Man who allegedly hit Center Harbor Police Chief with a car indicted for assault

CENTER HARBOR — The man alleged to have deliberately struck Police Chief Mark Chase with a car on June 6 has been indicted by a Belknap County grand jury for one felony count of second degree assault and one felony count of reckless conduct.

Matthew McKeen, 27, of Laconia is also charged with three misdemeanor counts of disobeying an officer, aggravated driving while intoxicated, and one count of conduct after an accident.

The two felonies, one of the charges of disobeying an officer and the charge of conduct after an accident, allegedly occurred in Center Harbor. The two counts of disobeying an officer and the aggravated driving while intoxicated charge were from the aftermath of his alleged assault on Chase, when McKeen allegedly refused to stop for Meredith Police after he fled from Center Harbor.

According to affidavits obtained from the 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division, Chase was on patrol just before midnight on June 6 and noticed a Subaru Forester parked in the parking lot of the Center Harbor ball field on Dane Road. Chase's car — a fully marked patrol car — was facing McKeen's car. Chase said he saw a man in a red shirt sitting in the front driver's seat.

Chase said the Subaru began to back up so he turned on the cruiser spot light and the blue lights and got out of his cruiser. McKeen stopped backing up and gave Chase a hand signal. Chase said he told McKeen to stop, but McKeen allegedly accelerated toward him and struck him with the left side of his car.

Chase, who was dressed in a full police uniform, was knocked to the ground but was able to report what had happened. He sustained some minor abrasions to his arms and one leg. A police broadcast was issued for McKeen's Subaru.

About 30 minutes later, a Meredith police officer saw the car on Route 3 and noticed the driver's side mirror was pushed in. When he attempted to stop the car, McKeen allegedly fled for a second time and was pursued by the officer until he crashed on Pickerel Pond Road in Laconia, which runs between Parade and Meredith Center Roads.

McKeen will be arraigned sometime next week.

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Indictment returned against suspect in Laconia armed robbery

LACONIA — A Belknap County grand jury indicted a Concord man for the armed robbery of an Harvard Street home in June of 2014.

Tyler Twombly, of 281 State St. in Concord was also indicted for two separate counts of — one alleging he entered the home and one alleging he entered the home armed with a gun, and one count of robbery.

At the time of the robbery, Twombly lived in Gilford.

The indictments read that Twombly along with a second man, entered 48 Harvard St. wearing hoodies and with their faces covered by bandannas. The armed robbery indictment says Twombly "used force against another in the course of the robbery by striking or shooting (the victim) in the back of the head with the firearm and the (victim) was aware of the force."

The indictment for robbery alleges Twombly stole "controlled drugs" from a second person in the home.

According to news accounts at the time, police were notified at 3:23 a.m. on June 25 by one of the victims who said he had been shot. Police took the victim to the hospital with a minor head wound but could only confirm that a gun was discharged and the victim had some kind of wound.

Twombly and the second man fled on foot down Dartmouth Street and some of the clothing they were allegedly wearing was recovered nearby.

Clary said yesterday the second man allegedly involved has not yet been charged.

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Hosmer commits to sponsor bill to establish special MC Week license plates

CONCORD — Senator Andrew Hosmer (D-Laconia) said yesterday that he will introduce legislation to issue a commemorative license plate marking the 100th anniversary of Laconia Motorcycle Week, proceeds from the sale of which would be applied to promoting the annual rally.

Hosmer said that a legislative committee, consisting of himself and Representatives Russ Dumais (R-Gilford), Sherman Packard (R-Londonderry) and Pamlea Brown (D-Nashua) convened to study the proposal met for the first time earlier this week and has scheduled a second meeting next month in anticipation of issuing its report by November 1. Hosmer said that he is hopeful the committee will recommend creating the plate.

Charlie St. Clair, executive director of the Laconia Motorcycle Week Association, said that "it is early in the process, but I'm encouraged. It was a positive meeting from my perspective." He said that although the proposal has been discussed in the past, "it has never gotten this far and as far as I know a bill has never been filed."

Hosmer said that several issues were raised when the committee met. Law enforcement officials are concerned about the growing number of specialty plates, which can challenge patrol officers seeking to identify a vehicle. The committee also questioned the precedent of issuing a plate to mark one single event, wondering how many other events would seek similar plates. Altogether New Hampshire issues more than 30 specialty plates, many of which are also available as vanity plates.

Hosmer expected that the proceeds would be earmarked for the Division of Travel and Tourism at the New Hampshire Department of Resources and Economic Development and added to the approximately $30,000 the agency annually applies to supporting Motorcycle Week. He stressed that the economic impact of the rally benefits the entire state and generates tax revenue for its general fund. A commemorative plate would provide a source of revenue for the state to invest in the success of the rally. "Motorcycle Week needs more advocates in Concord," he said.

Officials of the Department of Motor Vehicles were asked to present the costs of issuing a specialty plate when the committee meets again next month.

St. Clair said that he envisions a plate bearing the logo of the Laconia Motorcycle Week Association and the year 2023, marking the 100th running of the rally. "New Hampshire is home to the oldest motorcycle rally in the world," he said. "It should be a selling point for the whole state."

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