Oxford, MA – An Oxford police officer was driving down the street on Sunday morning when a man swinging a large sword ran out in front of his marked patrol car and then charged at him with the weapon, according to investigators.
The incident occurred at approximately 6 a.m. on May 14, WCVB reported.
Oxford Police Department (OPD) Chief Anthony Saad said an OPD officer was traveling along the 400-blcok of Main Street in a fully-marked patrol vehicle when a subject making his way down the sidewalk suddenly walked out into traffic.
The officer immediately hit the brakes to avoid hitting the man, Chief Saad said.
That’s when the suspect, later identified as 23-year-old Shawn O’Connell, allegedly pulled out a sword and began walking towards the officer’s car while swinging the weapon back and forth, WCVB reported.
Chief Saad said the officer reversed his patrol unit to create distance between him and the sword-wielding suspect, but he was ultimately boxed in by additional traffic coming up behind him.
The officer then exited his patrol car and ordered O’Connell to drop his sword, according to WCVB.
Chief Saad said the suspect refused to comply.
O’Connell allegedly raised the sword above his head and broke into a full sprint – charging towards the officer, WCVB reported.
The chief said the attacker continued to advance on the officer, who again ordered him to drop his weapon while holding him at gunpoint.
When O’Connell got close enough to hit the officer with the blade, the officer ultimately fired his weapon, according to Chief Saad.
The officer provided aid to the wounded suspect and immediately requested an ambulance, WBTS reported.
O’Connell was rushed to the University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center in Worcester.
His condition was not immediately released.
The motive for the attack is unknown.
Chief Saad said O’Connell has been charged with attempted murder, carrying a dangerous weapon, assault with a dangerous weapon, and disorderly conduct in connection with the incident.
The identity of the officer who shot the suspect was not immediately released, WCVB reported.
Chief Saad said the officer has been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation, as per protocol.