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Man fleeing traffic stop causes fiery crash in Southeast Portland, police say

The 19-year-old suspect is facing third-degree assault, DUII and other charges after two people were injured in the crash.
Credit: KGW News

PORTLAND, Ore. — A Portland man fled from a traffic stop and caused a fiery crash that seriously injured two people early Saturday morning in Southeast Portland, according to police. 

At around 12:45 a.m., two officers were stopped at a red light on Southeast 122nd Avenue and Southeast Division Street when a white 2007 BMW 328i blew through the intersection. Police said the driver continued southbound on 122nd and immediately sped up when the officers tried to pull him over. 

The suspect ran another red light at Southeast 122nd and Powell and struck a Nissan Altima that was heading eastbound. 

The BMW rolled several times and caught fire, police said. 

The driver of the BMW was identified as 19-year-old Alejandro R. Velazquez. Police said he was attempting to run away from the BMW on foot when officers arrested him. 

Meanwhile, the suspect's passenger, a 21-year-old man, was stuck inside the burning car. 

An officer climbed into the driver's side to clear debris in order to free the passenger's legs. Another officer used a fire extinguisher to try to put out the flames. 

The driver of the Nissan, a 25-year-old man, and the rescued passenger were transported to a hospital with serious but non-life threatening injuries, police said. 

Velazquez, the BMW's driver, was not badly hurt but was evaluated at the hospital as a precaution. He was discharged and booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center on the following charges: 

  • Assault in the third degree (2 counts)
  • Attempt to elude by vehicle
  • Attempt to elude on foot
  • Reckless endangering (2 counts)
  • Failure to perform the duties of a driver 
  • Driving under the influence of intoxicants
  • Reckless driving