Police Briefs 04-23-2015

April 23, 2015
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STABBING ON BROADWAY

Police are investigating the stabbing of one person on Saturday night at 763 Broadway. The victim was taken by ambulance for treatment, but was expected to survive.

ARRESTS AT EL CORRAL

Chelsea Police rounded up two men at the El Corral Bar last Tuesday, April 14, around 1:15 a.m. for allegedly attacking another man.

Officers were approached by a man after 1 a.m. who told them he had been threatened at the bar by two patrons who had refused to pay their bill and were giving the female bar employee a hard time. The victim told police he had tried to intervene to help the woman, but the two men allegedly punched him in the face and threw him to the floor. They also said they would wait outside for him to do more damage.

When the man informed police, they searched the area to no avail. They offered to give the victim a ride home, but he refused.

A few minutes later, officers saw the victim being chased down the street by two men.

Police arrested both men for the earlier attack, and were told by the victim that they had threatened him with a knife. However, no knife could be located at that time.

Esvin Hernandez Vasquez, 36, of 60 Grove St., was charged with assault and battery, assault, assault with a dangerous weapon, and two counts of threatening to commit a crime. Angel Scoop, 30, of 117 Shurtleff St. was charged with  assault and battery, assault, assault with a dangerous weapon, giving a false name and two counts of threatening to commit a crime.

APPEALS COURT AFFIRMS CHELSEA MURDER CONVICTION

The state’s appellate courts last week affirmed a murder conviction in the slaying of Braulio Gomez in Chelsea by Santos Portillo in 2011..

The Massachusetts Appeals Court on Wednesday, April 15, denied Santos Portillo, 24, in his effort to undo a 2013 second-degree murder conviction in Gomez’ fatal shooting on Central Avenue in 2011.

“Because police and prosecutors work hand in hand on homicides in Suffolk County, we build them with an eye not just to arrest but also to conviction and appeal,” Conley said. “The result is evidence that’s meaningful, reliable, and admissible, and convictions that withstand the scrutiny of the appellate process.”

Portillo, a self-proclaimed member of the MS-13 street gang, was convicted of shooting Gomez after a chance encounter in which the defendant asked the victim and his group what “set” – or gang – they were affiliated with. When Gomez replied that none of them belonged to a gang, Portillo pulled out a handgun, placed it to Gomez’ head, and shot the unarmed man.

Trial testimony established that Portillo and his friends had been drinking on the night of July 15, 2011, and into the morning of July 16, when the murder took place. Portillo’s trial counsel sought and received an instruction on intoxication as a mitigating factor but did not seek an instruction on manslaughter as a potential verdict. His appellate attorney claimed this was in error.

The Appeals Court disagreed, finding that even the intoxication instruction constituted a “windfall” for the defendant because the evidence at trial “did not support a reasonable inference that the defendant was so intoxicated at the time of the incident that he was incapable of forming the necessary intent or possessing the requisite knowledge for the crimes charged,” Justices Elspeth Cypher, Scott Kafker, and Mark Green wrote.

Assistant District Attorney Helle Sachse of the DA’s Appellate Division defended the conviction on appeal. The case marks the sixth Suffolk murder conviction to be affirmed this year.


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