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Jury selected in trial of Plaistow man accused in baby abuse case

Union Leader Correspondent

June 09. 2014 8:19PM

Roland Dow goes on trial today in Rockingham County Superior Court for allegedly abusing his girlfriend's 3-year-old son. (JAMES A. KIMBLE/FILE PHOTO)

BRENTWOOD — A jury was selected on Monday for the trial of a Plaistow man who allegedly fled to Orlando, Fla., with his girlfriend after he was suspected of burning and beating her 3-year-old son.

Opening arguments are expected to begin today in the trial of Roland Dow, 28, who is accused of abusing James Nicholson in 2012, then making recordings coaching the boy with how to respond to questions about how he was injured.

Dow was indicted on charges of first- and second-degree assault, witness tampering and illegally recording a home visit by a Department of Children, Youth and Families worker with a computer camera.

The boy’s injuries led to the conviction of his mother, Jessica Linscott, 24, who began serving 2 ½ to 7 years in state prison on July 16 after pleading guilty to witness tampering and endangering the welfare of a child.

Linscott is expected to testify against her former boyfriend. The defense maintains her credibility about what happened to her son is questionable.

Dow and Linscott went on the run in November 2012 after bringing Nicholson to Exeter Hospital to be examined.

Linscott told doctors her son was suffering seizures brought on by self-inflicted injuries, court records say.

Hospital doctors concluded the boy suffered a brain injury, a loss of vision, first-degree burns on his wrist and arm and second-degree burns on his hand, according to a police affidavit.

The doctors said the injuries were not consistent with what they were being told and suspected abuse.

Police obtained search warrants for Linscott and Dow’s apartment on Main Street two days after their visit to the hospital. Police say they also found videos of Dow coaching the boy with how to respond to questions when asked about his injuries. The couple was apprehended at Universal Studios in Orlando, Fla. on Nov. 28, 2012.

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