Pittsfield man denies he had stolen handgun


PITTSFIELD -- A traffic stop over the weekend led to the discovery of a stolen handgun, according to authorities.

Patrick Scoco, 47, of Pittsfield, pleaded not guilty on Monday to five charges, including two felonies, and is free on bail.

On Friday night at about 7:45, Pittsfield Police officers Mark Sniezek Jr. and Darren Derby stopped Scoco on Center Street for a headlight violation. The police arrested him after it was learned he was driving with a suspended license, according to a police probable cause report.

During an inventory of the car, the officers allegedly discovered a Walther P22 semi-automatic handgun with eight rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber, as well as a box of ammunition. The gun was in arm's length of the driver's seat, police said.

The pistol was allegedly stolen during a house-break in Pittsfield last year.

Scoco was charged with having a suspended license, two gun charges and possession of stolen property over $250. On Monday, he was in Central Berkshire District Court with his attorney Thomas C. Doyle and pleaded not guilty to the two felonies, two misdemeanors and a lights violation.

Scoco was released by Judge Fredric D. Rutberg on $500 bail. The bail amount had been agreed upon by the Berkshire District Attorney's Office and Doyle.

Scoco had been held over the weekend on much higher bail.

He is due back in court for a pretrial hearing Oct. 24.

If the case stays at the district court level, the punishment can be from six months to 21 2 years in jail. If elevated to the superior court, the punishment can be between 21 2 years to five years in state prison.

The investigation into the stolen gun is continuing, according to the police report.


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