SALEM — A Lowell, Mass., man who allegedly choked and punched a woman in the face at a Salem hotel last week then sped away at 120 mph on Interstate 93 may have escaped from getting arrested that night, but his Facebook profile ultimately caught up with him.
Police said that Tuesday's arrest of Gerald Fraize, 38, by U.S. Marshals and Derry police came about only after they were able to identify him through a Facebook profile in which he apparently used a different last name.
Fraize was ordered held on $25,000 cash bail following his arraignment in 10th Circuit Court, Salem Division, on Wednesday.
He pleaded not guilty to second-degree assault, criminal threatening, driving after revocation and six other charges.
Salem police responded to La Quinta Inn, 8 Keewaydin Drive, at 6:18 p.m. on March 23 for the report of a domestic disturbance.
Police said a suspect driving a white Mustang Shelby GT500 fled from the hotel before police arrived.
A police officer attempted to stop the Mustang as it took the Exit 2 on-ramp to Interstate 93, but the driver continued southbound only to be clocked by Massachusetts State Police at 120 m.p.h., according to court records.
The 25-year-old woman told police she got into an argument with her boyfriend over the use of a fan the night before. The woman said to police she knew her boyfriend as "Jerry Crosher," Officer Michael Massahos said in a sworn affidavit.
The woman told police that, "'Jerry' was angry because he slept poorly." She turned off the fan but the room got hotter, apparently angering her boyfriend, police said.
He got up and she followed him into the bathroom to calm him down. The boyfriend responded by punching the woman squarely in the face, choking her and shouting "I will kill you," Massahos said in the affidavit.
The woman briefly broke away, but Fraize allegedly pulled her to the ground by the hair, punched her then grabbed her cell phone and threw it in the toilet to prevent her from calling the police, according to Massahos.
"If you love me, you won't call the cops," Fraize allegedly said before fleeing.
The woman went back to the police station and showed them her boyfriend's Facebook profile under the name of "Jerry Noone," the affidavit says. That supplied police with pictures of Fraize and his white Mustang.
"Also, there was a video, with commentary, of the vehicle parked and running," Massahos said in the affidavit. The two last names given to police did not come up in any searches to help them identify their suspect in the assault. But police were able to use the Facebook photo and match it with a photo obtained "through the use of law enforcement networking," the affidavit said.
Fraize is being held at the Rockingham County jail.