Man accused of firing approximately 30 rounds from pistol downtown

  • Timothy Dearborn, 33, is accused of firing approximately 30 rounds from a 9mm pistol in downtown Concord on June 14, 2017. —Courtesy

  • Timothy Dearborn, 33, is led into the courtroom for his arraignment at Merrimack County Superior Court on Thursday in Concord. NICK REID / Monitor staff

Monitor staff
Thursday, June 15, 2017

A homeless man had some shots of whiskey at a bar Wednesday night, found a 9mm pistol and recklessly fired it 30 times in downtown Concord, a prosecutor said.

No one was struck, but “there were certainly people in the area” when Timothy Dearborn, 33, fired the gun at 11:42 p.m. in an alleyway off Main Street near Low Avenue, said Ashlie Hooper, the prosecutor.

Dearborn has been ruled incompetent to stand trial on “several prior occasions” and was hospitalized at Concord Hospital “for mental health reasons” as recently as a week ago, said Tracy Scavarelli, his public defender.

He was ordered held on $50,000 cash bail. He’s charged with two felonies – reckless conduct and felon in possession of a firearm – a misdemeanor charge of criminal threatening and a violation-level charge of unauthorized use of a firearm.

Hooper said Dearborn already had 14 charges pending against him out of Concord and Nashua when he allegedly fired two magazines of ammunition in the city center Wednesday, including theft, trespassing, disorderly conduct, simple assault, indecent exposure, and public urination and defecation.

“Presumably he was bailed on all of those and committed these new offenses while he was out on bail,” she said.

Having heard Judge Richard McNamara’s order, the sun-tanned and bushy-haired Dearborn requested through his attorney a more complete explanation as to why he’d been deemed a danger to the community.

“Well,” the judge said, “I believe I’ve stated that in light of the conduct alleged and in light of the defendant’s criminal history, I believe the defendant is a risk to the public.”

Dearborn questioned how a misdemeanor, criminal trespassing, made him so dangerous that he couldn’t be released on personal recognizance, as his attorney requested. He didn’t address the felony reckless conduct charge he’s facing.

“Are they saying that somebody was threatened or something? That would be a danger, I would say,” Dearborn said.

Dearborn isn’t accused of shooting the gun at anyone in particular.

Two men were hanging out near the State House when Dearborn approached them with the pistol “and told them he had found it with the two clips,” according to the affidavit filed by Concord police Officer Melissa Pfefferle.

One of the men said Dearborn “asked if his gun was real and that he wanted to sell it,” Pfefferle wrote, noting that the men said they weren’t interested in buying it. Dearborn walked away and the men started to follow in the same direction, calling 911 when they heard gunshots, the affadavit said.

Responding officers saw Dearborn, who matched the description reported by the 911 caller, walking on North Main Street and took him to the ground at gunpoint, according to reports. They reportedly found no gun on his person but located one in an alley nearby with 30 spent shell casings.

Concord police Lt. Sean Ford said police are continuing to assess any property damage that may have occurred during the shooting.

Back at the station, Dearborn struggled with officers who tried to test his hand for gunshot residue, and he threatened to knock their teeth out, according to the affidavit, resulting in the criminal threatening charge.

Hooper, who requested that Dearborn be held on $100,000 bail at the Merrimack County Superior Court arraignment Thursday, listed dozens of convictions against him dating back to 2001. Court records show that he has been charged with 169 crimes over the past 17 years.

Those convictions included a burglary in 2013, a felony that legally prohibited Dearborn from possessing a firearm.

Scavarelli, the public defender, argued that Dearborn should be released to live with his family in Bristol and continue to receive mental health services.

“We would ask that the court take into account other factors to allow him the opportunity to be released on personal recognizance bail with appropriate level of supervision ... and a specific condition that he comply with mental health counseling as recommended,” she said.

Police are separately investigating a reported burglary Wednesday in which a pistol was stolen. Ford said police are looking for any connection between the two incidents.