Suspect arrested after AutoZone ransacking and police chase

A man was arrested in connection with the ransacking of an AutoZone earlier this week and leading police on a car chase through Los Angeles, authorities said Friday.

Danny Sanchez, 24, was charged with organized retail grand theft, one count of fleeing a pursuing peace officer’s motor vehicle while driving recklessly and second-degree burglary, the Los Angeles County district attorney's office said in a news release.

“Mr. Sanchez’s alleged actions are part of a troubling trend that not only harms local businesses, but also jeopardizes the safety and security of our community,” Dist. Atty. George Gascón said in a statement. “Such brazen behavior will not be tolerated."

Sanchez, police said, was among a mob of people who broke into an AutoZone at about 1:30 a.m. Monday near Century Boulevard and Hoover Street and stole more than $1,000 in merchandise. Sanchez then allegedly fled the scene, leading police on a car chase.

Authorities eventually arrested him and recovered stolen merchandise.

Sanchez pleaded not guilty to the charges Wednesday and is scheduled to appear June 27 at the Compton courthouse, authorities said. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of three years and eight months in prison.

The burglary at the AutoZone occurred after a street takeover occurred near the store, police said. Video from the scene showed a mob of about 50 people near the storefront, with several of them covering their faces with hoodies and masks. They pulled the security gate open and forced their way in before fleeing with stolen merchandise.

Sign up for Essential California for news, features and recommendations from the L.A. Times and beyond in your inbox six days a week.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.