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Southbridge fugitive now 'most wanted'.

Byline: Kim Ring

SOUTHBRIDGE -- A local man who allegedly cut off a court-ordered GPS monitor and fled last month is apparently armed with a 9mm semi-automatic Beretta and has 200 rounds of hollow point bullets he allegedly took during a Southbridge home invasion.

Gregory J. Lewis, 26, of Brentwood Drive has been added to the state's Most Wanted list by the Massachusetts State Police Violent Fugitive Apprehension Section. He is considered armed and dangerous, and police are asking for help from the public in finding him.

In August, Mr. Lewis was arraigned on two counts each of statutory rape of a child and indecent assault and battery on a person under 14 years old. Both the alleged victim and her mother were granted restraining orders to keep Mr. Lewis away from them, but according to court documents, Mr. Lewis cut off the court-ordered GPS system he'd been wearing and tossed the device on a lawn not far from the girl's home on Sept. 15.

He then stole his stepfather's 2004 blue Jeep Grand Cherokee and drove off, prompting additional charges and the issuance of an arrest warrant, police said.

The new charges are larceny of a motor vehicle and two counts each of violating an abuse prevention order (because of his proximity to the victim when he left the GPS device near her home) and witness intimidation.

Schools in Southbridge and Warren took extra precautions after Mr. Lewis fled. Warren police kept vigil at two schools, posting on social media that Mr. Lewis is "acquainted with a student at Quaboag Regional Middle High School and another at Warren Community Elementary School.''

There was a reported sighting of him in Kentucky on Sept. 23, the date he allegedly kidnapped, assaulted and robbed a woman in Charlotte, North Carolina.

On Sept. 25, Mr. Lewis allegedly returned home, where he used handcuffs to bind his stepfather to a pole in the basement. A police report states he was armed with an expandable baton and carried two sets of handcuffs and had disabled the telephone.

His stepfather told police that Mr. Lewis wanted to know where his gun was, and when he refused to answer, Mr. Lewis struck him several times and choked him until he nearly blacked out.

Once he had the Beretta, he left the house -- court documents say he ran into the woods -- and about three hours later an anonymous caller alerted police that a man was tied up in the basement of the home, according to the police report.

It took nine staples to close a cut Mr. Lewis' stepfather sustained, the police report says.

He was later spotted in Vernon, Connecticut.

A source close to Mr. Lewis said he had served in the Army and may have been stationed near the Charlotte area during his military service.

Mr. Lewis' family members told police he "lost it'' Sept. 15 after learning that a plea deal in a case pending against him would not be forthcoming.

It is unclear whether the plea deal was for the rape case or for a charge of receiving stolen property brought in August after he was caught with a cellphone taken during a break-in at a Southbridge apartment complex.

Court documents indicate Mr. Lewis knew the phone was stolen, and a witness told police he'd sold Mr. Lewis several stolen items that were later listed for sale online.

State police said in a press release that anyone who sees Mr. Lewis should not approach him, but rather should call 911 or (800) 527-8873.

Mr. Lewis is white and has brown hair and brown eyes, is 6 feet, 2 inches tall, and weighs about 270 pounds. He has a tribal tattoo on his left shoulder. He is believed to be driving the stolen blue Jeep Grand Cherokee, which may still have a Massachusetts license plate 85GF63 on it.

The plate may have been altered or replaced, police said. Mr. Lewis may be suicidal and/or homicidal, and has threatened to commit "suicide by cop,'' police said.

Contact Kim Ring at kim.ring@telegram.com.
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Title Annotation:Local
Author:Ring, Kim
Publication:Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, MA)
Date:Oct 3, 2014
Words:678
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