Shirtless man arrested after bizarre carjacking on Hwy. 101 in SLO

A Salinas man was arrested in San Luis Obispo on Monday after he allegedly ran around on Highway 101, jumped into the back of a pickup and forced a woman to drive, the California Highway Patrol said.

At 8:10 a.m., officers got a report of a shirtless man in black pants running around in the northbound lanes of Highway 101 near the Monterey Street exit, according to CHP Officer Jordan Richards. The man was apparently stopping traffic and trying to open car doors, Richards said.

The man then jumped into the bed of a pickup, pounded on the back window of the cab and yelled “Drive!” at the female driver, Richards said. The woman continued driving while also calling 911.

At 8:20 a.m., the woman pulled over onto the right-hand shoulder of the highway just north of the Cuesta Grade, Richards said. The man then jumped out of the truck and began running into the middle of the freeway, flagging down other vehicles.

CHP officers were able to detain the man “without incident.” He was identified as Matthew A. Medina, 40.

Medina was exhibiting “bizarre behavior” and tried to escape several times while he was with CHP officers, Richards said. Authorities determined that Medina was under the influence of drugs and had some medical issues, as well as potential mental issues that could be related to drugs, Richards said.

After officials noticed that Medina’s blood pressure was higher than normal, he was taken to the hospital.

He has since been booked into County Jail on charges of carjacking, being under the influence of a controlled substance and resisting a public officer. Bail is set at $100,000.

Gabby Ferreira: 805-781-7858, @Its_GabbyF