Real Life Somerville Police Stories:Joseph DONOVAN (ADW)


On June 27th, 2017, I, Officer James Torres, was in full uniform, while assigned to marked unit West 6 during the last half shift. At approximately 12:09 AM, I, along with Officer Dorothy Nardone (West 7) and Officer Robert Driscoll (West 5) was dispatched to 1 Buena Vista Rd, for a report of a white male wearing a Boston Red Sox hat, who had a knife.


Upon my arrival, I witnessed a white male, wearing a Boston Red Sox hat, walking towards my police cruiser. There were three individuals in the distance, yelling “that’s him”. It was at this time that I made contact with the male party matching the description given by Somerville dispatch. For officer safety, I placed the individual in handcuffs (double locked). After frisking this individual, subsequently identified as Mr. Joseph Donovan, I recovered a pocket knife that was located in his front right jacket pocket, where the blade was in the open position. Mr. Donovan stated that “they are the ones who started it” as he stood there.


I then went and spoke to the reporting party who was on scene. The reporting party, subsequently identified as XXXXX, stated that while he was walking, he saw Mr. Donovan following a male and female and that Mr. Donovan was screaming at them. Shortly after, he heard the male party subsequently identified as YYYYY yell out that Mr. Donovan had a knife. It was at this time that XXXXX observed a shiny object in Mr. Donovan’s hand as he continued to follow YYYYY and the female, subsequently identified as ZZZZZ. XXXXX then called the Somerville police.


After speaking with YYYYY, he stated to me that he and his Fiancée of one year, ZZZZZ, were walking along Buena Vista Rd, when the couple noticed Mr. Donovan behind them. Mr. Donovan was stating to the couple that he knew ZZZZZ. When ZZZZZ told Mr. Donovan that she did not know him, he started to become angry and swear at the couple. This is when YYYYY stepped in and told Mr. Donovan to leave them alone. Mr. Donovan continued to follow the couple and this is when words were exchanged between YYYYY and Mr. Donovan. Mr. Donovan then pulled out a pocket knife and made his way toward YYYYY and ZZZZZ in an aggressive manner that made the couple fear for their safety. The couple was able to gain distance from Mr. Donovan but he continued following them.


I then Spoke to ZZZZZ who stated that she did not know Mr. Donovan but that he continued to follow the couple saying that he knew who she was. When YYYYY attempted to intervene, words were exchanged and this resulted in Mr. Donovan brandishing a knife and walking towards the couple aggressively.


Given the facts, Mr. Donovan was placed under arrest, and charged with assault with a dangerous weapon, chapter 265 section 15B. Mr. Donovan was transported to the Somerville police station by unit-200, operated by Officer James Radochia, where he was booked in the usual manner by the Commanding Officer, Lt. Christopher Ward.


The pocket knife was confiscated and placed into evidence in the usual manner.




Respectfully submitted,


Officer James Torres

Badge #329

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