, Newburyport, MA

Local News

July 4, 2013

Groveland man released after dangerousness hearing

HAVERHILL — A Groveland man who allegedly assaulted his girlfriend then locked himself inside his home with 43 handguns and rifles, was released on personal recognizance Tuesday after a judge determined he was not a danger to society. But 57-year-old Michael Sheedy was ordered not to return to his home until July 19 in order to give his 43-year-old girlfriend time to decide whether to stay there with him or move out.

According to a prosecutor in the case, it wasn’t the first time Sheedy assaulted his girlfriend and that in the past he’d threatened coworkers, including on one occasion when he allegedly told a coworker on the phone that he had a “red dot” aimed at his forehead, in reference to a laser scope of a gun. Sheedy is a hunter, his girlfriend said, and in April they went on a hunting trip to Alaska, where the woman is from.

Judge Stephen Abany extended a restraining order to July 19 and ordered Sheedy to stay away from the woman, although at the woman’s request he allowed them to communicate by phone.

Abany also ordered Sheedy to remain drug and alcohol free, submit to random screenings and report to probation. He told Sheedy that until his case is resolved he cannot have a firearms identification card or regain possession of his guns, which were confiscated by Groveland police after they arrested him for assaulting his girlfriend on Sunday night. Abany said the evidence against Sheedy pointed to his being a “bully” who “drinks to excess.” Police said Sheedy was properly licensed to have guns and legally owned them.

“You may have to be weaned off of alcohol,” Abany told Sheedy just moments before releasing him.

At a hearing Tuesday in Haverhill District Court, Assistant District Attorney Stephen Patten referred to Sheedy as a “batterer” and said he assaulted the woman on at least five other occasions, leaving bruises. Referring to new evidence he received from Groveland police, Patten said Sheedy made violent and threatening remarks to coworkers at his former workplace. He said Sheedy acknowledged that he suffers from an “emotional depression” and that he engages in the “daily use of alcohol” while owning a large collection of guns.

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