Authorities are investigating after a woman stole a Birmingham Police Department SUV and led officers on a high-speed chase on Interstate 459. Learn more in the video above.
Birmingham police said the suspect, 35-year-old Leah Letson, was allegedly involved in an altercation with a man inside a vehicle in west Birmingham around 10 a.m. when an officer arrived to investigate.
Letson, who police said “appeared to be the primary aggressor” in the altercation, was detained in handcuffs and placed in the back of the patrol SUV, where she “was able to manipulate her handcuffs” and climb into the driver seat of the SUV while the officer spoke to a witness. Authorities said she then fled the scene in the officer’s SUV and drove around “multiple parts” of the city before getting on I-459 South at Grants Mill Road.
Police said spike strips were used to help bring the chase to an end near Highway 150 in Hoover, which is where Letson was taken into custody.
Letson is charged with first-degree auto theft and first-degree robbery. She is in the Jefferson County Jail with no bond.
There are no reports of injuries at this time.