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This article was published 17/3/2015 (856 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
A Westman woman lost three fingers after the truck she was driving was run off the road by a man behind the wheel of a stolen car.
Jen Raposo of Deleau was driving southbound on Highway 10 with her 19-year-old nephew when a speeding car rammed her from behind.
The impact caused her Ford Ranger to flip about six times and slide on its roof while her left hand was caught between the road and her truck.
"It eroded my knuckles down to nothing and my three fingers were just hanging there," she told the Sun. "They couldn’t save them."
Raposo, 40, said the incident happened at around midnight on March 6 when the Acura — which was reported stolen later overnight — "came out of nowhere."
All she saw were the headlights in her rear-view mirror.
Police say speed was a factor and Raposo said the car could have been going as fast as 140 km/h.
"As soon as I saw the lights, I swung my arm and pushed my nephew into the seat and I told him to brace himself — I knew (the car) was going to hit us ... there was no time to get out of his way."
Raposo’s face was pressed up against the ceiling of her truck. She suffered road rash on her head and shattered glass was lodged in her face, she recalled.
She and her nephew crawled out through the broken windows.
The driver of the Acura got out of the car, walked into the darkness toward a nearby service road and drew a dark sweater hood over his head. Raposo recalls him "walking kinda funny."
She said she started yelling at him: "Where are you going? What were you thinking? How could you do this? Come back."
A passing vehicle stopped on the dark highway and the occupant called for help.
Her nephew walked away from the incident with only a few bumps and bruises.
Raposo said she’s healing well since she was released from the Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg on Saturday, but a wound on her hairline remains, and may need plastic surgery.
"Every day it’s getting better and better," she said. "I’m learning how to grab stuff with my pinky and thumb, I just have to build the strength back.
"It’s a challenge learning how to do things without three fingers ... I’m going to need more plastic surgery on my hand and possibly on my forehead."
Blue Hills RCMP Cpl. Mike Boychuk said there are no suspects and details are sparse.
He said there was no trace of alcohol in the car, but they haven’t ruled it out as a factor.
"We’re still investigating the matter through evidence that we gathered," Boychuk said.
Raposo is anxious to get back to work, but said it will be difficult since she works at a beer vendor.
"It’s going to be hard to go back to work because I know these people are taking the beer out and some of them are driving and my first inclination will be not to sell it to them."
Anyone with information about the incident is encouraged to call Brandon RCMP at 204-726-7522 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).
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