Crime

Ryan Lessard / NHPR

Last year, robberies, burglaries and heroin addiction appear to have skyrocketed in the Queen City.

Over the summer we looked at the issue of crime in Manchester and we provided a lot of historical data from the past five years. Now that the year is done, we review some of those numbers. The most surprising development is a 45% growth in robberies compared to 2012. Burglaries spiked to unprecedented highs during the summer, but robberies continued well into the colder months. The city also saw a high number of homicides. The highest in recent memory.

Ryan Lessard / NHPR

Ted Gatsas began his third term as Manchester’s Mayor Tuesday. And his inaugural address included promises to improve the city’s safety and public education.


New Hampshire prosecutors are saying for the first time that their investigation into veteran Rockingham County attorney Jim Reams is criminal in nature.

Prosecutors are fighting Reams' motion to release details about the nature of the investigation and complaints they say have been filed against him.

The attorney general stripped Reams of his power to prosecute last month — at the outset of a joint state and federal investigation of his office.

A 31-year-old New Hampshire man who has spent more than half his life in prison for killing his parents when he was 14 can be freed if he completes counseling and learns the skills he'll need to return to society.

via PatriciaCornwell.com

NHPR and The Music Hall present Writers on a New England Stage with Patricia Cornwell. Her best-selling Kay Scarpetta crime fiction series introduced millions of readers to forensic pathology – and inspired popular TV shows from CSI to Dexter. After her 21st Scarpetta novel, Patricia Cornwell reflects on the process of turning grisly real-world crimes into absorbing fiction.

A New Hampshire man accused of bilking investors in Maine and New Hampshire has been banned from the securities industry.

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced Monday that James Philbrook of Concord, N.H., was sanctioned after his convictions for theft and securities violations in Maine, where he was sentenced to prison and ordered to pay restitution.

Ryan Lessard / NHPR

A Concord tattoo artist has been charged with criminal mischief Tuesday for the racist graffiti found on four Concord homes. Court documents reveal a detailed account of a Concord detective’s investigation into Raymond Stevens. Handwriting on a 2009 gun license application was the first piece of evidence.


via FBI.gov

Investigators say the last call made on a missing New Hampshire girl's cellphone was at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, about four hours after she was last seen.

Fifteen-year-old Abigail Hernandez of North Conway was last seen leaving Kennett High School on Wednesday afternoon. Police say she made it home but was gone when her mother arrived later.

WMUR-TV reports that police said Sunday they have not located the girl's phone, but have determined that the last call was made at 6:30 p.m. It's not clear where the call was made.

IntelFreePress via Flickr Creative Commons

New Hampshire's Supreme Court will decide whether reading a text message while driving is a crime, even though it's not barred by law.

Thirty-year-old Chad Belleville, of Barnstead, is serving a 3 ½-to-7-year sentence for second-degree assault and vehicular assault related to a December 2010 car accident in Pittsfield that seriously injured a teenager.

Belleville's lawyer argues that reading a text message on his phone amounted to a momentary distraction, not reckless or negligent conduct.

Police in North Conway say so far there is nothing suspicious about the disappearance of a 14-year-old girl.

Abigail Hernandez left Kennett High School around 2:30 Wednesday afternoon and police believe she made it home. But when her mother arrived home, the girl was gone.

The search continued Thursday. Conway Police Chief Edward Wagner says police are treating it as a missing person's case "and nothing more." Local, state and federal police agencies are involved in the investigation.

via justkhaotic

Gang violence is nothing new, but the rise of social media has catapulted even local gangs into the spotlight...for the police, and for each other.

Ben Austen is magazine writer based in Chicago. He wrote in Wired magazine about how hundreds of youth gangs of Chicago are using social media sites like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

A 70-year-old New Hampshire man accused of killing his roommate in Hampton has several previous criminal convictions.

Peter Bartoloni is charged with second-degree murder in the death of 56-year-old Robert Roderick last week. Prosecutors say the two men had been roommates briefly before Bartoloni used a sledgehammer to kill Roderick.

