Johnston detective facing domestic violence charges

South County

Courtesy: Westerly Police Department

WESTERLY, R.I. (WPRI) ─ A Johnston police officer was arrested in connection with a domestic disturbance in Westerly over the weekend.

Westerly Police Chief Shawn Lacey tells 12 News that Detective Steven Lopez, 57, was taken into custody early Saturday morning.

Lacey said officers responded to Lopez’s Sunny Drive home for reports of a domestic disturbance around 11 p.m. Friday. They arrived to find his wife outside, who told police an argument between her and Lopez had escalated to the point where he assaulted her.

She said the two continued to argue until she ran out of the house to call for help. The officers attempted to speak with Lopez, however, he had turned all the lights off inside the home and did not respond to their requests, according to Lacey.

After several hours of trying to make contact with Lopez, Lacey said they assembled a SWAT team and entered the home through the garage.

The reason a SWAT team was brought in, Lacey said, was because Lopez is a detective and has access to firearms.

Lopez was arrested around 3 a.m. after he emerged from the second floor of the home, Lacey said.

He is scheduled to be arraigned Friday on charges of simple assault and disorderly conduct.

Johnston Police Chief Joseph Razza tells 12 News Lopez is currently on paid administrative leave “pending the results of an internal personnel matter.”

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