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Northwestern District Attorney's Office

Western Mass Man Stalked, Threatened Prosecutor After Attacking His Own Mother: DA Western Mass Man Stalked, Threatened Prosecutor After Attacking His Own Mother: DA
Western Mass Man Stalked, Threatened Prosecutor After Attacking His Own Mother: DA A 28-year-old Hampshire County man accused of choking his mother until she passed out is now charged with stalking and threatening to murder the prosecutor of that case, authorities said.  Cody Malone, of Northampton, is charged with stalking, criminal harassment, intimidation of a prosecutor, and threatening to commit murder, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. Malone pleaded not guilty to all of the charges.  Malone is accused of threatening the life of Assistant District Attorney Matthew Thomas, who was prosecuting Malone on charges of attempting to…
Suspect Accused Of Killing Western Mass Man, Leaving Body In Apartment Returns To Mass From NY Suspect Accused Of Killing Western Mass Man, Leaving Body In Apartment Returns To Mass From NY
Suspect Accused Of Killing Western Mass Man, Leaving Body In Apartment Returns To Mass From NY The suspect accused of killing a beloved Pittsfield and Greenfield man was returned to Massachusetts to face charges after being held in New York for more than two months.  Taaniel Herberger-Brown will be arraigned on Tuesday, July 9, in the slaying of Chris "Stix" Hairston, 35, in April, the Northwestern District Attorney said.  Related: Dead Body Found In Pittsfield Home After Neighbors Called About Smell Police found Hairston's body on April 22 inside a Greenfield apartment on Chapman Street after neighbors called officers to report a disgusting smell coming from inside, the Northwester…
Man Admits To Killing Athol Woman In Head-On Western Mass Crash, Will Lose License For 15 Years Man Admits To Killing Athol Woman In Head-On Western Mass Crash, Will Lose License For 15 Years
Man Admits To Killing Athol Woman In Head-On Western Mass Crash, Will Lose License For 15 Years A 64-year-old Needham man has admitted to causing the head-on collision in Franklin County last year that killed a 57-year-old woman, authorities announced on Monday, June 24.  Benoit Marande, 64, pleaded guilty to motor vehicle homicide by negligent operation in the June 30, 2023, crash and was sentenced to nine months in prison along with a 15-year revocation of his license, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. A judge suspended all but 30 days of Marande's prison term.  Marande was accused of killing Tracy Matthews when his Mazda MX-5 Miata crossed o…
Ex-Western Mass Firefighter Who Secretly Filmed Nude Female Coworkers Gets Prison Time Ex-Western Mass Firefighter Who Secretly Filmed Nude Female Coworkers Gets Prison Time
Ex-Western Mass Firefighter Who Secretly Filmed Nude Female Coworkers Gets Prison Time A former Hampshire County firefighter who admitted to hiding cameras in the women's locker room at the fire station where he worked to capture his female colleagues undressing was sentenced to eight months in prison, authorities announced. Nicholas Tillman, 39, of Westfield, pleaded guilty on April 24 to three counts of videotaping intimate parts of a person without consent, three counts of videotaping an unsuspecting nude person, and one count of attempted illegal wiretap, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. He must also register as a sex offender and will serve…
Remains Of Woman Found In Western Mass Woods Identified After 35 Years Remains Of Woman Found In Western Mass Woods Identified After 35 Years
Remains Of Woman Found In Western Mass Woods Identified After 35 Years The remains of a 65-year-old woman whose body was found in a wooded area in Franklin County have been identified thanks to new advancements in DNA testing. How she ended up there remains a mystery, but prosecutors have a person of interest.  Constance Holminski Bassignani was found not far off the road on Route 76 in Warwick on June 24, 1989. She had been living in Woonsocket, Rhode Island, with her husband, William Bassignani.  Constance was last seen alive on Memorial Day in 1989. Soon after, her husband told friends she had moved back to her native Hawaii, but investigator…
35-Year-Old ID'd As Victim Of Greenfield Slaying 35-Year-Old ID'd As Victim Of Greenfield Slaying
35-Year-Old ID'd As Victim Of Greenfield Slaying A 35-year-old Berkshire County man has been identified as the body found dead inside a home in Greenfield on Monday, April 22, authorities announced.  Christopher Hairston, lastly of Pittsfield, was found inside the apartment on Chapman Street after neighbors called police to report a disgusting smell coming from inside, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. It's unclear how long he had been dead before he was located.  Original Report: Mass Man Accused Of Murder Arrested At New York Airport Taaniel Herberger-Brown, 42, who used to live at that apartment, was arrest…
