A Winnipeg man was arrested Aug. 2 following an incident where a vehicle stolen in Winnipeg rammed into the back of a Portage La Prairie RCMP car.
Kenneth Martin Derksen, 41, of Winnipeg is charged with Theft of a Vehicle, Dangerous Operation, and Assault Police Officer x2. He has been remanded into custody for a court appearance scheduled in Portage la Prairie Provincial Court on Aug. 7.
At about 11 p.m., Headingley RCMP officers began receiving complaints involving a vehicle driving northbound in a dangerous manner on the Perimeter Hwy near Hwy 3.
About 20 minutes later, the suspect vehicle was reported to be driving dangerously in the wrong lanes on Hwy 1 near Elie.
Portage la Prairie RCMP was notified and was patrolling on Hwy 1 in an attempt to locate the suspect vehicle. At 11:40 p.m., Portage RCMP officers observed the suspect vehicle driving westbound in the eastbound lane at a high rate of speed towards them. The officers were able to avoid a collision and turned around in an attempt to stop the vehicle.
The officers lost sight of the suspect vehicle and approached the railroad crossing near Portage la Prairie, which had a train crossing at the time. A vehicle was observed waiting for the train to cross so the officers pulled to the side of the highway to determine it was the suspect vehicle.
The officers were in their car on the side of the road when they observed a vehicle in their rearview mirror coming straight for them at a high rate of speed. The vehicle collided with the rear of the police car causing extensive damage to both vehicles. The officers were able to exit the police car and take the driver into custody. It was later determined that the suspect had driven through a property near the tracks and made a complete circle and struck the police vehicle from behind at a high rate of speed.
Both officers and the 41-year-old male driver, from Winnipeg, were taken to hospital as a precaution and later released.
Officers from the Portage la Prairie RCMP along with an RCMP Forensic Collision Reconstructionist continue to investigate.