Boston Police bitten and punched during City Hall arrest

By Peyton Benbow

Photo courtesy of MGN

Michael Williams, 51, was on the fifth floor of City Hall for a meeting that was canceled at around 9:40 a.m. on Friday. He became aggressive and refused to leave the building. After City Hall employees called Boston Police, Williams bit an officer in the hand, drawing blood, and pushed another officer to the ground.

Witnesses at City Hall said he became aggressive when he started yelling racial slurs at a group of visitors. The fifth floor holds the mayor’s and city councilor’s offices. Williams was hoping to attend a meeting on bike lanes at 10 a.m. that had been taken off the schedule. 

According to the police report, as Williams refused arrest, one of the officers asked him, “Are you choosing to be arrested?” to which Williams responded, “Yes, I would rather be arrested.” While two officers tried to cuff the Bridgewater resident, the report indicates he bit an officer, causing “severe damage and heavy bleeding with parts of skin and tissue hanging off the hand.” The two officers managed to arrest Williams after a scuffle, where he had tried to punch both officers and escape. 

Williams is accused of punching a third officer as he refused to exit the police wagon just outside BPD-1 station at Government Center. Four officers were taken to Mass General Hospital with minor injuries. 

Later Friday, the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association posted to X, formerly known as Twitter, a graphic image of the officer’s hand that was bitten, detailing that: “The suspect who bit one of our officers earlier today at City Hall must be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law to send a clear message that this type of behavior is completely unacceptable.”

City Councilor Ed Flynn responded to the trending post, writing that the incident was “disturbing” and that “these assaults must be prosecuted.” Mayor Michelle Wu said in a statement: “I’m especially thankful for their quick response to protect staff and members of the public. No officer should be subjected to injury or harm for doing their job, and I wish them a quick recovery.” 

Williams faces two charges of assault and battery on a police officer, and single counts of assault to maim, resisting arrest, trespassing, and disorderly conduct. He was arraigned in Central Boston Municipal Court, and Judge Paul Treseler set his bail at $25,000. If released on bail, he must wear a tracking device upon the judge’s orders for Williams to stay out of Boston. 

After his arraignment, Williams was ordered to undergo a competency evaluation at Bridgewater State Hospital. He will return to court on April 24 for a pretrial hearing.