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Superior Court Briefs: March 20 - March 28

Staff Reports
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Monday, March 20.
 
Riley Nolan, 23, of Clarksburg pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, conspiracy to violate drug laws, possession of cocaine, and possession of diazepam.
 
He was ordered to serve concurrent one-year sentences at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the possession of heroin and conspiracy charges. He was placed on one-year probation on the others.
 
The charges stem from a motor vehicle stop in North Adams on October 5, 2016.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Tuesday, March 21.
 
Eric Hunt, 51, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute and resisting arrest.
 
He was given concurrent two-year sentences at the Berkshire County House of Correction but serving 10 days of it with the rest being suspended. He was placed on probation for two years.
 
The charges stem from a motor vehicle stop in Pittsfield on December 7, 2015. A single count of failure to wear a seatbelt was dismissed by the state.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Thursday, March 23.
 
Samuel Rivera, 21, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute and illegal possession of a firearm.
 
He was ordered to serve two years at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the firearm charge. He was given a one-year sentenced on the possession of cocaine charge. 
 
The charges stem from a motor vehicle stop in Pittsfield on January 2, 2016. Single counts of illegal possession of a loaded firearm and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony were dismissed by the state.
 
Amber Bassett, 22, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, and conspiracy to violate drug laws.
 
She was placed on one-year probation. 
 
The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant at her Fenn Street home on January 5, 2016. Single counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, possession of a firearm with a defaced serial number, illegal ownership of a firearm, improper storage of a firearm and possession of a stun gun were dismissed by the state.
 
Mark Daniels, 35, of North Adams pleaded guilty to a single count of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute related to the execution of a search warrant on Dalton Avenue in Pittsfield on September 23, 2015. He pleaded guilty to a single count of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute in connection with a motor vehicle stop in Pittsfield on September 28, 2015. 
 
He was ordered to serve concurrent two and a half to three and a half years at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction. He starts his sentence on April 4, 2017. 
 
A single count of conspiracy to violate drug laws was dismissed by the state.
 
Mark Linder Jr., 23, of North Adams pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, conspiracy to violate drug laws, and possession of cocaine.
 
He was ordered to serve one year at the Berkshire County House of Correction. The charges stem from a motor vehicle stop in North Adams on October 5, 2016. 
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Friday, March 24.
 
Ryan Sullivan, 28, of Hinsdale pleaded guilty to six counts of larceny from a building, five counts of breaking and entering in the daytime, two counts of larceny over $250, and a single count of wanton destruction of property. 
 
He was ordered to serve two and a half to three years at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the wanton destruction of property charge. He was given probation for three years on the other charges. He begins serving the sentenced on March 29, 2017.
 
The charges stem from a series of breaks at a home in Washington between March 8, 2015, and August 9, 2015.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Monday, March 27.
 
Jose Alexis Carrasquillo, 42, of Pittsfield had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on three counts of conspiracy to violate drug laws, two counts of armed career felon, and single counts of trafficking in cocaine, illegal possession of a firearm, illegal possession of a large capacity feeding device, illegal ownership of a firearm, possession of ammunition without a firearm identification card, receiving stolen property over $250, and possession of buprenorphine. Those charges are in connection with the execution of a search warrant on his home on January 6, 2017.
 
He also pleaded guilty to single count of assault by means of a dangerous weapon, and assault and better in connection with an incident involving a 46-year-old Pittsfield man between December 1, 2016, and December 31, 2016.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction without bail.
 
Charles Davis, 35, of Lanesborough had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of assault by means of a dangerous weapon, and assault and battery.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction without bail. The charges stem from an incident involving a 46-year-old Pittsfield man between December 1, 2016, and December 31, 2016.
 
Louis Hoffman, 27, of Pittsfield had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of home invasion, armed assault in a dwelling, and illegal possession of a firearm in relation to an incident on Appleton Avenue on January 20, 2017.
 
He also pleaded not guilty to single counts of armed robbery while masked, armed assault with intent to rob, assault by means of a dangerous weapon, and illegal possession of a firearm in connection with a robbery at the Gulf Station on Wahconah Street on February 8, 2017.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $10,000 bail. 
 
Varian Lefebvre, 23, of Holyoke 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 $2,500 bail. The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant in Williamstown on January 18, 2017.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Tuesday, March 28.
 
James Tarjick Jr., 45, of Becket was sentenced to 11 to 12 years at the Massachusetts Correctional Institute at Cedar Junction on charges of unarmed burglary, breaking and entering in the nighttime, and breaking and entering a motor vehicle. He was sentenced to four and a half to five years on other charges.
 
Tarjick had pleaded guilty to two counts of receiving stolen property over $250, four counts of unarmed burglary, two counts of breaking and entering a motor vehicle, two counts of breaking and entering the nighttime, nine counts of larceny over $250, three counts of receiving stolen property, three counts of larceny of a firearm, and single counts of unarmed burglary, and larceny over $250. The charges stem from a series of house and motor vehicle breaks in Berkshire County between October 29, 2010, and September 21, 2013.
 
