Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

January 2, 2014

Fight leads to attempted taser of suspect

By Dustin Luca

---- — Police were called to a fight the day after Christmas between two men at a downtown restaurant, but it was an uninvolved person that left the scene in cuffs.

Police responded to Palmer’s Restaurant at 4 Elm St. at 10:32 p.m. on Dec. 26 after callers reported a fight between two men inside.

When they arrived, “they found a male bleeding profusely from the head,” police Commander Charles Heseltine said. Police rendered assistance and called an ambulance.

Then, Heseltine said, a third gentleman who wasn’t involved in the fight came outside and “started to act unruly and was yelling at the gentleman who had the cut on his forehead.”

Heseltine said police instructed Busa Russell, 47, of 2 Hallmark Gardens, Burlington, several times to go back inside the restaurant.

Russell returned to the restaurant, but quickly found his way back outside, at which point officers escorted him to the restaurant’s bar, according to Heseltine. Then, the situation escalated even further.

“He tried to get back outside again,” Heseltine said. “He shoved the officer, and at that time, it seems like he began fighting with the officer.”

As Russell started fighting with officer Joseph Davies, officer Jeffrey Arleque attempted to taser Russell, Heseltine said.

The discharge was unsuccessful, however, at which point fighting continued and eventually ended with multiple officers on top of Russell.

“They were forced to forcibly take that third party to the ground,” Heseltine said. “He was subsequently handcuffed.”

Russell was arrested and charged with assault and battery on a police officer, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.

The man who was cut in the head was treated at the scene, but later declined transport to an area hospital. Meanwhile, the other man involved in the fight “just stayed out of everything” from the moment police arrived, Heseltine said.