High-speed chase through Dutchess leads to arrest on Newburgh-Beacon Bridge

TOWN OF POUGHKEEPSIE – One suspect is in custody and at least one police vehicle damaged after a high-speed chase through multiple Dutchess County towns on Saturday night.

Shortly before midnight on June 8, a Town of Poughkeepsie Police officer stopped a vehicle on Main Street near TD Bank for an equipment violation.  When the officer approached the vehicle, he recognized the operator as William “Bill” Pascal, 45, of the Town of Poughkeepsie from a previous encounter.  The officer knew that Pascal’s driver license was suspended and there was an active federal probation warrant out for the subject.

When the officer attempted to arrest Pascal, he pulled away from the officer, threatened to shoot the cop with a firearm that he claimed to have, returned to his vehicle and fled the scene.  The officer began pursuit that traveled south through several jurisdictions where officers from various agencies joined in the chase.  Pascal refused to stop the vehicle.

Pascal called Dutchess County 911 during the car chase and advised the dispatcher that he intended to harm himself and jump off of the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge.

Law enforcement boxed Pascal’s vehicle in on the bridge at which point he exited the vehicle and headed toward the bridge railing.  Officers kept Pascal from jumping into the Hudson.  During the ensuing struggle, Pascal was tased by an officer in order to gain compliance.  EMS was summoned to the scene at approximately 12:20 a.m. to evaluate Pascal’s potential taser wounds.

While police were physically restraining Pascal, his vehicle, which had been left in gear on the bridge, proceeded to roll forward and strike a vehicle belonging to the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office.

Pascal was taken into custody and arraigned in the Town of Poughkeepsie Justice Court on misdemeanor charges of unlawful fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle, reckless endangerment, menacing, aggravated unlicensed operation, as well as several New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law violations.

According to Town of Poughkeepsie Police Captain Kevin Faber, Pascal may face additional charges at a later date.  He was sent to Dutchess County Jail without bail pending a future court appearance.

Town of Poughkeepsie Police were assisted in the pursuit by the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office and New York State Police.

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