Community grieves in wake of Chief's shooting death
GREENFIELD, N.H. (WHDH) -- The small community of Greenland, N.H. was grieving Friday morning following the shooting death of the town’s longtime Police Chief, Michael Maloney.
Maloney, a 48-year-old father of two and grandfather, had been Greenland’s Chief of Police for the past 12 years. He had served in law enforcement for 26 years. He was just eight days away from retirement.
One of just seven full-time officers at the Greenland police department, Chief Maloney was part of a drug task force serving a search warrant at a Post Road home Thursday night. He was killed. Four other officers injured in the shooting were from various departments throughout New Hampshire.
Greenland’s police department was draped in black and purple bunting. Flags were at half staff around the state to honor the fallen officer. The elementary school in Greenland was closed.
“Nice guy. Great guy. Really good with children,” said Jason Mackenzie, a friend of Maloney. “He always had a smile. Always jokes around. Always had a nice quip.”
Mackenzie and his daughter knew the chief well.
“Last night I was crying and crying because I missed him so much,” said Ciretta Mackenzie, Jason Mackenzie’s daughter. “I was just saying, ‘Why did it have to be him? Why? Why?’”
Maloney would stop at the Mackenzie’s store for a coffee and lottery tickets. He would pretend to arrest Ciretta after she would pretend to shoplift.
“When I pretend to be a robber at the store and then he took his handcuffs,” said Ciretta.
Jason Mackenzie said Maloney loved police work, but was ready for his retirement.
“[He loved his job], but he loved the fact that he was getting done, too, you know. He was looking forward to this,” said Jason Mackenzie.
Those who knew the Chief well were not surprised to hear he took such an active role in the raid.
“Chief Maloney is wonderful,” Greenland town administrator Karen Anderson said. “He was eight days away from retirement, but he was a working chief; it’s not unusual for him to be at a scene. He really cared about the department and there were three of them there together.”
“It’s a very difficult night for New Hampshire, and my thoughts and prayers are with the family of Chief Maloney,” New Hampshire Governor John Lynch said. “He was an extraordinary individual who demonstrated tremendous courage in a very difficult time, and he really serves as an example of why all of us need to appreciate and respect what law enforcement does for us every day in New Hampshire.”
Cheif Maloney had no idea about the retirement party his friends and colleagues were planning for him. He was just eight days from retirement.
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