Amherst shooting leaves one injured, alleged gunman at large  

  • Amherst police station Scott Merzbach

Staff Writer
Published: 12/20/2017 2:29:36 PM

AMHERST — One suspect was arrested early Wednesday at a South Amherst apartment complex after a man was shot in the leg and struck in the head by a metal pipe, police said.

The gunman remains at large, according to the Northwestern district attorney’s office. The victim, identified by police as Charles Simmons, suffered injuries from the gunshot and the pipe that were not considered life-threatening, Amherst Police said.

Akieli Brown, 24, of 266 East Hadley Road, Apartment 99, was arrested on a charge of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, a metal pipe, Detective Lt. William Menard said in a statement issued by the department Wednesday afternoon.

Brown pleaded not guilty to the charge in Eastern Hampshire District Court in Belchertown and is being held without right to bail at the Hampshire Jail and House of Correction until a dangerousness hearing Friday.

Police officers responded to the 500 block of Mill Valley Estates at 12:38 a.m. where a disturbance was reported and found the injured man, Menard said. The apartment complex is off East Hadley Road.

The victim was taken by Amherst Fire Department ambulance to Baystate Medical Center in Springfield for treatment, according to Menard.

The gunman left the area and is being sought by police.

Court documents show that the victim was shot in the leg and hit on the head with the pipe. The pipe was recovered at the scene.

The matter remains under investigation by Amherst Police detectives and the Massachusetts State Police detectives unit assigned to the Northwestern district attorney’s office.

The shooting occurred close to the scene of the October 2016 shooting at nearby Southpoint Apartments, 266 East Hadley Road, that left Jose “Joselito” Rodriguez dead and another person injured.

Soknang Chham of New Salem pleaded not guilty in January to murder and numerous other charges in that case. He is awaiting trial.

Scott Merzbach can be reached at smerzbach@gazettenet.com.


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