Samuel Goldberg has been a Massachusetts criminal defense attorney for 20 years. Prior to that, he was a New York state prosecutor. He has published various articles regarding the practice of criminal law and frequently provides legal analysis on radio and television, appearing on outlets such as the Fox News Channel, Court TV, MSNBC and The BBC Network. To speak to Sam about a criminal matter call (617) 492 3000.

North Of Boston, An Alleged Teenage Crimewave Faces Actual Jail

Yesterday’s Salem Daily News told the tale of Angelo Diiorio, age 18. The young man, had been ordered by the court to confine himself to his home while awaiting trial on charges of vehicular homicide and child rape. In fact, he was even ordered to wear an ankle bracelet. According to the police, however, this condition of release was a bit too difficult for Mr. Diiorio to follow as he was found behind a Danvers business attending a meeting (scheduled fight) with another youth this past Saturday night. The court remedied the youth’s impulsivity by making him a guest of the Commonwealth for 60 days.

According to law enforcement, the two teens were arrested at approximately 10 p.m. as they were in mid-conference (“swinging at each other”) regarding a desired acquisition (a girl). The meeting was forcibly adjourned with the resulting charges of disorderly conduct, trespassing, and possession of marijuana. For poor lovesick Diiorio, however, these charges were the least of his problems as the arrest resulted in the court’s revoking Diiorio’s bail in his pending Salem rape case. Diiorio had been indicted last year on a charge of rape, which involved the alleged sexual assault on an 11-year-old girl during a Christmas Eve gathering in Danvers in 2006. Two weeks later, on January 5, 2007, Diiorio was allegedly at the wheel of a 2000 Mitsubishi Eclipse when he lost control on Route 1 in Revere and crashed, killing a 17-year-old girl in Peabody, for which he faces charges of vehicular homicide and negligent driving to endanger. Investigators say the crash was caused when Diiorio and another driver decided to race each other on the highway.

The respective prosecutors in these cases opined to the court that his latest arrest indicates Diiorio doesn’t take court orders seriously.

The court granted the request of prosecutors, ordering Diiorio held without bail for 60 days for violating the terms of his release. His rival in romance, however, was released on personal recognizance.

Sam’s take:
There are a few lessons here, even for those of us without Diiorio’s problems with women and impulsivity. Obviously, the varied criminal accomplishments at a very young age speak for themselves…they are illegal and can land you in jail.

What may not be obvious, however, is the fact that the seriousness of the charges were not even necessary for the court to hold Diiorio without bail for 60 days. Under Massachusetts law, any new arrest of a criminal defendant with a case pending can result in that defendant’s being imprisoned for up to 60 days without bail. This is because inherent in any bail conditions (even if released without bail) is an understanding that there will be no cause for a new arrest during the pendency of the case.

Many feel this is unfair given the fact that it is so easy to get arrest these days, even if actually innocent. For example, I have handled many cases where I am convinced that the only thing my client did wrong was either being at the wrong place/wrong time or to anger someone sick enough to use the criminal justice system simply to get revenge or the upper hand in some dispute. The fact is that even though the new criminal charges may prove false, and later either dismissed or the basis for an acquittal, the defendant will still have been held in custody. So much for the presumption of innocence.

The purpose of bail is primarily to ensure that the accused will show up on all court dates. However, there is a “safe streets” concern which enters the equation, especially in the case of violent crime. Even without that concern, however, the reasoning underlying the prosecutor’s successful argument in this case is that if Diiorio does not respect the court’s rulings enough not to get arrested or break the home confinement, he is likely to disrespect the court enough to not bother even showing up.

Think of it as if being released on bail was like being on probation. In actuality, it is.

The bottom line is that if you have a criminal case pending, regardless of how weak or strong you think it is, be extremely careful what you do and where you do it. Most of all, follow any conditions that have been imposed by the court!

The full article of this story can be found at
http://www.salemnews.com/punews/local_story_246235120.html

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