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Woman who led police on slow-speed chase identified

Desert Hot Springs police have released new information on the woman who was arrested Saturday afternoon after leading police on a pursuit through the Coachella Valley. The incident shut down the area’s main travel artery, Interstate 10, for a short period of time.

Police said the incident happened at around 12:15 p.m., after officers conducted a vehicular code violation stop on a car blue Dodge Durango on Buena Vista and Palm Drive in Desert Hot Springs.

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During this stop, the driver, 41-year-old Catherine Engebretson of Desert Hot Springs, appeared intoxicated and was asked to exit the vehicle.

Shortly after, Mrs. Engebretson re-entered her vehicle, reversed into traffic, and fled the scene, according to Desert Hot Springs police.

The vehicle then headed eastbound on the freeway, traveling around 30 mph. Eventually the car came to a stop on the left shoulder near the median, in the stretch of freeway between the Washington and Jefferson streets off-ramps. Police said Engebretson armed herself with a crowbar and refused to come out.

The blond, middle-aged woman engaged with officers, screaming out her window and eventually crawling into the back seat of the vehicle.

Officers were able to force entry into the vehicle and apprehended the suspect, without injury. She was placed under arrest and booked into RSO Banning Jail for two counts of assault with a deadly weapon on a peace officer, criminal threats, felony resisting arrest, felony evading, felony evading driving into oncoming traffic and felony DUI drugs.

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