LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WWLP) — A woman from Western Massachusetts is facing charges after allegedly attacking Hampden County Sherriff’s deputies. Police claimed that Rorie Susan Woods, 55, of Hadley relied on bee hives for a sting operation of her very own.
The Hampden County Sheriff’s Department claimed that on October 12 at around 9:15 a.m., Woods pulled up to an ongoing eviction on Memory Lane in Longmeadow in a blue Nissan Xterra SUV. She left her dog in the car and immediately went to the bee hives she was towing and tried to open the lids to unleash the bees.
A sheriff’s deputy claimed they tried to stop her, but that the angry bees started to circle the area. Woods then smashed the lid and flipped a hive off the flatbed, which made the bees very aggressive, according to police. They said that that’s when the bees stung several officers and bystanders who were watching nearby.
Woods put on a professional beekeeper suit to protect herself, then put a tower of bees near the front door of the home to stop the eviction, which has been stop-and-go for nearly two years. At the doorway, police claimed that she tried to agitate the bees even more, but was arrested and ultimately booked at the Western Massachusetts Reginal Women’s Correctional Facility instead.
Woods is charged with the following:
- Four counts of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon
- Three counts of assault by means of a dangerous weapon
- Disorderly conduct
“Never in all my years of leading the Hampden County Sheriff’s Civil Process Division have I seen something like this,” stated Robert Hoffman, Chief Deputy of the Civil Process Office. “We truly try to help everyone we are court-ordered to evict and the New York Times even documented the Sheriff’s humane eviction process during the pandemic. I’m just thankful no one died because bee allergies are serious. I hope that these out-of-county protesters will reconsider using such extreme measures in the future because they will be charged and prosecuted.”
“We are always prepared for protests when it comes to evictions, but a majority of the groups who protest understand that we are just doing our statutory duty in accordance with state law,” said Hampden County Sheriff Nick Cocchi. “And they appreciate how we go above and beyond to help the people being evicted with anything they need from food and temporary shelter to long-term housing, employment, and mental health and substance use disorder treatment. But this woman, who traveled here, put lives in danger as several of the staff on the scene are allergic to bees. We had one staff member go to the hospital and luckily, he was all right, or she would be facing manslaughter charges.”