Motorist in Wild Chase had Marine Driver Training

Marines with Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force 2012 practice ramming during an advanced tactical driver course at U.S. Training Center. (Photo: Cpl. Jad Sleiman)
Marines with Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force 2012 practice ramming during an advanced tactical driver course at U.S. Training Center. (Photo: Cpl. Jad Sleiman)

LOS ANGELES — A driver who led authorities on a wild chase through Los Angeles that included making "doughnuts" on Hollywood Boulevard had Marine tactical driver training along with speeding tickets and license suspensions, records show.

Herschel Reynolds was trained as a motor vehicle operator for the 1st Marine Logistics Group at Camp Pendleton, where he served nearly two years as a private before his January discharge, the Los Angeles Times reported.

He was not deployed overseas but held the National Defense Service Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, records show.

"Reynold's premature discharge and rank are indicative of the fact that the character of his service was incongruent with Marine Corps' expectations and standards," according to a Pentagon statement.

Los Angeles County deputies began chasing Reynolds and another man on Thursday because their car matched the description of one used by burglars who took a box of jewelry from a home in Cerritos, authorities said.

Over about 90 minutes in drizzling rain, the rented blue Mustang convertible weaved through slick freeway and road traffic, sometimes going the wrong way. The car's top was down and the passenger sometimes waved at other motorists or stood up and danced.

The car also clipped another vehicle and rolled through populated crosswalks.

In Hollywood, the car sped past the famous Walk of Fame and TCL Chinese Theatre, stopping to turn in sharp circles and forcing heavy traffic to a stop.

The Mustang finally stopped in front of a home in South Los Angeles, where the driver got out and sat on the hood. A crowd gathered and exchanged hugs and high-fives with the men, who took selfies as they calmly waited for deputies to arrive and handcuff them.

They were arrested on suspicion of burglary. Reynolds, 20, remained jailed Saturday on $50,000 bail and Isaiah Young, 19, was being held on $80,000 bail. It was unclear whether they had retained lawyers.

Reynolds had three speeding tickets from 2013 to 2015 and twice had his driver's license suspended, the Times said, citing state Department of Motor Vehicle records. He was charged with reckless driving last year but the charge was dismissed, the paper said.

Both men lived in the neighborhood where they stopped. Neighbors described them as good-humored, friendly and polite. People crowded around to talk to the men after they stopped.

"I've been here 22 years and never seen that many people in the street," Carla McKing said with a laugh. "Everyone knew who they were in the convertible."

"What in the world is wrong with these boys," she told the Times. "They just made a bad choice."

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