Utah woman steals idling firetruck, runs off after eight blocks

Police say Amber Marie Welker, 39, got into the driver's seat of an idling firetruck and drove it eight blocks before she got out and ran off (CNN)

KEARNS, Utah (KSL) — Kearns woman who police say got into the driver’s seat of an idling firetruck and drove it eight blocks before she got out and ran off has been booked into the Salt Lake County Jail.

Amber Marie Welker, 39, was arrested for investigation of theft and violating her parole.

About 5 p.m. Thursday, as Unified Fire Authority firefighters were inside a 7-Eleven, 4820 W. 6200 South, police say Welker got into the driver’s seat of their idling firetruck and drove off.

She drove eight blocks before parking the truck by a Walgreen’s, near the intersection of 6200 South and 5600 West, then went inside the store and changed her clothes in a restroom.

After reviewing surveillance video, Welker was spotted walking near 6200 S. Stone Bluff Way (5500 West) and was arrested.

The firetruck did not sustain any damage. In fact, both Unified police officers and firefighters were amazed she was able to not only get the large vehicle moving, but drive it rather successfully.

“I have no idea how she did it,” said Unified Police Lt. Brian Lohrke.

“I was shocked that she was able to drive the little distance that she did and do so without anything more than going over a couple of curbs, which you see even experienced truck drivers and firefighters (do),” said Unified fire spokesman Matthew McFarland.