HAVERHILL — Police said a man who stalked a 14-year-old boy at the public library last month invited the boy into his car, where he talked about his family and his life.
While making small talk, the man made several attempts to touch the boy’s leg, but the boy moved away, police said. The man then grabbed the boy’s genital area, police said. They said the boy was afraid the man would drive away with him, so he politely told him he was going back into the library and then got out of the man’s car.
That story unfolded yesterday in Haverhill District Court, where Kevin Gaudette, 54, of Nashua, N.H., faced a charge of indecent assault and battery on a person 14 or older.
Judge Patricia Dowling ordered Gaudette held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing Feb. 4. Assistant District Attorney John DePaulo said Gaudette’s court appointed attorney, Ana Crnilovic, would be prepared to argue the case at that time.
DePaulo said Gaudette has a “serious” out-of-state criminal record.
According to police, on Dec. 31 about 9:30 a.m., a 14-year-old boy was reading a book in the teen section of the library when a man, who was later identified as Gaudette, picked up a Spider Man magazine and sat down nearby. The boy told police he thought it was “weird” to see a man sitting in the teen section.
Police said Gaudette stared at the boy for about a half hour, then followed him into the bathroom, where he continued to stare, but did not speak to the boy.
When the boy stepped outside the building to get some fresh air, Gaudette followed him, police said. The two began chatting and, after a few minutes, Gaudette invited the boy into his car, which was parked on Summer Street, saying it was cold outside and that he wanted to have a cigarette.
According to the police report, the boy got into the car. In the back seat was a small dog and a 12-pack of soda. The boy told police that Gaudette continued to make small talk, telling him his name was Kevin and that he was from Nashua.
The boy said Gaudette asked him if he’d like to take a ride to the stadium or Winnekenni Park, both remote areas, but the boy declined the offer.
The boy told police that Gaudette then reached over several times and tried to touch his leg, but each time the boy moved away. Gaudette then grabbed the boy’s genital area, the police report said. The boy said he feared Gaudette would drive away with him in the car. The boy politely told him he was going back into the library then stepped out of the car, the report said.
The boy told police that he returned to the teen section of the library and told a friend about his encounter with Gaudette. The boy told police that Gaudette showed up again, sat down and continued to stare at him. After a while, the boy walked up to a library worker to tell him what was happening.
The boy told police that his actions may have spooked Gaudette into leaving.
The boy provided Haverhill police Detective Meaghan Buckley with a description of the man, including his first name. Buckley contacted detectives in Nashua, who were able to identify Gaudette. Nashua police said they were familiar with Gaudette and that they have had dealings with him in the past, according to the police report.
Buckley applied for and was granted a warrant for Gaudette’s arrest. On Jan. 10, Nashua police arrested him on a fugitive from justice warrant. Gaudette initially refused to waive extradition, but on Monday he relented and was transported from New Hampshire to Haverhill, where he was booked at the Haverhill police station on the assault charge.