Robbery Suspect Hospitalized After Being Shot by Police

Suspect on surveillance video. (Courtesy of Methuen Police Department.)

Methuen police and Mayor Stephen N. Zanni at a press conference Thursday night.

Methuen police and Mayor Stephen N. Zanni at a press conference Thursday night.

A convenience store robbery suspect is in the hospital recovering from, what were described as, non-life threatening injuries after being shot by Methuen police during a confrontation Thursday night.

James J. Dobbins, 36, of Methuen, is under arrest in a hospital bed in Boston, charged with armed robbery while masked in connection with a 9:30 a.m., Thursday armed robbery at Pleasant Valley Superette, Merrimack Street, Methuen, according to Methuen Police Chief Joseph Solomon. Four Methuen detectives were responding to the Summit Place apartment complex, Pleasant Valley Street, to question Dobbins after he called Methuen police in response to his picture, from surveillance video, being posted on police social media and offered to meet them at his home.

“At approximately 8:30 p.m., Methuen police detectives arrived at the Summit Place apartment complex. Upon arrival, the detectives were met by the suspect who suddenly and without warning drew what appeared to be a black firearm, pointed it at officers, and began to move toward them rapidly,” a statement said. “Fearing for their lives and the lives of the many civilians living in this complex, detectives drew their service weapons and fired at the suspect as he advanced toward them. The suspect was shot multiple times. Officers disarmed him and immediately began to render first aid. The suspect was taken to an area hospital with injuries that are not believed to be life threatening.”

The four detectives were placed on administrative leave and their duty weapons secured, as is standard procedure in any police involved shooting, police said.

“This was a very dangerous situation that our officers encountered. Our officers fell back on their training when faced with a potentially life threatening situation,” Solomon said.

Dobbins will likely face additional charges. The incident is under investigation by Methuen police and Massachusetts State Police assigned to the Essex County District Attorney’s Office.

This is a developing story. Return to this page for updates.

4 thoughts on “Robbery Suspect Hospitalized After Being Shot by Police

  1. Dobbins appears to have started this fight wanting to instigate a “suicide by cop.” I don’t blame the cops for aiming at non-life threatening body parts. What the cops have to go through when they have to shoot or restrain a bad guy, and the tension they must be under when they encounter a fool like Dobbins, is insane.

    Why is no one publishing the status of Dobbins’ gun permit? Is whether or not this guy has a valid FID card a secret?

  2. Well, my only question is why were his injuries NON- life threatening ? I heard four officers discharged their weapons and nobody hit center mass ? C’mon guys get to the range more often ! Lol