Belmont couple comes home to find intruder

BELMONT — A Cross Street man who came home to find an intruder in his house suffered a hand injury during his encounter with the burglar, according to affidavits submitted by police.

The affidavits said some blood was found on Robert Martel's pants after police caught him on Interstate 93 after a police chase that began on Route 3 in Tilton.

Police said Martel, 30, whose last known address was 336 Central St., Apt. 24, in Franklin had allegedly parked his SUV in the driveway of the Cross Street home and entered it. When the couple returned from running some errands, they pulled their car in behind his in the driveway blocking him from leaving.

Martel is charged with Class A felony burglary for breaking into the house and hurting the victim, and was also charged with auto theft for taking the couple's Ford Taurus.

After appearing by video in the 4th Circuit Court yesterday, Martel was ordered held on $100,000 cash-only bail. His defense team reserved the right to argue bail at a later day. Martel asked the judge for less bail but was told to speak with his attorneys and not to address the court directly through the video.

The victims told police that they thought they had company when they arrived home at 12:27 p.m. Friday. But when they entered the home they came face to face with Martel who was allegedly carrying a pillow case filled with their belongings.

The man yelled to his wife to call 9-1-1 while Martel allegedly ran past the two into the driveway. The male victim wrestled briefly with Martel who allegedly stole his car and fled at a high rate of speed.

The victim's parked car was blocking Martel's SUV in the driveway.

Lt. Rich Mann said two Belmont officers were at the victim's home within 90 seconds, and offered medical assistance to the male victim

Police issued an alert for the stolen Taurus. Tilton Police Chief Robert Cormier heard the alert and spotted Martel traveling west on Route 3 by the Tanger Outlets. He said he was "at the right place at the right time" and was driving an unmarked cruiser.

Cormier followed the car onto Interstate 93 and officers from Belmont, Northfield, Tilton, Sanbornton and State Police were able to stop Martel just south of the I-93 Exit 19. One of the southbound lanes was closed during the arrest.

Police said some jewelry reported stolen from the home was found inside the victims' stolen car.

Additional conditions placed on Martel require that should he post bail he is not to consume any alcohol or non-prescribed drugs, must not go south of the intersection of Route 106 and Route 140 so that he stays away from the victims' home, and is to live a 336 Central St. in Franklin.

A representative of the N.H. Judiciary call center said Martel has previous convictions for criminal trespass and unlawful possession from about 10 years ago and a driving while intoxicated in 2012 and a bail violation in 2013 – both out of Merrimack County.