At about 4:30 PM on Sunday, June 21, 2015, officers assigned to District C-6 (South Boston) made an onsite arrest in the area of 738 East Broadway. Officers responded to a radio call for a man bleeding from the head and swinging a hammer in the area. As officers approached the scene, they observed a large crowd gathered, pointing and directing the officers to the suspect, later identified as John Connolly, 52, of Boston. Officers observed the suspect, bleeding from a head wound, violently swinging the hammer, and screaming incoherently. Officers immediately attempted to set a perimeter around him to prevent injury to the onlookers. The suspect charged at several of the officers, swinging the hammer towards them causing them to tactically retreat to cover behind their police cruisers while still maintaining a level of containment of the suspect. Officers gave several verbal commands for the suspect to drop the hammer but he did not comply, continuing to swing the hammer, even shattering a window pane of a local business. A sergeant on scene, who was armed with a less-lethal bean bag shotgun, raised it towards the suspect who had turned to charge towards him. Upon seeing the shotgun pointed directly at him, the suspect suddenly dropped the hammer to the ground and officers were able to place him in custody after a violent struggle. The suspect was then transported by EMS and escorted by the BPD to a local hospital for treatment and evaluation. Numerous witnesses who observed the tense incident unfolding praised the officers on scene for their remarkable restraint in dealing with the dangerous suspect. After the situation was resolved, officers discovered that the suspect had damaged numerous buildings and a motor vehicle prior to their arrival.
Connolly will appear in South Boston District Court pending his release from the hospital and will be charged with 5 Counts of Assault with a Dangerous Weapon and 4 Counts of Willful Malicious Destruction of Property.