Scott A. Dumas, Police Chief
477 Haverhill Street
Rowley, MA 01969
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 22, 2016
Contact: John Guilfoil
Rowley Police Subdue Gun Wielding Suspect with Taser Following Pursuit
ROWLEY – Chief Scott A. Dumas reports that Rowley Police subdued and arrested an armed man last night following a pursuit through town.
JOHN F. MORRISSEY, AGE 59, OF ROWLEY is charged with:
- Assault with a Firearm with the Intent to Murder (two counts)
- Assault by Dangerous Weapon (two counts)
- Improper Storage of a Firearm
- OUI Liquor
- Resisting Arrest
On July 21, at 8:24 p.m., as a result of an earlier incident, a BOLO was issued for MORRISSEY, who was operating a 2005 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck and reported to be intoxicated.
Newbury Officer Mark Smigielski located the vehicle on Route 1A north in the area of Rolfes Lane. He attempted to stop MORRISSEY, who refused and continued to Route 1 south and into Rowley.
MORRISSEY turned onto Central Street in Rowley, where Officer Smigielski briefly lost sight of him. During the pursuit, speeds ranged from 60 to 80 MPH.
Newbury Officer Smigielski then located MORRISSEY’S car abandoned in his backyard, and along with Rowley Sgt. David MacMullen, observed MORRISSEY in the basement of his residence.
As they attempted to enter the residence, MORRISSEY picked up a loaded shotgun, aiming it at both officers. Police ordered MORRISSEY to lower his weapon, but he refused. Sgt. MacMullen then deployed his Taser, disarming MORRISSEY.
After a brief struggle, police were able to arrest MORRISSEY, who was then transported to an area hospital and held overnight on $100,000 cash bail. He is scheduled to be arraigned today at the hospital.
Chief Dumas commends Sgt. MacMullen and Officer Smigielski for diffusing the situation and subduing an armed suspect without the loss of life or serious injury to anyone involved. He would also like to thank the Newbury, Newburyport, Georgetown, and Ipswich Police Departments, along with the Massachusetts State Police for their assistance at the scene.