LACONIA — After a three-day manhunt, police arrested Hassan Sapry early Friday evening on a murder warrant in the bludgeoning death of Wilfred Guzman, police Chief Matt Canfield said.
Sapry, 21, was arrested at his parents’ home on Pleasant Street after officers ordered him out of the residence.
Police said a person who lives in the area reported earlier that he thought the suspect was in his house, but by the time police arrived the residence was empty.
Police vehicles were seen rushing to the area with their lights and sirens on. Roads were blocked in a section of the city before Sapry was taken into custody.
Authorities have been looking for Sapry since Tuesday night when police searched the premises around his parents’ home at 411 Pleasant St.
Helicopters were used and residents were notified by telephone late at night to stay in their residences.
Police and a police dog have been in boats at Opechee Cove on Thursday and Friday looking for possible clues. A police dog had tracked him to that area and authorities thought Sapry might have swam or possibly drowned.
Homicides are rare in Laconia and many people commented on social media that they were nervous after hearing about the killing, a suspect at large, helicopters circlings overhead, and police searching the water in boats.
Canfield said he didn’t know a motive for the killing of Guzman, who worked at a Staples store in Tilton.
Guzman’s body was found Friday, April 19, in his apartment at 57 Blueberry Lane.
An autopsy showed Guzman died from blunt and sharp force trauma to the head.
Sapry, his older brother, and their parents, Ali Hassan and his wife Ferdos Ajeel, arrived in Laconia in 2008. The family is originally from Iraq, where Hassan was a driver and bodyguard for Western and U.N. diplomats.
The Hassan family lived for a time at the complex where Guzman lived and at a nearby complex before buying the home on Pleasant Street.
Neighbors, classmates and refugee volunteers said Sapry was respectful, enjoyed track and soccer and didn’t get into trouble.
“When I heard that someone in my class was being sought, his name didn’t even cross my mind,” said Alana Persson, who graduated with Sapry from Laconia High School in 2016.
She said he was a “nice kid.”
Police said there did not appear to be a forced entry into Guzman’s apartment. There were also no signs of robbery or evidence of drugs.
The family was mentioned in stories from several years ago in the Laconia Daily Sun about refugees who resettled locally.