PITTSFIELD -- A Pittsfield couple has been charged with taking part in a home invasion on Tuesday in which they were allegedly seeking out a person who wasn't there.

Brian Hicks, 37, of Glenwood Avenue, allegedly told police he was in a vehicle driven by Angelina Clifford, 34, that went to the home on South Atlantic Street and that he took part in the break-in. Hicks told police that Clifford had been robbed by the person they went looking for.

Police were called to the South Atlantic Street residence at 7:15 p.m. Tuesday to respond to reports of a break-in.

One of the female residents told police that they heard the front door being kicked in and saw Clifford enter with a kitchen knife.

She allegedly yelled out for a 25-year-old female resident of the home to come outside and fight her before leaving. One of the residents said she witnessed Clifford holding a kitchen knife while asking about the whereabouts of a person she was looking for. Hicks was identified by one of the complainants through a photo array at the police station.

Clifford's attorney, Mark Vincillete, said the charges were part of a longstanding fued between the parties and were made up by the alleged victims as a "setup" of his client. Vincilette said that Clifford was set to testify against the boyfriend of one of the alleged victims in court on Wednesday and that the allegations were retribution.

Berkshire Assistant District Attorney Kelly Kemp said that Clifford had a record of six restraining orders against her and one violation. She requested that bail be set at $2,500.

Vincilette, asking for Clifford's release, argued that bail is meant to ensure the defendant returns to court. He said that his client has "always showed up for court," has four children and "minimal means to go anywhere." In addition, he noted that she was testifying in a separate case that day.

Judge Jacklyn Connly, who is based in Northampton, set bail at $5,000 for Clifford, causing the defendant to sob.

Hicks' attorney Nathaniel Green said his client had no criminal state record and asked that he be released on his own personal recognizance.

Kemp requested bail be set at $2,500 for for Hicks but Connly upped it to $5,000 pending a May 27 court date for the defendants.

To reach Nathan Mayberg:
nmayberg@berkshireeagle.com
or (413) 496-6243