TURNER – A Wales man caught on Saturday in Buckfield after fleeing from police in a stolen car and on foot was being held on multiple charges later that day in an Auburn jail, said Maine State Police Trooper Thomas Pappas.

Christopher Benoit, 33, was charged with eluding a police officer, operating under the influence of alcohol, operating without a license, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, driving to endanger, criminal trespass and possession of marijuana.

Pappas said Benoit is additionally being held on an Androscoggin County District Court warrant charging failure to pay fines on a previous drug charge.

Unable to post cash bail of $5,000, Benoit was taken to the Androscoggin County Jail in Auburn to await his first court appearance sometime on Monday, April 6.

The incident started at about 1 p.m. on Route 4 in Turner when Pappas said he attempted to stop Benoit, who was driving a 1992 Subaru Legacy that had been reported stolen in Lewiston on March 28. Pappas said he spotted the car heading south on Route 4 after receiving information earlier that day that it might be in the area.

But as soon as Pappas left his cruiser to approach Benoit, who had pulled over and stopped, he sped off, leading police on a 15- to 25-minute pursuit on several roads. The officer declined to state pursuit speeds.

Benoit turned onto the dead-end Purkis Road in Buckfield, jumped out of the car and fled into the woods with Pappas and Trooper Jason Wing running after him, Pappas said.

“Jason got him as he came out of the wood line,” Pappas said.

No one was injured during the pursuit and no vehicles were damaged.


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