December 27, 2010 | 2:34pm
Criminals aren't the sharpest bunch of individuals. History has shown us that. They forget video surveillance and fingerprints matter, obvious stuff like that.
They also seem to believe, even after they're caught or within reach of the police, they can put pedal to metal and race their way to freedom. What percentage of high-speed chases has resulted in the bad guy actually getting away? Maybe .0001-percent? Dude (or dudette), you're in a car, with cops trailing in cruisers or motorcycles, a helicopter above, in most cases, and radio communication between them. To make matters worse, if and when said bad guy is caught, a judge gets to tack evading authorities onto the charges. As we said, not geniuses.
The most recent fugitive speed demon: Marcelo Salvador Caparrotta. His vehicle of choice: 2002 Chevrolet Malibu. We hope there were racing stripes.
Caparrotta began the most recent episode of criminal stupidity at 1:13 a.m., after a police officer attempted to pull him over for speeding near the Euclid exit on the 5 Freeway, heading south.
The driver, who was also believed to be driving while intoxicated, took off, hitting speeds of over 100 m.p.h., passing through Anaheim, Garden Grove, Fountain Valley, Santa Ana, Costa Mesa and Newport Beach.
Caparrotta managed to make his way to Pacific Coast Highway and Brookhurst before Huntington Beach Police took over the chase and used spike strips to shred the Malibu's tires, and then employed the PIT maneuver--bumping a rear side of the vehicle to send it into a spin--to bring the chase to an end in Long Beach, near the corner of PCH and Second Street. The chase lasted for just over 30 minutes.
On top of evading police, Caparrotta also faces charges of driving under the influence and violating his parole.