Recorded on surveillance video chasing down a car of teenagers into a parking lot before shooting the driver, a Rhode Island police officer was recently charged with multiple felony counts. The Pawtucket Police Department confirmed they intend to suspend the officer without pay.
On June 23, Pawtucket Police Officer Daniel Dolan got off work around 7:40 p.m. and purchased a six-pack of beer at a liquor store. According to Dolan, he took a sip of beer before continuing his drive home on I-95 South.
Dolan later told detectives that he saw a black Audi A4 speeding down the highway and began pursuing the vehicle despite the fact that he was off-duty, driving his personal vehicle, had recently consumed alcohol, and not wearing his uniform. According to Dominic Vincent, 18, who was driving the Audi, he was driving two of his teenage friends to pick up a pizza before returning home to watch an NBA game.
Dolan followed Vincent’s Audi into the parking lot of Wicked Good Pizza, where a surveillance camera recorded a video of Dolan confronting the teens. In the video, Dolan’s Ford F350 aggressively drove into the parking lot before stopping a few inches from the parked Audi.
Dolan immediately exited his vehicle and approached the Audi while displaying his badge. Afraid that Dolan was holding a fake badge, Vincent reversed the Audi and exited the parking lot, as Dolan retrieved his service weapon from his waistband and fired a shot through the driver’s side window.
With a bullet in his upper left arm, Vincent pulled over before wrapping a sweatshirt around the bleeding wound. Dolan drove up to Vincent and started to question him.
“I’m like…why does it matter what I’m doing, like, you…you just shot me,” Vincent told police, according to a transcript of his interview with detectives. “[Dolan] is just babbling on about how he wanted to get home to his kids and I tried to run him over, which as I’ve stated multiple times, you can’t run someone over when they’re right next to you.”
Dolan falsely claimed that Vincent had attempted to run him down with his Audi, but the forensic evidence revealed that Dolan was standing near the left side of the car, not in front of the Audi, when he fired. On Thursday, Dolan was charged with one count of assault with a dangerous weapon, resulting in serious bodily injury; two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon; and one count of discharge of a firearm while committing a crime of violence, resulting in injury.
Police officials have confirmed that Dolan worked as a school resource officer at Slater Middle School in Pawtucket. A spokesperson for the department told reporters that they intend to suspend Dolan without pay.