Man Wanted In Western Mass Killing Arrested At Albany Airport Man Wanted In Western Mass Killing Arrested At Albany Airport
Man Wanted In Western Mass Killing Arrested At Albany Airport A 42-year-old man who is accused murdering someone and leaving their body inside a Western Massachusetts apartment was arrested in New York at Albany International Airport on Tuesday, April 23, authorities said.  Taaniel Herberger-Brown is being held on a fugitive from justice warrant in Albany County, following his arrest, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  Greenfield police were called to a Chapman Street apartment on Monday after neighbors called to complain about a horrific smell coming from the home. Officers found the body lying in one of the r…
Stray Bullet Hits Home In Western Mass Neighborhood — Again Stray Bullet Hits Home In Western Mass Neighborhood — Again
Stray Bullet Hits Home In Western Mass Neighborhood — Again Neighbors in a Hampshire County community were once again rattled after a stray bullet struck a home for the second time in a year, police said.  The latest shooting happened on Mountain View Drive in Belchertown on Friday afternoon, March 29, when a bullet shattered a sliding glass door, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  No one was at home at the time of the shooting and there were no injuries reported. The family returned home that evening to find the broken glass.  Police found the bullet and sent it to the State Police lab for testing and identification.…
Man Gets 8 Years In Prison For Botched Kidnapping, Shooting In Western Mass: DA Man Gets 8 Years In Prison For Botched Kidnapping, Shooting In Western Mass: DA
Man Gets 8 Years In Prison For Botched Kidnapping, Shooting In Western Mass: DA A Connecticut man who tried to kidnap a Western Massachusetts man at gunpoint on New Year's Eve 2022, but shot him instead when the man fought back, will serve eight years behind bars, authorities said.  New Haven County Marc A. Veturis, 29, of Waterbury, pleaded guilty on Thursday, March 28, to multiple felonies linked to the shooting, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  The charges come from a Hampshire County incident on Mill Valley Road in Hadley.  The Daily Hampshire Gazette reported at the time that the victim, a 59-year-old Hadley business owner, h…
Ex-Western Mass Elementary Paraeducator Busted On Child Sex Abuse Charges Ex-Western Mass Elementary Paraeducator Busted On Child Sex Abuse Charges
Ex-Western Mass Elementary Paraeducator Busted On Child Sex Abuse Charges A former Hampshire County paraeducator has pleaded not guilty to charges that sexually assaulted a student multiple times from 2022 through 2023, authorities said.  Troy Gray, age 57, of Easthampton, was arrested on Thursday, Feb. 22, and charged with five counts of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14 and one count of intimidation of a witness, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  Gray was released on his own recognizance. But he must have no contact with anyone under 16, must stay away from Mountainview School in Easthampton, avoid any contact…
Ex-Western Mass Cop Admits To Making Child Porn, Having Tens Of Thousands Of Files: DA Ex-Western Mass Cop Admits To Making Child Porn, Having Tens Of Thousands Of Files: DA
Ex-Western Mass Cop Admits To Making Child Porn, Having Tens Of Thousands Of Files: DA A former Franklin County police officer admitted to making child sexual abuse material with an 8-year-old girl without her knowledge, as well as having thousands of images and videos of pre-pubescent children, authorities said.  Jacob Wrisley, 42, a former part-time police officer in Bernardston and Buckland, pleaded guilty to six counts of possession of child pornography and single counts of posing a child in a state of nudity and videotaping sexual or intimate parts of a child without her knowledge, the Northwestern District Attorney Anne Yereniuk said on Wedn…
Vermont Man Behind Break-In Spree In Western Mass: DA Vermont Man Behind Break-In Spree In Western Mass: DA
Vermont Man Behind Break-In Spree In Western Mass: DA A 40-year-old Vermont man will spend the next five years behind bars after pleading guilty to a string of car break-ins in Franklin County, where he stole from 11 victims, authorities said.  Schuyler D. Gibson, of Brattleboro, Vermont, admitted to more than 20 charges, including seven counts of breaking into a motor vehicle, four counts of theft under $1,200, and theft with a credit card, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  Gibson is accused of a spree of break-ins that began with a home invasion on Sept. 24 in Bernardston and continued with seven car…
33-Year-Old Killed Walking Along Route 116 In Western Mass 33-Year-Old Killed Walking Along Route 116 In Western Mass
