Utica woman accused of shoplifting, then crashing car

By WKTV News

(WKTV) - A  20-year-old Utica woman faces charges after New Hartford Police say she stole merchandise from the Sears in Sangertown Square, assaulted a security guard and then crashed her BMW into another vehicle while trying to flee.

Valentina Kovalets is charged with robbery, reckless endangerment, assault and several traffic violations.

According to authorities, officers responded to a crash on Commercial Drive in front of the Men's Warehouse Plaza. While responding, police were told the car in the crash matched the description of a car that had been involved in a theft at Sears.

When a  loss prevention officer attempted to stop a woman for possibly stealing, she is alleged to have slammed her driver's door on his arm. Kovalets then allegedly drove away and hit the loan prevention officer's arm.

She is then accused of driving at an excessive rate of speed on Commercial Drive, where she struck a 2002 Saturn SUV driven by Caitlyn A. Casab, 19, of Clinton. Kovalets was transported to St. Elizabeth's Medical Center, and Casab was taken to St. Luke's.

Kovalets was sent to the Oneida County Correctional Facility. Bail was set at $10,000.


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