‘I thought it was over’: Pizza delivery driver’s act of kindness turns into carjacking, wild chase

PASADENA, Texas – A pizza delivery driver is shaken but OK after an act of kindness turned into a wild police chase in Pasadena.

The chase ended around 10:50 p.m. on Shaver Street near Thomas venue, police said.

Authorities initially said a pizza delivery man had gotten into an accident with another man in another part of town and that is how it all started, but the driver told KPRC 2 reporter Vincent Crivelli that he was just trying to help.

The delivery driver, who did not want to be identified, told KPRC 2 that he was on his last delivery of the day when he came up to the scene of an accident, so he pulled over to help.

According to the driver, there was a man holding a 2-year-old child. He asked the man if they were OK and that is when the man grabbed a shotgun and got in the back of the delivery driver’s car.

“He said, ‘Just drive or I am going to shoot you,’” the driver said. “I heard the gun click and I started thinking about my family.”

The driver told KPRC 2 he thought he was going to die.

“…I thought that was it, I thought it was over.”

With a gun to his head, the driver said he hit the gas and continued to drive, even as officers pulled behind him.

“(The man) had me running red lights, stop signs,” the delivery driver said. “(He) had me in a high-speed chase I did not want to be in.”

The chase went over the Ship Channel Bridge then 225, where the chase hit speeds over 100 mph.

“I am looking at the mirror (and) I’m seeing police,” the delivery driver said. “They are inches on my bumper trying to spin me out and all that.”

During the chase, the delivery driver said the man got angry that the authorities were so close and demanded to go faster.

“He was telling me he was already out on parole, he has guns on him (and) he can’t go back,” the driver said. “The baby he was crying throughout the whole thing. He was pointing. He was trying to get out of (the man’s) arms (who) was still holding him.”

The chase ended after 20 minutes. Police said the man left his child and the delivery driver behind and fled the scene on foot. Both the driver and the child are OK.

Upon investigating authorities determined the car chase ended in front of the baby’s mother’s home. Authorities said they asked 23-year-old Brenda Riojas if they could search her home for the man and she consented. Detectives did not find him, but they say they found large amounts of narcotics. Riojas was charged with manufacturing and delivery of a controlled substance as well as possession with intent to distribute.

Authorities identified the man as 25-year-old Elpidio Cruz Junior. Authorities said he remains at large.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.

About the Authors: