An SUV was destroyed and its driver arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after an early morning beating and chase in Berkeley.
An SUV was destroyed and its driver arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after an early morning beating and chase in Berkeley.

BERKELEY -- A Texas man who tried to flee officers in his SUV and on foot was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after an early Wednesday beating about a block from the UC Berkeley campus that left an Oakland man critically injured, police said.

The suspect, identified by police as 54-year-old Duane Nailor, was hospitalized after the crash but will survive, Berkeley police spokeswoman Jennifer Coats said.

In addition to attempted murder, Nailor will be charged with other crimes that allegedly occurred after the beating incident, Coats said.

The victim was in critical condition at an undisclosed hospital, Coats said. Police did not disclose the weapon used in the beating.

Coats said officers responded around 12:45 a.m. after several callers said one man was violently beating another at the northeast corner of Shattuck Avenue and Center Street, an area about a block west of the campus. Witnesses told police that the beating continued after the man was down on the ground and that it stopped only when the suspect broke out the window of a passing motorist's vehicle.

Police said Nailor got into a sport utility vehicle as they got close to the scene and fled west on Center Street, then north in a southbound lane of Martin Luther King Jr. Way, hitting a police car along the way. Eventually, officers lost the SUV, which was driven at a high rate of speed, Coats said.

They came upon it again at the Alameda and Hopkins Street, Coats said. This time, the SUV was destroyed, its right side sheared open from a collision with a tree that police later determined had occurred on The Alameda, Coats said. Nailor tried to run away from the wreck, she said, but didn't get far before police took him into custody.

The investigation remains open, Coats said, and anyone with information about the beating or the chase is urged to contact Berkeley police at 510-981-5741 or 510-981-5900. Anonymous tips can be left at 800-222-8477.

Contact Rick Hurd at 925-945-4789, and follow him at Twitter.com/3rdERH.