May 29, 2020
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Bangor man faces 13 charges

OLD TOWN, Maine — A Bangor man was arrested early Friday morning on more than a dozen charges after he allegedly stole a car and led police on a high-speed chase that began in Old Town and ended in Orono, where police put down spike mats to stop him.

David Ellis Chapman, 27, was charged with two counts each of aggravated driving after habitual offender revocation and unlawful drug possession and one count each of driving after revocation, eluding an officer, drunken driving, driving to endanger, failure to stop for an officer, criminal speed, failure to sign a summons, un-authorized use of property and violation of release conditions, according to documents filed at the Penobscot Judicial Center.

At the time of his arrest, Chapman was out on bail for prior robbery, theft and criminal mischief charges, the documents said.

During a court appearance Friday afternoon before Judge Jessie Gunther, bail was set at $7,500 cash or $75,000 surety. As of late Friday night, Chapman remained at Penobscot County Jail, a jail official confirmed.

The series of events that put Chapman behind bars on Friday began about 2:20 a.m. when Old Town police Officer Lee Miller saw a black 1992 BMW 325i on Main Street swerve over the centerline, according to his police report. Miller pulled up behind the vehicle and followed it as it continued down Main Street.

When the car took a “wide turn” onto Chester Street, Miller turned on his cruiser’s blue lights to stop the car but it began to speed up instead, the officer said in his report. The car then went through a green light at the intersection of Water and Center streets, turned onto Water Street, drove past a stop sign at Main Street and then turned onto Main Street, where it went through a red light and continued on toward Orono, according to Miller.

Miller and Sgt. Mike Hashey, who joined in the chase, continued to follow Chapman in their cruisers but Chapman kept going and continued to drive erratically, the report said.

“At one point, he was going over 100 mph in a 45 mph [zone],” Miller said.

Chapman continued heading toward Orono, where police officers had been alerted and Orono police Sgt. Scott Scripture had set up a spike mat near the town line, where Old Town’s Main Street turns into Orono’s Park Street.

The BMW drove over the spike mat but still kept going, Miller wrote. Miller continued to follow the car until Chapman lost control while trying to turn onto College Avenue and crashed into a snowbank in the parking lot of Murray’s Campus Service Center.

Chapman then emerged from the car with his hands in the air, according to the officer. Miller said that he ordered the suspect to the ground at gunpoint and placed him under arrest. As he did so, Miller recognized Chapman as someone he had “dealt with” in the past.

During a search of Chapman, police found several pill bottles containing tablets that included 19 Zoloft tablets, used to treat depression and certain types of anxiety, and 12 tablets of oxycodone, a powerfully addictive painkiller, according to the police reports. Miller also found a pocketful of change and a voice recorder.

Miller said Chapman, whose eyes were bloodshot and whose breath smelled of alcohol, was placed in the back of a police car, where he reportedly began spitting and kicking, requiring police to place leg restraints and a “spit hood” on him.

Miller then took Chapman to the hospital for blood alcohol testing. There, Miller said, he learned that the vehicle Chapman was driving had been reported stolen from a Pine Street residence in Old Town. Miller also learned that Chapman was under three different sets of bail conditions at the time, that his license had been re-voked and that he had three drunken driving convictions, according to the court documents.

Chapman has been ordered to appear in Bangor court on April 16 to respond to the charges.

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