Bellows Falls man leads VSP on high speed chase

By Shawn Cunningham
© 2018 Telegraph Publishing LLC

The Mercedes Corey Betit was driving in a high speed pursuit awaiting a tow truck on Westminster West Rd. Photos by Shawn Cunningham

A Bellows Falls man led Vermont State Police on a harrowing car chase that at times exceded 100 mph along the two-lane Route 5 and through the towns of Rockingham, Westminster and Putney before pulling over with just one tire in tact in the town of Rockingham south of Saxtons River.

Shortly after 4:15 p.m. a trooper attempted to stop Corey Betit, 28, of Bellows Falls, for speeding on Route 103 in Rockingham. Betit took off down Route 5 toward Westminster pursued by police. As Betit approached Westminster Station, police thought he was about to turn down Route 123 and head into New Hampshire, but he instead sped down Route 5 through Westminster and turned left onto River Road crossing into the town of Putney.

Westminster dispatch called “air priority” giving the pursuing cruisers sole use of the VSP Westminster radio channel and at times the Mercedes C 280 registered to a person in Maine exceeded 100 miles per hour.

Police spike strips took three out of four wheels down to the hubs, but the car still traveled 13 miles.

As the pursuit continued, another State Police trooper set up a spike strip on River Road near Landmark College and Betit ran over it,  continuing into downtown Putney and turning on to Westminster West Road and heading north.

Troopers pursuing Betit had to hang back to avoid the shredded tires flying off the car and, as the chase continued, the lead trooper reported that one by one, the car was driving on rims until there was only the driver’s side rear tire remaining. Despite that fact, troopers said that at times, the one-tire car sped along at more than 60 mph.

As the car approached Hitchcock Road in Saxtons River, the driver pulled over, 13 miles and three tires beyond the spikes.

At that point, Westminster dispatch told the trooper to execute a felony stop, which presumes a dangerous driver or occupant. Betit was taken into custody without incident and charged with gross negligent operation, attempting to elude, driving with license suspended, operating without owner s consent and excessive speed.

Betit is being held at the Southern State Correctional Facility in Springfield on $5,000 bail and is scheduled to appear to answer the charges in Windham County Superior Court at 12:30 p.m. Monday, April 2.

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