Woman who drove through a fire scene while under the influence sentenced – Austin Daily Herald


Woman who drove through a fire scene while under the influence sentenced

Published 9:10 am Friday, February 9, 2024

The woman accused of driving into an active fire scene while under the influence was sentenced Thursday in Mower County District Court.

Samantha Rae Ricke, 34, was sentenced to five years supervised probation and fined $500 for felony first degree DWI-operating a motor vehicle under the influence of a controlled substance.

Seven other charges related to the case were dismissed.

Ricke was also sentenced to 60 days in jail with 43 days credit for time served on top of a staggered sentence of 30 days in jail to be served each year from 2025 through 2028. On top of that, she will also serve 30 days each year of electronic alcohol home monitoring.

She must follow several conditions connected to the case and failure to do so could result in 36 months in prison.

According to court documents, Ricke drove an Ford F150 around a squad car at the scene of a fire at Japan Panda just before midnight on Feb. 14, nearly running over a hose in the process. 

Officers tried to communicate with Ricke, who appeared confused and began driving the vehicle toward the hose and a fire truck. Officers shone a flashlight through the window and allegedly observed Ricke to pinpoint pupils and continue to stare at officers as they tried to get her out of the vehicle.  

She then proceeded to lead officers on a brief chase that at one point included top-most speeds of around 52 mph, at which time officers ended the pursuit. 

A Mower County Sheriff’s Office Deputy picked up the chase and Ricke was eventually taken into custody not long after midnight on Feb. 15.

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