WATERVILLE — One man was arrested Thursday after he led police on a chase downtown, evaded spike strips and eventually fled into the woods in Fairfield.

The chase and subsequent search spanned three towns, required help from three police departments, involved about seven miles of road and lasted roughly 30 minutes.

Waterville Police Officer Steve Brame originally tried to pull over Joshua Elliott, 30, of Fairfield, when he squealed his tires and pealed out in front of him at the intersection of Spring and Water streets around 5 p.m., said Waterville police Sgt. Bill Bonney.

But Elliott, who had a male passenger in his car, did not stop and instead continued north on Front Street past the police station. Officers readied a spike strip at the intersection of College Avenue and Oak Street, but Elliott’s green Honda Accord sedan turned left and escaped down Ash Street.

The chase headed toward North Street, but because of the dense population, playgrounds, a hospital and eventually Colby College, Bonney said he ordered the officer to stop the chase and continue at a slower speed.

Elliott was going as fast as 50 mph through the neighborhood, Bonney said.

A short while later, Brame spotted Elliott’s car on County Road, heading toward Oakland. Because of the rural surroundings, Bonney gave him the go-ahead to try to stop the car.

Elliott turned onto Marston Road, and Bonney threw down a spike strip to puncture the car’s tires. The strip extends across one lane of traffic, and Elliott swerved into the ditch to avoid it, Bonney said.

When Elliott continued onto Rice Rips Road, his car reached 80 mph, and Bonney discontinued the pursuit. Elliott continued through Oakland, and Maine State Police took over the search.

Trooper Derrick Record noticed tire marks in the soft shoulder around 94 Davis Road in Fairfield, Bonney said. He then saw a green sedan across the road, up a dirt woods path. Both Elliott and the passenger had fled into the woods.

State police found Elliott a short distance away around 5:30 p.m., Bonney said. He was not wanted on criminal charges, but his license was suspended. He now faces charges of operating after suspension and eluding a police officer.

“We’re continuing our investigation into other possible reasons why he was running,” Bonney said.

The passenger isn’t facing criminal charges, so police did not pursue him into the woods.

Erin Rhoda — 612-2368

[email protected]


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