Two Andover teens have been confined to their homes with electronic monitoring after allegedly shooting into crowds of people downtown with an Airsoft shotgun-styled pellet gun, hitting at least five people and injuring none, police said.
People were hit by pellets outside of Orange Leaf, a downtown frozen yogurt shop on Park Street, and Bertucci’s, an Italian restaurant located a few blocks away on Main Street, on Aug. 2. Arrested were Benjamin Warren, 18, of 24 Chester St., and Louis Correra, 17, of 8 Fairfax Drive. Both were charged with five counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and both pleaded not guilty to those charges at an arraignment at Lawrence District Court on Friday, Aug. 3.
Police have spoken to two others believed to have been involved in the incident, but charges have not been filed against them, according to police on Tuesday evening.
Warren and Correra were released to their families under a number of conditions that included electronic GPS monitoring, undergoing mental health evaluations and completing any treatment deemed necessary, and surrendering all weapons, according to court documents. They are to be confined to their homes except to attend work or school. They begin their senior years at Andover High School in September.
Attorneys representing the boys did not return calls seeking comment.
“I don’t think they’re particularly being made an example of. I think the judge saw the seriousness of their actions,” said Andover police Chief Brian Pattullo. “It’s a serious event. If someone in that crowd had a weapon and returned fire, we’d be at a whole different set of circumstances.”
With deadly shootings recently “becoming a daily occurrance,” said Pattullo, “they’re pretty lucky nobody did.”
Steve O’Connell, spokesman for District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett, said the conditions for release were not in any way related to the recent shootings that have received local and national attention, such as the shootings at the “Dark Knight Rises” movie in Colorado.