NEWPORT—A Newport man was arrested by the Newport Police Department following a vehicle and foot pursuit on River Road Saturday afternoon.

Newport Police officials identified the male as Billy W. Hance, 47, Old Sevierville Highway. He was charged with seatbelt violation, violation of financial responsibility, driving on a revoked license, reckless driving, reckless endangerment, fleeing to evade, failure to yield, disregard of stop sign and kidnapping.

On Saturday, Patrolman Chris Silvers was patrolling the area of Lincoln Avenue when he observed Hance speeding near the intersection of North Filbert Street and 2nd Street.

Ptl. Silvers also stated Hance disregarded a stop sign at East Broadway Street and Belton Avenue and continued in the direction of River Road.

As Ptl. Silvers attempted to initiate a traffic stop, Hance did not stop and continued on River Road.

According the report, as officers pursed Hance, he reportedly turned into a yard at a residence and exited the vehicle on foot. Hance then jumped into the river in an attempt to swim away.

Officers then dispatched the Newport Rescue Squad to come to the scene with a boat.

Hance reportedly swam to the other side of the river but complained of chest pain and swam back to officers.

Officers spoke with a female passenger, identified as Melissa Harris, 39, who said before the pursuit started, Hance told her that he was wanted by police and he began to flee. Harris advised that she allegedly told Hance to stop but he refused to do so.

First Call EMS was called to the scene to evaluate Hance and he was medically cleared.

Hance was arrested and transported to the Cocke County Jail Annex.

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