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Local News

February 2, 2013

Port man charged with 5th OUI

Hit officer's car, allegedly threatened to kill woman

SALISBURY — A Newburyport man with four convictions for operating under the influence is in jail without bail, deemed a danger by the court after he was allegedly involved in two more drunken-driving accidents on Thursday, within less than half an hour of each other.

Michael Lieber, 53, of 1 Charles St., Apt. 104 in Newburyport, was arraigned yesterday at Newburyport District Court. The charges, brought by Salisbury police, stem from two incidents, one at Beach Road’s Beach Cove Cabins where he allegedly left the scene after striking a retaining wall, and the second alleging he failed to stop after striking a vehicle at the intersection of Toll Road and Pike Street, driven at the time by an off-duty Newburyport police officer.

According to Salisbury police Chief Tom Fowler, the incidents with Lieber unfolded quickly, beginning about 6 p.m., when the station received a call from Beach Cove Cabins. According to Fowler, Lieber and a female companion had pulled into Beach Cove Cabins requesting a room.

“The proprietor refused to give him the room” Fowler said. “And when (Lieber) was going, he struck a retaining wall, but didn’t stop at the scene. There’s no indication he did so maliciously because he didn’t get the room.”

Salisbury officer Michael Tullercash was dispatched to Beach Cove Cabins, where he received a description of the vehicle, complete with its New Hampshire license plate number, according to the police report. Tullercash then requested a “be-on-the-lookout” bulletin be issued for the vehicle, because of the report he received that its driver was intoxicated.

Fowler said within about 15 minutes of the call from Beach Cove Cabins, the dispatchers got a call from the victim of a hit and run accident at the intersection of Toll Road and Pike Street. Fowler said the victim, and off-duty Newburyport police officer, was driving his own vehicle.

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