Thursday May 3, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- The at tempted murder case of a Pittsfield man accused of running three people down in a sport utility vehicle during a melee at a city housing project in June 2010 got under way on Wednesday in Berkshire Su perior Court with jury selection and opening arguments.

Jerry Davis, 30, sat quietly beside his attorney, David A. Pixley, as the defense and prosecution whittled down the prospective jurors to seven men and seven women.

The 30-year-old Davis is facing attempted murder and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon charges for allegedly striking three people with his vehicle, including Larry Beamon, 33, who suffered life threatening injuries, according to police and prosecutors.

First Assistant Berkshire Dis trict Attorney Paul J. Cac caviello, said that on June 10, 2010 Davis, during a melee on Memorial Drive in the Wilson Park housing complex, first struck two women, Beamon’s sister, 24-year-old Camelia Artis, and their mother, Gaylamar Artis before running down Beamon.

"He hit him so hard he flew into the air and landed in the roadway," the prosecutor told the jury and described Beamon’s injuries, which included a torn aorta, a lacerated liver and kidney and a broken spine and ribs.

Pixley told the jury that his client didn’t intentionally hit anyone, hadn’t even been involved in the original fight and had only gone there to help a friend who was being attacked.


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Pixley said his client pulled Lawrence Taylor, 34, to safety, got into an SUV and attempted to leave the area but was "surrounded by between 10 and 20 people."

Taylor, he said, later required hospitalization for his wounds.

Beamon, he said, smashed the SUV’s windshield twice, with either a two-by-four or a bat, before Davis accidentally hit Beamon as he left the area through a narrow strip of grass where he was standing.

"These people were fighting for their lives," he said of Davis and Taylor.

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