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May 8, 2013

Police review why hospital released woman before stabbing death

Officers put her in hospital due to drinking; she later killed boyfriend, report says

HAVERHILL — About 5 p.m. Monday, police received a report of a disturbance at 1 Water St., where they found Susan Lovejoy unsteady on her feet — apparently heavily intoxicated, according to a police report.

After talking to Lovejoy, 64, and her live-in boyfriend Kevin Paul, 51, officers determined she had too much to drink and had also taken pills, the report said. They decided to take her to Merrimack Valley Hospital for observation.

Several hours later, Lovejoy was released from the hospital and made her way back to her Water Street apartment, the report said. At 11:35 p.m., police returned to the apartment for a reported suicide, according to the report.

Officers found Paul dead from a stab would. They have charged Lovejoy with murder.

Donald Thompson, deputy chief of the police department, said he is reviewing why Lovejoy was released from the hospital, where she was taken due to her drunken and drugged condition. Thompson said he will also review what happened when police went to Apt. 306 on the initial report of a disturbance and why no arrests were made at that time.

According to the police report, a nurse at Merrimack Valley Hospital said Lovejoy was a patient from 6 to 9:23 p.m. on Monday. The nurse told police that Lovejoy said she was in an abusive relationship, the report said. The nurse said Lovejoy appeared upset that she was unable to get in touch with her son to pick her up, so she got money from the ATM in the emergency room lobby and called for a cab, the report said.

Lovejoy later told officers she had walked home from the hospital, police said. The 1 Water St. apartment building is at the corner of Water Street and Basiliere Bridge, near the eastern end of downtown, about two miles away.

When police first went to the apartment for the reported disturbance at 5:12 p.m. Monday, Lovejoy , who was partially naked, told police in slurred speech that Paul was a womanizer and abusive, according to the police report.

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