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Melrose police follow snowy footprints to arrest man for allegedly attempting to break in to cars

A 29-year-old man was arrested in Melrose early Tuesday after police tracked his footprints through the snow because he allegedly fled after attempting to break in to multiple cars, Melrose police said.

Steven Goodrich of Lowell was arrested around 3:45 a.m. after officers found him hiding under a playset in a backyard at 4 Harding Road, Melrose police said in a statement. Police tracked his footprints because he had allegedly looked into the windows of parked cars on Emerson Street and Orient Avenue, the statement said.

An officer found a man matching Goodrich’s description near a parked car, police said.

“Goodrich fled through the backyard of 16 Orient Place and scaled a fence to continue fleeing. The officer first returned to his cruiser in order to try and locate the suspect but, after being unable to, returned to 16 Orient Place and followed the suspect’s footprints in the snow,” the statement said.

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The officer tracked the footprints through yards and sidewalks, police said.

“[The officer] then followed the footprints down the driveway of 4 Harding Road until they came to an abrupt end, at which point the officer located Goodrich hiding under a playset in the back yard. Goodrich allegedly provided multiple conflicting explanations for his presence in the area,” the statement said.

Police said Goodrich had broken into two cars on Orient Place. He was allegedly carrying an ID stolen from a car in Wakefield.

Goodrich was arrested and set to be arraigned in Malden District Court on Tuesday morning on charges of disorderly conduct, attempting to commit a crime, furnishing a false name, and possessing a false RMV document, police said.


Alyssa Lukpat can be reached at alyssa.lukpat@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @AlyssaLukpat.