Sunday October 9, 2011

PITTSFIELD -- Three people. Three deaths. Three lives before those deaths.

David Glasser, Edward Frampton and Robert Chadwell forever will be tied as victims in a case in which a Hells Angel and two others have been indicted on murder charges by a grand jury. The suspects likely will be arraigned in Berkshire Superior Court this week.

When news broke Sept. 11 that the bodies of Glasser, Frampton and Chadwell had been found the day before in a boulder-covered trench in Becket, their friends and families were shocked and devastated.

Glasser had been scheduled to testify Sept. 19 against local Hells Angels member Adam Lee Hall on drug, gun and assault charges. Authorities allege that Hall killed the three Pittsfield men to keep Glasser from testifying.

Frampton -- a roommate of Glasser's on Linden Street -- and Chadwell, a neighbor, were in the wrong place at the wrong time, according to police.

A month later, those close to the victims still can't believe they're gone.

"It seems unreal," said Rick Reynolds, a friend of Glasser's for more than 20 years. ... "This is a tough time for the families and friends of those taken from us all needlessly."

"It seems unreal," said Rick Reynolds, a friend of Glasser's for more than 20 years. ... "This is a tough time for the families and friends of those taken from us all needlessly."

"It's a tragic loss," said Debora DiDonna, a friend of Frampton's.

"I just can't believe it," said Chadwell's sister, Carol Chadwell Farrelly.

Reynolds said he and Glasser, 44, shared a love of music and would get together to jam -- Reynolds on guitar, Glasser on drums.

Reynolds said Glasser was a great drummer who loved to play rock music but who also played gospel at AME Zion Church on Linden Street.

Donna Randolph, a friend Glasser called "Ma," said he was "well-loved and very popular. He knew probably half the people in Pittsfield."

Caroline R. Stone, another friend of Glasser's, said in a letter to the editor to The Eagle that he had a "good and compassionate heart." She said she met Glasser, a handyman, when he did some odd jobs for her.

Even though he had little money, Glasser often brought Stone and her children small gifts, tokens of his friendship, she said.

In 2005, Glasser sent The Eagle a letter to the editor in an effort to spark "an awareness of how we treat each other." In the first sentence, Glasser said he was "mentally and physically challenged."

In another letter, Glasser's physician of more than 20 years, Dr. Barry Lobovits of Pittsfield, called him "kind and generous, humble and courageous" and said he was a man who overcame "many challenges and special hardships to stand tall among us."

"He leaves countless friends in our community who are deeply saddened by his tragic loss," Lobovits wrote after Glasser's death.

Lobovits' secretary, Margaret Dodge, recalled Glasser as being gentle.

"He wasn't boisterous -- he was always calm, always kind," she said.

‘Courageous, humble'

Frampton, 58, also overcame challenges and knew how to fend for himself, according to Jim Morrissey, a former teacher of Frampton's at Belchertown State School, a Massachusetts state-run facility for special-needs people that closed in the early 1990s.

Frampton, 58, also overcame challenges and knew how to fend for himself, according to Jim Morrissey, a former teacher of Frampton's at Belchertown State School, a Massachusetts state-run facility for special-needs people that closed in the early 1990s.

Morrissey said Frampton was sent to Belchertown at age 5 and lived there into his teens, then on and off in his 20s. Morrissey said Frampton was "mildly" mentally challenged but "never should have been institutionalized."

"He seemed to have no family connections," Morrissey said.

Morrissey also said Frampton was "feisty" and a good athlete who participated in the school's basketball program as well as in the Special Olympics.

In 2006, Frampton became an advocate for people with developmental disabilities. He gave monthly lectures about his Belchertown experiences to staff from Berkshire Family and Individual Resources, a nonprofit human services agency for the developmentally disabled and people with autism.

DiDonna, the agency's human rights coordinator and quality facilitator, said Frampton gave presentations during orientations for new staff, and his talks were designed to help new caregivers understand and meet the needs of the people they were serving.

