A woman towing a caravan led police on an action-packed chase after refusing to stop at a state border checkpoint on Monday morning.
The 47-year woman, who has been identified as Brenda Elena Bleazard, sped through a checkpoint at South Australia’s border with Western Australia on the Eyre Highway despite being directed to stop and supply relevant approvals.
Western Australia Police have alleged Bleazard, who was driving a Volvo wagon and towing a caravan drove “erratically” causing the caravan to sway all over the road before coming to a stop when police vehicles managed to box her in.
She then allegedly put the Volvo, still towing the caravan, into reverse at speed, and rammed an unmarked police car, before trying to run down a police officer who was on foot at the time.
The officer was able to dodge the Volvo’s advance.
Eventually, the caravan dislodged from the vehicle and wound up travelling on the wrong side of the road and into a bush, allowing the woman to speed away, as the Volvo was now free of the caravan.
According to police, Bleazard came to a stop and yelled abuse at officers before opening the driver’s door and hurling a jar of “unknown liquid” at the feet of the officers and tried to set the liquid on fire before speeding away again.
After this display, the unmarked police car stopped trying to intercept her and followed at a safe distance until she stopped at a truck rest bay and tried to ram the police car again.
Police managed to take Bleazard into custody at Madura Roadhouse, which is around 180 kilometres from the border checkpoint.
She was charged with two counts of reckless driving to escape police pursuit, failure to comply with a direction to stop, endangering the life of a person and assault to prevent arrest, just to name a few.
Bleazard faced Kalgoorlie Magistrates Court on Tuesday, via audiolink from behind bars at Eucla police station and chose to represent herself, according to ABC News.
She continuously interrupted Magistrate Andrew Matthews as he read out her charges, and told the court that she didn’t believe in the judicial system and that she needed to leave Australia.
Bleazard replied to Matthews attempt to explain her charges by asking if she could “charge the police”.
She also requested an interpreter, even though she appeared to have no trouble speaking English.
“I need an interpreter … I don’t understand what you’re talking about,” she said, according to ABC News.
“My problem is that I want to leave Australia, but no-one here is able to arrange it.”
At one point, an officer can be heard telling her that she needed to show the magistrate “a bit of respect”.
“We’re not achieving anything here… you need to let the magistrate speak without interrupting him so that we’re not going around in circles,” the officer said.
Matthews said he would not consider a bail application because he was concerned that Bleazard would fail to comply with any court conditions.
Bleazard will remain in custody until 6 September, when she will attend a hearing via videolink.
The incident came not long before Western Australia downgraded South Australia from ‘low risk’ to ‘very low risk’ at midnight last night.
Under the new rating, those travelling from South Australia will still need to complete a G2G Pass declaration and be prepared to take a COVID-19 test if deemed necessary.
Land arrivals still need to attend border checkpoints to present their G2G Pass and those arriving from Perth Airport will undergo a health screening and temperature check.
Likewise, Queensland has transitioned from ‘medium risk’ to ‘low risk’, which requires travellers to present a negative test on arrival and on day 12 as well as self-quarantining for 14 days.
However, NSW has been elevated to “extreme risk” meaning travel from the state will not be permitted.
Featured image source: WA Police