New Hampshire investigators admit they got lucky in detecting school bus driver John Allen Wright's sex abuse of children. A woman visiting a friend near Wright's Milton home unwittingly latched onto his wireless Internet connection and found sexually graphic images.

But getting the evidence to convict him of abusing the disabled children he drove and taping the abuse on a hidden camera required nearly 100 hours of computer examination by New Hampshire's Internet Crimes Against Children unit.

Accused Killer Of UNH Student Waives Arraignment

Oct 3, 2013
Jonathan Lynch for NHPR

The New Hampshire man charged with killing a University of New Hampshire sophomore nearly a year ago has waived arraignment on new charges that he conspired to mislead investigators.

Thirty-year-old Seth Mazzaglia was charged last year with first-degree murder in the disappearance and death of Elizabeth "Lizzi" Marriott of Westborough, Mass.

Last month, he was indicted for conspiracy to hinder the prosecution and faced arraignment by video Thursday in Strafford Superior Court, but waived arraignment.

In a press release from the N.H. Attorney General's office, new details surrounding the fatal police shooting of a Canterbury woman have been released. It describes the car chase that led to the shooting but not the specific circumstances that caused the state trooper to fire his weapon.

Here is an excerpt from the release:

Arrest Made After High School Lockdown

Oct 1, 2013

A New Hampshire high school was under lockdown after police got a report that a former student was on the grounds threatening several people with a firearm.

Police said shortly after the lockdown at Sanborn Regional High School in Kingston on Monday afternoon, they arrested 18-year-old Timothy Soucy of Danville on two counts of criminal threatening. It wasn't known if a weapon was recovered.

It wasn't immediately known if Soucy had a lawyer.

Jonathon Kambouris

For his last meal, John Wayne Gacy requested 12 fried shrimp, a bucket of original recipe KFC, french fries, and 1lb of strawberries. Gary Gilmore was served steak, potatoes, milk and coffee. Timothy McVeigh asked for two pints of mint chocolate chip ice cream. Victor Feguer asked only for a single pitted olive. Ethel and Julius Rosenberg were not given a choice.

Brent Cunningham is deputy editor of the Columbia Journalism Review and he wrote about the history of prisoner’s last meals for Lapham’s Quarterly.

Third Person Charged In Deadly Hampton Bike Crash

Sep 26, 2013
Emily Corwin for NHPR

A third person has been charged in connection with a crash into a group of cyclists in New Hampshire over the weekend that killed two women from Massachusetts.

Nineteen-year-old Scott Martin of Seabrook is facing a charge of allowing 19-year-old Darriean Hess to drive his car without a license.

Hess, ordered held on $50,000 bail, was arraigned Wednesday via video from jail. She's charged with negligent homicide.

Forty-eight-year-old Cindy Sheppard of Hampton is charged with selling a painkiller to Hess and allowing her to drive without a license.

Police in Candia, N.H., are investigating the theft of a 1,000-pound granite obelisk taken from the top of an old family gravesite.

Police said the obelisk looks like the Washington Monument and is about 6 feet tall.

WMUR-TV reports police said there is evidence that someone backed a truck into the Candia Village Cemetery and put outriggers into the ground to lift the obelisk from its headstone.

  Police have charged a 20-year-old woman with negligent homicide in connection with a weekend crash that killed two cyclists in Hampton, N.H.

Investigators say a car driven by Darriean Hess, of Seabrook, was speeding, crossed the center line and struck a group of riders at 8:30 a.m. Saturday on a bridge during an annual long-distance ride.

Hess was also charged with assault Tuesday.

The crash killed two Massachusetts women, Pamela Wells, of South Hamilton, and Elise Bouchard, of Danvers. Two other riders were injured.

Claremont Man Charged In Multiple Hanover Burglaries

Sep 12, 2013
JLaw45 via Flickr Creative Commons

Police say a man in Oklahoma City has turned himself in on charges that he burglarized multiple homes in Hanover, N.H.

Police say 23-year-old Brandon Mull of Claremont was arrested Tuesday in Charlestown on two counts of burglary. The break-ins happened on July 30.

