UPPER DARBY TOWNSHIP, Pa. — A man who led police in a multi-state manhunt before being taken into custody in Pennsylvania, has a violent past that included an arrest in South Burlington.
Everett Simpson, the man suspected of abducting a woman and child in New Hampshire on Jan. 5 and then sexually assaulting the woman at a Vermont hotel, was taken into custody following a car chase Sunday evening outside Philadelphia.
Simpson, 41, most recently of St. Johnsbury, faces extradition to Vermont following his arrest by the Upper Darby Township (Pennsylvania) Police Department. He is expected to face federal charges in the District of Vermont related to car theft, kidnapping and sexual assault. The prosecution is being coordinated by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Burlington.
According to South Burlington Police Chief Shawn Burke, Simpson was a resident of Grandview Drive as recently as September 2018.
Burke said Simpson was arrested last year for his role in fleeing from a South Burlington Police Officer at the Chamberlin School. Simpson fled from the officer as she attempted to stop his car as he was accompanied by a subject who was believed to have an active arrest warrant.
The arrest of Simpson Sunday followed a manhunt and investigation that included the FBI, the Vermont State Police, the Hartford (Vermont) Police Department and the Manchester (New Hampshire) Police Department, in conjunction with the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Vermont.
The initial incident began at about 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 5, outside the Mall of New Hampshire in Manchester, when a man later identified as Simpson forced a woman and her child into their car, a silver 2014 Kia Forte sedan with New Hampshire plates, and drove to Vermont. On reaching White River Junction, Simpson forced the woman to rent a room at a local hotel, where he allegedly proceeded to sexually assault the victim. The victim is a stranger who was targeted at random. When Simpson left the hotel room at about 5:30 p.m. Saturday, the victim and child were able to reach safety and contact the police.
The investigation indicates Simpson left a substance-abuse rehabilitation facility in eastern Vermont and stole a car three days earlier. Simpson was at the facility under court-ordered conditions of release following his arrest in September for a vehicle theft, high-speed pursuit and aggravated assault on a Vermont State Police trooper in Lyndonville.
Sunday afternoon, police from the Prospect Park (Pennsylvania) Police Department were on an unrelated traffic stop when an automated license-place recognition system identified the stolen Kia from New Hampshire. The vehicle failed to stop for law enforcement, and a car chase ensued, ending when the Kia was found abandoned in the parking lot of a nearby apartment complex. Police established a perimeter and were searching for the suspect when, about an hour later, another vehicle was reported stolen from the area, a red Pontiac Vibe. Upper Darby Township police located that car, and another pursuit began, ending when the Vibe crashed into a telephone pole.
The operator was taken into custody and identified as Simpson. He was being evaluated at a hospital Sunday night in Pennsylvania.
Vermont Commissioner of Public Safety Thomas D. Anderson and Vermont State Police director Col. Matthew T. Birmingham extended their thanks and appreciation to the local, state and federal law-enforcement partners who worked tirelessly across multiple jurisdictions to pursue and ultimately arrest this violent, dangerous suspect.
Further updates on the case will be released by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Vermont.