Search for Maine man wanted in kidnapping began in Salisbury

·4 min read

Aug. 4—SALISBURY — The search for Maine resident Peter Curtis, a suspect wanted in connection with abducting a Brentwood, New Hampshire, woman at gunpoint last week before eventually releasing her, became a local concern when he sped away in a stolen truck, according to local police.

Newburyport District Court records show that Curtis allegedly drove through several backyards and fences in a stolen 2008 Chevy Silverado flatbed truck on Sunday in a brazen attempt to escape from pursuing police.

The truck was eventually spotted by Officer Juan Guillermo, who chased Curtis onto Interstate 95 north and followed him until ending the pursuit at the New Hampshire border.

While New Hampshire State Police were notified, Curtis remains on the loose and is considered "armed and dangerous" by police.

A man who was seen in the truck with Curtis before the chase began was captured on CCC Road in Salisbury and arraigned Tuesday in District Court.

Samuel L. Call, 50, of Warren, Maine, was ordered held on $1,000 cash bail on charges of receiving a stolen motor vehicle, unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and trespassing with a motor vehicle. He is due back in court Aug. 23 for a pretrial hearing.

Salisbury police Detective Brian Verney responded to a report of an abandoned motorcycle on Salisbury Beach near the Driftway on Sunday about 8 a.m.

A check on its vehicle identification number told police it had been stolen in Portland, Maine, and used in a jewelry heist in Scarborough, Maine. A Portland police sergeant told Verney that one of the two suspects in the motorcycle theft was Curtis, with the other being a female acquaintance.

"(Portland police) advised me that the two were suspected to be in possession of two other stolen vehicles, a white UHaul pickup truck and a black flatbed Chevrolet pickup truck," Verney wrote in his report, adding that Portland police had reason to believe Curtis was staying at Pines Campground on CCC Road.

Based on that information, Verney went to the campground and spoke to a manager there, asking if Curtis was a registered guest and she said he was not.

"I then showed an image of the flatbed pickup and asked if she recognized it, which she immediately did," Verney wrote in his report. He said the manager believed the truck was still parked at the campground.

The campground owner arrived and told Verney that he recognized the truck and that three people connected to the truck were staying there. He also mentioned seeing a motorcycle parked near the truck.

As Verney drove toward the campsite, the truck, carrying at least three people, sped past him in the opposite direction. Verney reversed direction and alerted other officers about the truck leaving the campground.

After exiting the campground, the truck then attempted to pull down the driveway of 12 CCC Road.

"Officer (Jeffrey) Greene with blue lights activated, began shouting commands to stop and show their hands. I pulled up behind Officer Greene and Officer (Michael) Tullercash arrived as well. I unholstered my service weapon and issued commands, 'police, stop etc,' and provided backup to Officer Greene," Verney wrote in the report.

The truck stopped long enough for two men to get out. Call fell to the ground while Curtis slid behind the wheel.

"One of the males got back inside the truck and drove forward, crashing into a parked vehicle. The truck drove through back yards, crashing and destroying fencing and tearing up lawns of the neighboring houses before driving back down CCC Road towards us at a high rate of speed," Verney wrote in his report.

Officer Juan Guillermo, who was driving toward the scene, found the truck and chased it up Route 110 to Interstate 95 north toward New Hampshire.

Salisbury police Chief Thomas Fowler, in a separate interview, said Guillermo stopped chasing the truck at the border and radioed police in New Hampshire about the truck.

Verney, in his report, wrote that a third person in the truck appeared to be a woman. Curtis, he added, heavily damaged the parked Toyota RAV4 and caused significant property damage at neighboring residences.

Call was placed in Greene's cruiser and told police he had been using fentanyl earlier in the day. He also told police that Curtis had wrecked his motorcycle the night before, according to Verney's report.

Dave Rogers is editor of the Daily News of Newburyport. Email him at: Follow him on Twitter @drogers41008.

Dave Rogers is editor of the Daily News of Newburyport. Email him at: Follow him on Twitter @drogers41008.