Alleged attacker rescinds guilty plea

Wednesday August 8, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- A 19-year-old man was sentenced to three months in jail on Tuesday for a 2010 drunken driving accident, but he plans to go to trial in an unrelated aggravated assault and battery case next month after two judges rejected plea deals in the case.

In a Jury of Six session of Central Berkshire District Court on Tuesday, Chad M. Hodecker, of Curtin Avenue, Pittsfield, initially pleaded guilty to single counts of aggravated assault and battery and larceny over $250 in connection with the beating and robbery of a 62-year-old man last year.

In that case, Hodecker was hoping on Tuesday that the judge would agree to a nine-month jail sentence. But Judge Paul M. Vrabel didn't agree, telling the defendant he would give him 18 months in jail. The Berkshire District Attorney's Office was asking for one year in jail.

Hodecker pulled his plea, the second time he has done this, and is scheduled to take the case to trial in September.

In May, Judge Rita S. Koenigs also balked at a plea deal that would have given Hodecker a one-year suspended jail sentence with two years probation and required him to pay restitution.

Koenigs said she would give him a two-year suspended sentence with six months in jail and five years probation.

Hodecker and a juvenile are charged in a March 7, 2011, attack on Charles Helde.

At the time, Helde, 62, was walking back to his home on Richmond Avenue from the Harry's Supermarket on Wahconah Street. The attack left Helde with a broken nose, cheekbones, eye sockets and jaw. He was also robbed of $300.

The juvenile's case remains pending.

On Tuesday, Hodecker's attorney, Marc C. Vincelette, told the court that while his client was there during the beating, he did not participate in the attack and has no prior criminal convictions.

Hodecker also pleaded guilty on Tuesday to drunken driving for a July 25, 2011, incident in Pittsfield. Pittsfield Police said Hodecker drove an unregistered car while intoxicated and unlicensed, nearly hit some children who were playing in front of a Mohegan Street residence, and eventually crashed the car on the lawn of another home on Robert Street.


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