PLAISTOW — A man who led police on a chase through seven towns and was found wearing women’s clothing told a judge yesterday he didn’t stop because his wife was at the hospital giving birth.
Donald Smith, 23, of Plaistow was driving more than 100 mph, weaving in and out of traffic, when he slammed into a stone wall Saturday night, according to police.
But the Honda Accord kept on going, speeding across the lawn of Trinity Church on Route 125. The car struck air conditioning units, narrowly missing the church, police said.
Smith allegedly fled into the woods, eluding police for six hours until Kingston police Officer Derek Titone later spotted him walking along the roadside — wearing women’s clothing.
The chase began in Hampton Falls shortly after 5:30 p.m. and continued through Exeter, Hampton, back into Hampton Falls, Seabrook, Kensington, East Kingston and then Kingston.
During the pursuit, numerous items were thrown out the window, police said. Those items included a bag containing ammunition for .380- and .40-caliber handguns, police said.
Smith, held at the county jail, was arraigned by video yesterday in 10th Circuit Court. He faces seven charges, including several felonies punishable by years in state prison if convicted.
As his wife sobbed in the front row of the courtroom, Smith told Judge Sharon DeVries he didn’t stop for the multiple police cruisers pursuing him because he had to get to the hospital.
“I don’t know why I didn’t stop, I should have stopped. I’m sorry,” Smith said. “My wife was having my son in the hospital and I was trying to make it to her.”
At one point, Smith’s wife was admonished by the judge because her crying disrupted the proceedings.
“If you could keep it down, it’s hard enough to hear,” DeVries said.