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A judge agreed a man accused in a North Adams shooting poses a danger. A lab test suggests the man did not fire a gun

145 State St. North Adams.png (copy) (copy)

Initial tests of a defendant's hands for gunshot residue were negative in an incident at this building at 145 State St. in North Adams. Police contend that Isaiah J. Calderon fired six shots from a 9 mm weapon into a vacant apartment. Calderon says he did not fire a gun the night of his arrest Oct. 24.

NORTH ADAMS — Isaiah J. Calderon says he carried no gun on the October night he argued with a former girlfriend in North Adams — the night police later found spent shells at the scene.

Still, Calderon was ordered held without bail at a dangerousness hearing Nov. 5, pending the results of gunshot residue tests.

Alleged shooter in North Adams says gunshot residue tests will clear him

The first test is in. Samples taken from Calderon’s hands by police were negative for signs that he recently had fired a gun, according to his attorney, Jill A. Sheldon, of the Hochberg Law Offices in Pittsfield. Another test — it was on a sweatshirt Calderon was wearing — is pending.

North Adams Police allege that Calderon shot six times into a vacant second-floor apartment on the night of Oct. 23-24. No one was injured.

The case is scheduled to go back to Northern Berkshire District Court at the end of next week.

“I asked for a quick date because I want my client released as soon as the test results come in,” Sheldon told The Eagle by email.

She said the Berkshire District Attorney’s Office, which requested that Calderon be held as a danger to the community, is asking the laboratory handling the testing to expedite the results.

Judge Paul Vrabel agreed to hold Calderon for 120 days, after noting that the gunshot residue test results were crucial.

“There’s some key pieces of evidence that we don’t know,” Vrabel said. “In a perfect world, we would have those forensic results today.”

At that Nov. 5 court appearance, Sheldon suggested that the 9 mm shells found at the 145 State St. apartment building could have come from an earlier shooting.

In a court presentation, Sheldon questioned why surveillance video of people in front of the building did not appear to show them reacting in the time frame when Calderon is alleged to have discharged a weapon.

“They didn’t even turn. That strikes me as odd,” she said. “There’s something bizarre about this case.”

People outside the building, near a bar, were laughing and talking, Sheldon said, citing the video evidence. “At no point do any of them stop and turn and look where allegedly six gunshots went off. There is no reaction. Nobody runs. Nothing.”

Larry Parnass can be reached at lparnass@berkshireeagle.com and 413-588-8341.

Investigations editor

Larry Parnass joined The Eagle in 2016 from the Daily Hampshire Gazette, where he was editor in chief. His freelance work has appeared in the Washington Post, Boston Globe, Hartford Courant, CommonWealth Magazine and with the Reuters news service.

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