John Bacigalupo, 54, of Revere, was taken into custody after his vehicle allegedly plowed through the front door of Rapid Liquors in Stoneham.
Stoneham Police responded to the incident at 1:05 a.m. on January 8. Upon arriving at the establishment, police allegedly found Bacigalupo in the store smoking a cigar, drinking a beer and eating potato chips. Officers immediately ordered Bacigalupo to come out of the store; however, he did not obey their commands. He also allegedly told police that he was armed and that they would have to shoot him.
Two officers made three attempts to disable Bacigalupo using their Tasers; however, he was not fazed, according to police. According to Taser manufacturer Axon Enterprise, one Taser shot delivers approximately 50,000 volts.Bacigalupo then allegedly struck one of the officers as they took him into custody.
“I wish to commend the three Stoneham Police officers for apprehending a dangerous suspect who was willing to use violence against officers to resist arrest,” said Stoneham Police Chief James McIntyre. “The officers exercised great restraint, using their training and experience to attempt to de-escalate a volatile situation. I am grateful that this situation was ultimately brought to an end without serious injury to either the suspect or responding officers.”
The owners of Rapid Liquors made light of the situation. “Our overnight ‘drive-thru renovation’ didn’t go as planned so we will have a delayed opening on Saturday, January 8 and ask that you bear with us while we have our store repaired,” they said in a Facebook post.
The store opened 30 minutes later than usual that morning. “We’re open for all your beer, chips, cigars and bourbon needs,” the owners said in a separate Facebook post. “Please park in the lot and don’t drive through the doors.”
Bacigalupo was held on $100,000 bail and was scheduled to be arraigned in Woburn District Court on January 10. Bacigalupo was charged with assault and battery on a police officer; breaking and entering in the nighttime; larceny under $1,200; malicious destruction of property under $1,200; malicious destruction of property over $1,200; and resisting arrest. Under state law, Bacigalupo, if convicted, could face up to 20 years in prison and at least $10,200 in fines.
The incident remains under investigation.
In 2001, Bacigalupo was convicted of the 1996 murder of Robert Nogueira, a member of the Patriarca crime family, who was shot 20 times in a hotel parking lot in Saugus. In addition, Bacigalupo was convicted of the attempted murders of Vincent Portalla and Charles McConnell, also members of the Patriarca family, outside a nightclub in Revere. However, all three convictions were overturned by the Supreme Judicial Court in 2009.