POLICE LOG, FEB. 17-22, 2023: Online sale of $20 speakers causes flap; man vows to sue, move over holiday work

Excerpts from the Marblehead police log of Friday, Feb. 17 through Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2023. Consistent with state law, Marblehead Police have adopted a policy of not providing to media outlets reports related to incidents related to domestic violence, juveniles and matters that remain under investigation.

Friday, Feb. 17

10:03 a.m. Officers investigated a report that a parked car had been struck on Atlantic Avenue and Hawkes Street. 

12:19 p.m. An out-of-town caller reported having received harassing phone calls.

1:06 p.m. An officer investigated a report of a vehicle crash on Humphrey Street.

10 p.m. Officers restored the peace after the report of a disturbance on Washington Street.

Saturday, Feb. 18

1:20 a.m. A 48-year-old Marblehead man was arrested and charged with a second offense of operating under the influence of alcohol and leaving the scene of an accident with property damage after officers investigated the report of a crash on Bowden Street.

8:56 a.m. Officers investigated a general complaint on Creesy Street and filed a report.

1:10 p.m. Officers assisted a person on Washington Street and filed a report.

1:54 p.m. Officer spoke in the police station lobby with a man who six weeks earlier had purchased a speaker system on Facebook Marketplace for $20, which he subsequently learned did not work. The man had dropped the speaker system back off at the seller’s house and left him a note that the speakers were defective and to call him to arrange a refund of the $20. The man had finally heard back from the seller earlier in the day, but when he went to retrieve his $20, an argument ensued. The seller refused to return the money because, though a wire was missing, he believed the speakers worked just fine. Officer spoke to the seller in the hopes of brokering a settlement, but he resisted the suggestion to give the buyer a full or partial refund, saying he would only do so after he found another buyer for the speaker. Officer relayed that information to the buyer and suggested that he might be able to get further assistance from Facebook.  

4:01 p.m. Officers investigated the report of a missing person on Clifton Avenue and filed a report.

6:26 p.m. An officer assisted a person on Cheever Avenue and filed a report.

8:41 p.m. An officer responded to the scene of a minor car accident on School Street. Officer arrived to find one vehicle pulled off to the side of the road with its registered owner standing by its side. The man said that the other car involved in the accident had left before he arrived. Man said that as he was pulling out of his parking space in front of the Marblehead House of Pizza, a dark-colored SUV that was coming through the stop sign from Washington Street struck his vehicle. He had spoken briefly to the other driver, a young woman, but as he was bringing back his insurance information from his vehicle, the young woman drove off. The damage to the man’s vehicle was limited to some minor scrapes on the front right bumper. He told the officer that he did not want an accident report done and that he was all set.

9:03 p.m. Officers investigated the report of a break-in and/or burglary at a building on Norman Street and filed a report.

Sunday, Feb. 19

11:14 a.m. Officer was dispatched to the First Church of Christ Scientist on Elm Street to investigate the report of a broken window, possibly vandalized. Officer was shown the damage to a second-floor storm window, which had been pulled back slightly from the building, and there were shards of glass from it directly below. There was no damage to the inside window pane or any other windows. Officer determined that, based on where the glass had landed, it appeared that the wind had pulled the storm window off the building just enough to flex the glass and cause the pane to shatter, and then the wind had blown the broken piece further back before it struck the ground, as the winds overnight had been a sustained mid-20s mph with gusts into the mid-30s. The church representative was relieved by this explanation and asked for a report for insurance purposes.

11:43 a.m. A caller reported a squirrel dead in the road on Carlton Road.

5:15 p.m. The report of an unruly customer on Pleasant Street led to the arrest of a 44-year-old Marblehead woman on charges of disorderly conduct and trespassing.

Monday, Feb. 20

7:33 a.m. A caller complained about construction work occurring on a holiday on Redstone Lane.

