Woman accused of taking ambulance for joy ride

Posted: Updated:
Joni Marie Sweet By Andrew Michalscheck Joni Marie Sweet By Andrew Michalscheck
By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- A woman is under arrest after police say she took an ambulance for a joy ride.

According to Phoenix police officer James Holmes, the crew of a Southwest Ambulance was attending to a patient at the emergency room of Phoenix Baptist Hospital Friday evening. That's when, for some reason, Joni Marie Sweet hopped into the ambulance and drove off, Holmes said.

Officers spotted the ambulance in the area of 35th Avenue and Glendale Road.  According to Holmes, police tried to stop the ambulance, but Sweet kept driving into Glendale, then back to Phoenix.

That's when officers took action.

"Phoenix police proceeded then to go onto our ambulance channel and communicate with the driver," Molly Walter with Southwest Ambulance tells 3TV. "They did a great job deescalating the situation, calming the suspect, and she did eventually pull over."

Sweet was stopped by the Phoenix Police Special Assignments Unit in the parking lot of John C. Lincoln Deer Valley Hospital.  It was a peaceful surrender. 

Police believe Sweet may have mental health issues. It's unclear if she will be booked into jail or taken for a mental evaluation.

The ambulance is now back with Southwest Ambulance.