Joseph Solomon, Chief of Police
Quinn Public Safety Building
90 Hampshire St.
Methuen, MA 01844
For Immediate Release
Thursday, May 19, 2016
Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
Armed Robbery Suspect Wounded after Confrontation with Methuen Police
METHUEN — Police Chief Joseph Solomon reports that Methuen Police Detectives, while responding to an apartment complex to question an armed robbery suspect, encountered a dangerous situation in which the suspect drew a weapon and charged them, forcing the detectives to draw their service weapons and fire, wounding the suspect.
Methuen Police responded at 9:30 a.m. Thursday to the Pleasant Valley Superette, located on Merrimack Street for a reported robbery at gunpoint.
Police obtained surveillance footage from the shop showing the tall, white male suspect, in his 30s, with light hair.
Several hours later, and after the suspect’s picture was posted to the Methuen Police Department social media channels, the suspect called Methuen Police and offered to meet officers, asking them to come to his home because he did not have transportation to come to the station.
At approximately 8:30 p.m., Methuen Police Detectives arrived at the Summit Place apartment complex. Upon arrival, the detectives were met by the suspect who suddenly and without warning drew what appeared to be a black firearm, pointed it at officers, and began to move toward them rapidly.
Fearing for their lives and the lives of the many civilians living in this complex, detectives drew their service weapons and fired at the suspect as he advanced toward them. The suspect was shot multiple times. Officers disarmed him and immediately began to render first aid. The suspect was taken to an area hospital with injuries that are not believed to be life threatening.
“This was a very dangerous situation that our officers encountered. Our officers fell back on their training when faced with a potentially life threatening situation,” Chief Solomon said.
There were a total of four Detectives involved in the incident. Each of them has been placed on administrative leave, and their duty weapons have been secured, as is standard procedure in any police involved shooting.
The incident is under investigation by Methuen Police and State Police Assigned to the Essex County District Attorney’s Office.
The suspect, identified as, JAMES J. DOBBINS, AGE 36, OF METHUEN was later transferred to a Boston hospital. He is under arrest in his hospital bed, charged with Armed Robbery While Masked. Additional charges will likely follow.