Pittsfield man charged with allegedly threatening to assault Berkshire assistant DA

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PITTSFIELD — A city man is facing charges for allegedly harassing an assistant Berkshire district attorney and threatening to "pound his face off the pavement."

Brian K. Podavini, 47, was accused of running across the West Street about 9 a.m. Wednesday and yelling at Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Daniel Hespeler as he exited the building containing the Berkshire District Attorney's Office.

"You work for the DA's Office, don't you? You're a f---ing DA!," he shouted, according to police.

Hespeler told police he laughed off the man's approach.

"You think it's funny?" Podavini replied before threatening to assault the man, police said.

Police were called and given a description and the suspect's direction of travel. Officers spotted Podavini, who matched that description, and spoke with him.

Podavini, who police said smelled of alcohol and seemed agitated, said he was "just walking around and didn't have a problem with anyone."

He was warned against contacting anyone from the DA's Office unless it was in court or via the telephone, and told to not approach Hespeler.

About 20 minutes later, police were dispatched to the Berkshire County Courthouse for a report that Podavini was again harassing Hespeler.

Officers could see the two men standing close to each other and could hear Podavini yelling, but couldn't make out what was said.

Podavini allegedly took a photo of Hespeler with his phone and yelled, "Now I know what you look like," before police arrived and placed him under arrest.

He pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court to charges of disturbing the peace and threatening to commit a crime. Judge Michele Ouimet-Rooke released Podavini on his own recognizance with the conditions he stay away from the Berkshire District Attorney's Office and stay away from and have no contact with Hespeler.

He is due back in court Feb. 21 for a pretrial hearing.

The DA's Office declined to comment on the case because it was a pending criminal matter.

Reach Bob Dunn at bdunn@berkshireeagle.com, at @BobDunn413 on Twitter and 413-496-6249.


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