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81-year-old woman leads Denton police on slow chase

Nancy Strader
Credit: Denton Police Department

DENTON - A North Texas grandmother led police on a high slow speed chase Thursday.

Nancy Diaz Strader was "out for coffee" Thursday morning when other drivers began calling 911 to report an elderly driver going the wrong direction and around in circles on N. Elm Street.

Police say 81-year-old Strader did not respond to other drivers positioning themselves in front of and behind her white 2015 Jeep to make her stop, nor did she pull over when officers pursued her with lights and sirens going, according to the arrest affidavit. It wasn't until officers ordered her verbally through a patrol car's PA system as she was entering Loop 288 that Strader stopped. For a minute.

Strader ignored officers and refused to open her door or roll down her window, then drove away.

And thus began a police chase. A slow one, but still. The pursuit, at top speed, never hit 30 mph.

Think of the money they saved on gas.

Police 'chased' Strader for 3.5 miles before she stopped again. This time, officers approached her vehicle with (probably) a little less patience and a couple of knives they used to deflate her tires.

Still the outlaw, Strader refused to get out of the Jeep or roll down the window, so the cops used a shattering device and opened a window for her.

Still refusing to exit her vehicle, police removed Strader and she sat on a ground. A DWI field test concluded she was not intoxicated and paramedics checking her vital signs determined her blood sugar was okay. An affidavit states Strader told police she lives in Clifton, Texas and was "out driving and trying to get a cup of coffee," but she did not know where she was.

After conveying to officers that she did not know how long she had been driving or what time it was, she also told them, "I don't like people to interfere with my business."

But in spite of her confusion about where she was or what time it was, police believed Strader knew what she was doing when she chose to flee from police. She was arrested and charged with Evading Arrest or Detention with a Motor Vehicle and taken to the Denton City Jail.

She was released later that day after posting $1,000 bond.