EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

April 12, 2014

Police nab bank robbery suspect after chase, crash

Alleged bank robber was driving car stolen in Haverhill

By Jill Harmacinski

---- — LAWRENCE – An alleged New Hampshire bank robber led police on a chase through the city yesterday before crashing on Riverside Drive near the Methuen line.

Andrew Dufresne, 42, who was believed to be suicidal and armed with a rifle, was taken to Lawrence General Hospital after the chase and crash early yesterday afternoon.

Dufresne, who will likely remain in the hospital over the weekend, was arrested and charged on multiple motor vehicle charges and a litany of warrants, according to Lawrence police.

It’s believed Dufresne, driving a stolen, tan, Buick Century came to Lawrence yesterday to purchase drugs, police said. Dufresne is a suspect in a robbery Wednesday at the People’s United Bank in Manchester, N.H., according to police.

Lawrence police yesterday were alerted after a cell phone ping indicated Dufresne was in downtown Lawrence, near the intersection of Essex and Canal streets. All patrolmen were asked to be on the lookout for Dufresne, in the Buick, which was reported stolen by a Haverhill resident, according to police.

A patrol officer quickly located the Buick near the Walgreen’s pharmacy at Broadway and Lowell streets.

A brief chase ensued and Dufrense then crashed into a small blue car driven by William Hale, a retired Lawrence police officer, on Riverside Drive. Dufresne was taken to the hospital and Hale was uninjured, police said.

A rifle was later recovered from the Buick Dufresne crashed, police said.

The chase was part of a trio of serious events that unfolded Friday in Lawrence, which included a school lockdown over an armed gunman and a carjacking and shooting on Melvin Street, police said.

Follow staff reporter Jill Harmacinski on Twitter @EagleTribJill.