33-Year-Old Killed Walking Along Route 116 In Western Mass A 33-year-old Sunderland man was killed on Saturday morning, Jan. 6, while walking a road in Hampshire County, authorities said.  The man, whose name was not released, was walking on the side of Route 116 in Hadley when he was struck by a 29-year-old Deerfield woman, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. No charges have been filed, and the woman's name was not released.  She remained at the scene and called 911.  Bystanders gave the man medical aid until paramedics arrived. They rushed him to Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton, where he later died.&nbs…
Amherst Man Who Admitted To Sharing Child Porn Gets Up To 5 Years In Prison: DA Amherst Man Who Admitted To Sharing Child Porn Gets Up To 5 Years In Prison: DA
Amherst Man Who Admitted To Sharing Child Porn Gets Up To 5 Years In Prison: DA An Amherst man who was convicted of sharing child sexual abuse material will spend at least four and a half years in prison, authorities announced on Thursday, Dec. 28.  Blake Lassiter pleaded guilty to possession of child sexual abuse material, nine counts of dissemination of child sexual abuse material, and one count of possession with intent to distribute child sexual abuse material, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  He is currently serving a two-year sentence in Oregon for similar charges. His sentence in Massachusetts will begin when that is fi…
Man Found In Woods Behind Woman's Western Mass Home Gets 5-7 Years In Prison: DA Man Found In Woods Behind Woman's Western Mass Home Gets 5-7 Years In Prison: DA
Man Found In Woods Behind Woman's Western Mass Home Gets 5-7 Years In Prison: DA A 53-year-old Franklin County man with a lengthy criminal history has agreed to serve a 5 to 7-year prison sentence after being found guilty of witness intimidation and violating a restraining order, authorities said.  Antonio Candello, of Bernardston, was arrested in September 2022, just days after getting out of prison, when he violated the conditions of a restraining order filed against him by a woman, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  The woman contacted Bernardston police on Sept 19, 2022, to say Candello was in the woods behind her home, reports said. C…
Northampton Man Nearly Killed Neighbors After Firing AK-47 Into Their Home: DA Northampton Man Nearly Killed Neighbors After Firing AK-47 Into Their Home: DA
Northampton Man Nearly Killed Neighbors After Firing AK-47 Into Their Home: DA A Hampshire County man fired into his neighbor's home with an AK-47 and came so close to hitting one of them that a bullet passed through a man's pants, authorities said.  Joshua Martinelli, 29, of Northampton, faces several charges from the Thursday, Dec. 7, shooting, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. He is being held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing on Thursday, Dec. 14. Martinelli lives in a two-family home on Wright Avenue and allegedly fired multiple bullets from the AK-47-style rifle into the adjoining residence. There were four people inside, but none…
Dad Who Poisoned Daughter, 7, In Western Mass Will Not Get New Trial: DA Dad Who Poisoned Daughter, 7, In Western Mass Will Not Get New Trial: DA
Dad Who Poisoned Daughter, 7, In Western Mass Will Not Get New Trial: DA A Massachusetts appeals court has upheld the 2020 conviction of a Hampshire County father who was found guilty of injecting his 7-year-old daughter with liquid drain cleaner, authorities said. She survived the assassination attempt. Christopher Conley, of Northampton, who is serving a 16 to 18-year prison sentence, filed a petition for a new trial saying that the judge erred in allowing the jury to hear evidence that he'd previously attempted to poison the girl, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. He was arrested in April 2015 after his daughter was admitted to Yale New&n…
Driver Who Killed 2 In Western Mass Avoids Jailtime — With Stipulations: DA Driver Who Killed 2 In Western Mass Avoids Jailtime — With Stipulations: DA
Driver Who Killed 2 In Western Mass Avoids Jailtime — With Stipulations: DA A 65-year-old man accused of crashing into and killing a couple in Hampshire County last year admitted to his role in their deaths on Wednesday, Oct. 25. He will avoid going to jail if he meets the judge's conditions.  Stuart A. Larkin, 65, of South Hadley, pleaded guilty to two counts of negligent motor vehicle homicide in the deaths on Northampton Road (Route 10) in Easthampton, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  Northampton District Court Judge Jacklyn Connly said that Larkin showed remorse for the killings and had cooperated with investigators at every turn. Fo…
Body Found By Kids In Western Mass ID'd As Man Missing For 3 Years: DA Body Found By Kids In Western Mass ID'd As Man Missing For 3 Years: DA
