Taxi! Police Hail Down NH Man Accused of Punching Woman, Stealing Car
KITTERY, Maine — A Dover man accused of punching a woman in the face at a hospital before stealing a car has been arrested.
Police took Antonio J. Hector, 32, of Dover, into custody at 3:08 p.m. after discovering he was a passenger in a taxi, Lt. John Desjardins told NH1 on Monday afternoon.
Hector assaulted a woman he knew in the Women & Children's Center at Wentworth-Douglass Hospital in Dover, causing serious injury, and then fled the hospital before officers arrived, police said. A little more than an hour later, at 3:24 a.m. Dover police responded to Planet Fitness at 898 Central Ave. for a report of a stolen vehicle.
At 3:48 a.m., police in Kittery received a call from a woman saying she had just passed her husband's stolen car on Route 101 in Eliot, Maine. Police pursued the stolen car at speeds reaching up to 75 mph in 25 and 35 mph zones.
Officers lost the car but found it again in another neighborhood and where Hector drove over lawns and continued to elude officers, police said. The officers called off the pursuit for safety reasons. A short time later, the stolen car was found crashed into a utility pole on Rogers Road. A Wells Police K-9 was brought to the scene, but Hector could not be found. Desjardins said the stolen car was a total loss.
In Maine, Hector is charged with being a fugitive from justice, eluding an officer, driving to endanger, criminal speeding, theft and operating without a license. Police brought Hector to the York County Jail for booking.
Once he is brought back to New Hampshire, Hector faces charges of second-degree assault and theft.
Wentworth-Douglass said the incident at the hospital was isolated and did not involve any patients. It's unknown why Hector and the woman were at the hospital.
"At Wentworth-Douglass Hospital we take the safety of patients and staff very seriously" said Dawn Fernald, director of Marketing and Public Relations. "We have many measures in place that help to prevent and protect against violent acts. These include locked areas within the hospital and a full security team onsite. No patients were harmed in this incident. This was an isolated incident that happened between two members of the community who were not here as patients."