Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Prairie crime rampage stopped

Calgary couple finally cornered in Brandon

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Tim Smith / Brandon Sun
Brandon Police Service officers arrest a suspect in a three-province rash of crimes involving several stolen vehicles, one of which was used in an attempted break-in.


Tim Smith / Brandon Sun Brandon Police Service officers arrest a suspect in a three-province rash of crimes involving several stolen vehicles, one of which was used in an attempted break-in.

BRANDON -- A man and woman from Calgary are expected to appear in court today after a crime spree across the Prairies ended in a high-speed chase and a crash at the city's eastern outskirts.

Speeds reached more than 150 km/h and at least two vehicles were struck in the bid to evade police. Nobody was seriously hurt.

"We're just glad that everyone came out of this safe and sound," Manitoba RCMP spokeswoman Tara Seel said.

Mounties say the crimes occurred in three provinces, leaving a trail of break-ins and stolen vehicles.

The RCMP and Brandon Police Service were piecing together the events, which appear to have started in Alberta and continued into Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Investigators have traced the crimes to Lethbridge, Alta., where they believe a vehicle was stolen earlier this week.

It appears another vehicle was stolen in Moose Jaw, Sask., on Thursday.

Around 5 a.m. Thursday, in Sintaluta, Sask., east of Indian Head along the Trans-Canada Highway, a stolen SUV was rammed into the overhead door of a gas station/hardware store.

The attempt to get into the business failed and those responsible fled to Wapella, Sask., near the Manitoba border.

Around 7:30 a.m. Thursday, RCMP were called to Wapella after a report of a stolen pickup truck. An SUV and the stolen pickup had been seen going east on the Trans-Canada.

The Wapella truck was found later Thursday morning in nearby Moosomin, Sask., as RCMP investigated a report another pickup had been stolen from that town.

Mounties also found a grey vehicle that might have been the SUV used in the botched Sintaluta break-in, but they had not confirmed that Thursday.

The pickup stolen in Moosomin was abandoned in the Elkhorn, Man., area, just east of the Saskatchewan border, where another pickup was stolen.

Meanwhile, police were alerted that a 1999 Buick LeSabre had been stolen from Oak Lake, Man., between Virden and Brandon.

Shortly before 10 a.m., Brandon police stationed at Kemnay spotted that car and chased it east along Highway 1A where the speed reached 150 km/h.

The LeSabre entered the city and continued to speed along Victoria Avenue.

It turned north onto Highway 110, where it struck another vehicle as it tried to pass and both vehicles wound up in the ditch.

A man and woman in the struck vehicle weren't hurt.

Brandon police cars swarmed the crash scene and officers armed with shotguns arrested the man and woman who'd been in the LeSabre.


-- Brandon Sun


Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 3, 2014 A10

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