Body Found By Kids In Western Mass ID'd As Man Missing For 3 Years: DA Police in Franklin County have identified the skeletal remains found on an island in the Connecticut River last month by a group of children on a nature hike.  The bones belonged to Brian Cornwell, age 57, who was reported missing in 2020, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. Investigators are trying to determine how he died.  About 24 students and chaperones with the Westhampton-based summer camp Biocitizen Inc. were exploring Rawson Island — in between Greenfield and Montague — on Aug. 23 when they stumbled on the body, authorities said.  They called…
Florida Man Accused Of Western Mass Shooting Pleads Not Guilty To 11 Charges: DA Florida Man Accused Of Western Mass Shooting Pleads Not Guilty To 11 Charges: DA
Florida Man Accused Of Western Mass Shooting Pleads Not Guilty To 11 Charges: DA A Florida man who sparked an intense manhunt Tuesday, Aug. 29, after police say he shot a man in Franklin County before he ran into the woods has pleaded not guilty to all the charges, authorities said. Gil Viera, 30, of Sunrise, Florida, is accused of shooting a man near 30 11th St. in the Turners Falls neighborhood known as The Patch just before 1 p.m., the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  Paramedics took the victim, a 30-year-old Athol man, to Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, where he is expected to survive, authorities said.  Police from multipl…
Children Stumble Upon Human Remains On Western Mass Island: DA Children Stumble Upon Human Remains On Western Mass Island: DA
Children Stumble Upon Human Remains On Western Mass Island: DA A group of children found a body on a Franklin County island in the Connecticut River while on a nature hike last week, authorities said.  Reports said around 24 students and chaperones from the Westhampton-based summer camp Biocitizen Inc. stumbled across the human remains on Wednesday, Aug. 23, while on Rawson Island in Greenfield, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. The camp teaches students the importance of exploring nature.  The adults on the trip contacted the police. Officers remained at the scene until all the remains could be retrieved the following day.&n…
Springfield Man Admits To Rape, Gets 3 Years In Prison: DA Springfield Man Admits To Rape, Gets 3 Years In Prison: DA
Springfield Man Admits To Rape, Gets 3 Years In Prison: DA A 32-year-old Springfield man told a Hampshire County court this week that he knew the woman he had sex with in 2021 was too drunk to consent, but he proceeded anyway, authorities said.  Michael Pope pleaded guilty to three counts of rape, two counts of indecent assault and battery, and one count of providing alcohol to a person under 21 years of age, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  Pope pleaded guilty to raping the Amherst woman in an apartment before the prosecution began, sparing the victim a trial, the prosecutor said.  Judge Jane Mulqueen se…
Woman Pleads Not Guilty To Killing Motorcyclist In Western Mass Woman Pleads Not Guilty To Killing Motorcyclist In Western Mass
Woman Pleads Not Guilty To Killing Motorcyclist In Western Mass A Berkshire County woman told a court on Tuesday, Aug. 22, that she was not at fault in the death of a 66-year-old Colrain motorcyclist she had a wreck with earlier this year, authorities said.  Melissa C. Repka, 38, is charged with vehicle homicide by negligent operation and failure to yield the right of way in connection with the crash that killed Greg Herzig, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. A judge ordered Repka not to drive a vehicle for the duration of the trial.  Police said Repka had pulled her rented Jeep Grand Cherokee to the side of Route 2 in…
Woman Accused Of Stabbing Boyfriend To Death In Western Mass Charged With Murder Woman Accused Of Stabbing Boyfriend To Death In Western Mass Charged With Murder
Woman Accused Of Stabbing Boyfriend To Death In Western Mass Charged With Murder A 23-year-old Hampshire County woman who police say stabbed her boyfriend five times during a fight at their home will return to court next week.  Jean Marie Echevarria, of Easthampton, who is charged with murder in the killing of Brennan Bleau, 23, was indicted on July 20, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. She will be arraigned on Wednesday, Aug. 9. She previously pleaded not guilty to the murder charge.  Investigators said Echevarria stabbed Bleau multiple times on March 14 at the Culdaff Street apartment they shared in Easthampton. When poli…
Fatal Crash: Man Admits To Western Mass Wreck That Killed 1, Injured Another Fatal Crash: Man Admits To Western Mass Wreck That Killed 1, Injured Another
