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Dracut Man Fatally Shot By Police After Carjackings, Stabbing Identified

NEWBURY (CBS/AP) — The Essex District Attorney's office identified the man shot and killed by police after carjackings and a stabbing in Massachusetts and New Hampshire as Thomas Christopher Murray of Dracut.

According to the D.A., the 31-year-old man shot was believed to have been the same suspect from a carjacking in North Andover on Saturday, a carjacking in Lowell on Sunday and a subsequent carjacking from a dealership in Nashua, New Hampshire, during which an employee was stabbed during a struggle.

Around 3:45 p.m. Saturday, North Andover Police responded to a carjacking on Route 114. The car owner told officers his wife and five-year-old child were waiting in his car while he was in Starbucks. While waiting, Murray got into the car on the driver's side and yelled at them to get out, said the D.A. The car was found in Lexington on Sunday after a police pursuit through Canton around 6:30 a.m.

Police in Lowell said Murray told a woman in a red Subaru to get out of the car, and wrested the victim's purse away during a struggle, before taking off in the car around 3 p.m. Sunday. Less than two hours later, police were notified that the car had been tracked to Nashua, but responding officers couldn't find it.

Around an hour later, police received word of a carjacking at a BMW dealership in Nashua. Authorities said the car was stolen at knifepoint and the description of the suspect matched the description of the Lowell carjacker. Nashua police later found the Subaru stolen from Lowell at the dealership lot.

"Right after I left, the same man had ripped an elderly woman out of her car and stolen it. That was pretty frightening to hear that," said a woman who encountered the suspect in Lowell before the ensuing carjacking.

The scene of an officer-involved shooting in Newbury. (WBZ-TV)

A Massachusetts State Police trooper found a BMW matching the description of the one stolen at a gas station in the village of Byfield in Newbury, Massachusetts, around 6 p.m.

Responding officers boxed in the man's car and approached him, at which point Murray allegedly rammed a state police cruiser and Newbury police cruiser, district attorney Jon Blodgett said. In response, police shot him. It's unclear how many officers fired their weapons, Blodgett said.

Authorities rendered aid and took the man to a hospital, where he later died. No officers were injured.

A knife was found in the BMW, Blodgett said. The Nashua dealership employee was released from the hospital with minor injuries, a spokeswoman for Blodgett's office, Carrie Kimball Monahan said.

Monahan said the suspect might also be connected to another vehicle theft in Boston on Saturday.

Murray's family is struggling to understand what went wrong.

"I was shocked at how it happened and the outcome," said Cheryl Gordon, Murray's aunt. She said her family learned her nephew died when they saw it on TV.

"It's really hard," Gordon said. "My parents, my sister, his mother. They're devastated. It's just sad. It's a loss of life. It's a waste of life.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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