WE ARE HOMETOWN NEWS.

WILBRAHAM — In less than 48 hours, a campaign through the Greg Hill Foundation raised more than $13,500 to benefit Wilbraham Police Officer Cameron Prosperi, who was shot and injured recently during a confrontation with an armed man who allegedly threatened others in his home. As of press time, that number had climbed to nearly $23,500.

On Jan. 20, Wilbraham police officers answered a call about a male threatening people in a home on Old Carriage Drive. After arriving on the scene at 8:20 p.m., police exchanged gunfire with an occupant of the home, who was identified as resident Michael Ortega. Prosperi was shot and injured in the shootout. He was later transported to a hospital and is in stable condition.

Over the next several hours, officers were in a standoff with Ortega, who had barricaded himself inside the home.

The State Police Special Tactical Operations Team was called in to assist in ending the confrontation. The State Police Crisis Negotiation Unit established contact with the suspect by phone. Just after midnight, the STOP Team used an armored vehicle to break a window and piloted a video-equipped drone into the house to gather information on Ortega’s location and condition. The team then entered the building and apprehended the suspect, who had sustained a gunshot wound. A handgun and ammunition were next to him on the floor.

After being treated on-site by UMass Memorial Hospital Tactical Medics, Ortega was transported to a hospital for treatment and was reported to be in stable condition.

Two people who had escaped the house by climbing onto the roof of the attached garage were helped to the ground via ladder by state troopers.

Wilbraham Police Chief Edward Lennon read a prepared statement to the town’s Select Board at its Jan. 22 meeting. He said emergency services from several surrounding towns lent aid and “provided critical assistance” throughout the “extremely cold” night.

The Police Department is offering voluntary “critical incident stress management debriefing” for those officers involved in the standoff, Lennon said. As is routine is such matters, he said several police officers are on administrative duty while the incident is being investigated.

Ortega was charged with assault with intent to murder and assault with a dangerous weapon. An investigation by the Wilbraham Police Department, Massachusetts State Police and the Hampden County District Attorney’s Office is ongoing.

“[Ortega] will be arraigned on charges stemming from the incident but there is no arraignment date scheduled as of right now,” Assistant District Attorney Joan O’Brien told Reminder Publishing. There was no other information from the District Attorney’s Office available as of press time.

The Greg Hill Foundation, founded in 2010 by longtime Boston radio personality Greg Hill, began the crowdsourcing campaign and pledged to match up to $5,000 and cover all credit card transaction fees. The foundation was created to “harness [Hill’s] incredibly generous media audience and that would be able to assist in a tragic time at a moment’s notice,” it states on its website.

Those interested in donating can visit the campaign’s page on the Greg Hill Foundation’s website at thegreghillfoundation.org/donations/wilbrahampoliceofficer.

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