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Merrimack Valley

January 12, 2014

Police nab fugitive stuck in snowbank

HAVERHILL — Police arrested Joshua Willett of Haverhill on assault, drug, reckless operation charges and more after he became trapped in a snow bank Friday afternoon.

Police in Glastonbury, Conn., contacted Haverhill police Friday morning alerting them that Willett, 40, was a fugitive with multiple warrants for his arrests and his last known address was in Haverhill.

Haverhill police got word that Willett was staying at a family home with his girlfriend, Michelle Belfiore, on Doane Street. Willett is known to drive a green 2003 Jeep Liberty belonging to his girlfriend, police said.

Police located the car outside the Doane Street home and kept an eye on it. At 10:50 a.m., Willett left the home in the Jeep.

Police followed him and stopped him at South Kimball Street. As police approached him, they ordered him to get out of the locked vehicle. Willett then put the car in reverse at a high rate of speed, nearly hitting police officers.

Willett crashed into a snow bank where he became stuck, police said.

Willett continued hitting the gas trying to escape. According to the police report, police saw Willett grab a small white object that was the size of a Chapstick tube and empty the contents into his mouth.

Police broke the passenger car window, unlocked the doors and pulled Willett outside the car.

Willet fell to the ground, where he continued to resist arrest. Police handcuffed him and stood him up.

As he rose, several pills fell from his person, according to police. Police recovered two pills, one believed to be Suboxane and one believed to be Oxycodone.

Willet received medical treatment at the scene, along with several officers who were treated for cuts and other minor injuries.

Willet and Officer Jamie Landry were taken to Merrimack Valley Hospital for further treatment.

Willett was charged with assault with a dangerous weapon, possession of class B and E drugs, operating a motor vehicle with a revoked license, reckless operation of a motor vehicle, failure to stop for police, operating under the influence of drugs, resisting arrest and as a fugitive from justice.

Belfiore was charged with allowing improper operation of a motor vehicle.

Both Willett and Belfiore are scheduled to be arraigned in Haverhill District Court tomorrow.

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