METHUEN — About to be captured in the middle of an alleged house burglary early yesterday morning, Juan Ocasio made a daring escape attempt by jumping out a third-story window, according to police.
Ocasio didn't get far. He broke a leg in a hard landing on a paved sidewalk, ending a dramatic get-away. Officer Christine Nicolosi and K-9 Reiko tracked him down in the yard of a nearby home, where he was writhing in pain and yelling for help
"He told me he didn't realize he was on the third floor when he jumped," Methuen Police Capt. Randy Haggar said in an interview yesterday. "Things were happening so fast that he forgot where he was, he said to me during booking. It was about a 35-foot jump. People become desperate when they're about to get caught."
Ocasio, 36, 65 Railroad St., Apt. 1, Lawrence, was one of three people arrested by police in connection with a break-in at the 19 Grove Street apartments shortly after midnight. He was charged with breaking and entering in the nighttime, unlawful possession of a firearm, larceny of a firearm and resisting arrest. Ocasio was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, but later returned to a local hospital where he was being guarded by a Methuen officer.
Also charged were:
Nelson Rodriguez, 38, 25 Carlton St., Methuen. He was charged with breaking and entering in the night time, unlawful possession of a firearm, larceny of a firearm, assault and battery on a police officer and resisting arrest.
Jorge Ramos 27, of 12 Haverhill St., Lawrence. He was arrested on an unrelated warrant. But police said they expect to charge him as an accomplice in the burglary and possibly for related offenses.
The three men were being held on $50,000 cash bail pending their arraignment in Lawrence District Court tomorrow.