Man charged with threat to shoot O.B. cop

Defendant pleads not guilty to charges after tactical team arrest.


James Dillon, 26, pleaded not guilty in Edgartown District Court Thursday at an arraignment on charges of threat to commit a crime and witness intimidation, two counts each. The charges stem from allegations he told an Oak Bluffs Police officer he would shoot him in the face and that he made threatening 911 calls.

Cape and Islands Assistant District Attorney Matt Palazzolo gave the court a summary of the events that brought the charges. 

Early on Tuesday morning in the vicinity of The Loft, Palazzolo alleged, Dillon accosted an Oak Bluffs Police officer in what appeared to be a “highly intoxicated” state. Specifically, “shouting various obscenities and derogatory comments” at the officer. 

The officer initially ignored the defendant, but later on after he began filming the officer, he stated that he was going to “shoot him in the face,” Palazzolo said.

Dillon left the area and the officer searched for him, Palazzolo said. At another point, Palazzolo said Dillon called 911 and made “multiple threats on the line to shoot and kill the officer involved. He also made reference to having firearms that he would use to shoot the officer.” 

Upon his arrest and the execution of a search warrant, Palazzolo said no firearms were discovered. 

While not disclosed in court, the Vineyard’s tactical team descended on Dillon’s residence in Tisbury Tuesday evening for an arrest and search. The team’s response included use of an armored vehicle. 

Palazzolo argued for $1,000 bail and a stay away/no contact for the alleged victim and said Dillon had a probation matter out of New Bedford District Court with a default on it and other defaults on his record.

Dillon’s attorney, Ryan Searle, told the court the stay away/no contact condition was OK but argued that Dillon be released on personal recognizance. Among other reasons, she said he has limited funds and his employment and housing may be put in jeopardy by such a bail amount. 

Judge Barnes agreed to release Dillon on personal recognizance for the new charges. However he said New Bedford District Court wished to see Dillon on his probationary matters and he informed Dillon he would be transported to that court later in the day.


  1. So Brian Langhammer has been in jail for 2 months for a facebook post, and this guy is out in a matter of hours on personal recognizance after telling a police officer directly that he is going to shoot him, and following up with a 911 call just to make sure he was heard.
    And to top it off he’s on probation.
    What’s up with that ?

      • Jim– yes–“Judge Barnes agreed to release Dillon on personal recognizance for the new charges. However he said New Bedford District Court wished to see Dillon on his probationary matters and he informed Dillon he would be transported to that court later in the day.”
        So he had to see his probation officer, and Dukes county picked up the tab for a free ride for him. Maybe both ways.
        My guess is that he saw his P.O and is back at home– Innocent until proven guilty as andy likes to point out.

        • Wrong again Keller. I believe most people indicted or arrested are guilty and indeed they are at about 90 percent of the times. We would be fools if we believed innocent before guilty. That is a term for a jury and is a judicial concept. Ordinary people are not required to believe it.

          • The presumption of innocence is enshrined as a right of all citizens* of this country, not something one believes or disbelieves in. Anyone may form an opinion about a particular suspect’s guilt or innocence based on news reports, personal relationships, gossip, and extrinsic or intrinsic biase. To do so should preclude them from serving on a jury in that case.

            If you believe 90% of defendants are guilty prior to hearing the factual evidence presented at trial, please disclose this to the court officers so you can be dismissed.

            *Checks notes*: except for the legions of black, brown, indigenous, and other marginalized citizens never afforded this right.

          • andy– you have a point– of all the goons who were running the trump crime syndicate for 4 years and were charged or arrested , 100 % of them have either pleaded guilty or been found guilty by a jury.
            Of the 850 or so charged in the Jan 6 insurrection, about 350 have pleaded guilty.
            !00 % of those who chose to go to trial were convicted. The rest are awaiting trial.
            I think they are all guilty.
            And trump too.

  2. He was being transported to New Bedford on his default and probably to other jurisdictions after that, so he’s not actually free. The fact that Judge Barnes released him on PR helps to get the defendant out of the local jail and off the Island.

    • Albert– Just noting your third comment on this thread–
      We have some frequent commenters here, myself included..
      But May I point out that on August 2, you said this about Jackie “The fun part of MVT is seeing Jackie’s name in the newspaper multiple times a day.She must like it.”

      So I just took a look at 8 articles that I sort of randomly chose because they had a high number of comments.
      Between July 30 and August 8 you commented at least once every day.
      In fact, you commented on those 8 articles a total of 14 times.
      Jackie commented a total of 5 times in the same articles.
      Now, I don’t care how often you comment, and I don’t really care what you say.
      I disagree with your points most of the time, but that is the nature of a free and lightly moderated debate and exchange of ideas.
      But I wonder why you chose to criticize Jackie, for what you do nearly 3 times as often.
      Just pointing it out…
      With respect…


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