I’m going to let this stand without any commentary.
By Robert Mills
WOBURN — The man who allegedly killed a veteran Woburn police officer during a wild gunbattle following a robbery Sunday night was a career criminal with a lifelong history of robbery, escape and violence against law enforcement.
Domenic Cinelli, 57, of Woburn, was paroled from state prison last year.
Authorities say Cinelli shot Officer John “Jack” Maguire, 60, of Wilmington, four times in the chest during an exchange of gunfire on Washington Street in Woburn at about 8:45 p.m. Sunday. Cinelli was also killed.
Two alleged accomplices, Scott Hanwright, 19, and Kevin Dingwell, 51, both of Wakefield, have also been charged.
Hanwright is being held without bail after he was arraigned in Woburn District Court yesterday on charges of first-degree murder and armed robbery. Dingwell was ordered held on $1,000 cash bail as an accessory after the fact.
Maguire, a 34-year veteran of the Woburn Police Department, was one of several officers who responded to a robbery at Kohl’s department store on Washington Street in Woburn near interstates 95 and 93, according to District Attorney Gerard Leone’s Office.
Maguire was chasing Cinelli and Hanwright on foot when the gunfire began.
“We do not have shootings in Woburn,” said Woburn Police Chief Philip Mahoney at an emotional press conference yesterday. “It’s not that type of community, and last night Officer Maguire lost his life defending it right in the middle of Washington Street. It was almost like the Wild West between the two of them.”
Paul Sweeney, of Lowell, said he heard the incident unfold on a police scanner late Sunday night.
“I actually heard the deceased officer’s partner screaming for the Fire Department ambulance while he was pinned down by gunfire,” Sweeney said. “It was one of the most horrible things I’ve ever heard on my scanner, and I’ve been listening to police radios for over 40 years.”
Officers across the region were in mourning yesterday.
Lowell Police Superintendent Kenneth Lavallee said his officers worked closely with Woburn officers through the North Eastern Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council and through various training programs. Lavallee called Mahoney to offer his condolences.
“Our hearts are broken in law enforcement across the region,” Lavallee said. “We’re hoping justice is served against the other two defendants.”
Maguire’s wife, Desiree, his 22-year-old son and 21-year-old daughter requested privacy to grieve yesterday, and are making no comments to the press, according to Jessica Pastore, a spokeswoman for Leone.
Maguire was the son of the late Woburn Police Chief Thomas Maguire. He is the first Woburn police officer to die in the line of duty.
According to published reports and Parole Board records, Cinelli had mostly been in prison since March 1976, when he began serving time for several robberies.
In 1985, Cinelli didn’t return from a one-day furlough, and committed five more robberies while on the loose.
Among those heists was one at a jewelry store in downtown Boston in which Cinelli shot a security guard in the chest, according to published reports from the time.
A year later, Cinelli was sentenced to 20 to 25 years in prison after being convicted of charges including armed robbery and armed assault with intent to murder. Less than an hour after sentencing, though, he slit his wrist and was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital.
At the hospital, he pulled a fake gun on a deputy sheriff who was guarding him, stole the officer’s real handgun, and ran from the hospital still in shackles before carjacking a vehicle at gunpoint outside.
He was arrested again 11 days later, but not before committing at least one other robbery, according to published reports from the time.
In 2005, the Massachusetts Court of Appeals ordered the Parole Board to grant Cinelli an immediate hearing due to flaws in the way he had been sentenced. The board denied his request for parole in 2005, but granted him parole after another hearing in November 2008.
Timothy Dooling, acting executive director of the Parole Board, released that decision last night.
In the decision, the board wrote that though Cinelli had a history of violent crime and substance abuse that included using heroin by age 15, he had addressed his substance-abuse issues and completed numerous courses meant to assist his transition back into society. The board noted that he had not faced prison discipline since 1999.
“He appears committed to conducting his life in a positive manner,” the board’s decision states.
Cinelli was cleared for parole in February of last year, but ordered to undergo testing for drugs and alcohol, and to continue attending counseling.
“Upon learning the suspect was on parole, we immediately initiated a comprehensive and detailed review of all records and information related to Domenic Cinelli,” Dooling said. “We cannot make any additional comments at this time, other than to express our deepest sympathies to the Maguire family.”
Mahoney, Woburn’s grief-stricken police chief, singled out Wilmington police for thanks at yesterday’s press conference, saying officers from Maguire’s hometown drove his wife home from the hospital Sunday night, and then shoveled the family’s driveway on Monday.
Investigators said the robbery had been thoroughly planned, and aimed to take advantage of poor road conditions caused by the nor’easter that struck the area Sunday.
“I was with his wife last night at the hospital,” Mahoney said yesterday. “I can’t tell you how traumatic that was.”
Cinelli went into the store to steal diamond jewelry from the jewelry counter, while Hanwright served as a lookout and Dingwell waited outside as a getaway driver, according to prosecutors.
Rest In Peace Officer Maguire.