Rome man injured after crashing truck during high-speed police chase

Posted Feb. 05, 2013, at 11:31 p.m.

BELGRADE, Maine — A Rome man suffered multiple injuries to go with the multiple charges he’s facing after leading Maine State Police troopers on a high-speed chase before crashing Saturday night.

George Day, 30, of Rome was driving a 1993 Ford pickup truck south on Route 27 in Belgrade at 6:32 p.m. when he passed Maine State Trooper Diane Perkins-Vance, who was traveling north, doing 74 miles per hour in a 55-mph speed zone.

Perkins-Vance turned around to stop Day, but “he had no intention of stopping, whatsoever,” according to the trooper. Perkins-Vance chased Day at speeds up to 100 mph north on Route 27 for nine miles and up to the outskirts of Belgrade Village before Day turned onto West Road and headed south.

Perkins-Vance said Day sped through the four-way intersection stop at West and Castle Island Road at 93 mph.

“He had shut his lights off. He was completely blacked out for most of the chase,” Perkins-Vance said.

Adding to the poor visibility at night, with Day’s lights out, was dust and gravel getting kicked up by the tires running at high speed. The trooper said it was “like driving in the middle of a snowstorm.”

A Maine State Police supervisor told her to terminate the chase, so she slowed down and turned off her emergency lights and siren, but continued driving south on West Road. Shortly after, the trooper noticed the truck turning onto Dunn Road, but at an odd angle. She eventually determined through skid marks that he had slammed on the brakes after just passing Dunn Road, backed up, and turned onto Dunn.

Perkins-Vance eventually caught up with him on Dunn, but Day accelerated and drove away at a high rate of speed. Just three-tenths of a mile down the road, Perkins-Vance found Day’s overturned pickup truck on the side of the road, with Day, who wasn’t wearing a seat belt, trying to kick out the truck’s windshield and escape into the nearby woods.

She drew her gun and ordered Day to stop, and he complied.

Day was taken to Maine General Medical Center’s Thayer Unit in Waterville, and then transferred to Maine Medical Center in Portland with what Perkins-Vance called “potential life-threatening injuries.” After being listed in satisfactory condition Sunday evening, he was listed as fair by the nursing supervisor Tuesday night.

“As far as I knew, he was never arrested and last I knew, he was still at the hospital,” said Perkins-Vance. “He’s been charged, but he’s still in the hospital with serious injuries that he will probably be dealing with for a long time.”

Day has been charged with operating under the influence, eluding an officer and violation of bail.

“There could be more charges filed because of the eluding an officer charge,” she said, noting that the eluding charge was a Class C felony and that Day was also on probation, although she was not aware of what charges the bail and probation conditions were related to. “And the charges could be elevated, depending on what he’s on probation for.”

Day has been scheduled to make a March 26 Superior Court appearance in Augusta.

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