Shattered window delays opening of Greenfield Police Department’s substation

The window at 205 Main St. in Greenfield has been broken and will delay the opening of the Greenfield Police Department’s substation.

The window at 205 Main St. in Greenfield has been broken and will delay the opening of the Greenfield Police Department’s substation. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

By ANTHONY CAMMALLERI

Staff Writer

Published: 07-10-2024 6:24 PM

GREENFIELD — The Police Department will delay opening its new 205 Main St. substation by at least one month after a man allegedly punched its front window, shattering the glass and prompting the installation of a more durable storefront.

Nathan Terrell Franklin, 32, of Davis Street in Greenfield, was arrested on charges of vandalizing property and resisting arrest on June 26 after he allegedly punched, and shattered, the substation’s window while engaged in an argument with his girlfriend.

Police Chief Todd Dodge said Lt. Christopher Greene and Detective Brandon Lagoy of the city’s Community Impact Unit were in the substation at the time of the incident, concluding a day of “light demolition,” when Franklin and a woman passed the substation yelling at one another before Franklin allegedly punched the window.

“We’re in talks with glass companies to come up with a plan to reconfigure the front of that building, and, at the very least, once we put new glass in, it’ll be safer glass,” Dodge said. “That’s going to delay the process a little bit, which is sad. We really wanted to get in there and we really wanted to start manning that substation, but at the same time, we want to do it correctly.”

Mayor Ginny Desorgher previously said the opening of the approximately 150-square-foot substation — slated to cost the city $12,350 in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding during its first year — coincides with community demand for more policing downtown. Desorgher described the station’s cost as “a bargain of the ages,” and noted that next year, funding for the building will be shifted to the Police Department’s budget.

“It was a very good deal for a presence downtown,” Desorgher said.

Although Dodge said replacement of the window will likely delay the opening of the substation by one to two months, he is unsure how this will impact the project’s total cost. He added that any potential cost increase associated with the project will depend on how much of the work can be done by city employees. The storefront is currently covered with a plywood barrier.

The department’s new station will be staffed by two downtown officers, one of whom will be a new addition to the force. Dodge said the department hopes to also include a bicycle storage facility in future upgrades so the city can increase its bicycle patrol units downtown.

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Currently, the substation is not in use as the department awaits the installation of work stations and other interior renovations, such as repair of the air conditioning and new cameras and communication systems between the substation and dispatch.

Greenfield Police previously published a Facebook post calling for any skilled tradespeople who are willing to donate their time or resources to the station’s upgrades. The department wrote that it intends to turn the site into a “functional, vibrant and presentable downtown space.” Dodge later clarified that the department sought voluntary help with the main intention of engaging the community, noting that the department will take on any labor and materials costs associated with upgrading the facility.

“The silver lining in this will be that we’ll actually end up building a more aesthetically pleasing storefront, because that one’s quite antiquated. … I was going to delay the storefront portion [of the renovations] until the money was there, but this kind of accelerated the need for that,” Dodge said Wednesday, referencing the smashed window. “We’re currently in talks with the Mayor’s Office and Central Maintenance. We’re trying to put together a plan of attack on it.”

Anthony Cammalleri can be reached at acammalleri@recorder.com or 413-930-4429.