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Newport Beach man arrested after pursuit and standoff pleads not guilty to felony charges

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Richard Bloustine, 53, pleaded not guilty Friday to one count of reckless driving and one count of driving against traffic, both allegedly while evading a peace officer.
(Courtesy of Laguna Beach Police Department)

A Newport Beach man has pleaded not guilty to two felony charges in connection with a police chase last week that ended with a standoff in a Newport Center parking lot.

Richard Scott Bloustine, 53, entered his plea Friday to one count of reckless driving and one count of driving against traffic, both allegedly while evading a peace officer, court records show.

Bloustine was arrested Wednesday after a two-hour drama in which police initially tried to stop him in Laguna Beach on a warrant. An officer identified Bloustine’s Mercedes-Benz and tried to stop it, but the driver did not comply and a pursuit through Dana Point, Irvine, Costa Mesa and, finally, Newport Beach followed, the Laguna Beach Police Department said.

After an hour-long standoff in a medical center parking lot on Avocado Avenue, Bloustine exited the car and surrendered.

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Man surrenders after standoff in Newport Beach following multi-city chase »

Laguna Beach police said Bloustine had told authorities in a phone call that he was armed. But after the arrest, authorities determined there was no weapon in the car, police said.

Bloustine was sentenced in February 2016 to seven years in prison after pleading guilty to intentionally writing more than $200,000 worth of bad checks.

Newport man sentenced to 7 years for writing more than $200,000 in bad checks »

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He also was ordered to pay restitution to his victims and a $444,000 fine as part of his sentence, according to the Orange County district attorney’s office.

He was released in March 2018 and ordered to comply with a post-release supervision program until March 15, 2021, court records show.

According to a report earlier this year by an Orange County probation officer, Bloustine was deemed in violation of his post-release supervision terms in connection with an alleged grand theft incident in June last year.

The arrest warrant on which he was sought was issued April 18, court records show.

Newport Beach man arrested after chase and standoff has history of criminal convictions across the country, court records say »

Bloustine has other criminal convictions including grand theft, burglary and using force with a deadly weapon in California; defrauding an innkeeper and larceny in Florida; theft in Maryland; criminal use of a financial card in Kansas; larceny, theft of services and fraud in Texas; fraud, larceny and fraudulent schemes in Arizona; and theft and credit card fraud in Hawaii, according to the probation officer’s report.

Bloustine is being held at Orange County’s Theo Lacy jail with bail set at $100,000, the district attorney’s office said Monday. He is scheduled to return to court May 13.

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