Police said their investigation identified a vehicle registered to a woman in Claremont, and was later connected to Mull. A warrant was issued for him on Aug. 2.

Nashua Man Charged In Woman's Death

Sep 11, 2013

Police have a charged a New Hampshire man with manslaughter in the death of a woman in July.

They've arrested 51-year-old Daniel Burke of Nashua. He was scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.

He's accused of pushing Christina Hill into a cabinet, causing her to strike her head and resulting in injuries that caused her death.

Police said Hill's body was in her apartment for about two weeks before they were told about a suspicious odor within the building and found her on July 20. She had been wrapped in plastic.

Designed by Sara Plourde. Data courtesy of the Manchester Police Department.

Burglaries tend to increase in the warmer weather, but Manchester saw its numbers spike significantly in the recent summer months.

From Memorial Day to Labor Day, there were 338 burglaries in the city, a 23 percent increase over the same period last year.

The man who showed up at her front door one day in July seemed like a Godsend to 94-year-old Lorraine Fitzgerald.

Sara Plourde / NHPR

With any black market, it's impossible to track the full extent of its reach. One way to estimate the relative quantity of various drugs in the city is to track undercover drug buys and seizures by the police department. This system of measurement, however, is an imperfect science; large busts (see: cocaine, 2009) skew numbers for a particular year, throwing off the curve, and budgetary and tactical considerations can restrict potential drug buys.

Headlines & Heroes via Flickr Creative Commons

James “Whitey” Bulger’s lawless run came to an end on Aug. 12 when a federal jury found him guilty on 31 of 32 counts including racketeering, extortion, money-laundering and participating in 11 of the 19 murders with which he was charged. Few people know his story better than Shelley Murphy. The Boston Globe reporter has covered Whitey Bulger and his criminal empire for 17 years. She and Globe columnist Kevin Cullen are authors of “Whitey Bulger: America's Most Wanted Gangster and the Manhunt That Brought Him to Justice”. We spoke to Shelley when the book came out about Whitey’s path from the housing projects of South Boston to career criminal…to FBI informant…to 16 years as a fugitive on the Lam. Shelley spoke with us about the mobster’s recent trial and convictions, and life after Whitey.

Recently, more New Hampshire police departments have been acquiring the controversial armored truck, called the BearCat, causing outrage among some groups concerned about civil liberties and what they see as an increasingly militarized police force. But officers say they increasingly face deadly threats and that these methods help protect them and the public.

Guests:

via buzzfeed.com

Breaking Bad follows a high school science teacher who cooks up meth with a former student, kicking off a fast slide into murder, extortion and unsavory partnerships as a bona fide drug lord. Too crazy to be true…right? Well, maybe not. In 2011, police in California arrested Stephen Kinzey; professor by day, outlaw biker and meth distributor by night. Kinzey has been out on bail since his initial arrest. The preliminary hearing to determine whether or not the case against him is strong enough to go to trial was scheduled for June, it’s since been delayed.

Natasha Vargas-Cooper wrote about the real-life Walter White for BuzzFeed, and took the time to talk with us. She’s also a frequent contributor to The Atlantic, and The New York Times among others.

Harper Collins

Nearly three years have passed since Long Island police uncovered the bodies of four dead girls along their local ocean parkway. Following the discovery, authorities uncovered commonalities among the deceased that included internet prostitution and a poor, working class socio-economic background. These revelations, coupled with a fifth girl who disappeared nearby under similar circumstances, resulted in the pursuit of a faceless serial killer who left behind very few leads.

Harper Collins Publishers

We spoke with author Robert Kolker about the unsolved case, dubbed the Long Island Serial Killer by the press and public. Here's an abbreviated version of the timeline in Lost Girls of the events surrounding the ongoing investigation. The full story and timeline is discussed in Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery.

April 20, 1996: Two female legs, wrapped in a plastic bag, are discovered on Fire Island west of Davis Park Beach.

NakedSwanTrader via Flickr Creative Commons

The 2002 film Minority Report, based on a short story by Philip K. Dick, imagines a futuristic crime unit that uses data provided by psychics to apprehend criminals before they commit crimes.

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