BANGOR, Maine — A wanted local man who reportedly bolted from a vehicle that was stopped by a state trooper Tuesday morning has a history of running from the police.
The man was caught after a short manhunt but not before telling police that he had a gun, jumping out of a second-story window at his 351 Broadway home, and breaking into an adjacent apartment to get back into his basement, Maine State Police Trooper Michael Johnston said.
“That’s where we found him,” the trooper said. “He was curled up in a cubbyhole, a crawl space, under the stairs.”
Christopher Norris, 28, of Bangor was wanted by the Bangor Police Department for his involvement in a New Year’s Eve automobile accident on Stillwater Avenue. Norris fled the scene but was identified by passengers in the vehicle as the driver, according to police. Police then issued a warrant charging him with two counts of criminal mischief, operating a vehicle after suspension and driving to endanger. He had been on the lam since.
On Tuesday, Johnston stopped a car in which Norris was a passenger at 9:23 a.m. in the parking lot of St. Joseph Hospital on Broadway after noticing it had a 2009 inspection sticker and finding out the registration was expired. Shortly after getting the names of the driver and Norris, Johnston saw Norris running across Broadway.
“Not having any idea why he was running … I gave chase across the street,” the trooper said. “I find him in the bedroom and he tells me he has a gun. He has his hand behind his back and I believe he did” have a weapon.
“When I backed out, he jumped out the second-story window,” Johnston said.
By the time the trooper had made his way back out front, Norris was nowhere to be seen. Neighbors who live in an adjacent apartment “told us that he had come running through,” and Norris was found in the basement, Johnston said.
Norris was arrested on charges of criminal threatening, refusing to submit to arrest, violation of bail conditions and the outstanding warrant. He was taken to Penobscot County Jail, where he remained Tuesday evening, a jail official said. He is scheduled to have his first appearance in court today.
Norris has a history of running from police, according to previous Bangor Daily News articles.
When he was age 19 and living in Corinna, Norris was involved in a high-speed chase in Palmyra that resulted in his being charged with eluding a police officer, operating a motor vehicle after license suspension, illegal attachment of registration plates, resisting apprehension as well as possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia, according to a May 24, 2001, BDN article.
In 2004, while living in Pittsfield, Norris cut a Dexter man with a knife, then fled into a wooded area before eventually hiding in a nearby trailer, where he kept police at bay for 10 hours, according to a May 28, 2004, BDN article. He was charged with elevated aggravated assault and with creating a police standoff for that inci-dent, the article states.
Norris also apparently bolted twice from a friend’s car in 2007 when Milo police stopped it for having a broken window in early November and three weeks before that. At that time, he fled because he was wanted on four Penobscot County arrest warrants, three of which involved unlawful possession of scheduled drugs and a fourth for carrying a concealed weapon. After a foot chase in a wooded area, Norris was captured, according to a Nov. 6, 2007, BDN article.
Norris also has several prior convictions, according the BDN archives, for illegal possession of drugs and marijuana and carrying a concealed weapon.