EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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April 18, 2013

Trial postponed for Plaistow child abuse suspect

BRENTWOOD — A Plaistow man accused of severely beating a 3-year-old boy and then fleeing to Florida won’t go to trial this month as scheduled.

Roland Dow, 27, was scheduled to go on trial April 29 in Rockingham Superior Court, but defense attorney Thomas Gleason asked for more time to prepare Dow’s defense. He asked the trial be postponed until at least August. A new trial date has not been set.

Dow, who faces up to 95 years in prison if convicted, faces numerous charges for allegedly hitting his girlfriend’s son and burning the child’s fingers last fall. The boy suffered a severe head injury that led to seizures and temporary blindness.

The child’s mother, Jessica Linscott, 23, has been charged with failing to protect her son, now 4. She is scheduled to go on trial June 3.

They were arrested at Universal Studios in Florida, following a two-week manhunt, and remain in jail. The couple also face witness tampering charges for allegedly manipulating the boy and secretly recording a home visit by a representative from the state Division of Children, Youth and Families.

Dow faces a first-degree assault charge and two charges of second-degree assault. He also faces five charges for endangering the welfare of a child.

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