MEDFORD, Ore. — After brazenly stealing a BMW from a Medford car dealership on Wednesday, a woman allegedly led officers on a lengthy chase that ended on I-5 near Rogue River.
According to the Medford Police Department, 31-year-old Stephanie Chavez showed up at the Medford BMW dealership around 3:30 p.m. and asked about buying a new car. As a dealership employee prepared a 2022 BMW 240 for a test drive, Chavez allegedly jumped inside and drove away.
Dealership employees tried to stop Chavez as she left, but she kept going — turning out onto Highway 62 towards Medford. The white BMW passed a Medford Police officer, who begin tailing the car. MPD said that when the officer tried to pull her over, Chavez kept going north on Biddle Road, headed into Central Point, and finally got onto I-5.
Several officers tried to stop the BMW with spike strips, but they weren't immediately effective. Once on I-5, Chavez allegedly sped up in excess of 100 miles per-hour before her tires were ultimately flattened. The car came to a stop just west of Rogue River, where Chavez was arrested by officers from Oregon State Police, the Jackson County Sheriff's Office, and Rogue River Police without any further issue.
Chavez has been charged with unlawful use of a vehicle, felony elude, and reckless driving. MPD said that she provided a home address in the Portland area.