WEYMOUTH (CBS) — Police say a 20-year-old man attacked a Weymouth Police officer with a rock, stole his gun, and proceeded to kill the officer and an elderly woman Sunday morning.
The officer was identified as 42-year-old Michael Chesna, by Assistant District Attorney Greg Connor at a press conference Sunday afternoon. He had been with the Weymouth Police Department for six years, almost to the day. Chesna leaves behind a wife and two young children.
Weymouth Police Chief Richard Grimes said Chesna was an Army veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“He was just a great family man, he was a great officer. I would see him in the morning coming in from the street and he always had a kind word and a good attitude,” Grimes said. “He was one of those people who truly sought this job, was fortunate enough to get it, and very much appreciated it. And we very much appreciated his service to the Weymouth Police Department.”
Around 7:30 a.m., police received a call about an erratic driver near South Shore Hospital. There was then a crash between a BMW and a Camry and a driver ran away.
Officer Chesna responded to the scene near Burton Terrace.
“He saw the suspect actively vandalizing a home, he exited his vehicle, he drew his firearm and commanded this man to stop. The suspect was eventually identified as Emanuel Lopes. Lopes then attacked Officer Chesna, it is believed with a large stone, maybe hitting him in the head and Officer Chesna fell to the ground. Lopes then retrieved Officer Chesna’s firearm and discharged it several times in his head and chest,” said Connor.
When more police officers responded, Lopes ran off again. With Chesna’s gun, he shot three more times and hit a woman inside her home nearby. She died as well, Connor said. Her name has not been released.
Lopes was arrested shortly thereafter. He suffered non-life threatening injuries after being shot by another officer.
Police were on the scene on Burton Terrace near Torrey Street throughout the day Sunday. More cruisers and officers gathered at South Shore Hospital, down the road, where Chesna was taken.
A procession with police cruisers and officers on motorcycles also took place as his body was brought to the medical examiner’s office in South Boston.
A neighbor told WBZ she heard shots around 7:30 a.m.
“I opened up the back door and instantly there was an officer there and then more came running out behind all those houses,” she described. “I did hear the cops telling him ‘Put the gun down, put the gun down.'”
Lopes is expected to appear in court on Monday.
Mass. State Police Colonel Kerry Gilpin released a statement about the upcoming investigation.
On behalf of the Massachusetts State Police I offer our deepest condolences to the family of Officer Chesna, the family of the Weymouth woman who was also killed, and the Weymouth Police Department. The State Police Detective Unit for Norfolk County, the State Police Crime Scene Services Section, and the State Police Ballistics Section, and our State Police Crime Lab will work tirelessly alongside District Attorney Morrissey and the Weymouth Police Department to speak for these two victims by holding the defendant accountable for these horrific crimes.
Governor Charlie Baker also issued a statement Sunday afternoon.
“I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Officer Chesna and an innocent bystander today and my thoughts and prayers are with their families, loved ones and the Weymouth Police Department after this tragic loss,” Baker said. “The Commonwealth is forever grateful for the courageous men and women who risk their lives to serve and protect our communities every single day.”