A Boothbay man was arrested Friday after allegedly leading police on a wild car chase from Richmond to Gardiner that started when he drove 55 mph over the speed limit, then backed into the cruiser of an officer who was trying to stop him.

The chase ended when police forced his pickup truck to a halt on Route 24, at which point he took a brief dip in the Kennebec River, police said.

No one was injured, but four police cruisers were damaged in the pursuit of Daniel Lewis, 25, who returned to shore and surrendered to authorities around 10:15 a.m.

Lewis was charged with multiple crimes, including aggravated driving to endanger, eluding, and two counts of aggravated criminal mischief, which are all class C felonies, said Scott MacMaster, chief of the Richmond Police Department.

He also was charged with criminal speeding, a class E misdemeanor. On Friday afternoon, police took Lewis to Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset, where he was being held in lieu of $5,000 cash bail. Police are continuing to investigate the case.

The chase started on U.S. Route 201 in Richmond — also called Brunswick Road — when a local police officer, Chris Giles, stopped Lewis for allegedly driving 100 mph in a 45-mph zone, said Steve McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.

Lewis then allegedly backed into Giles’ cruiser before continuing to drive on U.S. Route 201 and leading police into Gardiner, police say. Along the way, Lewis allegedly did the same thing to another cruiser belonging to the Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s Office, stopping and backing into it.

Once in Gardiner, the chase continued onto Route 24, which follows the Kennebec River as it flows south and back toward Richmond. Eventually, Maine State Police troopers stopped Lewis’ vehicle using a special technique known as the PIT maneuver, McCausland said.

PIT stands for “precision immobilization technique.” The move involves a police cruiser pulling alongside a fleeing vehicle, then clipping the area around one of its rear tires, causing the vehicle to spin out of control and come to a stop, according to Police Chief magazine.

When that technique worked, McCausland said, Lewis left the truck and jumped into the Kennebec River, before returning to shore and being arrested on multiple charges.

Two Maine State Police cruisers were damaged as they tried to stop Lewis’ truck, McCausland added. There were two passengers in Lewis’ truck; they were not injured.

“I think that all departments involved did a great job,” MacMaster said. “It could have ended a lot worse than how it did, and we appreciate the job they’ve done.”

Charles Eichacker — 621-5642

[email protected]

Twitter: @ceichacker

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