I’m going to comment on something tonight, but what occurred surrounding the events that I’m going to speak to in this post are so outrageous, so lacking in any common sense on any level, so thoroughly disproportionate to rational and reasoned thinking, and so tragic, that I wasn’t immediately sure if I should post it here in my Injury Law blog, or my Criminal Law blog. The events in this incident strain belief, and the non-answers surrounding it issued so far by the Police Department involved, further strain credulity.
Full disclosure, before proceeding further: I am basing my understanding of the events described below, on published reporting from The Boston Globe, MSN and other media sources. (click on link for Boston Globe story published July 17 2017.) I have not yet had the opportunity to fact-check every description of this incident that follows. However, based on the media accounts that I have reviewed, these reports are consistent with each other, and thus as of this date I have no reason to doubt their fundamental accuracy. If, after publishing this post I learn of any errors within it, I will issue an appropriate correction in this blog promptly.
A young man killed himself Saturday night, July 8, in the wealthy town of Hingham. His name was Austin Reeves. He was 26 years old, and universally liked by all who knew him – employers, friends, schoolmates, and more. Said one of his employers of him, “He was charming and funny and outgoing. He could talk to anyone, and everyone always enjoyed him.” Austin had no history of either mental illness or violence of any kind. After finishing working for his employer at a 75th birthday party reception earlier that day and evening, Austin had a phone conversation with a former girlfriend, with whom his relationship had failed a month earlier. Something was said in that conversation that apparently hurt him a great deal. During the conversation, Austin mentioned that he owned a gun. Note: No information to date indicates that Austin made any specific threat in that conversation. However this former girlfriend became worried about him, and phoned the Hingham Police Department at approximately 9:19 PM, asking them to simply conduct a wellness check on Austin at his home – that is all. The Hingham Police then called the Reeves household, where they spoke to Austin’s father, Russell Reeves, and asked Russell if Austin had a gun in his possession.