PITTSFIELD -- A city man accused of robbing a taxi driver at gunpoint last month has been deemed dangerous and will be held without bail for up to 90 days.

Damarcus Swazy, 18, of Second Street, allegedly put a pellet gun to the head of a taxi driver Feb. 16 and robbed him of about $250, according to Pittsfield police. The driver was robbed on Hamlin Street after he picked up Swazy, whose face was covered, and another man on Second Street, police said.

Investigators recovered a black plastic pellet gun they believed was used in the robbery. The 53-year-old driver believed it was a real gun and thought he would be killed if he didn't hand over the money, according to police.

Police say they followed a set of footprints in the snow and with the help of a K-9 unit were able to track Swazy to his Second Street home, where he was arrested and allegedly confessed to the crime.

Swazy has denied charges of felony armed and masked robbery and assault with a dangerous weapon.

In Central Berkshire District Court on Wednesday, the Berkshire District Attorney's Office asked the court to hold Swazy as a danger to the community.

Swazy's attorney, Joshua C. Hochberg, argued that the prosecution, who didn't present witnesses during the hearing and instead relied on a police report to make its case, hadn't proven by "clear and convincing evidence" Swazy was dangerous and that there were less restrictive measures to ensure public safety.


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Judge Paul M. Vrabel found Swazy to be a dangerous person and ordered him held at the Berkshire County Jail & House of Correction without bail for up to 90 days.

He is due back in court on March 28, but the case may be heading to the grand jury.

To reach Andrew Amelinckx:

aamelinckx@berkshireeagle.com

or (413) 496-6249.

On Twitter: @BE_TheAmelinckx