Stolen hearse with body inside found after police chase in Southern California, deputies say

PASADENA, California -- A stolen hearse with a body inside was found after it crashed during a pursuit on a Southern California freeway Thursday morning.

A pursuit began around 7:35 a.m. after someone called police reporting they saw the stolen vehicle. The chase ended about 15 minutes later, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

The vehicle could be seen damaged on the 110 Freeway after the pursuit.

Police said a body and casket were found inside the vehicle after the pursuit ended.

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The search continued Thursday for a mortuary's Lincoln Navigator with a woman's body in the back that was stolen from a church in Pasadena, sheriff's deputies say.



Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies began searching for the hearse after it was stolen from outside St. Anthony's Church in Pasadena just after 8 p.m. Wednesday.



St. Anthony Greek Orthodox Church was holding a prayer service called a Trisagion Wednesday evening, often held the night before a funeral in the Greek Orthodox tradition. A funeral was scheduled for the morning.

Officials, however, said the woman's body that was stolen was not associated with the service, but was in a mortuary vehicle that happened to be stopping by the church at the same time. The mortuary attendant was bringing a body inside the church, while another was in the vehicle that was left parked outside.

Police said a suspect is in custody.
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