April 28 2019

Burlington Detective Recognizes Would-Be Burglar, Makes Arrest


Quick thinking on the part of a Burlington detective led to the arrest of a suspect in a breaking and entering attempt.

Chief Michael Kent reports that the Burlington Police Department has arrested Nicholas Gormley, 24, of Whitman who has been charged with

- Unlicenced Operation of a Motor Vehicle

- Carrying a Firearm without a License

- Possession of Ammunition without an FID Card

- Receiving Stolen Property Over $1,200

- Possession of a Class A Drug

- Attempt to Commit a Crime (Breaking and Entering During the Daytime)

- Possession of a Large Capacity Feeding Device

Police say that on Wednesday, April 24, Detective James Hanafin responded to an attempted break-in at a local residence. Upon arrival police found that a basement window had been broken by a large rock. It is believed the suspect left after an audible alarm went off at the home.

During his investigation of the break-in, Detective Hanafin viewed doorbell camera video of a male walking on the back deck of the home.

Detective Hanafin shared still photos and a short video clip from the footage with area law enforcement agencies.

However, despite cooperation from other agencies, it would be Hanafin himself who later saw, identified and arrested the suspect.

On Thursday, April 25, at approximately 1:45 p.m. Detective Hanafin was working a traffic detail on Cambridge Street when he saw a man driving a blue Jeep SUV who he recognized as the suspect from the attempted break-in from the previous day, police said in a release. Detective Hanafin subsequently stopped the driver.

The operator of the Jeep, later identified as Gormley,  was unable to produce his license and registration during the traffic stop, and was placed under arrest because he did not have an active driver’s license in Massachusetts.

Police say that during a routine inventory of GORMLEY’s Jeep, police located a shotgun and ammunition, suspected drug paraphernalia, jewelry, a Burberry backpack, binoculars and other goods that officers had probable cause to believe was stolen.

Gormley also does not have a license to carry a firearm.

“It was fortunate that Detective Hanafin had seen the footage personally, and that those homeowners had taken the precaution to put a high quality surveillance camera in place,” Chief Kent said. “Detective Hanafin’s vigilance and alertness enabled him locate and arrest this individual.”

Gormley was held pending arraignment at Woburn District Court.

These are allegations. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty.


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