WEYMOUTH (CBS) – An MBTA trolley operator is accused of violently assaulting an 83-year-old Weymouth man and chasing another man with a hatchet.

Maryellen Shields, 55, of Newton was held on $10,000 bail following a dangerousness hearing on Thursday. She was arraigned Monday on charges of home invasion, two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon, assault and battery on a person over 60, armed breaking and entering for a felony, malicious destruction of property and larceny.

Shields has been an MBTA employee for 12 years, an agency spokesperson said.

Maryellen Shields in court. (WBZ-TV)

Police responded to Franklin Street around 4:20 p.m. Friday after receiving multiple reports of a woman chasing someone down the street with a hatchet.

In his report, Weymouth Police Officer Joseph Sgambato wrote that when he arrived, he found Shields sitting in her car in front of the house where the alleged victims live.

Due to reports of a hatchet, “I took out my department issued weapon at the low ready position and told her to stay where she was,” he wrote.

Shields was uncooperative when repeatedly asked to show her hands and she continued to sit in her vehicle smoking a cigarette, Sgambato wrote.

Two other officers arrived. Police noted that Shields smelled of alcohol and was slurring her words.

An elderly man told police that Shields and another woman began pounding on his door and kicked the door in, demanding to see a title to a vehicle. Shields began pushing and hitting the man in the apartment while holding a hatchet, and demanded that the elderly man show his identification, according to police.

“During this time she started to slam the back end (smaller pointed end) of the tomahawk into his wooden table threatening him,”  Sgambato wrote. Six marks were left on the table. When the women left, the elderly man called police.

An apartment neighbor arrived home, and Shields began chasing him with a hatchet and threatened him, he said.

“I told her my name was William. Immediately, she began swinging the hatchet … she chased me, screaming she was going to kill me,” the man said.

Shields told police that someone at the apartment had the title to her niece’s boyfriend’s car and that she came to get it back. She told police she had a tomahawk tucked into her lower back and that she threw it somewhere down the street. Officers found the hatchet nearby.

Shields told police that she had two drinks before driving to Weymouth and that she worked for the MBTA. “I know I’m going to get fired for this,” she allegedly told police.

Neighbor Jackie MacKean called it a strange scene when she saw the police arrive next door, and later saw them tow a car police say had empty vodka nips.

“I don’t know what would have happened if I walked into it. Swinging a hatchet around 4:30 in the afternoon, a little crazy,” MacKean said.

Family members said Shields was distraught and turned to heavy drinking after her mother died last year. They offered letters of support to the judge, who still ruled Shields posed a danger and increased her bail.

Shields was ordered to undergo substance abuse treatment and be fitted with a GPS monitoring device.

  1. Bruce Vandyk says:


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