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Superior Court Briefs: Sept. 2 - Sept. 9

Staff Reports
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Friday, Sept. 2.
 
James Tarjick Jr., 44, of Becket pleased guilty to two counts of receiving stolen property over $250.
 
On January 14, 2015 Tarjick was in possession of stolen items take from housebreaks that occurred throughout the state in the past several years.
 
He also pleaded guilty to four counts of unarmed burglary, nine counts of larceny over $250, three counts of receiving stolen property over $250, and two counts of breaking and entering a motor vehicle in the nighttime. 
 
Those charges stem from house and motor vehicle breaks in Berkshire County between October 29, 2010 and September 21, 2013. 
 
Sentencing will be done at a later date. He was ordered to be help in custody until then.
 
Five counts of receiving stolen property over $250, and single counts of breaking and entering a motor vehicle in the nighttime and being a common receiver of stolen goods were dismissed by the state. 
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Tuesday, Sept. 6.
 
Aaron Tarjick, 40, of Windsor pleaded guilty to 25 counts of larceny over $250, 13 counts of breaking and entering a motor vehicle in the nighttime, nine counts of breaking and entering in the night time, seven counts of unarmed burglary, three counts of larceny of a firearm, and single counts of larceny of a motor vehicle and larceny under $250.
 
The charges stem from a series of housebreaks in Berkshire County between October 22, 2010 and November 13, 2012. He was ordered to be held without bail until sentencing on Sept. 22. 
 
A single count of breaking and entering a motor vehicle in the nighttime was dismissed by the state.
 
James Tarjick Sr., 63, of Windsor pleaded guilty to nine counts of receiving stolen property over $250. 
 
He was in possession of items stolen during housebreaks in Massachusetts over the last several years. The charges were continued without a finding for two years. 
 
A single count of receiving stolen property over $250 was dismissed by the state.
 
Nancy Tarjick, 61, of Windsor pleaded guilty to 9 counts of receiving stolen property over $250. 
 
She was in possession of items stolen during housebreaks in Massachusetts over the last several years. The charges were continued without a finding for two years. 
 
A single count of receiving stolen property over $250 was dismissed by the state.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Wednesday, Sept. 7.
 
Brian Ducksworth, 25, of Hartford, Conn. had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, and conspiracy to violate drug laws.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $15,000 bail. The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant at 522 West Shaft Road in North Adams on July 26, 2016. 
 
Dylan Litchfield, 23, of Peru had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of mayhem, armed assault with intent to murder, and aggravated assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon. 
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction without bail. The charges stem from an incident in Savoy on June 13, 2016 and involved a 27-year-old man.
 
Michael Litchfield, 43, of Hinsdale had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of manslaughter, conspiracy to violate drug laws, and possession of heroin with intent to distribute.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $25,000 bail. Litchfield is accused of selling fentanyl laced heroin to 39-year-old Shawn Filiault, who died after ingesting the drug, on February 5, 2016. He was also in possession of heroin with intent to sell when he was arrested on July 8, 2016.
 
Gavin Mahar, 23, of North Adams had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, and conspiracy to violate drug laws.
 
The charges are in connection of a motor vehicle stop in North Adams on June 27, 2016. Mahar was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $10,000 bail.
 
Joshua Stimpson, 29, of Pittsfield had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute - his second offense - and conspiracy to violate drug laws. 
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $15,000 bail. The charges stem from a motor vehicle stop in North Adams on June 27, 2016.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Thursday, Sept. 8.
 
Cathleen Crawford, 37, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of heroin and possession of cocaine.
 
The charges are in connection with the execution of a search warrant on her West Street home on September 16, 2015. She was ordered to serve 129 days at the Hampden County House of Correction Chicopee Woman's Facility with credit for time served waiting for the disposition of her case.
 
Two counts of conspiracy to violate drug laws, two counts of drug violation within a park zone, and single counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, illegal ownership of a firearm, possession of ammunition without a firearm identification card, and improper storage of a firearm were dismissed by the state.
 
Alysha Orvis, 26, of Savoy had not guilty pleas entered on her behalf on single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, and conspiracy to violate drug laws.
 
The charges are in connection with a motor vehicle stop in North Adams on June 27, 2016. She was ordered to be held at the Hampden County House of Correction Chicopee Woman's Facility on $1,000 bail.
 
Courtney Tatro, 21, of Clarksburg had not guilty pleas entered on her behalf on single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, and conspiracy to violate drug laws.
 
The charges are in connection with a motor vehicle stop in North Adams on June 27, 2016. She was ordered to be held at the Hampden County House of Correction Chicopee Woman's Facility on $2,500 bail.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Friday, Sept. 9.
 
Tyler Sherman, 24, of Cheshire pleaded guilty to single counts of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon and assault and battery. 
 
He was ordered to two years at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the assault and battery charge. He was given a concurrent one-year sentence on the other charge.
 
Sherman assaulted a 21-year-old man in Adams on March 11, 2016. A single count of strangulation or suffocation was dismissed by the state.
 
Caleb Sherman, 24, of Adams pleaded guilty to single counts of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, assault and battery, and threat to commit a crime.
 
