WATERVILLE — A man who police said stole liquor from the Hannaford supermarket in Elm Plaza evaded five police officers who chased him around the area for about 20 minutes before losing him.

The shoplifter fled on foot from a store loss prevention agent around 11 a.m. after stealing two bottles of liquor from the store, according to Deputy Chief Charles Rumsey.

A Waterville police officer who was in the area on unrelated business saw the chase and also went after the shoplifter, Rumsey said.

The man ran into the nearby Fireside Inn and Suites, then ran into woods between the neighboring strip mall and the Interstate 95 exit.

Five Waterville officers eventually joined the search in the area for the shoplifter but didn’t find him, Rumsey said. The officers spent about 20 minutes searching the area, he added.

Police did find the two bottles of liquor — they didn’t identify what type it was — but police still want to speak to the man they think took them.

Police said he was last seen wearing a black T-shirt and jeans, but in the store surveillance photo, he’s also wearing a plaid hoodie despite Thursday’s temperature, which was in the 80s.

Rumsey asked anyone with information about the incident to contact Officer Daryl Gordon at 680-4700. Police said anyone giving them infomration will remain anonymous.

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