Wilbraham Police want to identify citizen who helped with violent arrest

Wilbraham police said passerby may have saved an officer's life

WILBRAHAM, Mass. (WWLP)- Wilbraham Police would like to know the name of the man who helped officers arrest a violent suspect who had an officer in a choke-hold Friday.  Police said that brave stranger may possibly have saved an officer’s life!

According to the Wilbraham Police Department Facebook page, Officer Joe Brewer stopped  Derek Dalessio of Wilbraham on Old Boston Road for a motor vehicle infraction around 7:20 PM Friday.

A Wilbraham  “drug recognition” officer was called to the traffic stop, and he determined that Dalessio was under the influence of alcohol and drugs.  According to the report, when Officer Brewer tried to place Dalessio in custody, Dalessio struggled violently.

The report goes on to say that Dalessio placed an officer in a headlock and he was unable to breathe. A second officer struck the suspect with a baton several times “with little to no effect.”

“At this time, a citizen stopped and jumped from his vehicle and placed Mr Dalessio in a headlock allowing the officer in a headlock to assist with the arrest,” according to the Wilbraham Police report.

The report goes on to say, “WPD sends a HUGE THANK YOU to this unnamed party who potentially stopped what could have transpired into a fatal encounter. WPD would appreciate it if you could make yourself known to us, however, understand and respect your wishes to remain anonymous.

Dalessio is being charged with an OUI 2nd offense, alcohol OUI 2nd offense, assault and battery on two police officers, resisting arrest, failure to submit to police, strangulation, drug possession, negligent operation and failure to display an inspection sticker.

Dalessio is expected to be arraigned on those charges Tuesday.  Massachusetts courts will be closed for Martin Luther King Day Monday.