Springfield PD: Man arrested after crashing into Riverfront Park gate, jumping into CT river

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – One person is facing charges after he allegedly crashed his truck into a fence at Riverfront Park and jumped into the Connecticut River to avoid police early Monday morning. 

According to Springfield Police Spokesperson, Ryan Walsh, at 2 a.m. an officer began following a pickup truck that ran a red light at the intersection of Dwight Street and Harrison Avenue at a high rate of speed.

Walsh said the driver, later identified as 29-year-old Jesus Batista, continued to drive around two vehicles at a red light at the intersection of Dwight and State Streets and then ran a red light at State Street and Hall of Fame Avenue. 

Batista then allegedly left the road and crashed into an iron fence at Riverfront Park. Walsh said Batista was able to be tracked by a police dog after he ran from his truck, but continued to run away and jumped into the Connecticut River.

Walsh said Batista swam downstream after the police dog released him. He was arrested about an hour later by West Springfield police and was taken back to Riverfront Park. 

Batista was taken to Baystate Medical Center for treatment to any potential injuries and/or hypothermic symptoms. 

He is facing the following charges: 

  • Failure to stop for police
  • Leaving the scene of a property damage accident
  • A subsequent offense of operating a motor vehicle with a suspended license
  • Mistreating/interfering with a police dog
  • Trespassing

Batista was also cited for three violations of failure to stop/yield and speeding at a speed greater than reasonable. 

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