Woman arrested after stealing car

Staff Writer Kate Wehlann

A local woman was arrested for stealing a car, resisting law enforcement and intoxicated and reckless driving this past Saturday.

Just before 9 p.m. on Aug. 11, officers from the Salem Police Department were told of an auto theft that occurred at O’Reilly Auto Parts on West Mulberry Street and the car, a white Chevrolet Monte Carlo, was traveling west on Mulberry Street, then east. Officer Michael Voelz said he activated his emergency lights and went in the direction the car was last seen traveling.

As he reached the intersection of Posey and Mulberry, he spotted the car in question. Voelz said the driver, later identified as Summer Ammons, 39, Honoraville, Alabama, looked at him and turned south on Posey Street. Voelz pulled in behind her, with emergency lights and then siren. Ammons continued driving, speeding up and disregarding a stop sign at Posey and West Market Streets before hitting a white minivan traveling west on West Market Street, striking the front passenger-side fender and ending up in a ditch on the south side of the street. The van spun 180 degrees and Voelz called in to report the wreck.

Voelz approached the Monte Carlo and saw the air bag had dployed. Ammons exited the vehicle and said she was hurt and needed an ambulance. Voelz told her an ambulance was on the way and she was under arrest. He noted she had no obvious signs of external injuries and placed her in restraints and in the front seat of his vehicle.

The driver of the other vehicle told Voelze he needed an ambulance as there was a small child in the vehicle. He said he tried to avoid her, but it had been impossible. The child appeared all right.

Other units from the Salem Police Department arrived with deputies from the Sheriff’s Department and EMTs with the Washington County Ambulance service.

Voelz went back to check on Ammons and read her her Miranda Rights. He asked her why she ran from him and she replied she didn’t know.

“I explained to her that she had looked right at me,” Voelz said in his report. She admitted she had gotten the vehicle from O’Reilly’s.

Ammons complained of side pain and admitted she had a “tonic water” when asked if she had been drinking and that it had vodka in it. She told officers some guy had bought it for her at the bar near the auto parts store.

Voelz took Ammons to the hospital, where he attempted to administer a field sobriety test, which he soon terminated as she was unable to keep her head still and said her neck hurt. Voelz saw that Ammons’s eyes were bloodshot and could smell alcohol on her. Ammons consented to a chemical test, which later read a .026. A urine test showed Ammons also tested positive for amphetamines.

The vehicle Ammons had stoled belonged to one James Taylor, who told Salem Police Officer Russell Wilcoxson he and a passenger had traveled to the parts store and he had gone inside. While he was in the store, his passenger, Travis Russell, came into the store and said a woman had come up to him and asked for money. Taylor then looked outside to see his car gone. A store employee immediately called the police. They watched as Ammons drove the car first west and then east as the employee was on the phone with dispatchers.

Ammons was taken to the Washington County Detention Center and preliminarily charged with the following: auto theft, resisting law enforcement, operating a vehicle while intoxicated, operating a vehicle while intoxicated per se (.15 or above) and reckless driving.


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