This article has been updated to correct that Paul Capitanio has attended all City Council meetings since his arrest, with the exception of one. A previous version of this article incorrectly stated that he had abstained from the meetings.
PITTSFIELD -- A Berkshire grand jury has indicted Pittsfield City Councilor Paul Capitanio on drug conspiracy and accessory charges for allegedly buying illegal prescription drugs and tipping off a dealer concerning a pending drug bust.
Capitanio's attorney, Timothy J. Shugrue, told The Eagle on Monday his client, who represents the city's Ward 3, continues to deny the allegations against him, including those that he is an oxycodone addict.
Capitanio, 57, of Parkside Avenue, was buying pills from an unnamed dealer when he gave him information on an upcoming raid, according to Massachusetts State Police.
He was arrested by the state police in August and has been indicted on charges of conspiracy to possess oxycodone and accessory after the fact.
Police say the dealer was caught on tape during a Berkshire County Drug Task Force wiretap investigation telling Joshua Stegemann, the kingpin of the drug organization, that a "councilman friend" had tipped him off about upcoming drug raids. The dealer allegedly later told police he was referring to Capitanio.
Days after that conversation there was a massive raid at Stegemann's home in Stephentown, N.Y., involving the federal Drug Enforcement Agency, the Berkshire County Drug Task Force, and New York and Massachusetts State Police. The April 30 raid allegedly turned up more than 700 grams of cocaine, a pound of heroin, thousands of illegal prescription pills, various guns and close to $300,000 in cash that was buried in coolers on the property.
Stegemann, 36, allegedly admitted to DEA agents after his arrest that he had worried about a possible bust. He nearly escaped during the raid before being taken into custody, police said.
Capitanio, who has represented Ward 3 since 2009, announced earlier this year he was not seeking re-election. Capitanio has attended all City Council meetings since his arrest with the exception of one.
He remains free on $500 bail and is scheduled to be arraigned in Berkshire Superior Court on Oct. 31.
Shugrue said he has yet to see any discovery material in the case.