NEW BEDFORD (FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) A 35-year-old New Bedford man has been indicted for his alleged connection to the November 2011 murder of 36-year-old Michael Duarte.
Thomas Gardner was indicted on several charges including murder, armed robbery, violating a restraining order, and larceny of a motor vehicle.
Michael Duarte's body was found beaten to death under the basement stairs of a vacant New Bedford home on Churchill Street four days after his girlfriend reported him missing. After the discovery of his body on November 9, police activated the Lo-Jack security system on Duarte's car. The car was tracked to Route 95 South in Fairfield, CT. Fairfield Police attempted to stop the car, allegedly driven by Gardner, but he refused to stop. Gardner allegedly led police on a high speed chase that ended in Westport, CT. Gardner was caught hours later after fleeing from the car and into the woods.
Gardner is currently serving one year in a Connecticut prison for assault on a public safety officer and engaging police in pursuit. The 35-year-old will be transported to Massachusetts sometime in the future to be arraigned on the new indictments.