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November 26, 2012

Car chase ends in arrest of theft suspect

NEWBURYPORT — An Andover man faces several felony charges after leading police in several communities on an extensive car chase Friday afternoon that ended with his arrest on Spofford Road just past the Chain Bridge.

Darin K. O’Neil, 47, of 7 Salem St., Andover, was charged with malicious destruction of property more than $250, daytime breaking and entering to commit a felony and larceny over $250.

O’Neil is expected to be arraigned in Lawrence District Court on Tuesday. Additional motor vehicle charges could be filed as a result of the pursuit, according to Andover police.

The pursuit began around 4 p.m. after Andover police received word of a break-in at the administration building of Phillips Academy, a private boarding school on Main Street. An Andover police official said a laptop computer was reported missing.

The suspect was spotted by Andover police driving on Interstate 495 into Amesbury. With state police cruisers in pursuit, Amesbury police joined chase. After an attempt by Amesbury police to forcefully stop the car, the suspect eventually crossed the Hines Memorial Bridge and the Chain Bridge, where he was met by several Newbuyport police officers, according to state police.

It is believed the suspect tossed the stolen laptop out of his vehicle during the chase near Exit 53 on Interstate 495. State police K-9 units searched the area for the laptop but were unable to locate it, according to state police.

Among those assisting state police were Newburyport officers Charles Vorderis, Charles Eaton, Keith Carter and Sgt. Stephen Chaisson. Amesbury police officers included Jason Kooken, David Clark and Sgt. William Scholtz.

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