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Police: Woman led cops on 40-mile chase after striking officer with car in Gary

Sun-Times file photo

A woman allegedly led police on a 40-mile chase Saturday night after striking an officer with her car in northwest Indiana.

About 10:45 p.m., a trooper pulled over 37-year-old Tabitha S. Fidanza’s 2005 Chrysler 300 on Interstate 65 in Gary, according to Indiana State Police. Fidanza, who initially refused to identify herself, gave the trooper her sister’s information as her own.

Fidanza, of Michigan City, Indiana, was asked to get out of her car when additional police units arrived, but she drove off and struck an officer, police said. The officer suffered minor leg injuries.

The trooper who stopped Fidanza then gave chase as she drove south on I-65 at speeds that reached 120 mph, police said. Fidanza was slowed down when one of her tires deflated after she drove over Stop Sticks that had been placed at several different locations.

Nevertheless, Fidanza proceeded to drive through a construction zone along I-65 in Lake County, police said. When she left the construction zone and led police through Newton and Jasper counties, Fidanza drove over more Stop Sticks that caused two two other tires to deflate.

Fidanza ultimately ended the pursuit near Newton Township, and she was taken into custody, police said. Once she was in custody, Fidanza’s true identity was confirmed and investigators discovered that she was wanted on multiple warrants.

Fidanza was charged with felony counts of battery causing injury, resisting law enforcement and false imprisonment, as well as misdemeanor counts of reckless driving and refusal to identify, police said. She was also charged with failing to appear for court dates for previous theft and possession of a syringe charges in LaPorte and Porter counties, respectively.

She is being held at the Lake County Jail, police said.