Fatal Crash: Man Admits To Western Mass Wreck That Killed 1, Injured Another A 59-year-old man admitted fault on Thursday, July 27, to a fatal Hampden County crash in 2021 that killed a motorcyclist and seriously injured his passenger, authorities said. Aleksandyr Saykin, of East Longmeadow in Hampshire County, pleaded guilty to a charge of negligent operation of a motor vehicle, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  Niles N. Robbins, 46, of Wales, died on May 15, 2021, when Saykin crashed into his Harley Davidson motorcycle on Route 9 in Belchertown near the intersection of Ware and Enoch Sanford roads, the prosecutor said. Robbins …
Officials Tentatively ID Man Killed In Western Mass Fire Officials Tentatively ID Man Killed In Western Mass Fire
Officials Tentatively ID Man Killed In Western Mass Fire Authorities in Hampshire County on Thursday, July 13, released the name of the man believed to have died in a housefire in Belchertown earlier this week.  Wesley Korenewsky, 68, who lived at 42 Daniel Square, is believed to be the person that firefighters found after they put out a two-alarm blaze at that address, a spokesperson for the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will make the official identification.  Belchertown firefighters were called to the Daniel Square home just after 1:30 p.m. Monday. They found fire and smok…
Fiancé Charged With DUI Crash That Killed Western Mass Mom Fiancé Charged With DUI Crash That Killed Western Mass Mom
Fiancé Charged With DUI Crash That Killed Western Mass Mom A 30-year-old Hampshire County man is accused of killing his fiancée when he lost control of his SUV and crashed while driving drunk earlier this month, authorities announced on Wednesday, July 12.  Cory Menard, of Granby, is charged with motor vehicle homicide while under the influence of alcohol, negligent operation, manslaughter while under the influence of alcohol, manslaughter, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. Katelyn Gress, age 28, of Granby, died on July 1 after Menard lost control of his Jeep Grand Cherokee, which ca…
Rape Case: Western Mass Physical Therapist Pleads Not Guilty To Patient's Claims Rape Case: Western Mass Physical Therapist Pleads Not Guilty To Patient's Claims
Rape Case: Western Mass Physical Therapist Pleads Not Guilty To Patient's Claims A former physical therapist in Western Massachusetts accused of raping a former patient in 2012 pleaded not guilty Monday, July 10, to two charges, authorities announced.  Edward Kostek, 42, of South Hadley in Hampshire County, was convicted of three counts of indecent assault and battery in September after a woman said he'd groped her during three physical therapy sessions at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton in 2019, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. A judge sentenced him to probation.  Two women came forward following his conviction to accuse hi…
Granby Woman, 28, Killed, 2 Injured In Rollover Crash In Western Mass Granby Woman, 28, Killed, 2 Injured In Rollover Crash In Western Mass
Granby Woman, 28, Killed, 2 Injured In Rollover Crash In Western Mass A 28-year-old Granby woman was killed Saturday morning, July 1, when the SUV she was in lost control, rolled over, and crashed into oncoming traffic, authorities said. The wreck happened around 1:15 a.m. near the intersection of Pleasant and Barton streets in Granby. Police have not released the woman's name as they are still notifying her next of kin.  The woman was a passenger in a northbound Jeep Grand Cherokee on Pleasant that crossed the center line, skidded, and rolled over before it crashed into a Lexus SUV headed in the opposite direction, Granby police said. It's unclear what …
Drug Ring Bust Leads To 20 Convictions In Western Mass Drug Ring Bust Leads To 20 Convictions In Western Mass
Drug Ring Bust Leads To 20 Convictions In Western Mass Authorities in Western Massachusetts are celebrating as two men, busted as part of a drug ring in 2021, pled guilty on Thursday, June 8. That makes 20 felony convictions since investigators began dismantling the operation in 2021, officials said.  Jason Nadeau, 42, of Ludlow, pleaded guilty to two felony charges of trafficking cocaine and one of conspiracy, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said.  David Gallegos, 30, of Deerfield, will serve a year of probation after a judge continued without a finding a charge of conspiracy, the prosecutor said. …
Manslaughter: Man Accused Of Killing Girlfriend's Ex Pleads Not Guilty Manslaughter: Man Accused Of Killing Girlfriend's Ex Pleads Not Guilty
Manslaughter: Man Accused Of Killing Girlfriend's Ex Pleads Not Guilty A 23-year-old Southampton man pleaded not guilty to the December 2022 killing of his girlfriend's ex-boyfriend on Friday, June 2, authorities said. Brian Camp faces a manslaughter charge in the fatal shooting of Johnathan Letendre, 27, of Northampton, the Northwestern District Attorney's Office said. The prosecutor said Camp was asleep with his girlfriend and her two young children on Dec. 27 when Letendre, who had previously dated the woman, walked into the Chesterfield home through an unlocked door. Camp woke up when he heard Letendre climbing the steps, and a fight broke out between the…