A man apparently frustrated to find himself behind a driver stuck at a parking lot gate at the Pentagon City mall fired a shot into the air Friday afternoon and then led Arlington police on a 4-mile car chase into Northwest Washington, D.C., police say.
The possible incident of road rage began about 3:30 p.m. in Arlington, Virginia. With peak Christmas shopping underway, a driver tried to leave a parking lot at the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City through the 15th Street S. exit, Arlington County Police said. He had trouble using his credit card at the gate, and asked the driver behind him to back up. The drivers argued and then the second driver fired a shot into the air, police said.
The driver who fired sped off and soon was trailed by Arlington police. He sped onto I-395 northbound toward the Third Street Tunnel in Northwest D.C. The gun was thrown from the car along the way, police said.
The high-speed chase passed through Southwest D.C., near the National Mall and then into the Third Street Tunnel, forcing police to close traffic near rush hour.
Police were able to arrest the driver and passenger, another man, at 3rd and F streets NW without incident. The gun thrown out of the car was recovered, police said.
Officers are looking for witnesses and the man initially stuck at the parking lot gate.
The mall is operating as usual, officials said.