Norwalk man charged after car chase with ex
Published 10:00 am, Wednesday, June 7, 2017
DARIEN — A car chase between exes led to a 19-year-old Norwalk man being arrested for disorderly conduct and reckless driving.
On June 3 around 8 p.m., an officer stopped at a red light on the Post Road noticed a black SUV and a white SUV speed off the highway at Exit 11.
The officer watched as the two vehicles continued to drive erratically down the Post Road. Both weaved in and out of traffic and the black SUV appeared to be following the white SUV. The officer lost sight of the vehicles in traffic but caught up to them on Renshaw Road where both were going above the 25-miles-per-hour speed limit. The black SUV then pulled to the wrong side of the road and blocked traffic to pull up next to the white SUV.
The officer stopped the black SUV, but the white SUV fled the scene.
The driver of the black SUV, Joseph Benati of Silver Creek Lane, said his girlfriend was driving the other car. He said the two had had a small disagreement while out at dinner in Norwalk. After a too-long wait, they decided to bail. After leaving, Benati’s girlfriend did not answer his phone call and, he told police, his erratic driving was an attempt to catch up and speak with her.
The officer noted the plate number of the white SUV, which was linked to a Darien address. A second officer responded to the address to interview the driver. The woman was extremely emotional while speaking with the officer and appeared to be afraid of Benati. She said the two had broken up a few days earlier but were meeting to return each other’s belongings. She said the two had planned on getting dinner together, but the wait was too long and Benati became irritated. Benati said he was going to Westport to eat with his parents and the woman said she was going home.
Instead, Benati followed the victim onto Route 7. She said the Norwalk man got out of his car while she was at a red light and reached through her open window to take her phone out of her hand while she was using it. He hung up the call and asked the victim why she wouldn’t answer his calls. He then chased her to Darien. The victim asked Benati be told not to contact her.
Benati was issued a misdemeanor summons for disorderly conduct and for reckless driving. He was given a court date of June 5 and advised to no longer contact the victim.