Police on routine patrols in Kennebec County arrested six people on drunken driving charges over a span of just a few hours Sunday.
State police troopers made three of those arrests, one after the driver allegedly repeatedly crossed the center line. Gardiner and Monmouth police made the three other arrests, one of which reportedly followed a brief chase.
All of the arrests occurred between 7 and 10 p.m.
Maine State Police arrests all occurred around 7:30 p.m., said Trooper Christopher Rogers. He arrested 37-year-old Alan Lovejoy of Greene on U.S. Route 202 in Winthrop on the flats near the Turtle Run Road intersections.
Rogers said he was driving east on Route 202 in Manchester just past the Winthrop town line when he saw Lovejoy, who was driving west in a pickup truck, looking down as though he was texting. Rogers said he looked in his rearview mirror and saw the truck had veered into the eastbound lane. Rogers turned his cruiser to follow Lovejoy.
“As I got closer he was still driving over to the opposite lane of traffic,” Rogers said. “There were other cars, but because of the curves I never saw him one-on-one with those cars.”
Lovejoy passed a car and sped up to 88 mph where the speed limit turns from 45 to 55 mph near the eastern Turtle Run Road entrance.
“I was trying to catch up,” Rogers said. He said Lovejoy continued to drive 85 mph until Rogers caught up and the truck pulled over.
Rogers gave Lovejoy a field sobriety test after talking to him and then took him to the Winthrop police station, where Rogers said Lovejoy failed a breathalyser test.
“He said he’d been drinking at the golf course all day,” Rogers said.
Around the same time Trooper Breanne Petrini arrested John Legendre, 21, of Mount Vernon and charged him with operating under the influence after a traffic stop for speeding on Belgrade Road in Mount Vernon, Rogers said.
Trooper Thomas Bureau had the third arrest, on Route 126 in West Gardiner. Rogers said Bureau charged Kenneth Venoit, 21, of Gardiner, with operating under the influence and possession of drug paraphernalia during a traffic stop for speeding.
A few minutes later Monmouth Police Officer Mike Parshall arrested a Bonin Road man on drunken driving charges after a brief pursuit in that town.
Parshall, in an affidavit filed in Kennebec County Superior Court, said he was responding to an animal complaint on Bonin Road when he noticed a pickup truck pull up to a stop sign with a loud exhaust. The truck had no license plates. Parshall, who was outside of his cruiser, yelled for the driver to stop.
“The driver looked in my direction and began to quickly back up and turn around,” the officer wrote.
Parshall pursued the truck in his cruiser with his blue lights and sirens. The driver sped up to 57 mph.
“The driver knew that he was being pursued as he had placed his left hand out of the window pointing his finger towards the passenger side of the truck for an unknown reason,” Parshall wrote.
The pursuit lasted about a mile before the driver pulled into his driveway at 146 Bonin Road.
The driver, 34-year old Steven Paul Burd Jr., was taken to the Winthrop police station, where he registered a .16 during a breathalyser test, Parshall said. The legal limit is .08.
Burd was charged with operating under the influence, operating after suspension, eluding a law enforcement officer and operating an unregistered vehicle on a public way.
Around 9 p.m., Gardiner Police arrested two people for drunken driving during related traffic stops on Water Street in Randolph.
Gardiner Police Chief James Toman said the arrests came after police responded to a report of an erratic driver who had hit a pedestrian crosswalk sign, bumped into the curb and driven in the wrong lane in Hallowell.
Police caught up with the car near the Gardiner/Randolph bridge, Toman said. Joseph Ames, 45, of Brooksville, Fla., was arrested on a charge of operating under the influence.
Police also arrested Margaret Boynton, 62, of Winslow and charged her with operating under the influence.
Toman said Boynton was driving a second vehicle and her arrest occurred at nearly the same time on Water Street. Both charges were connected to the erratic driving complaint, but Toman said a report had not yet filed on the incident and dispatcher logs did not specify how Boynton’s and Ames’s arrests were connected.
Craig Crosby — 621-5642 | [email protected] | Twitter: @CraigCrosby4