A man who police say has had a few run-ins with the law over his suspended driving privileges was arrested Sunday morning, Nov. 27 after he allegedly tried to convince an officer that it was his wife — not him — who was driving.

William J. Runci, 38, of Swanville was arrested on charges of violating conditions of release, speeding (66 mph in a 45 mph zone), driving to endanger and operating while license is suspended or revoked (with three prior convictions) following a series of events that began with a complaint.

“We got an anonymous call on the morning of the 27th that this guy was driving down from Bangor and didn’t have a license,” said Chief Deputy Jeff Trafton of the Waldo County Sheriff’s Office.

A short while later, Trafton said Deputy Darrin Moody was headed up Swan Lake Avenue in Belfast and spotted a vehicle matching the description of Runci’s car. Moody also recognized the man in the driver’s seat as Runci, and the woman in the passenger’s seat as Runci’s wife, Trafton said.

Moody turned around and began following Runci’s vehicle, and Trafton said Moody observed Runci ducking down in his seat in an apparent attempt to avoid being seen behind the wheel.

Moody followed the vehicle to the trailer park on Chickadee Circle, and when the officer pulled up near the vehicle he saw Runci’s wife was in the driver’s seat and Runci was no longer in the vehicle.

Trafton said after Moody had a brief conversation with Runci’s wife, who claimed she had been driving and not her husband, Moody went inside a nearby trailer and found Runci inside.

“He tried to pin it on his wife,” said Trafton, who added that Moody easily recognized Runci because the officer had previously charged Runci with operating after suspension in September.

Runci is scheduled to appear at Waldo County Superior Court in Belfast Thursday, Jan. 26, 2012.