Death threats, local police chase… RENMARK RAMPAGE

A RENMARK woman feared for her family’s lives last week when a man “on a rampage” threatened to get a gun and shoot them.
Last Thursday, a 24-year-old Renmark man was arrested after leading police on a dangerous chase through the township, before he was caught in traffic at the Paringa Bridge.
The woman, who the Murray Pioneer decided not to name, was in her home at around 12 noon when she heard a commotion outside.
“At the end of our street there’s a dead-end and a bike track. Kids come and do burnouts there sometimes, but this time they kept going and going and we could hear rocks flicking up and hitting a car,” she said.
“It kept going for about 10 minutes and we were absolutely stunned because he was yelling out, ‘I’m going to f***ing kill you’ and going absolutely mental.”
The woman said her five-year-old grandson and other children were subjected to the ordeal. She said when the man was confronted he slammed on his brakes and exited his vehicle.
“He got out the car throwing his arms up, yelling obscenities and carrying on like an idiot,” she claimed.
“He threatened us that he was going to go and get a gun. He was standing there pretending to shoot us with his finger.
“At one point he tried to reverse over me, so I quickly bolted out the way. He then drove off really slowly around the corner, then took off like an idiot.”
Police searched for the man after they received numerous reports of a red Ford sedan doing burnouts in several streets including Tobruk Avenue, Renmark Avenue and Ral Ral Avenue.
A Renmark Avenue shop assistant said the man did burn-outs along the strip for so long that there was no visibility outside the store because of intense smoke. Police also received a report the car was involved in a petrol drive-off at a local service station.
Patrols first spotted the man driving erratically on Seventeenth Street, where they attempted to stop the car, however the driver refused to pull over and the car was pursued for a brief time before the chase was abandoned.
The car was found a short time later queued in traffic at the Paringa Bridge where the driver was subsequently arrested. His car was impounded.
The man was charged with engaging in a police pursuit, drink driving, misuse of a motor vehicle, driving unlicensed and making off without payment.
The Renmark woman said when the man left her street she was “extremely” worried that he would hurt or kill someone.
“I was concerned about who he was actually going to hurt… the way he was driving was just ridiculous,” she said.
“He was on a rampage to just hurt someone or himself. I don’t even know who the fella was. He was wearing pants, no shirt and just totally looked like he was drunk or on some heavy drugs.”
The Pioneer understands the man ran several vehicles off the road along the causeway between Renmark and Paringa.
He appeared in the Adelaide Magistrates Court on Friday and was granted bailed, and is scheduled to appear in the Berri Magistrates Court on Tuesday, July 25.

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Jane Kuerschner

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Jane Kuerschner completed a Bachelor of Journalism at the University of South Australia in 2014. She worked as an editorial messenger at The Advertiser before starting as a journalist at the Murray Pioneer. She grew up in Orroroo before completing her high school education and university studies in Adelaide. Jane is passionate about sport and in particular Australian Rules.

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