DiDonna said Frampton always did a wonderful job, and she called him "courageous, humble, very humorous and a pleasure to know." She said he always ended his presentations by telling the staff how they should treat people -- with compassion and respect.

"No staff left his presentation without being deeply moved," DiDonna said.

‘Happy go lucky'

Les Chadwell, the brother of Robert Chadwell, 47, said he had been in contact with Robert on a daily basis, but he began to fear the worst not long after his brother disappeared on Aug. 28. He said Robert hung out with Glasser and Frampton fairly regularly, and he agreed with authorities that Robert was in "the wrong place at the wrong time."

Les Chadwell, the brother of Robert Chadwell, 47, said he had been in contact with Robert on a daily basis, but he began to fear the worst not long after his brother disappeared on Aug. 28. He said Robert hung out with Glasser and Frampton fairly regularly, and he agreed with authorities that Robert was in "the wrong place at the wrong time."

Chadwell grew up on Pittsfield's West Side, according to Reynolds, who called him "Robert T. [his middle initial]" and said he was a "nice guy." Reynolds said that when the two got older, they sometimes would get together for a beer.

Chadwell's sister, Chadwell Farrelly, said her brother was "happy go lucky" and always was willing to help people.

"Robert didn't bother anybody," she said. "He was well-known and well-liked."

She said her brother spent some time in Worcester, counseling adolescents on drug and alcohol abuse before he returned to Pittsfield to live.

Chadwell was an avid outdoorsman who loved camping and fishing, according to his obituary, which ran in The Eagle. Besides his three siblings, he left behind a daughter, Ashley Hall.

Chadwell Farrelly called her brother's death "just awful."

The men accused of the murders -- Hall, 34, of Peru; Caius Veiovis, 31, of Pittsfield; and David Chalue, 44, of North Adams and Springfield -- remain behind bars along with David Casey, 62, of Canaan, N.Y., who has been charged as an accessory to the murder for allegedly helping to bury the bodies.

To reach Andrew Amelinckx:
aamelinckx@berkshireeagle.com
or (413) 496-6249




Timeline

July 21, 2009: Adam Lee Hall purportedly lures David Glasser to his house in Peru, where he allegedly beat Glasser with a baseball bat after accusing him of stealing a car part.

July 23, 2009: The Berkshire County Drug Task Force arrests Hall on drug, gun and assault charges after interviews with Glasser and a search of Hall's home.

Sept. 30, 2009: Hall, a ranking member of the local chapter of the Hells Angels motorcycle gang, is released from the Berkshire County Jail & House of Correction on $50,000 bond.

Aug. 14, 2010: Hall allegedly frames Glasser, a Pittsfield resident, for armed robbery in New York state to discredit him as a witness in an upcoming trial against Hall on drug, gun and assault charges.

September 2010: Hall requests a meeting with the FBI, during which he offers to become an informant against the Hells Angels in exchange for leniency in sentencing for his pending cases. The offer is rejected.

Nov. 29, 2010: Hall and two alleged accomplices are indicted on charges they pinned the phony robbery on Glasser.

March 15: Hall is released on $250,000 bond after the local chapter of the Hells Angels posted its clubhouse in Lee as surety, according to police.

Aug. 27-28: Glasser and two friends -- Edward Frampton and Robert Chadwell -- disappear from Glasser and Frampton's Linden Street apartment in Pittsfield.

Sept. 10: Police discover Glasser, Chadwell and Frampton's bodies buried in a trench on private property in Becket. Hall and two alleged accomplices are charged with the triple murder.

Sept. 12: Hall, David Chalue and Caius Veiovis are arraigned on three counts each of murder, kidnapping and witness intimidation.

Sept. 19: Police charge a fourth person, David Casey, with three counts each of accessory after the fact to murder, kidnapping and witness intimidation for allegedly using his excavator to bury the bodies of Glasser, Chadwell and Frampton.

Oct. 6: Hall, Chalue and Veiovis are indicted by a grand jury on murder, kidnapping and witness intimidation charges. Casey is indicted on charges of accessory to murder, kidnapping and witness intimidation.