DA: Seekonk Police ‘Justified’ in Shooting Death of Man Wielding AK-47
SEEKONK — Seekonk police officers were 'justified' in fatally shooting a suspect who they said fired an AK-47 at them last month, the Bristol County District Attorney's Office concluded in a report released Wednesday.
Jeffrey Groulx, 47, was wanted for multiple parole violations in New Hampshire in March and had recently been on the run in Massachusetts, the D.A.'s office said.
Seekonk Police found him near the site of an attempted break-in at the New England Tire on Route 6 at 6:40 a.m. on Nov. 28.
After the officers started following him, Groulx attempted to flee in a stolen car, but flipped it on Route 6 at the intersection with School Street.
Police called an ambulance and both officers started towards the car to give aid, according to the D.A.'s office.
Neither officer had their weapons drawn.
The D.A.'s office stated that as the officers approached, Groulx fired at least two gunshots from inside the car.
According to the D.A.'s office, the second officer saw Groulx and the AK-47-style rifle through the blown-out car window, yelled "Gun!" and then fired six shots into the vehicle.
The first officer saw Groulx come out and turn the rifle towards him, and fired his service weapon four times, the D.A.'s office said.
Although they said the suspect was not moving, the officers took cover and waited for backup.
A SWAT team and tactical robot confirmed there was no danger, and Seekonk fire crews pronounced Groulx dead at 8:58 a.m.
The D.A.'s office noted that synchronized video and audio show Groulx fired first, from inside the stolen car, as the officers were approaching without weapons drawn.
They returned fire "only after Groulx fired at least two times," according to the D.A.'s office.
Groulx had a long criminal history in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Louisiana, the office stated.
He had previously escaped from state prison in New Hampshire in 2019.
This was the second fatal police-involved shooting in the area last month, after Fall River police fatally shot a city resident just six days prior, on Nov. 22.