Chief Edward James Walsh
23 Summer St.
Taunton, MA 02780
Tuesday, April 30, 2019
For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Benjamin Paulin
Taunton Police Arrest and Charge Man after Store Clerk is Attacked and Injured
TAUNTON — Police Chief Edward Walsh reports that the Taunton Police Department arrested and charged a man after he assaulted a store clerk and bit the clerk’s face late Monday night.
JOEL DAVILA, AGE 19, OF TAUNTON was charged with Assault with Intent to Maim and Mayhem.
At approximately 11:25 p.m. Monday, April 29, Taunton Police responded to Sunoco, 231 Broadway, for a report of a patron that bit the face of a store clerk.
Upon arrival, officers came upon the victim, a 55-year-old Taunton man, who had a serious gash below his left eye and was bleeding profusely.
Brewster Ambulance was called to the scene and transported the victim to a Boston hospital. The man’s injuries are considered serious but not believed to be life-threatening.
Officers quickly located DAVILA who was sitting on the floor in an aisle of the store. He was detained while the officers spoke to him about what happened.
Through the subsequent investigation, it was determined that DAVILA would be brought to a local hospital for evaluation overnight. Upon his release from the hospital Tuesday morning DAVILA was placed under arrest by Taunton Police.
In reviewing surveillance footage from the store, officers determined that the store clerk tried to prevent DAVILA from stealing a bottled drink from the beverage cooler. DAVILA was known to the clerk and had allegedly stolen from the store in the past.
When the store clerk put his arm across the cooler door to prevent DAVILA from opening it, DAVILA allegedly bit the inside of the victim’s elbow and then during a struggle, DAVILA bit the clerk’s face.
A witness at the store called 911 and tended to the victim while another witness prevented DAVILA from leaving the store.
“The actions of the suspect represent an attack of an innocent worker just doing his job and trying to prevent the theft of merchandise from his place of employment,” Chief Walsh said. “I would like to commend the good Samaritans who were in the store at the time and helped the victim while preventing this dangerous suspect from escaping and possibly harming others.”
DAVILA is expected to be arraigned later today in Taunton District Court.
These are allegations. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty.