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Couple accused of child abuse arrested

Roland Dow, left, and Jessica Linscott, who are suspected of abusing Linscott's 3-year-old son, were taken into custody on Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2012, at Universal Studios in Florida.

US Marshals Service/AP Photo

Roland Dow, left, and Jessica Linscott, who are suspected of abusing Linscott's 3-year-old son, were taken into custody on Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2012, at Universal Studios in Florida.

The nationwide search for a Plaistow, N.H., couple accused of physically abusing the woman’s 3-year-old son came to an end Wednesday night when the couple was arrested at an amusement park in Florida, police said.

The mother of the child, Jessica Linscott, 23, and her boyfriend, Roland Dow, 27, were apprehended while standing in line at the amusement park and taken into custody, Plaistow police and the US Marshal’s service said.

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No further details on the arrest were immediately available.

Authorities launched a search for the New Hampshire couple after they dropped off Linscott’s son at Exeter Hospital in New Hampshire earlier this month. According to authorities, Dow struck the boy on the head on Nov. 1, causing traumatic brain injury, and burned the boy’s wrist and fingers.

Last Wednesday, Rockingham County District Attorney Jim Reams announced new charges against Dow of first and second degree assault in addition to the earlier five misdemeanor charges of endangerment.

Linscott faces six misdemeanor counts of endangerment for not seeking care of her son after he suffered the seizures. Each of those counts carries a one-year sentence.

On Nov. 16, police asked the couple to turn themselves in, but Linscott and Dow never showed up.

Since the couple’s disappearance, callers reported sightings to police in Massachusetts.

On Saturday afternoon, police followed a tip from a 911 caller and searched a home in Beverly. Last week, Haverhill police also received a tip saying the couple was seen in the area. Police did not find the couple in either search.

Melanie Dostis can be reached at melanie.dostis@globe.com.
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