By Ryan Gierach, West Hollywood, California
Temple Kol Ami, West Hollywood’s synagogue serving a predominantly LGBT congregation, suffered major damage to its front door early on July 4 when a stolen car being chased by police collided with another pair of cars, a pair of light poles (splitting the car in half) and the temple door
LAPD officers say that six people were injured in the incident, which began on the 5800 block of Centinela Avenue around 12:51 a.m. after a report of a person attempting to steal a vehicle.
As officers responded, a high-speed pursuit began with the driver of a black Tesla sometimes reaching 100 mph on La Brea Avenue..
The trail of detritus lay for miles up La Brea Avenue, with one police cruiser crashed into a center divider on La Brea Avenue in Baldwin Hills.
Moments later, upon arriving in West Hollywood, the Tesla then crashed into a Honda carrying five people in the 1200 block of N. La Brea Avenue in West Hollywood before crashing into another vehicle.
“We think the Tesla struck the Mercury that’s parked over at the curb, and it also crashed into the two light poles, and it was severed in half,” Los Angeles Sheriff’s Dept. Lt. Micheal White told the Jewish Journal. “The back half of it ended up wedged between the wall and the corner of the building.”
The 28-year-old unidentified driver of the Tesla was ejected before the front half caught on fire. The suspect was transported to a local hospital in critical condition. Three people in the Honda were also transported — one in critical condition, one in serious and one with minor injuries.
The two police officers in the cruiser were treated for minor injuries.
The Los Angeles Police Department is investigating the chase and stolen vehicle, as well as the crash involving the police cruiser, while the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department is investigating the other collisions.