A Helena man was taken into custody Wednesday evening, two days after allegedly leading police on a high-speed chase through town during the lunch rush.

James Paul Wheat, 38, was arrested without incident at a home north of East Helena on a $30,000 warrant for financial crimes as well as accusations of felony criminal endangerment and misdemeanor fleeing from or eluding a peace officer, according to the Lewis and Clark County Sheriff's Office and court documents.

On Monday, a sheriff’s deputy noticed Wheat’s vehicle driving through town and recognized Wheat driving the car, according to the court affidavit.

The affidavit alleges that the deputy then turned on his lights and stopped the vehicle, but when he got out of the patrol car, Wheat sped off.

Wheat led a sheriff’s deputy on a high-speed chase through Helena Monday around noon, hitting speeds up to and above 90 miles per hour, according to court documents.

After multiple near collisions and Wheat passing vehicles in no-passing zones while speeds crept higher, the deputy was advised by a captain to end the pursuit, according to court documents and the sheriff's office. 


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