Woman Steals, Crashes Ambulance in Lackawanna County

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LACKAWANNA COUNTY-- Police say it all started Thursday night near the helipad in Nay Aug Park in Scranton.

Officers said Stephanie Schwambach, 44, of Shillington was driving a U-Haul truck when she crashed.

“She just needed a ride, from what I understand, she was asking the COLTS bus up there if they could take her back to where she's from and they told her no, it was just too far,” said Olyphant Police Officer James DeVoe.

Police said Schwambach is then seen on surveillance video at Geisinger CMC first circling and then jumping into the driver's seat of a Pennsylvania Ambulance before speeding off.

When paramedics realized the ambulance was missing, officials tracked it to Olyphant using the vehicle's GPS.

There, officers said they tried to stop Schwambach as she sped through town.

They said she hit a vehicle with a person inside at a traffic light, then rammed the back of an Olyphant police cruiser.

No one was seriously injured.

Officers said Schwambach sped away into a neighborhood of Dickson City leaving a path of destruction, tearing down part of Anna Khazanov's fence.

“I was going to sleep, my daughter has to be up early in the morning for school, and out of nowhere, just boom! And I first thought it was down by Main Street,” said Anna Khazanov of Olyphant.

Finally, police said Schwambach took the ambulance up a driveway and down an embankment on the other side.

“Before I jumped over the bank, I thought she was dead, I didn't think she was going to make it because the ambulance actually launched into the air and hit the tree and a dead stop right there,” said Officer DeVoe.

Police said Schwambach is expected to be OK.

Officers arrested her at gunpoint.

She is facing felony charges in several communities, including Olyphant, Dickson City, and Scranton.


  • jimbrony

    I’m sure Stephanie will have plenty of insurance for something like this and will be able to make full restitution.

    • Silverfish Imperetrix

      That’s some funny stuff right there, Jim. Here’s something even funnier – this story reminded me of Destiny McNeil, the 17-year-old thug from Nanticoke that whacked a guy in the head from behind with a brick inside his own garage, then stole a brand new ambulance down the street (while they were making a call no less), led police on a chase, and totaled the ambulance (price – $150,000), so I decided to look into her “penalty”. It happened in 2015, her trial was in 2017, and she received TWO YEARS PROBATION, courtesy of Judge Joseph Sklarosky, Jr., and she has to pay $45,116 in restitution (like she ever will). A crackpot psychologist “treated” her and said she told him she saw “demon shadows”. Naturally he believed her and diagnosed her as schizophrenic, hence the non-sentence I assume. All of it on the taxpayer’s dime too. Disgusting.

  • Margaret Bennett

    Well if the paremedics didn’t leave the keys in the ambulance all this wouldn’t happen. If u read why she did this she couldn’t find a ride home..yes she is still in rhe wrong!!

    • jimbrony

      “911, what’s your emergency” “My name’s Margaret Bennett and I’m having a heart attack” “We’ll send an ambulance as soon as they find the keys ma’am”. A lot of emergency vehicles don’t even have keys Marg, and those that do – they stay on the ignition for that reason. Multiple shifts, multiple drivers. Who has the keys?

  • dunmorelegend

    Who’s the crazy woman and what was she on? B*tches be crazy. Thought she would get an ambulance full of drugs and nobody would know. Hahaha

    • Silverfish Imperetrix

      They finally identified her. She sounds like a real winner…just crashed a U-Haul truck and needed a ride. LOL

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