Suspect At Large After SWAT Standoff at Medford Church

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Authorities continued to search for a suspect Thursday who they believe fled into a Medford, Massachusetts church and disappeared after attempting to rob a convenience store earlier in the day.

Around 3:42 a.m., Medford police reported activity in the area of St. Clement Church along the Somerville line at the corner of Boston Avenue and Harvard Street.

Detectives had been involved in the foot pursuit of a suspect who'd attempted to gain access to the cash register at a 7-Eleven in Cambridge before encountering the suspect again in Somerville, where a brief struggle ensued.

The suspect was able to flee, heading to an area near St. Clement Church. Due to an open door and the sight of wet footprints, officers believed the suspect had entered the church.

Due to the increased police activity, area residents said they received alerts on their phones.

"I had one at 3:27 and one at 3:28 and one at 6:25," one Tufts University student said, adding that she also received an email from the college. "I opened it and I thought, I think that's this parish right next to where I live but I wasn't totally sure."

Hours earlier, Medford police responded to PLS Check Cashing, also on the Medford-Somerville line, to investigate an attempted armed robbery involving a firearm.

Due to the proximity of the check cashing building and 7-Eleven, the area was blocked off to traffic and a SWAT team was called in. Police were unable to locate a suspect in connection with that incident.

Both incidents remain under investigation, police said.

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