Sentence refusal leads to doubletime

Saturday September 29, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- A city man who rejected a nine-month jail sentence during a plea hearing in April is now serving a sentence twice as long.

Sean P. Zawistowski, 26, pleaded guilty on Thursday in a Jury of Six session of the Central Berkshire District Court to two counts each of possession of heroin and larceny under $250. Judge Paul M. Vrabel sentenced the defendant to 18 months at the Berkshire Jail & House of Correction.

Zawistowski has already served a total of 300 days in jail, awaiting the outcome of his case.

He had been facing a total of 46 charges, from receiving stolen vehicles to forgery to breaking and entering, stemming from multiple cases stretching back to September 2011.

The other charges were dismissed.

In April, Judge Fredric D. Rutberg rejected both the defendant’s plea request and that of the prosecution and instead said he would sentence Zawistowski to 18 months in jail with nine months to be served and the rest suspended. Zawistowski decided to take his cases to trial.

He then racked up more drug charges the next month and had his bail revoked.

The defendant’s attorney, Michelle Mechta, said her client had been struggling with a long-term heroin addiction, but planned to go to a drug rehabilitation facility after his release from jail.


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