Two men were stopped at gunpoint in a swampy area off Methuen Street in Dracut about 20 minutes ago, following a pursuit that began in Lowell.
Officer Scott Merrill said in radio broadcasts that he was nearly “t-boned” by a vehicle, and that he when he tried to pull it over the vehicle accelerated and fled on Methuen Street about 7:32 p.m.
Merrill pursued the vehicle over the city line, updating dispatchers with his location as he went, until the vehicle crashed on Methuen Street near Kelly Road.
“He’s fishtailing, he’s fishtailing. Lowell he lost it; crashed,” Merrill radioed at 7:33 p.m.
Immediately, three men fled from the vehicle on foot. Merrill stopped two of them at gunpoint in a swamp just off the road. The third man, described only has a heavyset male wearing all gray, fled into nearby woods.
The identity and charges against those in custody are not yet available, as they’re not even back at the police station yet.
UPDATE: Only the driver ended up being charged here, and I’m still waiting to get his name.
I went to the scene and took the two photos I’ve inserted into this post, and ran into Dracut Town Clerk Kathleen Graham.
In addition to being town clerk, Graham oversees the Kenwood Water Supply District, and she said that when the vehicle involved in this chase crashed into a fire hydrant, as seen above, an estimated 1,000 Kenwood customers lost water service.
Graham coordinated a reverse 911 call to let people know what was happening, and water service was restored about 9:15 p.m., after an outage of a little over an hour.
There are skid marks at the scene on Methuen Street in Dracut that I’d estimate are close to 100 yards long, and it appears this car was sliding sideways when it hit the hydrant. If it wasn’t for the hydrant, I think we’d be looking at a rollover here, with who knows what results.
UPDATE 2: The driver identified himself to police as Bernaldo Santiago-Rosario, 20, of 1325 Pawtucket Blvd., Unit 125, in Lowell. He is being held right now on counts of operating to endanger, failure to stop for police, and assault with a dangerous weapon (motor vehicle).
A bail commissioner has not yet decided whether he will be bailed. He’ll be arraigned Tuesday in Lowell.