Connect with us


Three from New Bedford arrested in Rhode Island, Westport, concerning Massachusetts Trooper dragging in Fall River



Photo courtesy of Massachusetts State Police

Multiple people have been arrested concerning an incident this morning where a Massachusetts State Trooper was dragged in Fall River.

According to Dave Procopio of Massachusetts State Police, at approximately 12:30 a.m. today, a Trooper observed a 2011 black Honda Accord traveling on Pleasant Street. A query of the vehicle revealed the owner’s vehicle insurance had been revoked last November. The Trooper stopped the Accord at the intersection of Pleasant and 17th streets and approached the driver.

The driver, a 27-year-old woman, stated she did not have her license on her, and that the vehicle belonged to someone else. A young adult male was in the passenger seat. The Trooper informed them he was having the Accord towed and told them to call someone to pick them up.

A short time later a silver Hyundai pulled up and a woman, identified as 41-year-old Maria Melendez Rivera of New Bedford, exited that vehicle and approached the Trooper. The Trooper confirmed she was the registered owner of the Accord he had stopped.

Procopio stated that a subsequent investigation revealed that the male passenger in the Accord was 22-year-old Steven Melendez of New Bedford, and that he was the subject of three warrants issued out of New Bedford District Court, one in connection with a shooting. Steven Melendez is the son of Maria Melendez Rivera.

When the Trooper attempted to take Steven Melendez into custody, he broke free and ran into the Hyundai that Melendez Rivera had pulled up in. By this point, both Melendez Rivera and the female driver of the Accord were also in the Hyundai.

The Trooper ran up to the Hyundai and began to pull Steven Melendez out of the vehicle; immediately, Maria Melendez Rivera who was in the Hyundai’s driver’s seat, sped off at a high rate of speed. The Trooper held onto Melendez, who was kicking and pushing the Trooper, while the Hyundai accelerated. After being dragged for about a block, the Trooper disengaged from the suspect and fell onto the pavement as the Hyundai sped away. He radioed to the Dartmouth Barracks to inform them what had happened. He was treated for injuries at St. Luke’s Hospital and returned to work the rest of his shift by shortly after 4:00 a.m., according to Procopio.

The Massachusetts State Police obtained arrest warrants from Fall River District Court for Maria Melendez Rivera and Steven Melendez. A warrant was also obtained for Steven Melendez’s girlfriend, 27-year-old Keysh Resto Alejandro of New Bedford, the woman who was driving the uninsured Accord during the initial motor vehicle stop, charging her with offenses related to helping Steven Melendez try to evade justice.

At approximately 12:15 p.m. today, Troopers located and stopped a motor vehicle occupied by Maria Melendez Rivera on Route 195 east in Westport. Troopers took her into custody on the warrant and charged her with Assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, Assault and battery on a police officer, Failure to stop for police, Negligent operation of a motor vehicle, Malicious destruction of property, and Speeding.

She was transported to State Police-Dartmouth and booked, and was expected to be arraigned in Fall River District Court today.

Procopio stated that throughout the day, Troopers from Troop D, the State Police Violent Fugitive Apprehension Section, and the State Police Gang Unit searched for Steven Melendez. They had developed information that the suspect might be at a hotel in Warwick, R.I., and enlisted the assistance of the Rhode Island State Police Violent Fugitive Task Force and US Marshals Service personnel.

Shortly before 4:00 p.m. today, the apprehension team observed Steven Melendez driving on the ramp from Jefferson Boulevard in Warwick, R.I., to I-95 and stopped him. Less than 16 hours after he violently assaulted a Massachusetts State Trooper, he was taken into custody by Massachusetts and Rhode Island State Troopers on the warrant for assault and battery on a police officer and resisting arrest. He was also charged on the three prior warrants: one for a motor vehicle offense, the second for vandalism, and the third for firearm and assault charges stemming from a 2021 shooting in New Bedford. Among the police officers present for his arrest was the MSP Trooper who was dragged by the motor vehicle early this morning.

Keysh Resto Alejandro, who was in the vehicle with boyfriend Steven Melendez at the time of his arrest, was arrested on her warrant, which charged her with accessory after the fact and interfering with a police officer.

Authorities in Massachusetts and Rhode Island will arrange for Steven Melendez and Alejandro to be rendered to Massachusetts for prosecution.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Copyright © 2017 Fall River Reporter

Translate »