October 30, 2018
A 40-year-old woman saying she needed help stole an ambulance and followed a fire truck, according to an arrest report.
Horry County police charged Laurie Leone, of Shallotte, N.C, with grand larceny of a motor vehicle, value of $10,000 or more.
Horry County Fire and Rescue crews initially responded to River Hills Drive in Little River for a medical call around 3:20 p.m. Monday. As a fire truck pulled away, one witness noticed an ambulance was stolen.
Witnesses saw the ambulance following a fire engine as it turned from River Hills Drive on to U.S. Highway 17, according to an arrest report.
An EMS worker told the firefighters in the truck what was happening, and they stopped on U.S. Highway 17.
When crews exited the engine, they saw Leone in the ambulance’s driver’s seat, according to the report.
Leone got out of the ambulance and said she was following because she needed help, the report states. Leone told police she saw the fire engine and it reminded her of her dad, so she decided to follow.
Emergency responders provided care to Leone, who denied drug use before the incident, according to the report. She was cleared by EMS personnel and arrested.
Police say Leone followed the fire truck for about a quarter-mile.