VIDEO: Woman Steals Lufkin Police SUV

LUFKIN, TX (KETK) - The Lufkin Police Department has released video of a suspect who stole one their SUVs after being arrested and placed in the vehicle's backseat.

Toscha Sponsler, 33, of Pollok, took officers on a 23 minute pursuit from the Ulta parking lot to Zavalla before the chase ended.

The suspect was initially taken into custody after a foot chase. She had been identified as a potential shoplifter.

Police took her into custody near South First Street at Loop 287 and drove her back to Ulta, where she was placed in the patrol unit. The in-car dash cam shows Sponsler slipping from her handcuffs, climbing through a window and taking off with the SUV.

Throughout the chase, officers could see the woman reaching for the officer's shotgun, which was mechanically locked to the vehicle, according to police.

Speeds in the chase reached 100 miles per hours and at one point, the suspect nearly hit head-on two Lufkin Police units and Constable Chad Wilson .

Authorities were able to bring the stolen police unit to a stop using a PIT maneuver. Sponsler was spun out and taken into custody after crashing.

An internal review of the incident is ongoing.

"During the initial review we determined that limiting the size of the partition window in its open position could prevent this from occurring in the future if the locking mechanism fails or is not engaged," Lufkin Police Assistant Chief David Thomas said.

Sponsler remains in the Angelina County Jail on bonds totaling $18,000. She is charged with escape causing serious bodily injury/threat of a deadly weapon, aggravated assault against a public servant, possession of a controlled substance, evading arrest with a vehicle with a previous conviction and unauthorized use of a vehicle.

Watch the video below. The video is courtesy of the Lufkin Police Department. 

(Information from

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