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Man who allegedly pulled fire alarm in Steelers hotel arraigned

Dennis Harrison was arraigned in East Boston Municipal Court.Pat Greenhouse/Globe staff

“I’m drunk. I’m stupid. I’m a Pats fan.”

That’s what Dennis Harrison told State Police early Sunday after he allegedly pulled a fire alarm inside the Hilton Boston Logan Airport hotel on a dare, giving the Pittsburgh Steelers an unscheduled wake-up call about 15 hours before their championship game against the New England Patriots.

The Patriots defeated the Steelers 36-17 Sunday night, clearing the way for Harrison’s favorite National Football League team to play in the Super Bowl on Feb. 5 in Houston.

Harrison appeared Monday in East Boston Municipal Court, where he pleaded not guilty to charges of disorderly conduct, disturbing the peace, and setting off a false fire alarm. He was released on personal recognizance and told to stay away from the hotel.


According to a State Police report filed in court, Harrison attended a housewarming party in Revere, where friends dared him to pull the fire alarm at the Logan Airport hotel.

Harrison allegedly rose to the challenge early Sunday.

A friend operated as the wheelman, driving the 25-year-old East Boston man to the hotel in his own car, State Police wrote. He walked in through the main entrance and up to the second floor, where he pulled the nearest fire alarm, State Police wrote.

Harrison tried to escape the hotel, rushing outside where he returned to his car, parked on Logan Memorial Way.

But his friend was gone.

And so were the keys to the car.

He launched Plan B, State Police wrote, and started walking away from the hotel when he was intercepted by State Police. Harrison first told a trooper he was waiting to be picked by Uber, but soon acknowledged he had not summoned the ride-hailing service.

Shortly after questioning by State Police began, Harrison admitted to his role in the fire alarm caper that forced the evacuation of some hotel guests.


“Harrison informed me that he knowingly and willingly activated the fire alarm system with the sole purpose of attempting to disrupt the Pittsburgh Steelers football team,” Trooper Bryan Erickson wrote.

Harrison, who appeared to be nervous and intoxicated when questioned by police, “expressed regret over committing the prank,’’ Erickson wrote.

He told police he and his friends learned the Steelers were staying at the hotel from Twitter and social media postings.

“The players were not evacuated and the situation was quickly resolved shortly after the fire alarm went off at the hotel,” said Burt Lauten, spokesman for the Steelers.

Harrison’s court-appointed attorney, Francisco Napolitano, said his client graduated from Salem State University with a degree in finance and lives with his father. Napolitano said Harrison is embarrassed by his actions, and is shocked to be the recipient of media attention.

Napolitano said the defense will focus on whether Harrison was in a position to speak with police given that he described himself as heavily intoxicated.

“What stands out in the police report is an allegation of alcohol use,” Napolitano said. “There are also allegations that there were some statements made by this gentleman, and the question that becomes pretty obvious: Was he in any condition to make statements?”

Harrison is scheduled to be back in court Feb. 13.

John R. Ellement of the Globe staff contributed to this report. Cristela Guerra can be reached at