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.

Baseball Bat Assault In Massachusetts Results In Felony Arrest

Can a baseball bat be considered a dangerous weapon in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts? As a Boston attorney for longer than I am in the mood to admit, I have seen cases where a pen, a box and even a shoe is considered a dangerous weapon by the law. So, it should be no surprise that a baseball bat, ball or even a glove can be considered dangerous weapons.

It is a lesson learned the hard was for 18-year-old Buzzards Bay resident Daniel M. (hereinafter, the “Defendant”), if he did not know it beforehand. Currently, he is being held on $5,000 bail after he allegedly beat a family member with an aluminum baseball bat.

Yes, that would make this a case of domestic violence.

The Defendant was arraigned in Falmouth District Court Tuesday morning after being arrested for allegedly hitting the 43-year-old man (hereinafter, the “Unnamed Complainant”) in the head with the bat at around 12:15 a.m. yesterday outside a Buzzards Bay home.

According to law enforcement, the Defendant struck the Unnamed Complainant with the bat after the latter attempted to leave after the two had had an argument.

When the investigating authorities arrived, they found the Unnamed Complainant lying in the driveway, unconscious and bleeding from the head, Bourne police said. He was taken by MedFlight helicopter to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston early yesterday morning, according to Bourne police.

Consistent with what passed for “judgment” during batting practice, the Defendant explained to the police that he had the bat because he was using it to search through some nearby bushes, where the man had thrown the Defendant’s cell phone during the dispute, according to the police report. So, naturally, he clocked him (allegedly). The police reported that the Defendant “appeared to have no remorse over hitting” the man and told police “he meant to hit him on the shoulder” or hit the window of the vehicle the man was in.

While he apparently lacked remorse or good judgment, the Defendant was apparently in possession of a couple other things, such as drugs. Specifically, he was found with three tablets of Clonazepam (a muscle relaxant which is classified as a class E substance). He also had a small switchblade knife in his possession, according to the police report.

The Defendant has been charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (a felony) and possession of a class E substance.

The Unnamed Complainant’s condition from the hospital has not been released. Nor is his name listed in the hospital’s directory, apparently by his request.
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Attorney Sam’s Take:

Well, assuming the above is all true, there is one little spark of good judgment that the Defendant showed. Namely, he neither ran from nor fought against the police when they arrived.

Other than that, the young gentleman is in trouble. What we don’t know is exactly how much trouble.

We do not know whether the Unnamed Complainant was merely knocked out, has a concussion or has brain damage. He could also potentially die. This occurrences would certainly up the ante in terms of criminal justice.

Presently, the matter is pending in district court. However, since there is a violent felony charge, it could end up in superior court. If the damage does turn out to be more severe, look for the addition of other charges such as “Assault with Intent to Kill”, “Mayhem” or some form of homicide.

“But his statement was that he meant to hit the guy in the shoulder, not the head.”

This does not matter. The law frowns upon whacking people with baseball bats. Intentially striking someone in the shoulder, missing, and hitting the head will not be much of a defense to murder charges, except to, perhaps, lower the charge.

Unlikely though.

The little knife and drugs could also be issues, but, as one would imagine, they are not likely to be the main issue in the prosecution.

People get angry. That is understandable.

However, when people act out of anger and cause physical damage, they are held responsible. There is no “Well, He Pissed Me Off” defense. Further, this is not likely to be seen as “self-defense” because the cell phone had been thrown.

Sometimes, though, people lose control. When they do, they need experienced help in minimizing the damages to them when facing accusations about the event.

In cases like this, they need an experienced criminal defense attorney.

That’s right, somebody like me.

If you are facing such circumstances and you wish to consult with me regarding representing you , please feel free to give me a call at 617-492-3000 .

To view the original story upon which today’s blog was based, please go to http://www.capecodonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100707/NEWS/7070327/-1/NEWSMAP ,and http://www.thebostonchannel.com/news/24154425/detail.html

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