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Slain MIT police officer identified as 26-year-old Somerville man

Posted by Your Town  April 19, 2013 09:44 AM

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The following is a press release distributed by the Middlesex District Attorney's Office:

CAMBRIDGE -- A 26-year-old MIT police officer was the victim of the shooting late last night, Middlesex Acting District Attorney Michael Pelgro, Cambridge Police Commissioner Robert Haas, and MIT Police Chief John DiFava announced today.

Sean Collier, 26, of Somerville has been identified as the victim in last night’s shooting.

Collier was an MIT police officer since January 2012 and prior to that he was a civilian employee with the Somerville Police Department.

Chief DiFava described Collier as a dedicated officer who was extremely well liked by his colleagues and the MIT community.

At approximately 10:20 p.m. April 18, police received reports of shots fired on the MIT campus. At 10:30 p.m., Collier was found shot in his vehicle in the area of Vassar and Main streets. According to authorities, the officer was found evidencing multiple gunshot wounds. He was transported to Massachusetts General Hospital and pronounced deceased.

Authorities launched an immediate investigation into the circumstances of the shooting. The investigation determined that two males were involved in this shooting.

A short time later, police received reports of an armed carjacking by two males in the area of Third Street in Cambridge. The victim was carjacked at gunpoint by two males and was kept in the car with the suspects for approximately a half hour. The victim was released at a gas station on Memorial Drive in Cambridge. He was not injured.

Police immediately began a search for the vehicle and were in pursuit of the vehicle into Watertown. At that time, explosive devices were reportedly thrown from car by the suspects. The suspects and police also exchanged gunfire in the area of Dexter and Laurel streets. During this pursuit, an MBTA Police officer was seriously injured and transported to the hospital.

During the pursuit, one suspect was critically injured and transported to the hospital where he was pronounced deceased. An extensive manhunt is ongoing in the Watertown area for the second suspect, who is believed to be armed and dangerous.

The case is being investigated by local, state and federal authorities working in cooperation. The Massachusetts State Police Bomb Squad is assessing and removing any potentially explosive devices that may have been thrown on the street in Watertown by the suspects.

The investigation remains active and ongoing.

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