Woman shot, killed after police chase
MANCHESTER — A woman was shot and killed after leading police on a chase from Interstate 93 in Bow to a city neighborhood Monday night.
Senior Assistant Attorney General Jeffery Strelzin confirmed that the woman died of gunshot wounds after being shot by a state trooper near the intersection of Dave Street and Kennard Road, just north of Mammoth Road.
Her boyfriend, Charles Peter of Warner, identified the woman as Wendy Lawrence, 44, of Canterbury, in a Tuesday afternoon interview. (See related story.)
"There is one adult female who is deceased," Strelzin said.
He would not confirm information about the chase, or say whether more than one trooper opened fire after the woman's car struck a state police cruiser.
Witnesses reported the woman tried to ram the cruiser, but Strelzin would not comment.
"For right now, everything else is under investigation," he said. An autopsy is planned later Tuesday, Strelzin said.
The two-door sedan and a damaged New Hampshire State Police cruiser remained parked at the scene as investigators set up cones and reconstructed the events. State police pursued the driver from Bow to exit 9S on I-93 and into a residential area just south of McIntyre Ski Area.
The shooting drew at least a dozen New Hampshire State Police and Manchester police cruisers. The dark-colored sedan was touching the rear tire of one state police cruiser.
At least 10 Manchester police evidence cones — often used to pinpoint shell casings — were in front of the car, whose front driver's side door was open.
Eleven bullet holes peppered the driver's side of the windshield.
Robert Britton, who lives across from Dave Street, said he was watching television about 6:30 p.m. when he heard eight to 10 gunshots.
"It sounded like somebody was squeezing off an automatic weapon rapid fire," he said.
Police roped off much of the area with crime tape and stayed mum about what happened as neighbors stood across from the cordoned-off area and watched.
Ryan Laliberte, who lives just across Mammoth Road from the shooting scene, said he heard several "pops" and initially thought it was fireworks before realizing it was gunfire.
"I saw a cruiser come down and I was like 'All right, something just happened,'" Laliberte said. "I looked out the front window of my house and saw cruisers everywhere."
Britton and his wife, Kathy, said a fire truck arrived, and paramedics quickly took the driver out of the car.
They worked on the person and put the patient in an ambulance.
The Brittons said a police officer later spoke to them and said the driver, a woman, was being pursued on Interstate 93 by state police.
She got off at Exit 9S, weaved through residential neighborhoods, and then struck a cruiser as it tried to block her.
When she backed up and struck it again, the shooting took place, the Brittons said, relaying what police told them.