Boston Police Officer Displays Restraint in Fending off Violent Attack on New Year's Day, Suspect Arrested

At about 2:00 AM on Friday, January 1, 2015, officers from District A-1 (Downtown) and surrounding areas responded to a radio call to assist an officer in trouble in the area of the parking garage at One City Hall Plaza.

The officer requesting assistance was parked at the entrance of the Boston City Hall Dock Square parking garage, monitoring the New Years Eve crowds from the operator’s seat of his marked tactical cruiser. A male walking on Congress Street crossed in front of the officer’s cruiser, approached the open driver’s side window, and stated in a loud, clear voice, “You heard about the war, right?” then, without warning, began to violently strike the officer in the face with a closed fist. While still seated, the officer immediately returned closed-fist strikes to the suspect’s face, attempting to fend off the attacker while radioing for assistance. The suspect fled on foot into the parking garage, where back-up units found him scaling a fence in an attempt to escape. Using verbal commands and empty-hand control tactics, officers struggled to apprehend the male while he violently and physically resisted arrest and yelled, “You are all doomed, and you’re going to die. They told me to do this.” Officers were eventually able to handcuff and take the suspect into custody. The officer who sustained the attack was transported to a Boston area hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and has since been released.

Officers arrested 23-year-old Andrew Bowman from Everett and charged him with Assault and Battery on a Police Officer causing Injury, Disorderly Person, Trespassing, and Resisting Arrest.

Said Police Commissioner William Evans, “It’s disheartening that these are the dangers officers have to face and be prepared for on a daily basis. During otherwise peaceful New Year’s celebrations where many folks thanked the officers on the streets and shook their hands, there are still others who wish to harm law enforcement officers at all costs. This officer displayed incredible restraint, defending himself without the use of a baton, pepper spray, or deadly force, even though the situation may have warranted it. I speak on behalf of my entire department when I say that we are all thankful that this officer is going to be okay.”