PAWTUCKET â€” The 37-year-old man shot to death by Pawtucket Police on Wednesday night had been wanted by the Massachusetts State Police for an armed assault.
The suspect has been identified as Jamie Coyle, who has addresses in both Pawtucket and Attleboro, Pawtucket Police said.
According to a press release from the Pawtucket Police, the department had been notified by Massachusetts State Police that an arrest warrant had been issued for Coyle on a charge of aggravated assault with a firearm. Police say that on Wednesday at around 6:10 p.m., two Pawtucket Police officers located Coyle as he sat in a vehicle on Sherman Street.
The press release states that as the officers approached the suspect (later identified as Coyle), he attempted to exit the vehicle with a firearm. Police say the officers fired several shots at Coyle to defend themselves, and that he was struck by several of the officers' rounds. It also states that officers immediately began doing CPR on Coyle. He was taken to Rhode Island Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Pawtucket Police Major Arthur Martins said that members of the State Police and the Attorney General's Office are assisting the Pawtucket Police Department with this investigation.
The firearm that was in possession of the suspect was seized by members of the Rhode Island State Police, he said.
The two officers who fired their weapons have been identified as Officer Emmanuel Mejia, 27, a member of the Pawtucket Police Department for the past five years, and Officer Jess Venturini, 29, a member of the department for the past four years.
Martins said that the investigation is still ongoing and additional information will be released when it becomes available.
According to earlier police and news reports, Coyle was shot while sitting in a black Dodge Charger with an unidentified woman. The woman was not injured and was taken into custody by police, but not charged.
Coyle was parked near an apartment complex, located at Sherman Street and Main Street, where his sister reportedly lives, and some family members told news reporters that Coyle had been on his way to see his sister.
Despite several phone calls to the Massachusetts State Police, The Times was unable to learn the nature of the assault incident involving Coyle that prompted the warrant being issued for his arrest. He was, however, known to Attleboro Police on a May 2011 domestic-related incident involving an alleged armed robbery and assault of his teenage daughter's boyfriend.
According to Attleboro Police and a May 4, 2011, article in The Sun Chronicle, Coyle, of Frenier Avenue in that city, was accused of forcing his way into the apartment of his teenage daughter's boyfriend on Holman Street in Attleboro. He allegedly threatened the 17-year-old boy with a handgun, struck the youth in the head with it, and took his cell phone. He also allegedly threatened the boy's mother. The victim was treated for a head wound at Sturdy Memorial Hospital.
Coyle's lawyer, former Rhode Island Attorney General Jeffrey Pine, had reportedly said at the arraignment that his client had acted out of the desire to protect his daughter from a boyfriend he considered a bad influence. He also said that Coyle had a firearms permit in Rhode Island, where he lived on and off, in addition to living in Attleboro.
According to the news article, Pine also reportedly told the court at the time that his client had mental health problems and was under psychiatric care.
According to an article in The Sun Chronicle from the previous day about the incident, police had surrounded Coyle's apartment house and had later called in a regional tactical response team, but he had not been inside. A car he had been driving was later found in Pawtucket. After obtaining a search warrant, investigators searched Coyle's residence and his two vehicles. They reportedly found a loaded shotgun under a sofa in his living room and a 9 mm semi-automatic handgun in the glove compartment of a Dodge Charger parked in his driveway.
A warrant was issued for Coyle's arrest and he turned himself in to Attleboro Police. He was arraigned in Attleboro District Court on charges of home invasion, armed robbery, assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, unlawful possession of a firearm in commission of a felony and other weapons charges. He pleaded innocent and had been released on $10,000 cash bail.
Attleboro Detective Sgt. Arthur Brillon confirmed the basic facts of the incident and the charges against Coyle, and said the court case had still been pending at the time of his death.
Coyle reportedly leaves a wife and three grown children.