June 22, 2018
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Bristol man charged in high-speed chase with police

By J.W. Oliver, Lincoln County News

BRISTOL, Maine — A Bristol man was arrested after leading a Lincoln County sheriff’s deputy on a high-speed chase through South Bristol and Bristol late Sunday, Aug. 3, according to police.

Joseph A. Benner, 33, faces Class C charges of aggravated criminal mischief and eluding an officer, both felonies; and Class D charges of domestic violence assault and domestic violence terrorizing, both misdemeanors.

Lt. Rand Maker of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office said deputies were on the lookout for Benner after responding to a domestic violence call on Austin Road in Bristol.

During an argument with his estranged wife, Benner allegedly “tackled her to the ground,” Maker said.

“The suspect had fled,” Maker said.

Deputy Jared Mitkus located Benner’s GMC Yukon at about 10:15 p.m. on the Harrington Road in South Bristol.

“We signaled for him to stop and he didn’t,” Maker said.

Mitkus pursued Benner along the Harrington Road into Bristol and onto Bristol Road, Foster Road, and Elliott Hill Road, where “we discontinued the chase for safety reasons,” Maker said.

“He was driving too recklessly at that point,” the lieutenant said.

The top speed during the approximately 6-mile pursuit was 80 mph, Maker said.

Mitkus later located Benner in a vehicle behind his Austin Road residence and took him into custody without incident, Maker said.

Benner remained in custody Monday afternoon at Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset, where he is being held without bail.


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