(File photo)

100 Mile woman arrested after dramatic incident in Ashcroft

Diane Carol Priester allegedly rammed police cruiser in attempt to evade capture

A 100 Mile House woman who was wanted on multiple outstanding warrants for crimes she allegedly committed in Kelowna, Salmon Arm, and 100 Mile is in custody and facing a number of new charges after a dramatic incident in Ashcroft on Sunday, Feb. 16.

Diane Carol Priester, 44, has been formally charged by the BC Prosecution Service with dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, flight from police, assaulting a police officer with a weapon, resisting or obstructing a peace officer, possession of stolen property under $5,000, possession of a break-in instrument, and two counts of breach of a release order in relation to the incident.

At approximately 10 p.m. on Feb. 16, Ashcroft RCMP were alerted that a vehicle reportedly associated to fuel thefts in Logan Lake was seen heading into their area. The car — a silver Honda Civic hatchback — was spotted by an Ashcroft officer along Highway 97C near Mesa Vista Drive.

Police attempted to stop the vehicle, which turned off the highway onto Mesa Vista. It tried to evade police by pulling into a residential driveway, but an officer used his police vehicle to try to block the only escape route. The suspect allegedly accelerated toward, and collided with, the fully marked police vehicle, but became wedged between the RCMP cruiser and another unoccupied vehicle parked in the driveway.

“The officer emerged from his damaged cruiser and ordered the female suspect out of her vehicle,” says Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey, spokesperson for the RCMP Southeast District. “The woman ignored the officer’s commands and continued to accelerate in an attempt to push through the blockade.

“She eventually turned off the vehicle’s ignition, but when the officer went to re-position, she re-started her engine, suddenly reversed and accelerated towards the police officer and crashed through the blockage.”

O’Donaghey says that the officer had a fortunate escape by jumping onto the hood of the cruiser, where he escaped serious injury.

The suspect returned to the highway, where she continued north toward Clinton. RCMP officers there were forced to deploy a spike belt at the edge of town, which enabled them to safely apprehend the suspect.

Priester was held in police custody overnight, and is expected to appear in Kamloops Law Courts on Thursday, Feb. 20.

Anyone with additional information is asked to contact the Ashcroft RCMP at (250) 453-2216.


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