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.

Assault, License Loss And OUI Charges Apparently Not Enough For Alleged Armed Carjacker

Today, the Boston Criminal Lawyer Blog points out that there really can be “heroes” as well as “villains” in today’s modern, if not skeptical, age.

It seems to also be a story of a suspect’s alleged consistency.

It was this past Monday. It began when a 34-year-old woman parked her Acura SUV at the Dock Square garage in the North End. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a burly man appeared at her door, speaking calmly and matter-of-factly.

“I need your car, I need your keys,” he said.

When she saw the gun in her hand, she knew it was not simply an unlucky gentleman who simply needed an emergency ride to, say, deliver a baby.

He simply wanted to deliver the car…to himself

The woman threw her keys away from him and tried to run away. Nearby, there were two other women who saw the exchange. They drove over, got the first woman in their car and drove away. Coming to the cashier, they pleaded for the gate to be opened immediately.

“The guy has a gun. Hurry, hurry, he’s going to shoot us.” They yelled.

As if on cue, the man came barreling out of the parking garage exit, driving over a cone and the gate. He then sped off…until he hit a taxicab and crashed into a tree on Commercial Street.

He was thereafter arrested.

All in all…not a very successful venture.

For him.

The women who came to the rescue are now being hailed as heroes. Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley described them as good Samaritans in a situation that could have turned tragic.

Even the passenger in the smashed-into taxi cab was happy with the result. “It’s one of those things, you don’t realize you had a close call until all the facts came to light,” he said. He described how he watched the suspect flee and sent police in his direction, only to realize later that he had a gun and had just committed the carjacking. “It was like there were so many different elements to the crime itself.”

52-year-old Michael F. of Malden (hereinafter, the “Defendant”) was arrested without further incident He was arrested, gun and all at the boardwalk under the North Washington Bridge. Tuesday, he was arraigned in court on charges including carjacking, carrying a firearm without a license, possession of ammunition without a license, carrying a loaded firearm, and causing property damage in the car accidents.

The Defendant was ordered held on $100,000 cash bail. Based on a prosecutor’s request, his bail was revoked for possible violation of probation in Orange District Court for a separate charge of driving under the influence of alcohol. It was also revoked for another pending case, this one involving an alleged assault and battery in Quincy, in which he is accused of pushing the son of his girlfriend to the ground, choking him, and yelling that he “was from Dorchester, and would kill him,” according to police records.

Well, there’s something to be said for community pride, I suppose.

The Defendant’s attorney explained at the Boston Municipal Court that the Defendant is suffering from a number of personal issues: he has been homeless after recent marital strife, and was laid off from his job at an iron works company in Somerville.

Well, it would appear that he won’t be homeless again for awhile.

Attorney Sam’s Take:

This is another example of a situation which could have easily become real tragedy. Like our story from Tuesday, serious assault or homicide charges could have easily come about between the gun and the speed-racing Defendant.

It is worth pointing out that, while we applaud the first woman’s bravery in resisting the Defendant, it is usually inadvisable to act against a gun that is pointed at you. The safer course is to comply and get away from the car and, allegedly, the Defendant.

It is, though, nice seeing such bravery in these cases, not to mention the heroism of the other women who came to her rescue.

The Defendant, of course, has ensured himself Commonwealth housing for quite a long time.

We do not know the extent of his prior record, but we do know that he now faces two warrants for violating probation. We also know that he now faces various charges with some rather strong evidence.

As is often the case in these stories, there is also evidence of “consciousness of guilt” evidence due to the rather steve mcqueen esque attempt at escaping…smashed cab, happy passenger and all.

One may think that all is lost as the Defendant now begins to count the various charges and accompanying years of incarceration ahead, that it is all over for him.

Not necessarily so.

As is the usually the case, there are other sides to the stories. With these other stories come potential defenses and/o mitigating circumstances. But you will need an experienced criminal defense attorney to realize and take advantage of them.

If you wish to discuss a case with me, please feel free to contact me at 617-492-3000.

To read the original story upon which today’s blog was based, please visit the website http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2010/02/24/group_effort_foils_north_end_carjacking/

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