A Portland man has been charged with a slew of crimes Sunday after city police say he led officers on a 20-minute chase through the city and eventually onto Interstate 295 before surrendering.

Benjamin Martineau, 34, of Portland, faces several counts, including criminal restraint, domestic violence assault and terrorizing.

Police said in a news release that officers spotted a woman “waving frantically for help out the passenger side window of a vehicle on Forest Avenue” just after 2:15 p.m Sunday.

The driver refused to pull over, police said, so officers pursued him through the city and, later, onto I-295 northbound.

Officers attempted to stop the vehicle on I-295 using a spike strip but were unsuccessful because of heavy traffic, police said.

Eventually, the driver stopped near mile marker 12 on I-295, just north of Portland, police said.


“He pulled over and stopped his vehicle and was taken into custody without incident,” Portland police spokesman Brad Nadeau said.

Martineau is charged with criminal restraint, terrorizing, domestic violence assault, domestic violence criminal threatening, eluding an officer, refusal to stop, reckless conduct with a dangerous weapon, two counts of driving to endanger, obstructing the report of a crime, operating without a license and leaving the scene of an accident.

Asked whether the woman in the vehicle had been harmed, Nadeau replied, “We are not going to comment on the (domestic violence) charges at this time.”

Martineau was taken to the Cumberland County Jail.

Police are asking anyone with additional information to call 874-8575 or text the keyword PPDME to 847411.

Maine law requires that every department adopt policies that outline the circumstances in which chases are acceptable. Many agencies believe the dangers of engaging in such pursuits usually exceed the potential benefits.

In January, five people were hospitalized after Fryeburg and Oxford County officers pursued a man suspected of dangerous driving who crossed from New Hampshire into Maine.

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