GREAT FALLS — Viola Lillian Foster is facing several charges after she allegedly led law enforcement officers on a high-speed chase and nearly ran over several airmen at Malmstrom Air Force Base.
The incident happened on Saturday, February 5, 2022, when a Cascade County Sheriff's deputy attempted a traffic stop at about 3:40 a.m. on US Highway 89 after a driver - later identified as Foster - appeared to be driving erratically. When the deputy approached her vehicle and tried to talk with her, she drove away.
The deputy got into his patrol vehicle and began following Foster; court documents state that she reached speeds of up to 65 miles per hour and performed an illegal u-turn as the deputy chased after her.
Foster then proceeded toward the 2nd Avenue North entry to Malmstrom Air Force Base and stopped in a grassy area next to the visitor's center. Two Sheriff's deputies and two Great Falls police officers surrounded her car and ordered her to put the vehicle in park.
Foster then put the car in reverse and backed up toward a deputy, who had to move out of the way to avoid being hit. Foster then "backed through the front gate and made it onto the base," according to the charging document.
Foster then reportedly drove toward several officers and Malmstrom Security Forces personnel; she then reversed again, and tried to drive on the grass to get around patrol vehicles.
Security Forces personnel blocked her route, so she made a u-turn and managed to drive off base. Officers then attempted a PIT maneuver with their vehicles to stop her; Foster again tried to drive back on base, but her car got high-centered, and she was taken into custody.
Court documents note that Foster has had several encounters with law enforcement in recent months and "has become a public safety risk," stating that she has a "varied" misdemeanor criminal history.
Foster, 30 years old, has been charged with criminal endangerment, reckless driving, assault on a peace officer, and fleeing from/eluding a peace officer.