SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — An armed suspect who held a UPS driver hostage Thursday after stealing his truck and leading police on a chase through San Jose was shot dead just yards from a KPIX crew.
The suspect, who was identified by police sources as Mark Morasky, was shot once by law enforcement in a parking lot as he ran from the UPS truck holding a firearm.
The standoff began as a car chase at Chynoweth and Pear Avenues just before 5:30 p.m. A Santa Clara County Sheriff’s spokesperson did not say why they were trying to pull over the suspect and his female passenger in the first place.
Investigators said the two suspects fired shots at deputies — hitting a patrol car — then ran out of the black SUV they in and carjacked a UPS truck, taking the driver hostage and speeding off through the streets of San Jose.
Deputies deployed spike strips at Highway 87 and Taylor but the truck continued to move for miles until it came to a stop at the busy intersection on Trimble and First. The area is surrounded by businesses and restaurants which were all put on lockdown as the standoff unfolded. VTA service was also affected.
“We were just told to hunker down until the time came,” said Marilyn Jansen, who works in the area, but was holed up inside a Starbucks across from where the UPS was parked.
Sakid Ahmed, who was working across the street from the incident, said officers told workers to stay indoors.
“They said there was a hostage situation, stay in the building, be safe,” he said.
For nearly 90 minutes, the suspect could be seen inside the UPS truck making hand signals, looking out the window and talking on the phone. He also could be seen holding a rifle and at times pointing it toward his head.
At one point the suspect drove the truck a couple feet forward but he was surrounded by a barricade of law enforcement who had their guns drawn.
The female suspect surrendered and was taken into custody and, soon afterward, the UPS driver was released. He appeared in good condition.
Morasky refused to surrender. KPIX has learned he was arrested in 2012 for an alleged carjacking and two armed robberies.
Moments before a KPIX live shot, Morasky jumped out of the truck with his rifle as law enforcement zeroed in on him with their vehicles. Morasky ran into an adjacent parking lot where he was shot dead.
“And then you could see him run out with he was carrying something ran across the street and then we heard a pop,” said witness Jacinto Laney.
“Shocking and very unfortunate,” Ahmed said.
Mike Glish, who works across the street from the incident, was among many who were not allowed to get to their cars when the standoff turned fatal.
“It’s terrible when somebody would do something like that,” he said.