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Ambulance thief leads police on chase into Lake Ontario

By
Kyle Barnett

June 14 (UPI) -- A chase through upstate New York took a stolen ambulance 137 miles before it was dumped in Lake Ontario.

"In my 15 years at the Police Department, I've never heard of anything quite of this nature," Sgt. Michael Curley of the Utica Police Department said, according to WSTM.

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A spokesperson for Kunkel Ambulance said that none of the crew members was present when the theft occurred.

Police used GPS to track the ambulance after it was reported stolen.

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State police began chasing the vehicle 50 miles in Syracuse before the chase ended outside of Rochester, when the driver plunged into Irondequoit Bay.

Authorities said they tried to stop the driver several times and used two tire strips to try to puncture the vehicle's tires.

"We pursued the vehicle at a reasonable speed. The person wasn't in any hurry," said Mark O'Donnell, a spokesman for the New York State Police.

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The driver was traveling through the Rochester area on Seneca road near the Newport Yacht Club when she crashed into the water.

Bob Henry, a board member at the yacht club, watched the incident.

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"I was working on the docks when I heard a loud ambulance siren. I could tell it was coming down the road because it was so loud," Henry said. "So I looked up and I saw an ambulance fly right by. It didn't stop. It went right through the gate and into the water. Big splash."

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After the crash, the driver of the stolen ambulance -- a woman whose identity was not released -- was rescued by civilians and now is under arrest.

The stolen ambulance was pulled out of 30 feet of water with the help of diving crews.

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