A sex offender has been arrested after leading police on a 100-mile chase while driving a motorhome.

Stephen Houk was taken into custody Thursday afternoon in Barstow, California, according to Los Angeles County Sheriff Department.

Houk was on parole for felony sodomy in Oregon, where he had served an eight-year sentence.

The chase began on Tuesday afternoon in Santa Clarita, after officers tried to talk to the 46-year-old about claims he had threatened his wife.

Sheriff's Captain Darren Harris said Houk's wife told deputies that he had assaulted her earlier that morning and pointed a loaded gun at her.

Houk was wanted on a number of charges, including assault with a deadly weapon, making terrorist threats, kidnapping.

But he escaped in a motorhome, with his two young children, aged three and 11 months, inside.

At times, there were more than a dozen police cars chasing the motorhome during the 100-mile chase through Hollywood and north into California's agricultural region.

Officer Robert Rodriguez, a spokesman for the California Highway Patrol, said officers did not deploy the usual methods of stopping the chase – such as puncturing tyres or hitting the vehicle – because of the presence of the children.

"We were treating this with kid gloves because we didn't want to agitate the driver," he said on Thursday.

Eventually Houk stopped at an almond orchard and police surrounded the motorhome with guns drawn, waiting for him to leave the motorhome.

Instead, Houk's young son walked out and officers later found the baby in the vehicle – but no sign of Houk.

Describing the situation, Officer Rodriguez said: "He got lucky.

More from California

"All the forces came together and, temporarily, they were on his side."

The children were unharmed and reunited with their mother.

Original Article

[contf] [contfnew]

Sky News

[contfnewc] [contfnewc]