- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 25, 2015

OGDEN, Utah (AP) - A woman may have been high on drugs when she drove the wrong way on Interstate 15 in Utah, took off on foot after the car crashed and attempted to carjack others stopped on the freeway as her dramatic arrest played out, authorities said.

The 32-year-old Utah woman driver remains hospitalized at the Ogden Regional Medical Center as of Tuesday morning for her non-life-threatening injuries from the initial car crash, the Utah Highway Patrol said.

The incident started about 2 p.m. Monday on southbound I-15 near Ogden, when a wrong-way car was reported.

As traffic was slowed to protect vehicles from the driver’s path, troopers mobilized to put the woman’s car off the side of the road. The car was weaving in and out of traffic and traveled in both directions on that stretch of the freeway north of Salt Lake City.

The car appeared to be driving toward at least one trooper who was on foot and that the officer had to jump out of the way to avoid being hit, Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Todd Royce said.



“When we get a wrong-way vehicle on the freeway, it’s kind of our worst fear,” Royce said, calling other such incidents that ended with fatalities “catastrophic crashes.”

As seen on a trooper’s dash-camera video footage, a Dodge Durango SUV driven by the trooper clipped the car twice. The maneuver caused the car to spin before landing on its top, Royce said.

The bleeding woman then got out of the crashed car, ran on foot toward traffic and began approaching multiple cars and a semi-truck that were stopped on the freeway, Royce said. She had tried to open their doors in an attempt to carjack them, although she didn’t gain control of those vehicles. Troopers approached her as she was standing on a side rail of the semi-truck, trying to get inside for an escape.

She resisted arrest, and it took five troopers to subdue the woman, who Royce said appears to weigh about 100 pounds, with handcuffs and ankle shackles. Four troopers were sent to the hospital after significant exposure to the woman’s blood, as part of standard procedure.

It’s not clear what drugs the woman may have had in her system, but that authorities believe that she may have also suffered from a mental breakdown, he said. “Just by her actions - the way she was acting was not normal actions,” Royce said.

She hasn’t been interviewed by police yet, but Royce said she will likely face charges of evading police, attempted carjacking, driving the wrong way and driving toward a trooper.

“There was no trooper hurt. She was slightly hurt, but nobody was killed. It’s a very dangerous situation,” Royce said.

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