Dramatic chase on the highway

Police major operation on the A 8 Dramatic chase on the highway

Damaged police car in action on the A8 near Leonberg Photo: 7aktuell/Nils Reeh

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A desperate woman races along the A 8 from Ulm to Stuttgart – and the police need all their strength to stop her. In the end, the highway near Leonberg is closed for three hours.

Leonberg – A total of 14 patrol car crews were on duty, the A8 was closed for hours, there were several kilometers of traffic jams, more than 10,000 euros in damage – but in the end a human life was saved. This is the result of a 60-kilometer highway chase that a desperate 35-year-old woman had with police on Monday night. "She is injured, but not life-threatening," police spokesman Peter Widenhorn says of the large-scale operation that ended near Leonberg.

The case started in the south of Bavaria. The 35-year-old, who comes from the district of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, is said to have left her family’s home at around 3 p.m. in an exceptional psychological situation and drove off in her BMW in an unknown direction. Because she had announced she was going to hurt herself, the family alerted the police. The relatives also reported that the woman probably had a firearm with her.

A first attempt to stop fails

The Garmisch-Partenkirchen police department initiated a manhunt that led to initial success in the early evening: a patrol car from the Ulm police headquarters spotted the BMW on the A8 in the direction of Stuttgart and attempted to arrest the BMW driver at around 18.45 o’clock to a control. For this, the woman should be directed to the parking lot Kornberg near Gruibingen (Goppingen district).

However, the woman accelerated and drove on at high speed in the direction of Stuttgart. Because she was approaching the area of responsibility of the traffic police of the Ludwigsburg police headquarters after Kirchheim unter Teck, the emergency services there were also alerted. Officers spotted the BMW in the area of Stuttgart Airport and continued to chase the driver in the direction of Karlsruhe.

The driver still reaches for the gun

The vehicles had around 19.3 p.m. passed the Leonberg interchange and the Leonberg-West exit in the direction of Karlsruhe when the police decided to seize the vehicle. About at the level of the S-Bahn underpass, after almost 60 kilometers of chase, two police cars slowed down the BMW and stopped it. The driver hit the two patrol cars.

Officers opened the vehicle and subdued the driver, who had previously drawn a gun. In doing so, she caused injuries to her upper body. "However, she did not point the gun at the officers," said police spokesman Widenhorn. The firearm was found in the car and was confiscated. The woman was taken to hospital. An officer was slightly injured during the grab.

Three hours of crime scene work

The A 8 had to be closed in the direction of Karlsruhe. Traffic was diverted at the Leonberg-West exit, motorists had to detour via Leonberg and Rutesheim. Meanwhile, the truck traffic remained in a traffic jam. "Because of the necessary crime scene work, the area had to be closed for longer," says Widenhorn. Only around 22.20 o’clock the road could be opened again.

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