Driver who allegedly fled police, caused 4-vehcile crash, remains hospitalized

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LEOMINSTER, Massachusetts — A man police say led officers on a high-speed car chase after stealing a woman's purse and before causing a four-vehicle crash that injured nine people remains in the hospital and has not been formally charged.

Police identified the man charged with fleeing from police at speeds of more than 100 miles per hour after stealing a purse from a Lancaster ice cream stand Sunday as 26-year-old James Barrett.

The Worcester district attorney's office would not confirm the name, saying he will not be charged until he is well enough.

After Lancaster police broke off the chase out of public safety concerns, authorities say the driver was involved in the multi-vehicle crash in neighboring Leominster. Nine people, including several children, were hurt.

Police say Barrett suffered the most serious injuries.

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