ARLINGTON – On Sunday, Aug. 13, at approximately 3:24 p.m., Officers John Costa and Chad Brown of the Arlington Police Department were dispatched to a grocery store on Massachusetts Avenue to investigate a disturbance.
(The following quotations were taken from the printed Officer Report of Officer John Costa)
Upon their arrival, a manager of the supermarket told police that a store employee, Emmet Harris Cohen, 19, of Watertown, got into a fight with a customer and then fled the area. (The exact grocery store was not specified in the report because the street number was redacted – there are three grocery stores on Mass Ave in Arlington.)
Officer Costa then spoke with the customer who was involved in the altercation to get his side of the story.
The customer, whose first name – Jonathan – was included in the report, told Officer Costa that he was walking by the produce section toward the front of the store when Cohen pushed a cart in front of him and told him to go the other way.
“Jonathan stated that he said ‘excuse me’ to which Emmet did not reply,” explained Officer Costa.
Jonathan then allegedly told Cohen that he “needed to move the cart” and, once again, Cohen did not move or reply.
“Jonathan stated he then called Emmet a ‘piece of $h*t’ and said he was going to the manager,” Officer Costa said.
Jonathan said Cohen followed him as he headed toward the customer service counter.
Near the checkout area, Jonathan said that Cohen punched him in the neck/jaw area, making him bite his tongue. Cohen then allegedly grabbed a grocery divider and swung it at Jonathan’s head.
“Jonathan reports that once they were separated Emmet fled the store,” Officer Costa said.
Officer Costa then called Arlington Police Dispatch (APD) with the names of the involved parties.
“A short time later, APD advised that Belmont Police had Emmet stopped at Pleasant Street in Belmont and that he was involved in a hit and run,” said Officer Costa. “At that time, I responded to 301 Pleasant Street in Belmont. Upon arrival, I was met by Belmont Officer Cory Taylor who advised this officer that Emmet was involved in a motor vehicle collision in Arlington and fled the scene.”
Officer Costa then requested backup, spoke with the driver of the vehicle “Emmet collided with,” and then placed Cohen under arrest for the following charges: assault and battery, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and leaving the scene of property damage.