Pittsfield man arrested after woman said he threatened her and her child
PITTSFIELD — A city man is being held without bail for allegedly assaulting a woman and threatening the lives of her and her child through menacing text messages and photos.
Michael R. O'Grady, 27, has been in custody since his July 29 arrest pending a dangerousness hearing Wednesday in Central Berkshire District Court.
The woman told police O'Grady hit her in the face with a door several times earlier in the day, and that he was in possession of an assault-style firearm and body armor, according to a Pittsfield Police report.
Later, the woman told police, O'Grady sent her two photos and a text message in which he threatened to kill her and her child.
The first photo features a person wearing a skull-like mask and dark clothing, holding a black rifle and wearing what police described as a carrier for body armor with an American flag affixed to the front. The second photo shows a man firing a rifle in a wooded area.
The photos were followed by another text message containing similar threats, the report said.
The woman told police she recognized the person in the photos as O'Grady, and she gave the location where the second photo was taken.
Further, the woman told police that O'Grady purchased the parts for the weapon online and assembled it himself, and that he had purchased ammunition online and from a Walmart in New Hampshire.
She told police she had seen the weapon as recently as a couple of weeks earlier, and said O'Grady fired it in April 2018 — an incident that triggered a ShotSpotter activation and a police response. She said O'Grady told her to lie to police and say the neighbors recently had been setting off fireworks.
She also gave details about the rifle itself and where it might be stored.
A background check showed that O'Grady does not have a firearms license.
O'Grady told police he didn't have any real weapons.
During a search of his home after his arrest last week, police recovered a bulletproof vest, similar to the one in the photo, containing a fully loaded 30-round magazine as well as several loose rounds of ammunition. No weapon was found.
O'Grady pleaded not guilty July 30 to charges of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, threatening to commit a crime, witness intimidation, possession of a large-capacity magazine and possession of ammunition without a firearms identification card.
Judge Mark. J. Pasquariello ordered him held without the right to bail until Dec. 6. A pretrial hearing was set for Sept. 6.
Bob Dunn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, at @BobDunn413 on Twitter and 413-496-6249.
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