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McDougall Pleads Not Guilty

BudCom, ZBA member and House candidate's trial on misdemeanor charge will be Sept. 19.

Salem Budget Committee and Zoning Board of Adjustment member Patrick McDougall pleaded not guilty to a charge of obstructing government administration in the 10th Circuit Court of Salem Monday morning.

McDougall, also a declared candidate for the N.H. House of Representatives as a Republican, appeared briefly in court Monday and did not appear before a judge.

Instead the clerk read the charge, who were attempting to transport his wife, Jane, by ambulance after she'd called 911 complaining of severe pain due to a pre-existing medical condition.

Salem Police have said Patrick McDougall spent nearly an hour arguing with paramedics and police before he drove his wife to the hospital himself. This happened after Jane McDougall called 911 a second time while her husband was arguing.

Patrick McDougall's name was called in court Monday morning and he attempted to approach the court's podium with his wife alongside. A bailiff told McDougall only he would be allowed to approach.

After the clerk read the charge, McDougall was asked how he would plead.

"My wife and I simply refused an ambulance ride, so I plead not guilty," McDougall responded.

He was handed a trial notice and left the courtroom.

Outside, McDougall declined to speak with reporters on the advice of counsel, other than to say his trial date has been set for Sept. 19. McDougall, however, did not appear in court today with an attorney.

He stated the incident was "a private matter, we decided to drive ourselves to the hospital," and that he believed he had "the right to say no" in this instance.

, saying he was "was concerned about the ambulance bill that we cannot afford" that night and asked for the charge to be dropped.

 in the wake of the charge.

His trial date is set for eight days after the Sept. 11 state Republican primary. McDougall is one of 12 Salem Republicans vying for nine spots on the November ballot.

Riley Reid July 31, 2012 at 03:37 AM
Surprised this has been up for 13 hours now and there have been no comments ?
You Need Help July 31, 2012 at 02:45 PM
What is there to comment on? Mr McDougall is stuck in 1950 and can refuse an ambulance ride for his lowly wife. Then like a good woman, she stands by him. Lets not beleive the actual 911 tapes or the fire fighter/paramedics who were looking to help the poor woman. If I truly loved my wife, I would have driven her to the hospital instead of forcing her to call 911 and then fighting with them. Considering the paramedics do not make extra money for an ambulance ride it wouldnt make sense that they would make Mrs McDougall take the ride for cash.
Jeff Hatch July 31, 2012 at 04:36 PM
The calm before the storm? Or maybe everyone is either bored with it ot waiting for the outcome.
Jake O'Donnell July 31, 2012 at 09:21 PM
Just wanted to make a couple things clear: I took down and later rejected a couple comments that were made out of uninformed speculation, which is mostly my fault for not including a detail in the original story that McDougall did not have an attorney present Monday. I take responsibility for and but after further review decided the comments weren't appropriate. The second thing is I do not allow name-calling but with the number of comments that come into the site I sometimes miss things. As our Terms of Use clearly states, even though we may miss violations from time to time that doesn't mean it's OK. There are also sometimes gray areas but I try to be as fair as I can. Please be respectful in all of your comments and try to avoid harmful speculation. I also will not allow commenting threads to turn into discussions about what is acceptable for comments, so if you want to ask me a question please contact me at jake.odonnell@patch.com. Only comments about McDougall's arraignment and case will be allowed from here on out. Thanks.
Love NH September 19, 2012 at 07:31 PM
Was today Mr. McDougall's trial on the obstructing government administration charges? Does anyone know the outcome?
Jake O'Donnell September 19, 2012 at 07:37 PM
@LoveNH: Thanks for asking this. The trial did not take place today. His next court date on that charge is a motion hearing Oct. 9. Arraignment on the witness tampering-related charges is this coming Monday.

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