He was ordered to serve concurrent two-year sentences at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon and assault and battery charges. He was given a concurrent six-month sentence on the charges. 
 
Sherman assaulted a 21-year-old man in Adams on March 11, 2016. A single count of strangulation or suffocation was dismissed by the state.
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Pittsfield Police Officer Fired for Misconduct

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A Pittsfield police officer has been fired for "multiple misconduct charges."

Officer Dale Eason, a 20-year veteran of the force, had been on leave since May after a scuffle with an elderly woman in her home last year.

A terse press release from Chief Michael Wynn said Eason had been terminated on Wednesday after a "lengthy internal investigation and a local civil service hearing."

Eason had arrested Phyllis Stankiewicz, 88, after he and another officer entered her home after being sent to the wrong address for a disturbance. A confused Stankiewicz had allegedly threatened them with a small paring knife and, when disarmed, had slapped Eason on the wrist. Eason then put her on the ground and arrested her. All charges against Stankiewicz were dropped.

"The City of Pittsfield and the Pittsfield Police Department take any and all acts of police misconduct by our personnel extremely seriously. Service as a police officer requires a high degree of public trust. On those rare occasions, as is the case here, that trust is violated, severe sanctions must be imposed," said Wynn in the statement.

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Body Discovered In Windsor Lake in North Adams

Staff Reports

 

The body was discovered in the lake Friday morning.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The body of a 63-year-old North Adams man was found in Windsor Lake.
 
Police say the body of Leszek Godyn of Arnold Place was discovered at 8 a.m. Friday morning.
 
The incident remains under investigation but the district attorney's office says it "does not appear to be suspicious at this time."
 
Police Director Michael Cozzaglio confirmed that police received a report at 7:48 a.m. from someone who said they saw a body lying in the water.
 
Police, EMS, and fire responded to the lake, where Godyn's body was found in the shallow water at the fishing area near the concession stand. Firefighters were able to remove him from the water.
 
"We're trying to determine what brought this person up to the lake and what happened," Cozzaglio said, adding again that it did not appear suspicious. 
 
The investigation is being conducted by members of the North Adams Police Department, state police, and the district attorney's office. 
 
The entrance of the lake was blocked Friday morning for more than an hour during the recovery.
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Superior Court Briefs: Aug. 29 - Aug. 31

Staff Reports
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Monday, August 29.
 
Rhianna Randall, 40, of Dalton pleaded guilty to three counts of assault and battery and a single count of disturbing the peace.
 
She was placed on two-years probation on the assault and battery charges. The other charge was placed on file.
 
Randall assaulted three youths - ages 17, 15, and 15, - on October 24, 2015.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Tuesday, August 30.
 
Patrick Coyne, 34, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of armed career felon, illegal possession of a firearm - his second offense, possession of ammunition without a firearm identification card, and discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a building.
 
He was ordered to serve six to 10 years at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction on the armed career felon charge. He was given concurrent five to six years at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the other charges.
 
Coyne was arrested in Pittsfield after multiple reports of shots fired in the area of Wahconah Street and Pecks Road on May 19, 2016.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Wednesday, August 31.
 
Joevany Santiago, 25, of Springfield pleaded guilty to a single count of manufacturing cocaine. 
 
He was ordered to serve 15 months at the Hampden County House of Correction. The charge stems form the execution of a search warrant at 86 West Main Street in North Adams on April 15, 2016.
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North Adams Apartment Blaze Doused; West Main Closed

By Jack Guerino
iBerkshires Staff

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Firefighters quickly knocked down fire in a storage area at a West Main Street apartment building on Thursday.

Fire Director Stephen Meranti said only one tenant was in the building and he was quickly evacuated.

Meranti said the Fire Department arrived at 75 West Main St around 2:30 p.m. after receiving a report of smoke coming out of a second-story window. It was initially described as a structure fire.

"The guys got on scene, and they saw smoke," he said. "We had smoke coming from the bedroom window on the second floor. ...

"The guys went in, found the tenant and escorted him out," he said. "He was OK. He was just trying to put the fire out with a portable extinguisher."

Meranti said a pre-connected hose was weaved through a room, a bedroom and into the storage room on the eastern side of the flat-iron building where the fire broke out. Firefighters tossed items out of the window to get to the fire.

"It was contained in that one room, and the stuff was not really that burned," he said. "We just had to get down to where it was burning."

Meranti said power had to be shut off to the apartment and to the one below it because water had to be used to extinguish the fire. He said an electrician will have to come in and inspect the apartments before the tenants can occupy them.

Meranti said all in all the fire was contained and knocked down quickly.

The guys did a good job," he said. "Early detection, quick response and aggressive interior attack. That is how you keep a small fire small."

He said the cause of the fire is still under investigation. The road was closed from the east end of the Memorial Bridge to Brown Street for more than an hour.

North Adams Police and Ambulance were on scene as well as the Wire and Alarm Division and Berkshire Gas. The building is owned by Charles Swabey.

Meranti added that at the same time, there was a one-car accident on Pattison Road that resulted in no injuries. All off-duty firefighters were called in to assist.

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