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N.H. man arrested in assault on his mother

Shhools locked down during chase

An 18-year-old Salem, N.H., man was arrested Thursday morning after attempting to kill his mother with a knife and hammer before fleeing and leading police on a three-hour hunt, police said.

Thomas George is accused of attacking Catherine George, at about 8 a.m. Thursday at an apartment on Cluff Crossing Road in Salem. He fled in his car to Derry, N.H., Salem Deputy Police Chief Shawn Patten said.

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Catherine George, who is about 50, sustained stab wounds to the neck and leg and multiple hits from a hammer on her body. She was taken to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston by a medical helicopter, Patten said.

Thomas George abandoned his car on Kendall Pond Road in Derry and stole a Chevrolet Blazer that he drove back to Salem, Patten said. He was captured in Salem at about 11 a.m.

At his arraignment in Salem District Court, George pleaded not guilty to a charge of first-degree assault with a deadly weapon, according to a court clerk. He is being held on $250,000 cash bail.

Police shut down Salem High School during the hunt because George has a younger sibling enrolled at the school.

“We felt that with an armed suspect who had attempted a homicide of his mother, we weren’t sure where he was headed,” Patten said.

Pinkerton High School and two other schools in Derry were also put in lockdown mode, Patten said.

Jasper Craven can be reached at jasper.craven@globe.com . Follow him on Twitter @Jasper_Craven.
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