An erratic driver involved in a hit-and-run nearly struck two children, threatened a witness with a knife and a gun and then barricaded himself inside an auto body shop in the Fairmount section of Philadelphia Tuesday night, according to police.
Investigators say the ordeal began at 25th and Brown streets shortly after 7:30 p.m. when the unidentified suspect rear-ended a van and then left the scene at a high speed. As the suspect fled the scene he nearly struck two children who were crossing Girard Avenue, according to a witness.
A Good Samaritan followed the suspect for several blocks as he continued to drive erratically at speeds of up to 60 mph during rainy conditions, police said.
The Good Samaritan finally confronted the driver when he pulled over. The suspect allegedly pulled out a knife causing the Good Samaritan to back off. The Good Samaritan told police the suspect then got out of the vehicle, went to the front seat, pulled out a gun and pointed it at him before returning to his car.
The suspect then drove off again until he arrived at an auto body shop on the 2600 block of Parrish Street shortly after 8 p.m., police said. He then barricaded himself inside and refused to come out as police surrounded the area, according to investigators.
The suspect was inside for about 45 minutes until he finally surrendered peacefully and was taken into custody, police said.
Investigators say the suspect was not injured but appeared to be intoxicated and under the influence of drugs, alcohol or both. The driver of the van that was struck, the two children who were nearly hit and the Good Samaritan who chased after the suspect also were not hurt, according to police.