A suspected child rapist nabbed after a six-week cross-country crime spree planned to kill his 13-year-old accuser, police said Wednesday. Gregory Lewis, 26, cut off an ankle bracelet in August after he was charged with statutory rape in Massachusetts — and then kidnapped, robbed and sexually assaulted a string of escorts before he was arrested late Tuesday in New York, police said.
"It was almost like he had nothing to lose. It was his last hurrah, and he was going to go out and do as much damage as he possibly could," said Detective Lt. Michael Farley, commander of the Massachusetts State Police Violent Fugitive Apprehension Section. "He had made statements that his ultimate goal was to come back and kill the victim from his original charge."
Lewis was taken into custody just before midnight in Fort Edward, New York, a village on the Hudson River not far from the Vermont border. A trooper tried to stop Lewis' car after noticing a missing license plate, but the suspect kept driving, and patrol units were drafted in to track down the vehicle. "A short time later, police received 911 calls reporting that a vehicle had crashed into a river," police said in a statement. "Preliminary reports indicate that Lewis emerged from his sinking vehicle and brandished a gun at a witness."
Police say that after Lewis skipped out on the Massachusetts charge, he beat up his stepfather and stole a handgun and 200 rounds of ammunition. He allegedly attacked seven female escorts in North Carolina, Missouri, Utah, Colorado, Indiana and Oregon while he was on the run.
— Cassandra Vinograd and the Associated Press