A Massachusetts woman was arrested after a police pursuit that ended in a McDonald's drive-thru when the suspect pulled over to order food while driving a stolen vehicle, according to Worcester police.
The Worcester Police Department responded to a call reporting a stolen vehicle by a man who said he saw an unknown woman get into his truck and drive away, police said in a press release.
The owner of the stolen vehicle had GPS tracking and was able to provide police with a rough estimate of the truck's location, according to police. When police began their pursuit, they encountered a driver whose vehicle had been struck by the stolen truck.
Police eventually found the suspect, who was later identified as 38-year-old Johanna Gardell, but she drove away when she saw police approaching her. As Gardell fled, police pursued her but stopped for safety reasons after Gardell proceeded down a main road and through several red lights, police said.
When Gardell found herself stuck in heavy traffic, she started driving in the wrong lane against traffic to try and get around the other stopped vehicles, according to police. When officers approached, police say Gardell backed up the stolen truck at a high speed, striking another parked car and knocking down and dragging one of the officers. The officer who was struck was taken to a local hospital to be treated for non-life-threatening injuries, police said.
Police kept following Gardell as she drove away, but stopped their pursuit when it was again determined to be a safety risk.
The tense pursuit came to an end when police located Gardell, who had pulled into a local McDonald's drive-thru to order food. When two more officers located her in the drive-thru and approached, she allegedly struck their vehicle, police said. The officers were not injured.
Finally, Worcester officers were able to pull Gardell out of the stolen truck, despite the fact that Gardell "fought and struggled," police said.
She was arrested at the scene and faces a slew of charges including failure to stop for police, leaving the scene of an accident, assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, disturbing the peace, disorderly conduct and operating a motor vehicle after suspension, among others.
It is unclear whether Gardell has obtained an attorney. She could not be reached for comment.