Pittsfield father and son deny 22 gun charges
PITTSFIELD -- Police looking for a suspect in an alleged vandalism incident in Dalton turned up "a large cache of illegal weapons and ammunition" at the city apartment the man shares with his father.
The suspect, Justin C. Gaetani, 29, and his father, Gerald V. Gaetani, 62, of Bradford Street, are out on bail after pleading not guilty on Monday to 22 gun-related charges in Central Berkshire District Court. The younger Gaetani also pleaded not guilty to a charge of vandalism.
Justin Gaetani's lawyer, Marc C. Vincelette, said his client doesn't live at the apartment and had only been out of jail for 36 hours at the time of his arrest.
"The prosecution has a lot of questions to answer before they can get a conviction," he said, "including how my client was able to get this cache of guns together... when he's been in jail for 18 months."
A call to the elder Gaetani's lawyer, Joshua C. Hochberg, was not immediately returned.
According to Pittsfield and Dalton Police reports, the younger Gaetani allegedly knocked over a pole at the Shamrock Village Inn on Main Street in Dalton late Saturday night and then fled the scene by car. Dalton police investigated the incident and asked the Pittsfield Police to look for Gaetani at the Bradford Street residence.
The elder Gaetani initially allowed police to search the apartment, but he told them to leave after they found a loaded AR-15 and an AK-22, both with high-capacity magazines, on a pile of clothes in a closet. Police said neither Gaetani has a valid gun license.
After receiving a search warrant, police allegedly recovered two loaded handguns, nine high-capacity magazines for various pistols and rifles, a bullet-proof vest and more than 100 loose rounds of ammunition, besides the two semi-automatic rifles, police said. One of the pistols had a defaced serial number that prevented them from determining whether the weapon was stolen.
The police report does not indicate whether any of the other weapons seized from the house were stolen.
Both defendants appeared before Judge Fredric D. Rutberg on Monday. Justin Gaetani was released on $2,500 bail and his father was released on $10,000 bail.