The FBI Is Investigating a Trespassing Incident at the Quabbin Reservoir
Seven people were walking on the property, which serves as a water supply for millions of residents, after hours.
State police are keeping a watchful eye on the water supplies around Massachusetts after finding a group of individuals trespassing at the Quabbin Reservoir.
According to police reports, the FBI is investigating seven individuals that were caught at the reservoir in Belchertown, after designated hours allowed for visits, based on their “curious explanation for why they wanted to see the reservoir.”
The reservoir is the source of drinking water for more than 2 million people in Massachusetts, including Boston, and the state’s Department of Conservation and Recreation has strict rules about access to the body of water. State regulations require all entry and exit through gates or other designated areas only. Anything that could pollute the water supply system, such as litter or refuse of any sort, is prohibited.
State police said the seven people, five men and two women, were walking from the Quabbin Reservoir toward two vehicles parked nearby on the grass near the “middle entrance.” When questioned by police about there reason for being there, the male individuals claimed to be chemical engineers and recent college graduates who “wanted to see the Quabbin” based on their career interests.
All seven identified subjects were then queried for warrants, and searched in Interpol’s wanted persons database, but there were no warrants or detainers found. The report said responding officers also checked the vehicles, persons, and the park area but did not locate any items out of place “or of a criminal nature.” There was no evidence that the seven were committing any crime beyond the trespassing, according to police. An initial investigation showed that the late-night observers were from Amherst, Cambridge, Sunderland, Northampton, and New York City.
Police did not release the names of the seven alleged trespassers, however, they did list their ethnicities. They all will be summonsed to Eastern Hampshire District Court to face trespassing charges, but were not arrested at the scene. “I want to reiterate that there was no evidence of terrorism or any crime committed beyond the trespassing. Further investigation is being undertaken because of the late hour when they were observed, their curious explanation for why they wanted to see the reservoir, and the fact that they were in an area marked no trespassing,” said State Police Spokesman David Procopio in a statement.
Procopio said because of the incident, police are increasing the number of routine checks patrols make at water supply facilities around the state. The FBI’s Springfield Office was also notified, and sent agents to the Belchertown Barracks, to assist in the follow up investigation, according to police.