Police chief apologizes to Massachusetts city; stolen shotgun recovered in Lowell
CHELMSFORD, Mass. — Police said a shotgun stolen out of an unmarked police cruiser has been located in Lowell and the town's police chief is apologizing to the city of Lawrence.
Sometime overnight from Wednesday into Thursday, thieves reportedly broke into the garage of a Chelmsford police detective and stole several sets of keys from inside.
Police said the thieves also stole a 2011 Ford Taurus unmarked police cruiser and a Saturn wagon from the detective’s driveway.
The Saturn was reportedly found a short distance from the detective’s home, and police found the Taurus at approximately 9 a.m. Thursday on Bowden Street in Lowell, near the Lowell-Chelmsford border.
According to police, the shotgun was no longer inside the vehicle, and it became the subject of a high priority for police in the area.
On Thursday, Police Chief James Spinney commented on the possible whereabouts of the shotgun.
"For all I know it could be in Lawrence," Spinney said.
On Friday, he said the comment had been made to convey distance and was not intended as a slight.
"I sincerely apologize to the residents of the City of Lawrence," Spinney said. "Please know that while I understand that my choice of words was wrong, I did not intend to offend anyone or speak poorly of the city. I was only trying to comment that the missing firearm may be miles away from Chelmsford for all we knew ... I have also been in contact with Lawrence Police Chief James Fitzpatrick this morning to convey the same sentiment, and I asked him to share my apology with Mayor Dan Rivera. I have also reached out to City Council President Kendrys Vasquez."
In March, Gov. Chris Sununu came under fire for comments he made about Lawrence.
"Eighty-five percent of the fentanyl in this state is coming straight out of Lawrence, Massachusetts," Sununu said at the time.
Since then, Sununu and Rivera have agreed to work together to combat the drug war.
Chelmsford police said the investigation into the stolen vehicles and shotgun remains ongoing.