METHUEN - A Methuen police officer pleaded not guilty this morning to charges of assault and battery and malicious destruction of property over $250 for his role in a club brawl in Salisbury over the weekend.
Shawn Tardif, 38, was released on personal recognizance and ordered to stay away from the victim, to refrain from drinking alcohol, and submit to random alcohol screenings. A six-year member of the Methuen Police Department, Tardif was ordered to return back to court Aug. 30 for a pre-trial conference.
Witnesses said Tardif was "in a rage" when he grabbed a 25-year-old woman attending a bachelorette party, forced her to the floor and then dragged her by the hair in a bar brawl at Surfside 5.
It took two security guards to get Tardif off the woman and Tardif punched one of the guards in the mouth, according to a Salisbury police report.
The altercation occurred after tension between the two groups escalated that night and the alleged victim, Nicole Morrison, allegedly threw a drink at Tardif's wife Stacey and then bit a man who was trying to break up the fight, according to the police report.
DJ equipment belonging to Ryan Oiler, 35, including a laptop computer, turntable and stand valued at $5,000, was also damaged, according to police.
Tardif told police he “was reacting to his wife getting grabbed” and denied any other wrongdoing and damaging the DJ equipment. He also said he wanted to file charges against Morrison because his glasses and gold chain were broken.
Salisbury Police are still investigating have not ruled out charges against Morrison.
Tardif was placed on paid leave from the Methuen Police Department following the incident.