Lawrence store owner beats suspected intruder
LAWRENCE, Mass. (WHDH) -- A Lawrence store owner who was fed up with crooks trying to break into his business took matters into his own hands -- when an alleged intruder tried to break in, he was waiting for him.
Avelino Fernandez, the owner of Fernandez Market in Lawrence, said he heard someone break the lower panel of the store’s door shortly after 5 a.m. Monday.
“The guy broke in the window,” said Fernandez.
Fernandez was sleeping in the back of his store and knew he had heard something. He got an aluminum baseball bat. Fernandez said when he got to the front of the store the suspect came to him with a broom and that’s when Fernandez took the man down.
Fernandez said he had to hit the suspect several times. Fernandez’s two teenage sons were inside the store at the time, one of them called for help.
Authorities said it is too early to tell if the owner acted within his rights.
“He indicated to us what happened -- we have his story. We have nothing to disapprove that at this point. If there is any [surveillance] footage we’ll look at the footage and if any determinations have to be made at that point, we’ll make it,” said Chief John Romero of the Lawrence Police Department.
Police said they did find cash and a check that were stolen from the register on the suspect. The suspect is in intensive care. Police identified the suspect as Douglas Ragonose. The Methuen man was charged with breaking and entering with intent to commit a felony, malicious damage over $250 and assault with a dangerous weapon.
(Copyright (c) 2012 Sunbeam Television. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)