EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

New Hampshire

December 30, 2012

N.H. Year in Review

Abuse of toddler

shocks region

The brutal abuse of a little blond-haired boy and a two-week manhunt that led to the arrest of Plaistow couple received national attention in 2012.

Three-year-old James Nicholson was badly beaten and burned, suffering head injuries that led to seizures and spending three weeks in the hospital. The abuse was allegedly inflicted by his mother’s boyfriend, Roland Dow.

Dow, 27, and James’ mother, Jessica Linscott, 23, face charges after they abandoned the injured boy at Exeter Hospital on Nov. 16 and fled to Florida.

Dow faces up to 30 years in prison on each of three assault charges, in addition to up to a year in jail on each of five counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Linscott was charged with six counts of endangerment for failing to protect her son from Dow.

Dow is being held at the county jail on $500,000 cash bail; Linscott is incarcerated on $100,000 cash bail.

The couple eluded capture until authorities finally apprehended them at Universal Studios theme park in Orlando. They had hid out in Haverhill before traveling to Boston.

From there, they took a bus to New York and then a train to Florida. From there, they took a bus to New York and then a train to Florida.

A widely distributed photo of the young boy captured the hearts of many across the country, wondering how anyone could harm an innocent child. The Plaistow Police Department was flooded with toys and donations for the child.

— Doug Ireland

Elections mean big changes in N.H.

New Hampshire voters returned Democrats to power after a controversial two-year reign by Tea Party minded Republicans in Concord.

The Democrats retained the governor’s office behind Gov.-elect Maggie Hassan and reclaimed the Legislature, Executive Council and both House seats in Congress.

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