Man accused of assaulting husband

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PITTSFIELD A Pittsfield man has been charged with assaulting his husband then vandalizing the man's place of employment following a dispute.

Jose A. Whiteley, 30, of First Street, pleaded not guilty to three charges connected with the incident June 22 in Central Berkshire District Court. Whiteley was released on personal recognizance following a dangerousness hearing, after Judge Jennifer Tyne determined the prosecution had not proved Whiteley should be held without the right to bail for 120 days.

Assistant District Attorney Amy Winston did not ask the court to set bail for Whiteley following the dangerousness hearing.

Tyne did extend an emergency restraining order the victim obtained against Whiteley for a full year. Earlier, Tyne said she would release Whiteley because he had not violated the terms of a previous restraining order the victim had obtained against him. The couple has been married for seven months.

According to police, the victim was assaulted June 20 after he went looking for Whiteley and found him drinking in a car in the parking lot of Tito's Mexican Restaurant on Depot Street with another man.

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The two men began arguing after the victim opened the car door and told Whiteley it was time to go home. Whiteley then allegedly punched and kicked the victim. Police found blood under the victim's nose and on his left knee, abrasions on the inside of an elbow and outside a wrist, and cuts on the ring, middle and pointer fingers of his right hand.

After the victim fled the scene, Whiteley caused some $3,000 worth of damage to Tito's, where the victim works as a waiter. He broke windows, throwing a one-foot log through one, and damaged the front door and outside dining area, police said.

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The victim called police after returning to the couple's residence on First Street, and was taken to Berkshire Medical Center where he was treated and released.

Police arrested Whiteley after he returned to the couple's home and broke two television sets and a window.

During the dangerousness hearing, the victim said Whiteley's brother had come to Tito's the following day and asked him to drop the charges so Whiteley could be released from custody. The victim said he became so fearful that he left his job and returned home.

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In asking the court to extend the restraining order, the victim said, "I'm very afraid for my personal safety."

Recalling similar incidents between the couple, including one where Whiteley broke the window of his car June 9, the victim said, "he gets very violent."

Attorney Gregory Barry of Pittsfield, who represented Whiteley, said his client denied asking his brother to get the victim to drop the charges. He said his client wished he had a "cooler head "when the fighting and vandalism took place, but thought a physical altercation was going to take place when the victim opened the car door.

Originally from Brooklyn, N.Y., Whiteley has a previous assault and battery conviction on his record and has been charged twice with drunken driving. Barry said he has been charged with no serious offense s during the past five years.

Whiteley is charged with single counts of vandalizing property, assault and battery on a family member and assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon (shot foot). The case has been continued until Oct. 6.


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