Wareham Police Apprehend Convicted Murderer Hiding in Home
WAREHAM — Wareham Police teamed with other law enforcement to apprehend a convicted murderer wanted on a parole violation who was hiding out in the attic of an Onset home Tuesday night.
On December 22 at about 8:40 p.m., Massachusetts parole officers Nathan Mendes, Robert Mello, Timothy White and Mychal Grady developed information that a wanted individual was staying at a house on Mason Street Extension in Onset. The parole officers requested the assistance of the Wareham Police Department to serve the warrant. The wanted individual was on parole for murder, and currently under investigation for a recent crime in the Boston area. In addition, information was received that the suspect had commented he was not going to be taken back to jail.
Wareham Police Detective Bryan Whalen, along with Lieutenant Peter Flannery, Sergeant Steve Soqui, and Officers James White and Malik Wilkes went to the home with the parole officers. While searching the house, police say it became apparent that the suspect had secreted himself in an attic space. The officers were unable to access the area safely and instead surrounded the house at the direction of Lieutenant Flannery. Multiple other off-duty Wareham officers responded from their homes after the request for assistance was sent out.
The Southeastern Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council SWAT team responded, along with the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Department, Massachusetts State Police, and a command unit from the Metropolitan Law Enforcement Council. In addition, an ambulance and EMS Director David Evans staged nearby.
The area was secured, and neighboring houses were evacuated. Shortly before 10 p.m., police say the suspect began to strike the attic exhaust fan in an attempt to escape. Chief John Walcek, using a cruiser loudspeaker, directed the suspect to surrender and come out of the house. Within a few minutes, the suspect appeared in the kitchen and was placed into custody without incident.
Gino Gaillardetz, 56, of Chelsea was transported to the Wareham Police station by Officers Christopher Smith and Eric Machado, where he was processed before being released to the custody of the parole officers.
The SWAT team performed a protective sweep of the home to ensure that no other suspects or weapons were in the residence.
“This potentially dangerous situation involving a convicted murderer was resolved safely by the professionalism and cooperation of several law enforcement agencies," Chief Walcek said. “This was a team effort, and our off-duty lieutenants, sergeants, officers, detectives, and a juvenile detective who responded from home to assist are typical of the dedication of personnel at the WPD. In addition, our amazing communications officers not only coordinated incoming resources, they continued to handle regular shift-related calls.”
During the incident, police say Deputies James Loring and Scott Sawler of the PCSD observed a neighbor who had refused to evacuate come outside of his house holding a firearm. The deputies ordered the man to go back into his house. After Gaillardetz was secured, police say the deputies observed the male in the doorway, again with the pistol in his hand. Chief Walcek was walking back to his cruiser when the deputies alerted him to the armed individual.
The chief and other officers approached the man, who now had secured the pistol. According to police, it was determined that he had a lawful firearms permit; however, his permit and firearm were seized pending additional investigation.
Gaillardetz was convicted of second-degree murder in 1986 for the fatal stabbing of 43-year-old Francis P. Gray in Hyannis. According to parole board records, Gaillardetz, who was then 22 years old, was drinking and using cocaine on the night of April 14, 1986. He met up with Gray, planning to rob him, which he did at knifepoint. Gaillardetz took Gray’s wallet, but when Gray grabbed him, Gaillardetz stabbed Gray once in the chest. Once Gray fell to the ground, Gaillardetz stabbed him two more times in the chest. He then fled the scene but was arrested the next day.
At the time of the murder, Gaillardetz was already out on parole from a two-year house of corrections sentence for receiving stolen property. He also had prior convictions for breaking and entering, larceny, and larceny of a motor vehicle.
He pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and armed robbery on October 8, 1986, in Barnstable Superior Court, and was sentenced to serve 40 to 60 years for the armed robbery and a life sentence for murder.
He went up for parole on November 3, 2009, and was granted parole to a long-term residential program, Harmony House in New Bedford. However, records indicate that he violated his parole when he left Harmony House with another convicted felon, a major dealer of drugs on Cape Cod, to visit his mother at Cape Cod Hospital. That was on March 29, 2010, only 20 days after he had entered the residential program. Gaillardetz’s parole was revoked but he was granted parole again in 2012, first to spend 24 months in lower security and then again to a long-term residential program.