Press Release: East Providence police arrest individual suspected of vandalizing the police station


April 16, 2021 



Deputy Chief Christopher Francesconi  

East Providence Police Department 



East Providence police arrest individual suspected of vandalizing the police station 


EAST PROVIDENCE, RI – On Friday April 16, 2021 shortly after 3 a.m., a person was observed via video surveillance vandalizing the front of the East Providence Police Department headquarters, located at 750 Waterman Avenue. Soon after the incident, a suspect was apprehended. 

“I credit our East Providence Police Department dispatchers and patrol officers for their swift actions in identifying, locating and arresting the person responsible,” Mayor Bob DaSilva said. 

 It was determined the suspect spray painted the EPPD sign and a section of the building.  The suspect also threw two large rocks at the front entry glass doors, shattering two panes. He then fled in a vehicle. 

Our dispatchers broadcast a description of the suspect and his vehicle. Minutes later, Officer Fontaine observed a vehicle matching the description in the vicinity of Commercial Way, which is a short distance from the police station.  Officer Fontaine conducted a motor vehicle stop. During the motor vehicle stop, officers observed a can of black spray paint, along with a pair of rubber gloves inside the car. After further investigation, the operator of the vehicle was arrested. 

The suspect is identified as East Providence resident, Mitchell C. Lawson, age 23.  Lawson was charged with: 

  • Two Counts of Vandalism 
  • Obstruction 
  • Disorderly Conduct  
  • Driving With an Expired License 

The motivation for this crime appears to be recent national headlines involving police.   

This appears to be an isolated incident.       

 “We have always enjoyed an excellent relationship with our community and we look forward to continuing and building upon that relationship,” Chief William Nebus said.