Police say the 31-year-old man was wanted for a number of property- and driving-related offences in Ladysmith and Duncan and was being monitored by RCMP.
Mounties attempted to block his vehicle on Thursday, but say the suspect smashed his car into police cruisers and sped away.
RCMP say road spikes were deployed to deflate his tires but the man got out of his car and tried to hitchhike, though no one picked him up.
Mounties say the suspect leapt into the Nanaimo River but misjudged the water's depth and injured his ankle before swimming to shore and being taken into custody.
The man, whose name was not released, was expected to appear in court on Friday and is now facing a number of new charges including evading police, resisting arrest and dangerous driving.