search warrant tied to Swat RAID IMPOUNDED

A military-style vehicle used by SWAT team police last Friday when they arrived to search an apartment at Carriage Hill Estates in Amesbury.Courtesy photo

NEWBURYPORT – A judge approved the request by an Essex County assistant district attorney Wednesday to impound a search warrant application relating to a SWAT team raid of an Amesbury apartment.

Around 6 p.m. Friday, residents of the Carriage Hill Estates apartment complex looked out their windows to see about 15 heavily armed police officers in body armor coming out of armored trucks and entering one of the buildings. Several photos of the raid were posted on social media.

The raid came a day after a different Newburyport District Court judge approved a search warrant application filed by Amesbury police. 

But attempts to see the search warrant application, a public document once it’s returned to court by an Amesbury police officer, were halted when a judge in Newburyport District Court granted Essex County prosecutor Shailagh Kennedy’s motion to have it impounded. 

When asked for a comment as to why the application was impounded, DA’s Office spokesperson Carrie Kimball issued the following statement:  “The warrant is connected to a continuing investigation and therefore must be impounded to protect the investigation.” 

Calls to Amesbury police for comment on Wednesday were not returned. 

On Monday, Amesbury police Lt. Kevin Donovan said officers focused on items inside the dwelling and not a specific person. But he wouldn’t say whether police found what they were looking for or what those items might be.

Most of the officers involved in the raid were affiliated with the Northeastern Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council which was called in to assist local police as they executed its search warrant.

NEMLEC is comprised of Essex County and Middlesex County police officers, along with two sheriff departments, and serves as a regional resource to assist local police when they are facing high-risk situations. It is based in Wilmington.

Carriage Hill Estates consists of several apartment buildings and is located across from Town Park off Friend Street.

Staff writer Dave Rogers can be reached by email at drogers@newburyportnews.com. Follow him on Twitter @drogers41008.