A man killed in a shootout with police in Rochester, New Hampshire, on Monday had led Maine police on a brief chase in York County in June, authorities said.

Officers tried to stop Douglas Heath, 38, in Sanford on June 11 because they knew he was wanted in New Hampshire on a drug charge, Maine State Police said.

But instead of stopping, Heath fled in his vehicle, leading police on chase that lasted a couple of miles on Route 202. The pursuit ended in Lebanon when officers stopped chasing him to minimize the risk to the public, and because they knew the identity of the driver, police said.

Later that day, police tracked the car to a home on Second Street in Lebanon where Heath was living at the time. Officers later learned that Heath fled Lebanon on foot and was likely picked up by a vehicle and left the area.

Heath, 38, was killed in a police shootout around 3:15 p.m. Monday at the intersection of Oak Street and Route 125 in Rochester.

News Center Maine (WCSH/WLBZ) said Rochester police obtained “credible information” earlier this month that Heath had been living in Rochester and had three firearms. Information given to police indicated that Heath had no intention of going to jail.


On Monday, Heath was pursued by officers for about 20 minutes before crashing his vehicle. He got out of the passenger side of the vehicle and exchanged gunfire with officers before he was fatally shot. The New Hampshire Attorney General’s Office said a gun was found near Heath’s body.

Deborah Haynes-Whitehead told WMUR-TV that she and her husband were in their truck and first thought they were witnessing a car crash. But then she saw a man with a gun getting out of the car. She said police told him to drop the gun but he didn’t, and shots were fired, The Associated Press reported.

“I was thinking about my grandson and whether I’d see him again,” Haynes-Whitehead said. “And we slouched down in the truck and just sat and waited for someone to tell us to do something. You know, we were terrified to move the vehicle.”

New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon MacDonald said two Rochester police officers and two state troopers were on the scene at the time of the shooting. It wasn’t clear who fired their weapons, or who fired first, the AP reported. All four are on administrative leave.

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