ELLSWORTH — A Bar Harbor man was arrested Tuesday evening on multiple charges following a miles-long pursuit on busy Route 1A.
Javier A. Gomez, 34, who also has a Florida address, was charged with failing to stop for a police officer, driving to endanger, OUI, violation of bail conditions and refusal to sign a summons.
Police initially received reports around 5:30 p.m. about a van “being driven erratically, making bad passes, speeding, tailgating and stopping in traffic blocking the roadway” as the vehicle was in the area of the Trenton town line, heading north on Route 3.
Sgt. Shawn Willey located the van in the Ellsworth Falls area on State Street and tried to stop it, but the driver — later identified as Gomez — reportedly refused to stop.
The pursuit — Lt. Harold Page pointed out it was not a high-speed chase — lasted for almost 8.5 miles from the time Willey first saw the van until it eventually stopped.
Willey said he saw the van during that time passing other vehicles in the break-down lane “and nearly colliding with other vehicles.” The van was reportedly traveling around the posted speed limit.
The pursuit ended, according to police, when a Good Samaritan motorist “stayed in front of the van and ultimately cut it off on the side of the roadway.”
While Page said that action was successful in this case, it is not encouraged by police.
Gomez was taken into custody without incident, according to police, but he was not cooperative when Willey asked for information and instead told the officer to contact his attorney.
Gomez was additionally given a traffic ticket for operating after suspension (the suspension was a result of allegedly failing to pay fines).