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Woman held without bail after attack on driver who was dragged, beaten by ATV riders in Providence

Shyanne Boisvert, 24, of North Providence, was arrested Thursday night after being identified in videos of the beating by Cranston and Providence police.

Shyanne Boisvert, 24, of North Providence, is arraigned in court in Providence on Aug. 6, 2021.Alexa Gagosz

PROVIDENCE — Providence Police arrested Shyanne Boisvert, 24, of North Providence on Thursday night in connection to an incident Tuesday night when a woman was dragged out of her car and beaten by a group of ATV and dirt bike riders in Smith Hill. She was arraigned in court in Providence on Friday morning, and was held without bail on a probation violation. Bail was set at $2,000 for her involvement with the Tuesday night attack.

Shyanne BoisvertHandout Photo Courtesy of Providence Police

Detectives were notified of her whereabouts by the Cranston Police Department when she went to the station to pick up one of her bikes. Cranston police notified her that she violated her probation and that there was an outstanding warrant for her in Providence. They took her into custody and then handed her over to Providence police, according to Cranston chief Col. Michael Winquist. Cranston and Providence police had identified Boisvert in surveillance and cell phone video taken by people on the scene Tuesday night, and a person in the victim’s vehicle.

Boisvert cannot have any contact with the victim, who was identified in court as Tanya Martinez. According to Commander Thomas A. Verdi, Martinez and Boisvert did not know each other prior to Tuesday’s incident. Boisvert will appear in court again Aug. 13.


Boisvert is a known suspect to police. In January, she was one of three people arrested after a January incident that involved a Cranston officer being pushed, surrounded, and run over while responding to “dozens of recklessly driven motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles.”

In that incident, Boisvert allegedly intentionally put her Harley Davidson bike, the registration plate for which was in her backpack instead of on the bike, in the middle of Atwood Avenue to block traffic. Boisvert was accused of pushing the officer who had stopped his vehicle and approached her on foot. As he was kneeling in the street, several other riders circled him “in a threatening manner,” according to police. Then one lurched suddenly and rode over the back of the officer’s leg.


Boisvert was charged with one count of simple assault and one count of disorderly conduct related to the assault on a 35-year-old woman in Providence on Tuesday night, according to Verdi.

The victim was driving in Providence with her 8-year-old daughter, her puppy, and a friend, said police.

The driver first encountered the group of approximately 10 ATV and dirt bike riders in Smith Hill at the intersection of Smith and Orms streets at 11 p.m. Tuesday. When the bikes did not move after the light turned green, she honked at them, and then turned onto Valley Street, according to the original police report.

A few minutes later, while she was stopped at a traffic light at Zone Street, the riders allegedly came up from behind her and surrounded her vehicle, preventing her from moving forward. Police said several of them were described as riding blue dirt bikes.

The victim told police that the riders stepped off their bikes, opened the driver’s side doors of her car, and “dragged” her out of the driver’s seat and onto the street. The riders allegedly punched and kicked her before returning to their bikes and riding away on Valley Street, leaving her in the road, according to a copy of the police report that was sent to the Globe.


Local politicians and leaders on Wednesday called for officials to put out a plan to address the violence that is shaking the city.

“As local leaders, we owe it to our community to create systems which ensure that our city is a safe place to live and work. A woman driving in her car with her child should not have to fear being a victim of brutal physical violence,” said Providence Councilman David Salvatore of Ward 14.

On Thursday, City Council President John Igliozzi sent a letter to Governor Dan McKee, asking him to deploy Rhode Island State Police troopers to assist Providence Police in stopping the crime that has left the city reeling.

“This wave of violent crime is unacceptable, and we need to act immediately to restore public safety and make our city’s residents once again feel safe walking and sitting outside in their own neighborhoods,” wrote Igliozzi to the governor. “Like the rest of Rhode Island, the capital city re-opened in recent months as the pandemic improved, and residents and visitors alike have resumed dining out, listening to live music, and patronizing our small businesses.”

Councilwoman Kat Kerwin, whose district is where the incident took place, has not responded to the Globe regarding Tuesday’s violence nor did she offer a statement.

The investigation into this incident is ongoing, said Verdi.

Alexa Gagosz can be reached at Follow her @alexagagosz and on Instagram @AlexaGagosz.