Veteran Hull Police Sergeant charged with assaulting neighbor, placed on leave

PEMBROKE, Mass. — Hull Police Sgt. Scott Saunders, an 18-year police veteran, is now on leave from the police department, facing charges that he assaulted his 72-year-old neighbor, while off duty, near their homes in Pembroke.

Saunders, 46, of Pembroke, is charged with assault and battery on a person over 60 with injury. Saunders was arrested by Pembroke Police on Monday, July 24, and arraigned in Plymouth District Court last week. He was released on personal recognizance and ordered to stay away from the victim.

The victim told police he was “sucker punched” by Saunders during an assault that was caught on surveillance video, according to a police report found in court documents.

Saunders has been placed on paid administrative leave, pending the outcome of the case. Hull’s Police Chief said the matter has been referred to the Department’s Internal Affairs Unit.

Boston 25 tried to talk to Saunders but were told to leave his property.

According to a police report found in court documents, on Monday morning, July 24, Pembroke Police were called to the victim’s home.

Police wrote that the victim “had multiple cuts to the left side of his face and cheek area, blood was coming from his left nostril and his left cheek and eye area were swelling and bruising.”

The victim told police the incident happened on Furnace Colony Drive, near a neighborhood beach.

Saunders was walking with a paddleboard, as the victim was driving by on the narrow street.

The victim told police Saunders used the paddleboard to hit his car. The victim told officers the assault took place after he got out of his car.

The victim told police, “He was grabbed, and sucker punched by Saunders and he was thrown to the ground with Saunders straddling on top of him.”

Police said when they talked to Saunders, he told them he had earlier problems with his neighbor.

Saunders told police that previously, the victim had not given him enough room on the road to walk by while carrying his paddleboard, so he struck the victim’s car with his board.

Saunders said when his neighbor got out of his car, the neighbor “raised his hand, so he pushed (the neighbor) to the ground and got on top of him and was holding (the neighbor) down… (the neighbor) began to raise his hand again and Saunders punched (the neighbor) once to the face.”

Police said the entire incident was captured on Saunders’ own home surveillance and that Saunders showed it to police, who detailed in their report what they saw in the video.

“Saunders’ back is to the camera and (the neighbor’s) hands are not visible at this time then Saunders pushes (the neighbor) with both hands to his chest area causing him to fall backwards onto the ground,” police wrote in their report. “Saunders proceeds forward following (the neighbor) to the mount and straddling his body.”

“As Saunders is on top of (the neighbor) Saunders Is seen throwing one punch to the face area for (the neighbor) before standing and walking away from the area toward his residence,” police wrote.

Police wrote that when the two men were face-to-face, they could not see the victim’s hands in the video.

Pembroke Police wrote that after reviewing the video, it appeared the victim gave Saunders appropriate space as he drove by at an appropriate speed.

Police then escorted Saunders from his home and placed him under arrest.

Saunders was “placed in handcuffs behind his back (double locked and fit checked) and secured in the rear of C-124,” police wrote in their report.

Saunders was taken to the Pembroke Police Station, where he was booked “In the usual fashion without issue.”

“Saunders intentionally touched” his neighbor “without any right, excuse to do so or consent,” police wrote in their report.

Saunders is due back in court next month.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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