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Suspect in fatal U-Haul truck hit-and-run crash arrested

A suspect wanted in connection with a fatal hit-and-run crash that killed a 45-year-old woman in southeast Edmonton late Saturday has been arrested. 

RCMP said the man was arrested Tuesday night in the area of Wainwright, Alta., about 200 kilometres southeast of Edmonton.

RCMP previously said a Fort Saskatchewan woman was inspecting the outside of her vehicle after driving over a police spike belt on 50th Street and 22nd Avenue S.W. around 9:40 p.m. Saturday when a male suspect in a U-Haul truck hit her.

The woman was in one of three civilian vehicles to hit the spike belt, which deflates a vehicle’s tires. Another person was hospitalized with non-life-threatening injuries after being struck by the suspect’s vehicle after it went over the spike belt, according to RCMP Alberta spokesperson Cpl. Troy Savinkoff.

The incident started after Beaumont RCMP attempted to arrest a person suspected of theft around 9 p.m., but the vehicle fled at a high rate of speed.

Police said the truck travelled north on 50th Street into Edmonton from Beaumont before striking and killing the woman, later identified as Kassandra Gartner, a married mother of three daughters who worked as executive director of the Fort Saskatchewan Food Bank.

The spike belt had been laid on the road after the U-Haul truck rammed into an RCMP cruiser, RCMP said.

The U-Haul didn’t stop after striking Gartner. It crashed shortly after just outside a convenience store near the same intersection at 50th Street and 22nd Avenue S.W.

The suspect then stole a dark grey Honda Civic that was parked outside the gas station with a child inside, EPS said.

Police said the child was located unharmed in the area of 66th Street and 25th Avenue minutes later, but the suspect had fled in the stolen Honda.

On Monday morning, RCMP said the Honda was found abandoned Sunday evening in a rural area just outside Wainwright.

The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team has been notified by RCMP and will investigate the incident. 

The agency investigates cases where people are killed or seriously injured during incidents with police, or when allegations of police misconduct are presented.

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