A Clinton man with a lengthy criminal record who’s been on the run from police since Monday was arrested after a brief standoff with police Wednesday.
Clinton Police Chief Craig Johnson said James Simonson, 54, was wanted by police on drug charges and the Maine State Fire Marshal’s Office also had a warrant for Simonson’s arrest on arson charges.
Johnson said police tried to arrest Simonson Monday, but he fled the scene and got away. Simonson reportedly told another officer on the phone he would not be taken into custody “without a fight.” That led up to Wednesday’s confrontation on Main Street in Clinton.
Clinton Police were joined by deputies from the Kennebec County Sheriff’s Department, Maine State Police and Winslow Police as they surrounded Simonson’s home with guns drawn just after noon. After roughly 30 minutes, a shirtless Simonson was led from the house in handcuffs.
“He was subsequently located at his residence and arrested without incident,” Johnson said.
Simonson is charged with cultivating marijuana and more charges are expected to be filed by the Maine State Fire Marshal’s Office.
According to document obtained from the Maine Department of Corrections, Simonson has had multiple stints in jail and prison dating back to 1986 when he pleaded guilty to forgery. He’s also been convicted of aggravated drug trafficking in 1995 and was sentenced to 20 years in prison with all but 15 years suspended. He was released in 2004. His latest conviction was in 2011 for felony drug possession. He’s still on probation as part of his sentence for that conviction.