Man arrested in wrong way Route 8 chase

State Police arrested a man for driving 12 miles in the wrong direction on Route 8 in Shelton at around 1 a.m Tuesday morning.

According to the State Police report, Troop I informed Troop G of a wrong way driver traveling southbound in the northbound area of Exit 12.

Troopers attempted to deploy “stop sticks” to stop Walter Ciepiela, 64, who was driving the Honda CRV in the wrong direction. Ciepiela avoided the stop sticks and almost struck a police cruiser before increasing his speed to more than 60 miles per hour, according the police report.

Trooper Kauffman was posted on Route 8 near exit 1 and successfully deployed the stop sticks which struck the two driver’s side tires. The vehicle continued to travel southbound onto I-95 northbound.

Trooper Mitri stopped the vehicle as it approached his cruiser head-on. Mitri then secured Ciepiela in double lock cuffs.

According to the police report, “Ciepiela’s eyes appeared bloodshot and glossy and his speech was slurred.”

Ciepiela was then administered the standardized Field Sobriety Tests, which he failed, according to police.

He was then arrested and charged with criminal attempt/assault on a police officer, interfering with an officer, reckless endangerment 1st, driving under the influence, reckless driving, disobeying the signal of an officer, driving the wrong way, possession of less than ½ ounce of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Ciepiela did not post the $50,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in Bridgeport Superior Court Aug. 9.