PITTSFIELD -- A city man was sentenced to 3 1/2 years in jail Tuesday for stabbing someone outside a North Adams bar last summer.

Messiah Grandson, 22, of John Street, was the last of five men to plead guilty to charges connected to a fight outside of the Artery Lounge in North Adams in the early morning hours of June 15, 2013.

The attack left the 42-year-old victim with eight stab wounds in his back and buttocks.

The attack began after words were exchanged between two groups of people in a crowd of about 30 outside the Union Street bar, according to the prosecutor.

Second Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Robert W. Kinzer III said Derrick Borum of North Adams was set upon by several men after he tripped and fell while trying to back up. In a surveillance video Grandson is seen circling around, reaching inside his pocket and then jabbing the victim.

Borum suffered severe injuries and had to have emergency surgery for internal bleeding, said the prosecutor.

Grandson's attorney, Edmund St. John III, said there was evidence that Borum may have also had a knife.

After his arrest, police found a bloody pocket knife on Grandson who admitted to stabbing the victim once. He told police another man had also stabbed Borum. It later turned out that this person hadn't been involved, said Kinzer.

On Tuesday in Berkshire Superior Court, Grandson pleaded guilty to single counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and misleading a police officer.


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A charge of armed assault to murder was dismissed at the request of the DA's Office.

Kinzer asked the court to sentence Grandson to at least 31 2 and no more than six years in state prison citing the nature of the crimes.

St. John said his client didn't have a record to speak of, took responsibility for his actions and had been a model prisoner while in jail awaiting the outcome of the case. He asked for a 3 1/2 year jail sentence.

Judge John A. Agostini sentenced Grandson to 3 1/2 years at the Berkshire County Jail & House of Correction in line with the defense request.

The judge based his decision on the defendant's age and lack of record.

"Next time he'll be going to state prison," said the judge.

Grandson was given credit for the 408 days that he has already served because he was unable to make bail.

In March, Johnny Nieves, 39, of Burbank Street, Pittsfield, pleaded guilty to three counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and one count of assault and battery and was sentenced to 45 days in jail and two years of probation. During the fight, he struck Borum with a beer bottle, which bounced off the man's shoulder, hitting 23-year-old Brittany Gresser in the forehead and causing a large gash, said police.

Brandon Green, 22, of Myrtle Street, Pittsfield, also charged in the attack, suffered a stab wound to the leg. In February, he pleaded guilty to assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and was given a year of probation.

Quintin J. Sumpter, 25, of John Street, pleaded to sufficient facts earlier this month and had a felony assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (shod foot) and assault and battery continued without a finding of guilt for a year. He punched and kicked Borum, police said.

In December, Steven Sumpter, 20, had a charge of misdemeanor assault and battery continued without a finding of guilt for six months. He attempted to initiate a second fight with a man who was not injured in the exchange, according to Kinzer.

The investigation was conducted by members of the North Adams Police Department and state police detectives assigned to the District Attorney's Office.

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