Woonsocket Police investigate officer involved shooting

Woonsocket police are investigating an officer involved shooting.

Police say just after 1:30am Sunday police shot 19 year old Mitchell Savard behind an apartment building on Read Street after a brief foot pursuit.

Savard was treated and released from the hospital and taken to police headquarters where his father, also Mitchell, showed up Sunday morning, concerned about his son and frustrated.

“They won’t tell me exactly what happened, all they’re telling me is my son was shot, they didn’t even tell me that, strangers told me that,” said Mitchell Savard.

Savard’s girlfriend told NBC 10 it started when a group of people approached Savard while he was walking. Her brother came to intervene and was sliced in the hand by someone with a machete.

She drove her brother to the hospital nearby, leaving Savard at the scene.

Chief Thomas Oates told NBC10 witnesses on scene told police Savard then made threatening comments that he was going to shoot somebody.

“Cops come down to talk to the kid, all we hear is ‘he’s got a gun’, kid goes running, cop goes running, minute and a half two minutes later we hear the gunshot, cop comes back saying he shot the kid in the leg,” said neighbor Ryan Hoggarth.

“I know he didn’t have a weapon, if nothing else, he didn’t have a gun,” Savard’s father said to NBC 10.

Police have not said if Savard had a gun, but Chief Oates said the officer who caught up with Savard described seeing an object in the suspect’s hand, and that he ignored police commands before being shot in the hand and leg.

The entire incident leading up to and including the shooting of Savard remains under investigation, by Woonsocket Police, Rhode Island State Police and the Rhode Island Attorney General.

The name of the Woonsocket officer involved in the shooting was not released Sunday.

Chief Oates said charges against Savard are pending.

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