Multi-Town Police Chase Starts With Tewksbury Stolen Car
Vehicle was stolen from in front of Crystal's News.
UPDATED 11 A.M.
Law enforcement officials are on the lookout for the driver of a vehicle that was stolen in Tewksbury last week and then was involved in a multi-town police chase on Monday.
The chase began in Ayer and continued into downtown Concord, where authorities abandoned pursuit because of a risk to public safety.
According to a Tewksbury Police report, the car in question, a 1998 grey Saturn, was reported stolen just after 7 p.m. on Dec. 28. A female caller told dispatch she had parked her car in front of Crystal's News, 1120 Main St. and left the vehicle running and unlocked as she went inside the store.
When she came back outside, the car was gone.
Tewksbury Police filed a report and put out a "Be On The Lookout" (BOLO) alert on the vehicle.
Tewksbury Police were contacted by Ayer Police at around noon Monday, reporting that they had spotted the vehicle in their community. It then proceeded into Littleton and Acton.
At around 1 p.m., the driver headed into Concord's Monument Square, disrupting the town's lunch hour, according to Concord Police Chief Barry Neal.
Neal said the Concord department monitors the police radio of surrounding towns, and picked up a call from the Acton police about a car that "just left a Great Road parking lot after breaking and entering into a car to steal a GPS system."
Neal said the Acton police responded to the theft and began pursuing the car along Route 2A, or Great Road, and contacted the Concord police. The Acton department stopped pursuing the vehicle on Barretts Mill Road in the area of Strawberry Hill Road.
"Sgt. John Kennedy and Officer Robert Murray observed the car on Lowell Road heading into Concord Center," said Neal.
Kennedy and Murray stopped their pursuit as the car came into Monument Square out of concern for pedestrians. Neal said public safety became the overriding issue.
"The car went the wrong way around the square, definitely putting people's lives in jeopardy," said Neal.
The car sped down Lexington Road toward Route 2. The car evidently reached Route 128 and started heading north in Lincoln, Neal said.
Neal said he also became aware that the car had been stolen from Tewksbury.
"We had to manage the information, our resources and public safety all at the same time," said Neal. "We made our decision to terminate pursuit based on those factors."
(Bill Gilman contributed to this story.)