Woman in theft of CN truck from Ponoka pleads guilty

Sentencing not set as the woman heads into intensive one year drug treatment program

A woman charged with the theft of a CN Rail maintenance truck while it was fuelling up has pleaded guilty to several of the charges against her.

Amanda Rau appeared in Ponoka Provincial Court Nov. 2 through closed circuit television while her defense lawyer, Damien Kutinsky, spoke on her need to take in an intensive one-year drug rehabilitation program at the Hope Mission Women’s Wellness Recovery program.

Crown prosecutor Sarah Sager, detailed the September incident where Rau almost drove into two people when she stole the truck.

Along with stealing a CN Rail truck while it was fuelling up, Sager, reading from the police report, stated when Rau got the truck stuck in a man’s yard north of Ponoka, she attempted to stab him with a screwdriver.

She took another vehicle and a police pursuit was initiated with officers reporting speeds in excess of 200 km/h. She eventually crashed in an area on the Samson Cree Nation and police reported that when they approached, her eyes were droopy.

Kutinsky said Rau was drug impaired at the time and doesn’t remember what occurred.

“Unfortunately, she has very little recognition of what occurred, but she takes no issue with the facts,” said Kutinsky.

He added that she recognizes a need for change. “These are obviously drug-fuelled charges.”

Read More: Woman steals truck from Ponoka gas station while being fuelled

After pleading guilty, he requested sentencing be held off for at least six months while she is still in the program.

“It’s a full year residential program, but we don’t want to put it off for a full year if she doesn’t comply,” explained Kutinsky, adding that the program’s first six months are quite intensive.

Rau faced a total of 12 charges, seven of which she pleaded guilty to — dangerous driving, theft of a motor vehicle, mischief, impaired driving, failing to stop a vehicle, disqualified driving and knowingly possessing a prohibited weapon.

The other charges have not been spoken to.

Rau was given strict bail conditions, something that Judge J. B. Mitchell wanted her to pay attention to.

“The RCMP will understand these rules perfectly, so you must also,” said Mitchell.

Along with keeping the peace and following through with the program, Mitchell added no drugs or alcohol to the list.

Read More: Ponoka crime mapping tool allows public to notice trends

“I just don’t think we should create any condition that makes you think it’s okay to go back to drug consumption,” stated Mitchell.

On top of those restrictions, Mitchell added that if her bail supervisor states she shouldn’t associate with certain people, she must comply.

“If you hang with dogs, you pick up its fleas. It’s the way of the world,” stated Mitchel frankly.

The opportunity is much like a second chance.

“I emphasize to you. This is not just an opportunity, this is a golden opportunity,” said Mitchell. “So don’t drop the ball will you.”

He added that most people go to jail for a long time in situations like this. “You’re going to a good place. They can help.”

A pre-sentence report is set to be heard on May 3 in Ponoka. A victim impact statement was provided to police, which will be read during sentencing.

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