10:18 a.m. Police received another call complaining about the contractors working on Redstone Lane on a holiday. Officer arrived to find the complainant standing in the street directly in front of his neighbor’s driveway across the street. The man began explaining the ongoing issues that he had been having with his neighbor’s renovation projects. The man had admitted that he had approached and confronted a worker about working on the holiday and that the employee had responded by telling him that he was trespassing and threatened to beat him up if he did not leave. At the officer’s suggestion, they went inside the caller’s house to continue the conversation. While there was a van in the neighbor’s driveway, the officer said he could neither hear nor see any work being done. Officer explained that he was not aware of any laws that he could enforce to stop the work that was being done on Presidents’ Day, using his phone to show the caller information on the state’s website indicating that Presidents’ Day is not a holiday to which the state’s Blue Laws apply. The resident was “not satisfied” with that answer and said he was going to sue the town or move. Officer told the man that if he could produce a statute that

showed the work was illegal, he would be happy to enforce it. The officer also told the resident that he would double check with his supervisor about his determination. The officer-in-charge agreed that there was nothing in the town bylaws or state laws to give the police the power to order the work to cease for the day. Officer advised the resident to call the police if there were noise disturbances before 7 a.m. on any day.

10:27 a.m. Officer investigated a report that a man had gone swimming on Atlantic Avenue and filed a report.

10:59 a.m. Officer investigated a report that a truck had struck a garage on Redstone Lane and filed a report.

12:11 p.m. An officer investigated a report that a loaded clip of ammunition had been found in a repossessed vehicle on Anderson Street and filed a report.

12:39 p.m. Officers responded to the scene of a vehicle accident on Atlantic Avenue and Washington Street and filed a report.

7:07 p.m. An officer investigated a report of vandalism on Humphrey Street and filed a report.

Tuesday, Feb. 21

11:44 a.m. An officer spoke at the station with the woman who had been the apparent victim of an internet scam. The woman explained that she listed a table and several chairs on Facebook MarketPlace for sale. A person had reached out and offered to purchase the chairs using a Zell payment. After some back and forth, the buyer said that he would send her $800 if she sent him $300 first, which the resident had done. The resident then received a strange email, purportedly from Zelle, and came to the conclusion that the transaction was a scam. The woman had gone to National Grand Bank, where an employee told her that they would contact Zelle to try to get her money back. The officer advised the woman to also contact her credit agencies for credit monitoring. The case was forwarded to detectives for follow-up.

12:21 p.m. An officer spoke at the station with a man who reported that someone had intercepted a check that he had mailed on Feb. 8 and forged it. The man had used the mailbox with a “slit-style” opening on Lafayette Street on the corner of Everett Paine Boulevard, which should have prevented the envelope from being fished out of the box. The check had originally been made out to a lawn care company in New Hampshire for $623.24 but was forged and cashed by a man for $9,100. The resident had received a voicemail from the bank about the suspicious check on Feb. 18. The man had been able to get a copy of the forged check from his bank, which he shared with the officer. He pointed out that the signature on the check was not his. The only writing that was his was the date and the memo. The case was forwarded to a detective for follow-up.

4 p.m. An officer investigated a report of a suspicious vehicle on Atlantic Avenue. The vehicle could not be located.

4:07 p.m. An officer met a woman at the station who wanted to file a report of possible unemployment fraud. The woman told the officer that she had received a credit card in the mail on Feb. 17, stating that she was receiving the credit card because of her unemployment claim with the state. The woman said that she had not applied for unemployment benefits. On Feb. 21, the woman had called the state unemployment office’s fraud line, and an employee confirmed that a claim had been made on her behalf but that the claim had also been flagged as

potential fraud. The woman had then called one of the major credit bureaus, and an employee told her that the other credit agencies would be notified about the situation. The officer took the brochure that had come with the debit card and shared it with a detective along with a copy of his report.

Wednesday, Feb. 22

8:48 a.m. An officer investigated the report of a break-in to a vehicle on Elm Street and filed a report.

12:29 p.m. Officers assisted with a disabled vehicle on Humphrey Street. The vehicle was towed.

5:13 p.m. An officer spoke at the station with a man who had had a Chase debit account opened under his name. He had spoken with a Chase Bank employee who informed him that the account had been opened on Feb. 13 using his Social Security number. The address on the account had subsequently been changed to a Lynn address. The man planned to report the incident to identitytheft.gov, while the officer planned to forward the report to detectives.

7:21 p.m. An officer investigated a general complaint on Pleasant Street and filed a report.

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