DADE CITY — William Walker gunned his 1989 Crown Victoria past 100 mph, weaving in and out of Pasco and Hernando counties, the law on his tail, running red lights, and he did it, authorities said — he escaped. He shook off the cruisers, ditched the car on a dark dirt road, ran through the woods, swam across a river and, hours later, made it home. He promptly fell asleep.
That is where officers found him shortly thereafter. They had taken his license plate information during the chase.
The pursuit began at 10 p.m. Thursday when a Dade City police officer tried to pull over Walker for speeding on 14th Street. A police report says Walker drove into a ditch, spun his Crown Vic, drove straight at the cruiser and tried to hit it as he passed. The chase was on.
Afterward, Walker, who was found in his bedroom in Trilby, at first told police he had been home all night. Then a witness said Walker had come home at 4 a.m. and said he was on the run.
If the "Dade City police show up," Walker had told the witness, according to the report, "tell them I was here all night."
After that, he confessed, authorities said. Walker — who has been incarcerated at least once a year since 2006 — said he didn't want to go back to jail.
"All right, Bubba," he told an officer, the report says, "I ran from you guys because I was scared."
Walker was released from prison in January after serving eight months for willful fleeing to elude law enforcement.
He denied trying to hit the officer's car. He said he "was only trying to get home," the report says.
Walker is charged with knowingly driving with a suspended or revoked license, resisting arrest without violence, felony fleeing to elude a law enforcement officer and aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer.
He remained Monday in the Pasco jail in lieu of $20,150 bail.