WELLS, Maine — A Cumberland man and a Bangor woman were arrested late last week after leading police on a chase on the Maine Turnpike that hit speeds of more than 120 mph in a red 1984 Porsche Targa reported stolen from Bucksport. After crashing the car into a ditch, the two then tried to elude police on foot.
Arrested in connection with the incident, which occurred late Thursday night, were the alleged driver, Aaron Soucie, 31, and Monica French, 24, who police said was a passenger.
Soucie was charged with eluding an officer, operating after suspension, criminal speed and refusing to submit to arrest or detention, according to a statement issued by the Wells Police Department.
In addition, an arrest warrant was issued out of Hancock County at the request of Bucksport police, who so far have charged Soucie with felony theft in connection with the stolen sports car. Bucksport police Sgt. David Winchester said Tuesday the car was reported stolen at about 9 p.m. last Wednesday. Winchester said the car was worth about $18,000.
As of late Tuesday night, Soucie was still at York County Jail, where he was being held on $6,000 cash bail for the charges filed by Wells police and $1,000 cash bail for the felony theft charge out of Hancock County.
French, who was charged with receiving stolen property, since has been released on bail, according to Wells police. Winchester said Bucksport police did not charge French in connection with the theft of the car.
In their statement, Wells police said they received a call at 11:45 p.m. Thursday from state police asking them to help locate a small red vehicle that was “operating very erratically” in the southbound lanes of the Maine Turnpike, near mile 32.
Wells police Officer Adam Shaw headed to the turnpike in an attempt to stop the vehicle. Wells dispatchers looked up the car’s plate number and learned it had been reported stolen.
Shaw saw the car heading south and tried to stop it, but the Porsche pulled away at speeds in excess of 120 mph. Shaw was able to keep the sport car’s lights within sight “without pressing the vehicle too closely,” the statement said.
The chase continued south to the crossover at mile 10, where Soucie allegedly turned onto the northbound side of the turnpike and shut off the car’s lights, according to the officer. Shaw lit the car with his spotlight and continued his pursuit.
Police said Soucie then turned the lights back on and drove to mile 23, where he again crossed over the median and headed south. The car, however, began to slow down because of engine problems. It drove nose-first into a ditch near the Cole Hill overpass, police said, and Soucie and French fled into the woods.
French was arrested near the accident scene shortly after the crash. Soucie continued to run north along the turnpike. Police said he ultimately was taken into custody near the service plaza by Sgt. Darren Cyr of the Kennebunk Police Department.
Winchester said the car theft remains under investigation by Bucksport police, who also are looking into a related residential burglary. The Porsche, which had front-end damage during last week’s episode, was in the process of being returned to its owner.