Police: Woman steals ambulance, crashes after chase
Stephanie Schwambach faces several felony charges after allegedly leading police on a chase in a stolen ambulance before crashing it into a tree
By Joseph Kohut
DICKSON CITY, Pa. — A woman accused of crashing an ambulance she stole after a chase through Olyphant and Dickson City on Thursday night faces numerous felony counts filed by two police departments.
Stephanie Schwambach, 44, 125 Church St., Apt. A, Shillington, went to Geisinger Community Medical Center for treatment and a mental health evaluation after she crashed a Pennsylvania Ambulance vehicle into a tree behind homes at Amhurst and Templeton drives in Dickson City.
Olyphant police charged her with aggravated assault, fleeing, reckless endangerment, reckless driving, running a red light and stop signs, causing an accident, criminal mischief and receiving stolen property. Those charges cover the tense pursuit detailed in a criminal complaint filed by borough Patrolmen Dennis Sekelsky Jr., James DeVoe and Kevin Murphy.
Scranton Patrolman Greg Garvey charged theft in a separate complaint because police accused Schwambach of stealing Penn-31 from where it had been parked at GCMC.
A representative who answered the phone at Pennsylvania Ambulance said the company had no comment.
According to Olyphant’s complaint, authorities tracked the stolen ambulance using the vehicle’s GPS system.
Police spotted the vehicle headed north on South Valley Avenue, and they turned on their lights and sirens. Schwambach did not stop. She collided with the rear bumper of another car as police tried to box her in. She also struck an Olyphant police cruiser during the chase.
The chase continued along Lackawanna Avenue through Olyphant and into Dickson City, where she crashed and demolished the ambulance in the Westwood Manor development.
Schwambach was injured and was taken to the hospital for treatment. No other injuries were reported.
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