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Concord man charged in Laconia kidnapping

  • —Courtesy —Courtesy

Monitor staff
Published: 10/25/2016 5:08:59 PM

Police arrested a Concord man accused of dragging a woman by her hair into a vehicle and threatening to kill her Sunday night in Laconia.

James Lemmond, 32, was taken into custody Tuesday morning at his workplace on Whitney Road in Concord. He faces felony charges of kidnapping and armed robbery. He is being held at the Belknap County jail pending his arraignment Wednesday afternoon in Laconia.

Police are not naming the woman who they say escaped Lemmond’s black GMC Terrain uninjured.

Laconia police Capt. Matthew Canfield said Tuesday afternoon that within the course of a few hours Monday police went from believing they did not have a credible kidnapping to finding the victim and obtaining evidence to support her story.

“We had no credible information that this even happened and all the sudden it took a turn when we actually found her,” Canfield said.

The incident stemmed from a prior disturbance on Cottage Street and was reported at about 11:30 p.m. Canfield said the disturbance and the kidnapping that followed are related, and that drugs were involved in both.

Police found the woman after pursuing a tip Monday night that a vehicle seen in the area of Cottage Street late Sunday was now parked at the Landmark Inn. At the inn, police spoke to Brain Norris who said his girlfriend was the victim and that she was with him at the hotel, Canfield said.

The woman agreed to speak to police about Sunday’s incident, and, based on her statements, investigators were finally able to “connect the dots,” Canfield said.

Canfield said the woman did not personally know Lemmond.

“However, I would not say it’s a random act either,” he added.

At first, the woman voluntarily got into Lemmond’s vehicle, where she stayed for a short time before leaving, and that’s when he got out and pulled her back in, Canfield said. Lemmond is accused of holding a gun to the woman’s head, robbing her of some cash and a cell phone, and then demanding at gunpoint that she get out of the vehicle, he said.

Once outside the vehicle, she managed to escape on foot. She ran several blocks before meeting up on Baldwin Street with Norris who was driving around looking for her, Canfield said. 

Police have not yet recovered the gun, which they say Lemmond used to threaten the woman. 

They found his vehicle overnight Sunday parked on Monroe Street in Concord and not Holt Street as previously reported.

Lemmond spoke with police Monday in Concord, but denied any involvement in the Laconia incident, Canfield said. He was later identified as a suspect following interviews with the victim and other witnesses.

Norris was ultimately arrested on unrelated charges. Police  charged him with two counts of possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute after finding 42 grams of the drug.

(Alyssa Dandrea can be reached at 369-3319, adandrea@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @_ADandrea.)

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