Officials: Woman uses bees to attack deputies during eviction
LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WGGB/Gray News) - A routine eviction in Massachusetts turned sour when a woman protesting it allegedly unleashed a swarm of bees on deputies.
Rorie Sussan Woods, 55, can be seen donning a beekeeper’s outfit last Wednesday in photos provided by the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department. She was protesting the eviction of a man from his Longmeadow home.
As deputies attempted to serve eviction papers, Woods arrived hauling boxes full of bees, which she allegedly tried to release outside the house. The sheriff’s department stepped in quickly to try and close the lids.
Hampden County Chief Deputy Sheriff Robert Hoffman told WGGB that Woods’ actions, which are being called violent, were unexpected.
“I’ve been doing this for 17 years, and we try to do a great job of sizing up different situations that we’re walk into each day. … It was Ms. Woods’ arrival with her vehicle and trailer that caused things to go haywire, if you will,” Hoffman said.
WGGB reports that in the scuffle, the boxes fell over and released bees on several sheriff’s deputies and bystanders.
Woods then allegedly put on a beekeeper’s outfit, brought another box of bees to the front door and started to agitate them in an attempt to stop the eviction.
She was arrested and is facing a long list of charges, including four counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.
Hoffman added that the sheriff’s department has always tried to deal with these incidents as professionally as possible, and cases of violence typically don’t occur during most evictions.
“I would say the occasions of violence are rather rare. We like to chalk that up as due to our outreach and the relationship we try to build with people who are on the cusp of being evicted,” Hoffman said.
One deputy did go to the hospital after he experienced an increased heart rate, but he was released later that day.
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