A woman tried to run down an Oak Harbor garbage truck driver with a U-Haul van in an elementary school parking lot May 6 because he was driving too slow, according to court documents.
The suspect, 31-year-old year old Thanaporn Wongthida, then called 911 and blamed the garbage truck for striking her, according to a report by an officer with the Oak Harbor Police Department.
Officers arrested Wongthida on suspicion of vehicular assault. She appeared in Island County Superior Court May 9, and the judge set her bail at a $10,000 bond or $2,500 cash.
According to the police report, Wongthida was southbound in a U-Haul van behind a city of Oak Harbor trash truck on Regatta Drive just after 6 a.m. Wongthida grew impatient about the slow pace of the trash truck and tried to pass, but was forced back behind the truck by oncoming traffic.
The garbage truck turned into an Olympic View Elementary parking lot, and the driver got out to unlock a cable blocking the driveway.
Wongthida veered the van over the curb and the planting strip at the school parking area and headed straight for the man, according to the report. The garbage truck driver managed to jump out of the way of the van, which struck his elbow. He did not suffer any obvious injuries and denied medical attention.
The van continued across a sidewalk and grass strip into the parking lot and then back onto Regatta Drive. She recorded the garbage truck driver with her cell phone as she drove by and then called emergency 911, the police report states.
“Wongthida was uncooperative with dispatch and instead of stopping, continued to flee and curse at the call taker and claimed that a second vehicle had also tried to hit her,” the report states.
Police found and detained Wongthida at the south end of the city. She denied striking the man with her vehicle or turning into the parking lot.
The police report, however, states that the tire tracks across the curb, sidewalks and grass strip corresponded to the garbage truck driver’s story, as did the fresh grass and dirt in the wheel well of the van, the report states. Video from the school also showed the van closely following the garbage truck and then looping through the school parking lot, according to the report.
The officer wrote that the trash truck driver “was only spared serious injury or death by the fact that he had the room and ability to get out of the way of the vehicle.”
Wongthida recently arrived in the Oak Harbor area from Oregon, has no job or ties to the community and has an outstanding domestic-violence-related warrant out of Mason County, court documents indicate.