Anthony Newton, 28, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to a single count of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute in connection with the execution of a search warrant on Dalton Avenue on September 23, 2015.
 
He was placed on two-years probation. A single count of conspiracy to violate drug laws was dismissed by the state.
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Pownal Man Dies After Car Crash in Williamstown

Staff Reports
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — A Pownal, Vt. man died Tuesday after his vehicle careened into a tree on Bridges Road.
 
Police said James Smith, 69, of Mason Hill Road in Pownal, Vt. was driving a 1995 Lexus sedan westbound when he drifted across the eastbound lane and then crashed into a tree. He was the sole occupant of the vehicle and no other vehicles were involved.
 
Smith was taken to Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield, where he later died. The investigation is ongoing but Police say there is no evidence to suggest that speed, negligence, or impaired driver contributed to the crash. 
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Pittsfield Police Testing Gunfire Detection System Wednesday Night

Staff Reports
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Police Department will be testing out the new ShotSpotter technology Wednesday night.
 
The department sent out a notification and calls to residents to inform them about the live gunfire test. The city is contracting with ShotSpotter to install gunshot detection systems, which will send notifications to police cruisers the moment the microphones pick up the sound of gunfire. 
 
"ShotSpotter uses a wide-area network of acoustic sensors to detect when a gun is fired and then precisely and quickly pinpoints the location of the gunfire. In less than a minute, officers and 911 dispatchers are notified of the fully qualified and validated gunfire incidents, even if no one calls 911 - although the community is always encouraged to report sounds of gunfire," Lt. Gary Traversa wrote in a release issued Wednesday afternoon.
 
"By quickly notifying police with the precise information, ShotSpotter helps speed police response, has the potential to save lives, increase weapons-related arrests, and the technology enhances the safety of our neighborhoods."
 
Before it can be deployed, the city needs to test it out. At 7 p.m. Wednesday night the department will be firing off shots at test locations to help calibrate the system.
 
"The Pittsfield Police Department will be conducting a live-fire gunshot event to test the ShotSpotter solution as they conduct a detection qualification and validation analysis before the system is live and operating in Pittsfield. The purpose of the DVQ is to test the sensor calibrations, quality of detection, and identify any additional calibration of the sensors needed. The ShotSpotter system is not considered live and operational until the successful completion of the DVQ event," Traversa wrote.
 
The will be no danger to the public, police said, because during the tests there will be officers on site at all locations, a bullet trap will be used to ensure public safety, and no bullets will be fired into the air. 
 
"The controlled tests will consist of a sequence of gunshot sounds followed by validation of quality detection by ShotSpotter. During the tests, a bullet trap will be used to ensure public safety. No bullets will be fired into the air and there is no danger to the public," Traversa wrote.
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Everett Murder Suspect Arrested In Pittsfield

Staff Reports
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Police arrested on Tuesday the suspect in an Everett murder case.
 
Pittsfield Police say David Grossack, 47, was arrested in the city this afternoon. Grossack was listed as one of Massachusetts State Police's "most wanted" for allegedly killing and Everett artist. 
 
Grossack will be arranged in Central Berkshire District Court on Wednesday. According to MassLive, Grossack was named the prime suspect in February for the murder of Francis Brescia, who was found dead in his apartment in February.
 
According to MassLive, Brescia was found after a landlord went to check on him. Authorities found the body severely decomposed.
 
Grossack was believed to be homeless with ties to communities near Boston. On March 2, State Police put out a release calling for information about his whereabouts and warned he had access to weapons and could be armed. 
 
Grossack also has a criminal history in Massachusetts and California. 
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Former Pittsfield Officer Sentenced for Stealing From Police Union

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A former Pittsfield Police officer sentenced on Monday afternoon after pleading guilty to stealing more than $200,000 the Pittsfield Patrol Police Union.

Jeffrey D. Coco, 44, former union president, will serve up to 20 months in the House of Correction.

Coco was fired in November 2015 after some two months on administrative leave after an internal affairs investigation uncovered numerous improprieties with the union's accounts and fundraisers.

He pleaded guilty to two counts of larceny, ongoing and continuing offense, and a single count of identity theft in Central Berkshire District Court on Monday.

Judge John Agostini sentenced him to concurrent 20-month sentences for the larcenies and three years' probation on the identity theft. During the probationary period, Coco is to refrain from using illegal drugs and undergo counseling and drug testing. He will begin serving his sentence on April 3, 2017.    

Coco serving in various offices, including treasurer, of the union between January 2008 and July 2015. During that time, he generated a false document requesting access to certain funds.

The investigation was conducted State Police Detectives assigned to the district attorney's office with the assistance of members of the Pittsfield Police Department.      

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