Husband of carjacking victim: 'She's a strong lady'

Husband of carjacking victim: 'She's a strong lady' »Play Video
Police said a woman carjacked this SUV before crashing it at N. Interstate and Mississippi.

PORTLAND, Ore. – A woman who jumped into several cars in North Portland on Wednesday morning ended up stealing one before crashing into a building, police said.

Police spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson said a 26-year-old woman carjacked a driver before 9 a.m. at North Interstate and Multnomah. The suspect sped away, then later lost control and drove up an embankment and crashed into a building.

The suspect was injured in the crash, Simpson said. She was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

She suffered serious injuries and will likely in the hospital for several days, police said.

Simpson said the strange series of events started around 8:40 a.m. when a man called 9-1-1 and reported that a woman got into his car. The caller told police the woman said her family was trying to kill her.

Other officers heard the woman was panicked and seemed to be either on drugs or having a mental crisis.

When officers arrived, Simpson said the suspect took off running into the surrounding neighborhood.

As officers searched the area, they heard the woman ran up to the second vehicle at Interstate and Multnomah and climbed into the passenger seat. Simpson said the driver got out of the SUV as the woman hopped into the driver’s seat.

That’s when police said the driver got into the backseat, although SUV’s owner got out again as she started to drive away.

The owner of the stolen SUV was not hurt.

Simpson said after stealing the SUV, the suspect sped away down Interstate before crashing into the embankment and building at Interstate and Mississippi.

"I think it's a little crazy the way it happened," said Mony Mao, the husband of the woman who was carjacked.

Mao said after the incident, his wife went back to work.

"She's a strong lady," he said. "It shook me a little bit, you know? I got here as fast as I can and when I see my wife safe in the detective's car and she's not trembling, I feel better."

Jim Hogan works at the building that the suspect crashed into. He said people in the building heard a loud "boom" when she hit the building.

"She was injured and kind of incoherent," he said. "If it hadn't been such a glancing blow I think she might have ended up inside." 

He added that he was told the suspect was driving about 60 miles per hour when she crashed.

Investigators said mid morning that they were still processing the crime scene and interviewing witnesses. Police have yet to file any charges.