Wednesday December 5, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- A Dalton teen was sentenced on Tuesday in Central Berkshire District Court to a year of probation for attacking his younger brother with a metal pipe during an argument over video games.

Jesse J. Boateng, 17, pleaded to facts sufficient for a finding of guilt and had his case continued without a finding. If he abides by a litany of year-long conditions, the charges against him will be dismissed. If not, he can be sentenced to as much as 21Ž2 years in jail.

Boateng must stay in high school, take anger management classes, stay drug- and alcohol-free, and refrain from the abuse of his family while on probation.

He was charged by the Dalton Police with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, witness intimidation and carrying a dangerous weapon after an Oct. 20 incident at his family’s home.

According to the police report, after the two siblings argued over some video games, Boateng approached his 14-year-old brother inside their house and hit him in the left side of his head with a three- to four-foot long metal pipe using "a two-handed, baseball-style swing."

The 14-year-old told police he could feel the blood pouring from his head after being hit. He was taken to Berkshire Medical Center, received a dozen stitches and was released.

According to police, after the attack, but before his arrest, Boateng begged his brother to change his story and apologized for hitting him. On Tuesday, Boateng denied that he tried to get his brother to change his story. He said he just wanted to apologize to his sibling and make sure he was all right. The weapons charge stems from a spring-loaded knife police say they recovered from Boateng during his arrest.

On Tuesday, Boateng’s law yer, Alexander R. Shmulsky, said his client understood the seriousness of the charges against him and would abide by the court’s decision.

When questioned by Judge Robert S. Murphy Jr., the teen said he would do what the court wanted.

This inspired the judge to tell Boateng that the motivation to succeed needed to come from Boateng -- and not from the court.

"You aren’t here because of us, you’re here because of your actions," Murphy told the defendant.

To reach Andrew Amelinckx:
aamelinckx@berkshireeagle.com,
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On Twitter: @BE_TheAmelinckx