FALL RIVER — Police Officer Michael Malek was released on personal recognizance Friday as a judge brushed aside the prosecution contention that his freedom represented a risk to the community.
Malek, 58, was arrested on July 3 by Freetown Police who responded to his home after receiving a 911 call that a female was shouting for help.
He was charged with assault on a 23-year-old female relative who lived in the home. He was also charged with improper storage of firearms that police report they found in the home.
Malek has been held since his arrest, pending a dangerousness hearing held Friday before District Court Judge Kevin Finnerty.
“I’m not satisfied by clear and convincing evidence the defendant represents a danger to the community,” the judge ruled. “He is released on personal recognizance bail.”
Malek, through his lawyer, Joseph Silvia, had no objection to a restraining order against him filed by the female in the case. He remains under orders to stay away from the female and to not contact her.
The hearing started with Silvia and prosecutor Kyle McPherson agreeing to amend the charge against Malek from assault and battery against a household member to assault and battery.
Freetown Officer Philip Pine was the only witness for the prosecution. He described entering Malek’s home at 11 p.m. and seeing Malek on the floor, straddling the female in the case, pinning her hands over her head on the floor.
Malek was pulled from the female and later taken outside, Pine said.
“Mr. Malek continually stated (the female) was drunk and was mixing her medication with alcohol, which caused her to become crazy,” Pine said. “He did not appear intoxicated. There was a slight odor of alcohol on his breath.”
The female’s wrists were red and she had a small cut on her left eyebrow, Pine testified.
Silvia called two of Malek’s neighbors, Courtney Reardon and John Reeback, who testified that the female arrived at a bonfire behind Reeback’s home at about 10 p.m. and that she appeared drunk when she arrived. She fell, causing the cut on her eyebrow, they testified.
Reardon testified she gave the female a ride to Malek’s home. She said she had to call Malek on the female’s cell phone, apparently waking him from sleep, to get the female into the home and explain the cut on her eyebrow.
Reardon testified that, shortly after that, she saw police cars and an ambulance at Malek’s home.
Malek was charged with improper storage of firearms after police allege they found and seized two rifles and three shotguns that they located inside a closet in Malek’s home. The guns were not loaded, but they lacked trigger locks, as required by law, police allege.
They allege they also located a loaded .380 caliber pistol on a dresser in Malek’s home.
The charges of assault and illegal storage of firearms will proceed to trial in District Court.
Fall River Police have not yet said if the charges will affect his status as a police officer.