The chase that included a helicopter and search dogs started and ended with the help of an alert good samaritans.
Tuesday night, Watertown Police arrested an Everett man after a prolonged manhunt along the Charles River involving a helicopter and search dog teams from the Massachusetts State Police.
Watertown detectives along with members of the Suburban Middlesex County Drug Task Force conducted a month long investigation on the Westside of Watertown, said Watertown Police Capt. Thomas Rocca.
“It started because a neighbor complaint from Whitcomb Street concerning drug activity,” Rocca said.
Law enforcement observed the area and on Tuesday night they spotted what they believe was drug activity and the man left in his vehicle at about 7:15 p.m., Rocca said.
“Detectives began following the man and asked a uniformed police officer to pull over the vehicle,” Rocca said. “At first he pulled over and then he took off. There was a short chase from Mt. Auburn Street to Pleasant Street.”
The suspect, later identified as 28-year-old London J. Cohen, then jumped out of his vehicle and headed toward the Charles River.
“Officers thought they heard a splash and assumed he was in the river, which he was,” Rocca said.
Because it was getting dark detectives called in help from a State Police search helicopter and K-9 units. They could not locate the man and the search was called off after about an hour and a half, Rocca said.
“Sometime later, around 11:20 p.m. we got a call from Tedeschi (on Main Street),” Rocca said. “There was somebody in the store all soaking wet matching the description of the man we were looking for.”
Police located the man walking down the street.
“He was in obvious distress – cold and covered in mud from hiding on the shore,” Rocca said.
In the meantime, Watertown Police had searched the suspect’s car and found items often used in the dealing of drugs, Rocca said.
Cohen was arrested and charged with possession with intent to distribute a Class B Drug – cocaine, drug violations near a school or park and vehicle charges related to the chase, Rocca said.