Police got called to 412 Fletcher Street today at 11:24 a.m. for a report of a house break in progress. They went off to find a 58-year-old man sitting on the front porch holding his hand over his left eye.
Behind the hand hung the man’s eyeball, which had been forced out of its socket.
The victim, who works at Tewksbury State Hospital, according to police, told officers Christopher Owen had broken into his home and attacked him. At one point the 58-year-old fell backwards, hitting and cutting his head on a table. The 58-year-old told police Owen jumped on him and plunged a thumb into his eye socket.
Owen is pictured throughout this entry during a Sept. 6, 2009 arrest on Varney Street. In that incident, Owen was accused of breaking into a home and breaking a shovel over the arm of a resident. The resident fought back and bloodied Owen’s face.
Owen was later ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation in connection with that case, because prosecutors said in court that Owen had told officers that he was “the son of God.”
Police said last night that Owen and the victim of today’s attack knew each other through Tewksbury State Hospital.
The 58-year-old and a witness told police Owen fled 412 Fletcher Street toward the North Common after the witness tried to pull Owen off of the victim. Police arrested Owen on the common a short time later.
About 3 p.m., as Owen was being taken to court for arraignment, he allegedly sprinted away in handcuffs as soon as an officer opened the door of the prisoner transport wagon. That officer quickly caught up to Owen and took him back into custody.
Owen was then evaluated at a local hospital, so he was not arraigned. He will be arraigned Thursday in Lowell District Court.
He is charged with mayhem, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (table), assault and battery, breaking and entering, and escape.
The 58-year-old was flown to an undisclosed Boston trauma center by MedFlight, but I have no updates on his condition or on whether his eye could be saved.