Nashua woman leaps from moving car following Amherst-to-Merrimack-to-Nashua police pursuit

AMHERST – Several police agencies were involved in a wild car chase that began in Amherst and ended when the female driver jumped from her moving car in Nashua’s French Hill neighborhood the morning of Wednesday, Nov. 20.

The chase began in Amherst after a shoplifting call at Wal-Mart at 85 Route 101A around 9:30 a.m.

An officer quickly spotted the vehicle employees described and began pursuing it, according to Amherst police.

Nashua Police Capt. Bruce Hansen said the driver, who Amherst police identified as Cristy Fernadnez, 34, of Nashua, led police from Route 101A onto Thornton Road in Merrimack, where she collided with an Amherst police cruiser but continued fleeing, onto Tinker Road and then Manchester Road into Nashua.

Nashua police joined the chase for a short period but called off their officers because of the speeds reached when the woman entered the crowded French Hill neighborhood via Lock Street.

Amherst Police Lt. Anthony Ciampoli said Fernandez also hit a tree during the chase.

The Amherst officer involved in the collision was not inured, he said.

Fernandez was driving around 60 mph for most of the roughly 15-minute chase and as fast as approximately 70 mph at one point, Ciampoli said.

Fernandez injured herself when she jumped from her still-moving vehicle on Chandler Street. The car came to rest when it struck a parked vehicle, Hansen said.

Fernandez was arrested by Amherst police and brought to Southern New Hampshire Medical Center for treatment, Hansen said.

She was charged with theft, operating as a habitual offender and disobeying a police officer by Amherst police before being released on bail into Merrimack police custody.

Merrimack police have charged Cristy Fernandez, 34, of 11 Atwood Court, Nashua, with operating as a habitual offender, reckless driving and conduct after an accident, following the police pursuit that included a wrecked police cruiser and ended when Fernandez jumped out of her moving vehicle.

Amherst police have already charged Fernandez in relation to the chase, and Nashua police may follow suit.

Fernandez is scheduled to be arraigned on the Amherst charges at Milford district court on Dec. 12, police said.

Joseph G. Cote can be reached at 594-6415 or jcote@nashuatelegraph.com. Also, follow Cote on Twitter (@Telegraph_JoeC).