Middleborough Police Officer Seriously Injured During SEMLEC SWAT Training in Bridgewater
BRIDGEWATER – Southeastern Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council SWAT Unit Control Chief (Raynham Police Chief) James Donovan, Bridgewater Police Chief Christopher Delmonte, and Middleborough Police Chief Joseph Perkins regret to report that a Middleborough Police Officer was seriously injured Wednesday morning during a regional police training exercise in Bridgewater.
Bridgewater Police and Fire received a 911 call shortly after 11 a.m. from a member of SEMLEC SWAT requesting an ambulance for an officer who sustained a hand injury during a training program on the exterior grounds of MCI Bridgewater.
Upon arrival, rescuers found a Middleborough Police Officer with a serious wound to one of his hands. The officer was treated at the scene and transported by Bridgewater Fire Department Ambulance to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston with injuries that are not believed to be life-threatening.
A preliminary investigation by the Bridgewater Police Department indicates that the officer, whose name is not being released, was using a 37 mm projectile launcher loaded with training rounds to aid in the SWAT training exercise when the device exploded in his hands. At this time, investigators believe that the device malfunctioned.
While not carried by officers in the normal course of their duties, the 37mm launcher is used for a variety of SWAT operations including smoke screens, high visibility flares, decoy noisemaker rounds, “Flash Bang” style stun grenades, and training rounds that emit smoke and/or noise.
“The officer was conducting high-level training as a member of our region’s vital SWAT unit when what appears to be a terrible accident occurred that left him with serious injuries,” Chief Perkins said. “We wish our officer all the best as he receives treatment for his wounds.”
This incident remains under investigation by the Bridgewater Police Department.