Officials identify victim in deadly officer-involved shooting in Springfield

The Hampden District Attorney’s Office has released new information into an officer-involved shooting in Springfield last weekend that left a 48-year-old man de
Published: Feb. 27, 2023 at 3:13 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 27, 2023 at 5:29 PM EST
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SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - The Hampden District Attorney’s Office has released new information into an officer-involved shooting in Springfield last weekend that left a 48-year-old man dead.

“Early Saturday morning, there was a use-of-force by Massachusetts State Police troopers that resulted in the death of a civilian. The incident had started in the casino. There was a law enforcement response including members from my office,” said Hampden District Attorney Anthony Gulluni.

Gulluni spoke with Western Mass News on Monday after a deadly officer-involved shooting in Springfield that left 48-year-old William Tisdol of Hartford, CT. Western Mass News has found several of Tisdol’s Facebook pages, which have thousands of followers. Many of them are offering their condolences to a man who appears to have connections to the music industry.

We have also learned that Tisdol spoke with our sister station, WFSB-TV, in Connecticut after his son was hurt in a run-in with police. Tisdol’s son was in a car that police opened fire on after it drove at officers. The Connecticut State’s Attorney determined that shooting was justified.

The D.A.’s office has released early information that Tisdol was possibly armed with a gun and allegedly acting aggressive towards people inside MGM Springfield. Troopers from the Mass. State Police Gaming Enforcement Unit at the casino tried to locate him, as he left heading towards Main and Union Streets. Once State Police made contact with Tisdol, there was a chase on foot, during which shots were fired by both Tisdol and State Police. Tisdol was then taken to Baystate Medical Center in Springfield where he died.

“We’re analyzing whether the use-of-force was appropriate and whether it was criminal or not, but we’re also looking at how a police officer was presented with a threat and how a police officer decided to use force in protection of himself or herself or other members of the public,” Gulluni explained.

We’re also getting answers from a local criminal justice professor on what makes a use of force incident justified.

“The biggest part will be if the individual who was shot had posed a danger to the officers or to other people in the area in general. If he was firing a gun or even if he had a gun and pointed it towards the officers, that would make it in all likelihood a justified shooting,” said Western New England University Associate Professor of Criminal Justice Creaig Dunton.

Meanwhile, Lavar Click-Bruce, chairman of the Springfield City Council public safety committee, told us he will continue to have conversations with other city leaders to make sure the community feels safe.

“Public safety is my top priority and, again, if people don’t feel safe going to the casino, shopping at the local Big Y or the local bodega, whatever the case may be…playing outside, then nothing else really matters, so we want to make sure things are addressed,” Click-Bruce said.

A thorough investigation is still underway by the district attorney’s office and once that is completed, Gulluni told us he will release the findings right away.

We also reached out to MGM Springfield for a statement, but they said that no comment is being made at this time.