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Man wanted in NH arrested after high-speed chase

Union Leader Correspondent

April 05. 2012 3:33PM

ATKINSON - A former Seabrook man wanted for burglary in Atkinson and suspected in other break-ins was arrested Thursday after leading police on a wild chase from Massachusetts to New Hampshire that reached speeds of 90 mph.

Keith Babcock, 30, of Haverhill, Mass., and formerly of Seabrook, was arrested in Amesbury, Mass., when he tried to flee after his vehicle's tires were punctured by a spike strip deployed on Interstate 95.

At one point, police said he tried to ram his vehicle into Massachusetts cruisers when they tried to stop him.

Babcock is well known to police in New Hampshire, where he has faced numerous arrests in the past related to burglaries in Danville, Hampstead and Kingston. On one occasion in 2008, Kingston police arrested him after they said he accidentally left his wallet behind near a basement window of a house that he was accused of burglarizing.

Thursday's pursuit began around 10:30 a.m. in Massachusetts when Haverhill police spotted him in a green Ford Explorer and attempted to stop him on the Atkinson warrant.

Atkinson police Sgt. Patrick Caggiano said the warrant was issued after Babcock was identified as a suspect in a break-in at a Crown Hill Road home on March 30. He said jewelry, a computer and an iPad were allegedly stolen.

With help from Plaistow police, Caggiano said police learned that some of the stolen items were pawned at a pawn shop in Hampton. Atkinson police worked with Plaistow and Hampton police to recover the items, which included some of the stolen jewelry, Caggiano said.

Local police held a regional task force meeting Tuesday because Babcock is also believed to have been involved in other recent burglaries in Candia and Exeter, Caggiano said.

According to Massachusetts State Police, Thursday's pursuit reached speeds of 80 to 90 mph as it moved north on Interstate 495 and eventually crossed into New Hampshire at the Seabrook line.

Seabrook police Lt. Michael Gallagher said Seabrook police assisted as the vehicle was pursued for only a few minutes on I-95 before it crossed over to the southbound lane and returned to Massachusetts where police there continued the chase. At one point the pursuit moved to Route 286 in Salisbury and then onto a local town road before returning to I-495 where Amesbury police successfully deployed the spike strip.

Police said Babcock continued for a short distance with his punctured tires before stopping and fleeing the vehicle. Massachusetts police caught him on foot along the side of the highway.

Babcock is charged fugitive from justice on the New Hampshire warrant; failure to stop for police; negligent operation of a motor vehicle; assault with a dangerous weapon (the vehicle driven at cruisers); speeding; marked lanes violation; and resisting arrest.

He is expected to be arraigned Friday in Newburyport (Mass.) District Court.

Public Safety Crime Seabrook

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