Police Officers from Weymouth Police and surrounding communities stand at salute as the body of Weymouth, MA Police Officer Michael Chesna leaves South Shore Hospital on July 15, 2018. (Credit Karyn Regal/WBZ NewsRadio1030)
WEYMOUTH, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — A police officer and a bystander were shot several times and killed after in a foot chase with a suspect following a vehicle crash Sunday.
The Norfolk County District Attorney’s office confirmed that Weymouth Police Officer Michael Chesna, 42, died of gunshot wounds suffered in a confrontation with the suspect identified as Emanuel Lopes. A woman was fatally shot in her home allegedly by Lopes.
Authorities say, Officer Chesna, a 6 year veteran of Weymouth Police, was shot before 8 a.m. after responding to the call of an erratic driver who had crashed his car near South Shore Hospital.
Neighbors say the suspect had been driving erratically as officers tried to pull him over. Witnesses say the man crashed into another car, fled on foot and then shot the officer. Several bullets hit a nearby home.
Authorities say that when Chesna encountered Lopes on Burton Terrace, he was "actively vandalizing a home."
Chesna drew his firearm and told Lopes to stop. It was then Lopes took a large rock and attacked Chesna striking him in the head making Officer Chesna fall to the ground authorities say.
"Lopes then retrieved Officer Chesna's firearm and discharged it several times in his head and chest," said Greg Connor, Assitant District Attorney for the Norfolk District Attorney’s Office.
Several officers arrived at the scene at Burton Terrace where the shooting took place and returned fire hitting Lopes once in his leg below his knee Connor said.
Lopes ran away and Weymouth continued the chase on foot.
"Lopes still had control of Chesna's firearm and during this foot chase in the yards of Burton Terrace, it is believed Mr. Lopes discharged the firearm an additional three times striking a local resident in her home," Connor said.
Lopes was apprehended shortly thereafter and was transported to South Shore Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. An arraignment is set for Monday, July 16.
Cheryl Fiandaca, Chief Investigative Reporter with WBZ-TV, reports that Lopes was on pre-trial probation when he allegedly shot and killed Chesna and the innocent bystander.
They report that Emanuel Lopes who released on pre-trial probation after Weymouth Police arrested him on October 201 and charged that he allegedly sold cocaine to a minor and resisted arrest. The case was continued to July 30th. Random drug testing the only condition of his release.
Susan Long, who was dog sitting at a residence on nearby Torrey Street, told WBZ NewsRadio’s Bill Marcus that, around 7 to 7:30 a.m., she heard 10 to 15 gunshots. The neighborhood then, ‘instantly,’ filled up with police.
“We heard shots but didn’t know what they were,” Long said. “I did hear the cops telling them to put the gun down.”
Long said she, initially, thought the sounds were caused by fireworks. Other neighbors say there was a killing about nine months ago at a nearby gas station.
Here’s what WBZ NewsRadio1030 has learned about Officer Michael C. Chesna:
According to Weymouth Chief Richard Grimes, Chesna was a Weymouth native was hired on July 16, 2012 and was sworn in as a police officer on December 12, 2016. He is a graduate of the Boyslton Police Academy and Northeastern University.
Grimes said Chesna was assigned to the Midnight to 8 am overnight shift in the traffic division.
Chesna also served in the military with several tours of duty in the U.S. Army, serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.
This Dec 10, 2012 photo from the Weymouth Police Department Facebook Page shows Michael Chesna as one of three new officers sworn in. Joseph J. Sgambato and Derek A. Holbrook are pictured to the right of Chesna (Credit: Weymouth Police/Facebook)
“I was speaking with his mom his morning, and she told me that he joined to the military to open doors to get on this job and he was successful with that,” Grimes said.
Monday would have marked Chesna’s 6th work anniversary with the Weymouth Police Department he leaves behind a wife and two children, ages four and nine, Grimes said.
“He was a great family man and a great officer, I would see him in the morning coming in off the streets and he always had a kind word and a good attitude…he was one of those people that truly sought this job was fortunate to get it and very much appreciate it and we really much appreciate his service…our concerns right now are with Michael’s family and our Weymouth Police family.” Grimes said.
Sunday afternoon online tributes could be seen on social media
Weymouth Mayor Bob Hedlund shared a solemn tribute on Twitter:
PHOTO: Karyn Regal / WBZ NewsRadio