In classic Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! fashion, the Mystery Inc., gang was framed this past Sunday, when a woman took their iconic Mystery Machine on a joy ride that attracted the attention of the police. The woman in question was driving a minivan painted to look just like the iconic vehicle from the popular Saturday morning cartoon series and live-action movie franchise. She evaded the Northern California police in Redding, engaging them in a high-speed pursuit.
The chase began this past Sunday afternoon. 51-year-old Sharon Kay Turman was behind the wheel of her 1994 Chrysler Town and Country Minivan, which she used to outrun a number of squad cars. The van was painted teal and green, with the words 'The Mystery Machine' printed on the side. The vehicle is most often used to haul Fred, Daphne, Velma, Shaggy and Scooby-Doo to their various investigations. But this time, there was something a bit more nefarious to its use. Redding police Cpl. Levi Solada had this to say about the incident.
"You can't really get caught up in the cartoon because it's a serious business."
What made Sharon Ky Turman turn the Mystery Machine into the perfect getaway vehicle? The woman was wanted on suspicion of violating her probation. Officers spotted her at around 12:15 pm. Attempting to pull her over, Turman failed to heed their requests and excellerated her minivan. She also went out of her way to show a 'blatant disregard for motorist safety'. Officers stopped pursuit of the minivan in the area of Buenaventura Boulevard and Highway 273 as concern for public safety began to grow. Turman sped through one red light, and nearly hit four different cars in the first half of the harrowing chase. With the Redding police stepping back, the California Highway Patrol picked up the pursuit a short time later.
The Shasta County Sheriff's Office also joined in the chase as the Mystery Machine zoomed down Highway 273 to Interstate 5. However, deputies were forced to call off the high speed pursuit a second time as Turman reached speeds of 100 mph while fleeing through Tehama County. A CHP helicopter continued to monitor the van's progress as it continued moving down Highway 36. The fugitive eventually abandoned her colorful vehicle in the area of northwestern Tehama County.
Sharon Kay Turman was able to escape. And her current whereabouts are unknown. The Mystery Machine was recovered by the police though, and currently sits in the impound station. Anyone who has information regarding Sharon Kay Turman's whereabouts are urged to call the Tehama County sheriff's department. You can see the Mystery Machine in the news story we've included here.