The New Hampshire Attorney General's office said Wednesday that it is investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of a 45-year-old woman who was shot by state troopers in a residential area of the state's largest city Monday night.
Officials said that Wendy Lawrence, of Canterbury, New Hampshire, was shot four times and died of a gunshot wound to the chest in Manchester. The shooting was the conclusion of a police chase that began earlier Monday evening when Lawrence was stopped by a state trooper for driving erratically on Interstate 89.
According to the official release, Lawrence gave the officer a non-driver's license ID and claimed she had a valid license. But when the officer returned to his car to radio for a record check, Lawrence pulled back onto the highway and drove away.
The officer briefly broke off pursuit, but came across Lawrence's car near the intersection of Interstates 89 and 93 in the state capitol, Concord. When Lawrence spotted the officer, the report claims that she got onto Interstate 93 and continued south toward Manchester. At some point, she got off the interstate and drove to the intersection of Kennard Road and Dave Street in Manchester, where the shooting took place.
Lawrence's friends and family members admitted to the New Hampshire Union Leader that Lawrence had been in trouble with the law and was afraid of police. The paper reported that Lawrence had previously been arrested for assaulting her boyfriend, multiple charges of marijuana possession, violation of a restraining order and drunken driving and had served sentences including a spell of home confinement, 14 days in jail, and a suspended sentence.
"She never hated police. She was always afraid of police, deathly scared," Gary Boulac, Lawrence's ex-husband, told the paper "If a cop started to talk to her, she'd start shaking." Boulac lives around the corner from the scene of the shooting.
An investigation into the shooting is ongoing, but the statement from the state Attorney General's Office classified Lawrence's death as a homicide.