By Alex Lippa
---- — PLAISTOW — Police believe the couple charged with neglecting a 3-year-old boy who has severe bruises and burns are being hidden by someone, as the manhunt for them continues.
Investigators are asking the public’s help in finding the couple.
The child’s mother, Jessica Linscott, 23 of 197 Main St., and her boyfriend Roland Dow, 27, of the same address, are wanted on multiple counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Police said they plan to upgrade the charges to first-degree assault with help from the county attorney’s office.
“I absolutely believe they’re getting help from someone,” Plaistow Lt. William Baldwin said. “It’s been cold out the last four or five days and freezing at night. There’s no way they’re surviving outside. Someone is helping them and hiding them. Someone has to be helping them out and moving them. Either that or they’ve just been staying in one place.”
Baldwin said his department has received several tips about the couple’s location, ranging from New Hampshire to various places in Massachusetts, but police have not been able to locate Linscott and Dow. Baldwin said it would be in couple’s best interests to surrender.
“The longer this goes, the worse it is,” he said. “Don’t just turn yourself in when you feel you’re ready to.”
Baldwin said family members of Dow and Linscott have not been very cooperative with the investigation.
Police said they received a call last Wednesday from Exeter Hospital saying a child with significant head injuries was admitted there and suffered massive bruises and burns. The couple told doctors the injury was self-inflicted, but doctors concluded that was not the case. An arrest warrant was issued Friday. The child is now at Lebanon Hitchcock Children’s Hospital, where he is expected to stay for the foreseeable future, police said. Linscott’s mother is staying with the child at this hospital, police said.
“The child is stable and improving, but it’s an extremely long process,” Baldwin said. “He will be there a while.”
Dow and Linscott have been living together in Plaistow for more than a year. Roberta Reed, who lives next door at 193 Main St., said she saw the couple and the child playing outside often during the last few weeks. Reed said the couple lives with Dow’s grandmother.
“I saw him outside playing a few weeks ago,” Reed said of the injured boy. “I’ve never talked to them, except for the grandmother a couple times.”
Reed noted that several cars were parked outside the home yesterday afternoon. Those cars were not there on Monday, she said.
Baldwin continues to ask that people throughout the region be on the lookout for Dow and Linscott, and to call local police if they spot the couple.
“We need everybody’s help to come together for this child so we can bring these two in to answer to this horrific event,” Baldwin said.
The investigation is now being handled by Rockingham County Attorney James Reams and the U.S. Marshal’s office. Anyone with any additional information on the case is asked to call Deputy U.S. Marshal Jeffrey White or Special Deputy U.S. Marshal Shawn Walmsley at 603-225-1632.