Vanessa Fortino and her boyfriend were driving home after buying groceries when she noticed a fast-approaching car in her rearview mirror.

"I kind of swerved out of the way, because a car was driving towards me going at least 100 - 120 kilometers an hour (62-74 MPH)," she recalled.

She thought it was just a reckless driver zooming by, but 15 seconds later down the road, she came upon a horrific car accident. Fortino realized the two-vehicle crash was likely caused by the fast driver who passed her. Her brain jumped into nursing mode and she immediately decided to help. She and her boyfriend hopped out of her Toyota RAV4 and went over to help an older man in a white car.

The front end of the white car had been crumpled to the point where it looked "completely gone." Fortino approached the man in the car, he was shaken but not in critical condition, so she moved onto the black car to check on the other driver.

The black car was 100 meters away and had been flipped multiple times. Fortino sprinted to the car, as the scene looked so bad she thought the driver might be dead.

Fortino said, "There was somebody on the other side of the sidewalk, another bystander, and he screams out to me, and he goes, 'Nobody's in there!' And I look over at him. And I'm like, 'What do you mean, nobody's in there?'"

Right at that moment, a Toyota RAV4 zoomed through the crash scene and sped away.

"Immediately, as soon as I see the lights of that car, I noticed — that is my car!"


What happened to her car!?

Turns out the driver of the black car had enough strength to not only walk away from the crazy crash but also to steal Fortinos Toyota.

Luckily, her cell phone was still in the vehicle so she and her boyfriend were able to track down the car, with the help of other people at the scene who gave them a ride.

"I was expecting my car to be totaled," Fortino said

When they found the car, the man who had stolen it was already in the back of a police cruiser, Fortino said. A police officer had followed him after catching him speeding down the road.

Her car was in OK condition, with minimal damage on the outside, unfortunately, some of her belongings were damaged, including a recently purchased computer. She was able to drive it home later that night.

"There's a little bit of, I'd say, bloody and muddy handprints on my steering wheel, my door handle, my center console, and the gear shift," she said.

What happened to the car thief?

The man in the white car came out of the accident OK.

As for the car thief, Ottawa police said a 48-year-old Ottawa man was charged with dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, theft of a motor vehicle, failure to stop after an accident, and possession of proceeds of property obtained by crime over $5,000.

Fortino said she learned a lesson that day. "Don't ever leave your engine on and park your car, even in an emergency situation, because the person you're trying to help might steal your car."

Read More Details Here: CBC News

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