ATLANTA — A routine traffic stop turned into a frantic police chase after a man stole an Atlanta police car, led officers on a high-speed pursuit and eventually crashed in front of an oncoming train before police potentially saved his life.
Bodycam and helicopter footage showed the entire scene play out as APD released the video on their Facebook from the incident that occurred in the early hours of Saturday morning.
At around 2:09 a.m., an APD officer performed a traffic stop at 2841 Greenbriar Parkway in southwest Atlanta. While the officer was out of his car talking with the driver, another person unrelated to the stop hopped in the driver's seat of the patrol car and sped off past the officer.
The officer immediately notified dispatch and relayed the information of what direction and road he drove off in to the APD Air Unit who was up patrolling at the time, according to a statement from Atlanta Police. A brief pursuit then ensued.
Not long after stealing the police car, the suspect lost control at the intersection of McDonough Boulevard and Hank Aaron Drive where he flipped the car onto nearby train tracks.
In a scary scene, GSP troopers assisted APD officers in pulling the suspect from the police car just seconds before a train rolled in and hit and the vehicle that was partially blocking the tracks. The train's horn rang out as it desperately tried to alert the officers nearby that it was about to plow into the car.
"Good job officers, glad everybody's safe. They just saved that man's life. For sure," an APD pilot said minutes after the ensuing crash and arrest.
>>Take a look at the entire scene play out below
The 29-year-old suspect was arrested and charged with theft by taking, fleeing and eluding, reckless driving, obstruction, and damage to city property. He was booked into the Fulton County Jail.