06/04/14 South Hampton, NH – Armed Man – Police Take Cover – Suspect Attempts To Steal NH State Police Cruiser – TREMCO SAVED THIS VEHICLE – Suspect Steals Kensington Police Car – Crashes Into Two State Police Cruisers
June 4, 2014
An intense search for an armed man with military experience who allegedly fired shots, hopped into a police cruiser, and then crashed into two other cruisers ended peacefully Tuesday night when he was found back inside his home.
Anthony Reardon, 44, of 81 Highland Ave., was arrested just before 9 p.m., when the SWAT team moved in to capture him nearly five hours after the manhunt began and frightened residents were ordered to take cover in their basements. Early Wednesday morning, police said Reardon remained hospitalized and his arraignment had not yet been scheduled. Police offered no specific reason for the suspect being hospitalized, but said no one was injured as a result of Tuesday’s incident.
State Police Executive Maj. David Parenteau said Kensington Police and State Police initially responded to Reardon’s home for a welfare check.
A Kensington officer and state trooper arrived and found Reardon was armed. They attempted to communicate with him but he refused to give up his guns, according to Parenteau.
“The officers then took cover and the gentleman then proceeded to attempt to leave the scene in a police cruiser,” Parenteau said at a press conference.
At some point, shots were fired, but police said they are not sure whether Reardon fired at the officers of if they shot back.
While the officer was working at the scene, Reardon managed to get inside a Kensington cruiser and attempted to flee, but struck two State Police cruisers and then became stuck in a wooded area with the cruiser.
“Typically, when an officer responds to the scene, they leave the car running and you do what you have to do, and apparently he must have gotten in the car, and again, we’re still trying to determine how all of that happened,” Kensington Police Chief Mike Sielicki said.
Reardon also attempted to get into a State Police cruiser. He opened the door but was unable to access the interior of the vehicle, Parenteau said.
After the cruisers were hit, the officer and the trooper took cover and attempted to locate Reardon but were unable to find him. Parenteau said he ran to the tree line in the backyard of the residence.
SWAT teams from State Police and the Seacoast Emergency Response Team responded to the scene, along with officers from multiple agencies in southern New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
Reardon had two firearms in his possession, but police did not confirm what kind.
He is believed to have had tactical gear, including a black helmet and vest, that were his own and not stolen from the cruisers, Parenteau said.
Initial reports indicated that Reardon was on top of his roof with the guns, but Parenteau said Reardon was on the ground when police arrived and met up with him in the street area.
Officers quickly cordoned off the area and blocked roads to prevent Reardon from escaping as they didn’t know where he had gone.
Police made a reverse 911 call to residents in South Hampton, Kensington and surrounding areas to inform them of the ground and air search.
Reardon was found inside his home at about 9 p.m. and he was taken into custody.
Police are unsure how Reardon ended up back inside the residence.
“Thankfully, the officer and the trooper are unhurt and as far as we know, Mr. Reardon is unharmed as well and he’s being taken to the hospital for treatment and examination,” Parenteau said.
He said police are continuing their investigation to figure out exactly what happened.
Police from Kensington, South Hampton, State Police, the FBI and other agencies are involved in the investigation.
Police are still considering the charges that will be filed against Reardon.
Parenteau said police don’t know who else may have been at the house.
Reardon has lived in the area for several years and has served in the Navy.
“There’s no indication that he’s had any outward bursts of violence at this point,” Parenteau said.
Police will investigate to determine whether Reardon may have stolen anything from the cruisers, but Parenteau said he doesn’t believe Reardon took any equipment.
During the manhunt, a mother and father who were unable to reach their home to be with their two young children gathered at the command center set up down the road at CP Building Supply.
The father, who asked not to be identified, said the children were with their baby sitter and were safe in their basement.
“They’re sheltering in place so they’re not seeing anything. They’re getting hungry, that’s all they can tell us,” he said.
At one point, their baby sitter said police had blocked the driveway with cruisers and armed officers were seen running through the yard. Police told her to stay inside the house with the children.
Just before 8 p.m., police approached the parents and told them that they would try to evacuate the baby sitter and children.
“As soon as they get a chance, they’re going to run in,” the father said.
He added, “I know they’re safe. I know they’re sheltered well.”
They were evacuated along with others a short time later and reunited with their parents at the command center.