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Lehigh River escapee arrested

By Will Lewis, Reporter, WLewis@wfmz.com
Published On: Dec 25 2013 07:25:14 PM CST
Updated On: Dec 26 2013 10:50:29 AM CST

A man on the run for close to a week is behind bars tonight and officers caught him after he ran into a police car.

SOUTH WHITEHALL TWP., Pa. -

A man on the run for close to a week is behind bars, and officers caught him after he ran into a police car.

Eric Messick ran from Walnutport police last week and escaped by jumping in the icy Lehigh River.

Messick tried to run again Wednesday night, but he was caught after running into a car.

Workers at Lehigh Valley Bail were trying to catch Messick, 30, after a bench warrant was issued in Northampton County.

“He ran from us from Walnutport," said Eugene Pozen, from Lehigh Valley Bail. "That's the gentleman that jumped into the river and caused a bunch of ruckus over there.”

That was on Dec. 19. Almost a week later, Pozen was following up on a tip that Messick was in South Whitehall Twp., Lehigh Co.

“We kind of found out the location of where he was going to be at," added Pozen. "We notified South Whitehall Township police."

According to Pozen, Messick was meeting someone at the Trivet Diner, in South Whitehall Township.

"They surrounded the area, he pulled up in a car," said Pozen. "A South Whitehall township officer tried to approach the vehicle and he ran.”

Pozen said this time police caught Messick after Messick ran into an on coming South Whitehall police cruiser on Tilghman Street.

“It looks like something out of a movie if you want to say that.”

A real-life chase that finally ends with Messick in handcuffs.

“I say 80 percent of the people that we catch they surrender," said Pozen. "Once we got them we got them, but you've got a couple of these random ones that want to run.”

Messick was transported to Northampton County Prison.