CANTERBURY — An 18-year-old Hillsboro man is facing multiple charges, including assault, following a two-vehicle crash Friday morning at the intersection of Route 132 and Kimball Pond Road.
A New Hampshire State Police trooper came upon the crash, involving a passenger vehicle and a commercial truck, at 7:46 a.m.
Sgt. William Graham said the truck was stopped at the end of Kimball Pond Road and the car came from the opposite direction at a high rate of speed and was unable to negotiate the turn, precipitating a head-on crash that totaled the car, with minor damage to the truck. No one sustained injuries in the crash, Graham said.
The trooper began questioning the drivers while waiting for an officer from the Canterbury Police Department to arrive. As he gathered information from one of the drivers, later identified as Alan Clark, 18, of Hillsboro, Clark reportedly walked away from the trooper, then ran toward the trooper's cruiser, getting into the driver's seat and accelerating the engine. The trooper attempted to prevent Clark from putting the cruiser into drive and, during the struggle, was able to push the cruiser's microphone button, allowing dispatch to overhear the commotion.
Several state police units, the Canterbury police, and deputies from the Merrimack County Sheriff's Department converged to help pull Clark from the cruiser and handcuff him as he continued to struggle. They placed Clark into the back of a second state police cruiser while making sure the original trooper was not hurt.
Clark used the opportunity to climb through an open part of the partition that separates the front and back seats of the cruiser and, although still handcuffed, he put his foot on the gas in an attempt to escape. Authorities again removed him, re-handcuffed him, and shackled him before placing him back into the cruiser and taking him to the Merrimack County jail.
The incident led to charges of reckless operation, wrongful conduct after an accident, resisting arrest, and two counts of felony escape.
Troopers later learned that a woman had stopped at the crash prior to their arrival to check on the occupants but, when she approached Clark, he assaulted her with a piece of pipe. As a result, an officer from the Canterbury Police Department planned to charge him with assault.
Clark is scheduled to be arraigned in Merrimack County Superior Court on Dec. 3.
While state police are handling the criminal charges, Canterbury police are investigating the accident. The name of the other driver was not immediately available.