Boston Globe, August 30, 1973
By John Robinson, Globe Staff

Gunman killed, 2 others arrested in holdup try at Roxbury bank

One man was killed and two others arrested by Boston police yesterday during an attempted armed robbery of the Brigham Circle branch of the New England Merchants National Bank in Roxbury.

The identify of the dead man was not immediately known, but the two arrested were Sheldon T. Bernard, 31, and Mark E. Frechette, 25, both of 24 Fort Avenue terrace, Roxbury.

Frechette, a Boston native, was a co-star in a 1970 film, "Zabriskie Point." According to the police, the two suspects, who were charged with armed robbery, said they knew their dead companion about an week and only by his first name. Police were checking fingerprints to establish his identity.

Police said a silent bank alarm, audible at police headquarters, was sounded about 5 p.m. Patrolmen Daniel Fitzgerald and Morris Flaherty responded to a radio alert.

Flaherty, gun drawn, entered the bank through the front door, was surprised and thrown to the floor by a man who was standing guard.

According to authorities, the man aimed his pistol at the fallen policeman, but was shot twice in the abdomen before he could fire.

Police said about 15 patrons were present at the time. The other two armed men were in the rear of the bank trying to stuff money into two satchels.


Mel Lyman