A Portland man with a criminal history was arrested Thursday in connection with a carjacking in the city this month followed by a bank robbery in Freeport later in the day.

Jimmy Odong, 25, of Park Avenue, will be charged with robbery for stealing a vehicle in Portland. He also faces a federal bank robbery charge, according to Assistant Police Chief Vern Malloch. Both crimes occurred on July 17.

Odong was arrested after police spotted him around 4:10 p.m. near the University of Southern Maine’s Portland campus.

He fled from the Bedford Street campus when officers approached and tried to hide in some bushes near the Sullivan Gymnasium on Falmouth Street, Malloch said. Police used a dog to track him to the bushes, and Odong fled again. He was finally apprehended on Granite Street, a short distance from USM in the city’s Oakdale neighborhood.

Odong’s alleged July 17 crime spree began when he approached a woman in a parking lot adjacent to the Seaside Nursing Home on Baxter Boulevard, pointed a handgun at her and ordered her out of her silver Honda Pilot SUV. She escaped and he drove away in the vehicle.

Police said Odong entered the Key Bank branch on Main Street in Freeport later that day, pulled out a handgun and demanded money. He left the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash in a silver SUV, which was later found abandoned in Yarmouth.

Just prior to the carjacking, a suspect fitting Odong’s description tried to steal a cellphone from a man in the Hannaford parking lot off Baxter Boulevard, about a mile and a half from the nursing home. He has not been charged in connection with that incident.

Odong has a criminal record that dates to May 2009.

The Portland Press Herald reported that Odong, 19 at the time, led police on a two-mile car chase through the city’s Bayside neighborhood and downtown Portland. During the chase, Odong crashed into several parked cars and struck a building.

After abandoning his car, Odong fled before he was captured in Congress Square. He was charged with reckless conduct with a dangerous weapon, eluding an officer, operating under the influence, operating without a license and four counts of leaving the scene of an accident.

Malloch said Odong was also arrested in February on a domestic violence aggravated assault charge and was released after he made bail.

Odong now faces an additional charge of violation of conditions of release in that case.

He was being held Thursday evening at the Cumberland County Jail in Portland.

Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:

[email protected]