A tale of two pursuits

Sometimes police are willing to release public information:

Date: December 30, 2008
Man leads police on six-town chase
Author: Eugene Driscoll Staff Writer

NEWTOWN — A Shelton man with a long history of motor vehicle violations allegedly led police on a chase that stretched through six towns Monday.

Police said the incident started in Stratford at 2:19 a.m., when police stopped a white van on Canaan Street being driven by Michael A. Jackson, 41.

As an officer waited for him to produce a license and registration, Jackson “put the van in drive and took off,” said Capt. Kenneth Bakalar, spokesman for the Stratford Police Department.

With police in pursuit at speeds between 40 and 60 mph, Jackson drove through Bridgeport, Fairfield and into Easton, where police called off the chase after Jackson managed to elude them.

However, Monroe police spotted Jackson on Route 25, where he allegedly ran a stop sign and nearly struck a police car at the intersection with Route 59, authorities said. Jackson then crossed into Newtown and abandoned his van in the parking lot of the Botsford fire department.

The van may have been out of gas at that point, police said. Jackson then allegedly ran into the woods. At that point a canine unit from state police Troop A in Southbury was brought in.

After picking up a “scent item” from the van, the dog, named Bosco, tracked down Jackson about a half-mile away under a billboard on Route 25 near a trailer park, police said. The search took about 45 minutes. Jackson was taken into custody about 3:30 a.m.

In Stratford, Jackson is charged with running a stop sign, engaging in a pursuit and reckless driving. In Monroe, Jackson is charged with reckless driving and evading. Jackson has a long history of speeding and other motor vehicle infractions dating back to 2003, according to court records.

In January 2003, he received a one-year suspended sentence and three years of probation after pleading guilty to resisting arrest.

Police were not sure why he initially fled the scene Monday. “His license is clean,” Bakalar said.

Sometimes, not so much . . .

N.Y. man charged after police chase through Ridgefield

By Eugene Driscoll
Staff Writer

RIDGEFIELD — A 35-year-old man from Mount Kisco, N.Y., led police on a chase Thursday that stretched from Turner Road to Putnam County, N.Y.

Ridgefield police said an officer attempted to stop a vehicle being driven by Thomas Wilkinson at 2:44 a.m. on Turner Road.

Wilkinson wouldn’t stop and “lead police on a pursuit into New York state,” according to a statement from police. They would not provide the distance traveled, the route or where the pursuit ended.

Wilkinson obeyed speed limits, which ranged from 30 mph to 50 mph, Ridgefield police said.

Ridgefield officers were able to take Wilkinson into custody with the help of Putnam County sheriffs.

He was charged in New York with reckless operation, failure to comply, and possession of burglary tools, along with other motor vehicle changes, according to Ridgefield police.

In Ridgefield, he faces a single charge of engaging in pursuit.

The public information officer for the Putnam County Sheriff’s Department was off Friday. A message seeking comment was left with Chief A. Gerald Schramek.

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