West Yarmouth man arrested after fleeing into storm drain
BARNSTABLE, Mass. (WHDH) -- According to the Barnstable Police Department: A busy weekend for the Barnstable Police Patrol Division and Barnstable Street Crime Unit (SCU) included the arrest of a West Yarmouth man that fled into a “storm drain” attempting to make his escape.
Life imitated art as Justin M. Peckham, age 20, of West Yarmouth mimicked “John Rambo from First Blood” and “Andy Dufresne from Shawshank Redemption”. However, Peckham attempted escape did not fare as well. On Saturday at 5:49pm Barnstable Police Officer Scott Leger responded to Sears, Cape Cod Mall, Rte 132, Hyannis for a shoplifting suspect that had fled on foot from Sears Loss Prevention (SLP). Peckham was stopped as he attempted to load a 55” inch television set into a vehicle waiting outside.
The vehicle was operated by a 20-year-old male from South Yarmouth. Also in the vehicle was Peckham’s 2-year-old son. When first encountered by SLP, Peckham was cooperative and produced his identification. When he heard that Barnstable Police Officers were already responding, Peckham jumped into the waiting vehicle and told his associate to drive away. The associate refused and Peckham took off on foot leaving his identification and 2-year-old behind.
Peckham jumped over a “storm water pond” fence and could be heard splashing in the water. Responding police units and SLP searched the area but could not locate Peckham. It was later learned that Peckham had entered a storm drain and would hide out under ground in the storm drain pipes for almost four hours. At 9:30pm, BPD Dispatch received a call that a person was observed exiting a “man hole” in the CCM parking lot near Macy’s. The person observed exiting the “man hole” was later learned to be Peckham. Barnstable Patrol Unit and SCU members responded to the area. Peckham was arrested by SCU Member Peter Ginnetty on Hiramar Road, Hyannis. At the time of his arrest, Peckham had a “fist sized” rock on his person. Peckham told investigators he armed himself for fear rodents may try and attack him while he crawled through the storm drain system. He said he did not encounter any but did have to crawl over six or so dead ones.
Peckham had crawled over a couple hundred yards inside the storm drain pipe system in an attempt to avoid arrest and spent four hours underground. He reported no injuries and was transported to BPD for booking.
He will be arraigned in Barnstable District Court on Monday June 18th on a single charge of Larceny Over $250.00.
A report was filed with the Department of Children and Family relating to Peckham leaving his 2-year-old son at Sears.