CLINTON — A 40-year-old man was in custody Thursday afternoon after he reportedly led police on a high-speed chase that ended in an armed, hourslong standoff on East River Road in Clinton.

Police identified the suspect as Joshua Elliott, who could be seen in a police cruiser that left the scene at about 3:30 p.m.

A report Thursday morning said several officers had responded to East River Road, near the Clinton-Skowhegan line, where a person with a gun was barricaded in a car following a chase with police.

Felony warrants on charges of theft and burglary had been issued in Piscataquis County for the driver, who had shown a gun, according to the report.

Police said the high-speed chase went through Benton and Clinton, before officers laid down spike mats and stopped the vehicle on East River Road in Clinton. East River Road was closed from Clinton to Oak Pond Road, according to police.

Later in the afternoon, Lt. Jason Madore of the Maine State Police said Elliott had surrendered peacefully and was taken into custody without injury following negotiations with the department’s crisis intervention team and tactical team.


“Elliott remained in his vehicle and was armed with a handgun and made statements that he wanted to be killed by police,” Madore said.

He was transported to MaineGeneral Hospital in Augusta to be evaluated before being taken to Kennebec County jail, where he faces charges of eluding, criminal speeding, failure to stop, possession of a firearm by a felon, operating after habitual offender status and creating a police standoff.

“Elliott’s mental health is being looked into at this point as part of our active investigation,” Madore said.

Maine State Police and a Somerset County deputy confer at a roadblock on Pishon Ferry Road, about 2 miles from where a vehicle pursuit ended in a police standoff involving an armed man in Clinton on Thursday. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel Buy this Photo

Madore said that Clinton Police had been looking for Elliott for a few days after the arrest warrants had been issued in Piscataquis County. They spotted him operating a black truck near mile-marker 138 on Interstate 95. Police attempted to stop Elliott, but he took off, leaving the Interstate at Exit 133 and then driving into Clinton.

“(Clinton Police) saw Mr. Elliott driving a dark-colored truck and attempted to make a traffic stop,” Madore said.

The pursuit lasted for about 30 minutes, Madore said, until officers from Clinton and Fairfield police departments were able to lay down spike mats to successfully stop the vehicle on East River Road.

“I don’t have the exact location of where the spike mats were deployed at that time,” Madore said. “No homes were evacuated. There are homes on this road, but quite a distance from where he stopped his vehicle.”

“A peaceful resolution is always what we want,” Madore said. “Mr. Elliott will get the help that he needs and the public is safe. I thank all of the local and county agencies that came to the scene to assist.”

Also assisting at the scene were the Somerset County Sheriff’s Office, Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office, Maine Warden Service, Fairfield Police Department, Winslow Police Department, Skowhegan Police Department, according to the state police statement.

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