Augusta police Sgt. Chris Blodgett prepares Tuesday to have a brand new Toyota Tundra towed after the driver was arrested a few hundred yards away from where the vehicle was spotted driving across the Augusta State Airport tarmac. According to officials, the operator rammed the rear gate to the airport after several crashes with the vehicle were reported on Western Avenue. The truck had just been purchased, Blodgett said, but sustained heavy damage, with the rear panels of the truck perforated with dozens of drill holes. Police are still investigating the conduct that lead up to the driver’s arrest. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

AUGUSTA — The driver of a new pickup truck drove onto the airfield of Augusta State Airport on Tuesday then smashed through one of the airport’s rear gates as he fled, police said.

Police arrested the man a few minutes later and said the truck had also been involved in crashes elsewhere before entering the airport.

Augusta police Sgt. Chris Blodgett, at the airport, said the Toyota Tundra pickup was brand new and had just been purchased. The driver had gone onto the airport tarmac and rammed through the gate after several crashes with the vehicle were reported on Western Avenue, he said.

The driver was arrested nearby a few minutes after the airport incident, police said.

Blodgett said the truck sustained heavy damage, and the rear panels of the truck had been perforated with dozens of what he described as drill holes.

Police are still investigating the incident, and did not provide further information, or the identity of the driver, Tuesday.


Airport Manager John Guimond said airport officials received a report of a vehicle on the airfield and, after determining no officials were out on the runway conducting inspections or other duties, spotted a truck on the airfield and sent an airport worker in a vehicle to go see what was going on. Guimond said the worker headed the driver off and the driver fled the airport by driving the truck, at speed, through one of the airport’s back gates, smashing through it.

“He went right through, he was going pretty fast,” Guimond said of the truck’s driver.

Augusta State Airport manager John Guimond kicks debris off the rear access road Tuesday. A gate was smashed when a driver rammed it after driving on the airport tarmac. Police arrested the driver a few minutes later. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

Guimond said he has never seen anything like the incident in his 18 years at the airport.

The gate, marked with a stop sign and other signs, appeared to have been leveled by the truck.

The gate enters onto Old Winthrop Road, and is one of seven gates around the airport’s perimeter.

He said the truck was only on the airfield for a couple of minutes before the driver was chased off. Guimond said there were no planes landing or taking off at the time, and no flights had to be delayed due to the action, including a commercial Cape Air flight that came in, as scheduled, about an hour after the incident.

Guimond said late Tuesday afternoon airport workers were going around the perimeter of the airport to check for damage other than the obvious damage to the gate. He said he didn’t yet know how the driver had gotten into the airport, but that workers would check the other gates to see if he’d come through any of those.

He said the damaged gate would be secured.

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