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Driver who jumped curb in Castro arrested

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The 70-year-old driver whose van jumped a curb, wreaking havoc in the Castro Saturday, was arrested on suspicion of crimes including attempted murder, police said.

Kenneth Rotter, who police said lives in his vehicle with his dog, has been booked at San Francisco County Jail on suspicion of aggravated assault, attempted murder, felony vandalism, hit and run, reckless driving, driving under the influence and vandalism, according to police.

The case began when officers responded to the 400 block of Castro Street around 3:12 p.m. Saturday after getting several calls about a person driving on the sidewalk, police said.

The officers found a purple Dodge van driving westbound on 18th Street toward Castro Street and made a traffic stop, according to police.

A preliminary investigation revealed Rotter allegedly drove his vehicle onto the sidewalk on the 400 block of Castro Street, hitting parking meters and trees, police said.

Next, Rotter stopped, backed into a deli and then drove off the sidewalk and down 18th Street southbound, according to police. He drove around the block, running stop signs and sometimes driving on the wrong side of the street, police said.

The suspect didn’t hit any pedestrians and no other vehicles were damaged, according to police.

Rotter told officers he was having brake problems, police said.

Officers impounded the vehicle and will have it inspected it for any mechanical defects.

The California Highway Patrol provided a drug recognition expert who visited the injured suspect in the hospital at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital to determine his sobriety status, police said.

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