Police: Video shows who killed well-known Pittsfield barber
PITTSFIELD — Police say surveillance video of the stabbing death of William Catalano shows which of the three men charged with his murder landed the fatal blow.
According to previously sealed court documents obtained by The Eagle, Jason Sefton stabbed Catalano in front of 219 Robbins Ave. on Oct. 15, while he and co-defendants Bruce Romano and Anthony Boone all violently hit him.
According to court records, at least one stab wound punctured Catalano's heart.
But the available court documents don't provide any clarity regarding a motive for the attack. All three men have been indicted by a Berkshire County grand jury and charged with murder. They are being held without the right to bail.
Police were sent to Robbins Avenue about 5:30 p.m. Oct. 15 for multiple reports of the stabbing. All three suspects were identified by police via the surveillance video in which Catalano can be seen bleeding from his injuries and struggling to get up. An autopsy determined that Catalano, 34, died from multiple stab wounds to his torso.
Romano, 28, and Boone, 22, were apprehended soon after Catalano's death. Sefton, 20, remained at large before turning himself in Oct. 22.
In addition to the murder charge, Sefton has four open cases pending in District Court: two unlicensed operation cases, one from May and the other from June; a domestic assault and battery, aggravated assault and aggravated assault and battery case; and another aggravated assault and battery and assault and battery to collect a loan, also from May.
In the latter set of charges, Sefton is accused of having stabbed a man twice in the abdomen during a dispute over the return of drugs and a firearm. He was arraigned May 29, and his bail was set at $250, which was posted.
Sefton was already under police scrutiny for allegedly dealing cocaine and heroin in the area, according to court files.
Police spoke to at least one witness who had contacted Sefton within days of the stabbing and who was able to provide a cellphone number. Police applied for a warrant for any location data associated with that number.
It's not clear if information from that warrant request aided authorities in their search for Sefton.
According to police, Romano also has four open cases, including one involving an alleged assault with a handgun and at least three default warrants.
The relationship, if any, between Catalano, a well-known barber in Pittsfield, and his alleged assailants remains murky. An initial news release from the Berkshire District Attorney's Office in the immediate aftermath of the attack suggested that the men all knew each other. Catalano's fiance, Lindsay Roucoulet, disputed that information when she spoke to The Eagle.
A fourth man, Shane Smith, whom Roucoulet described as a longtime friend of Catalano's, has pleaded not guilty to one count of misleading police, for allegedly giving false information to authorities regarding the attack.
Smith told police that he saw a man run up to Catalano and stab him twice before fleeing the area. The video evidence contradicted that account.
Smith is being held on $3,000 bail.
Catalano's death is the second homicide in Pittsfield in 2018. David Green Jr. was shot Nov. 3 and died from his injuries five days later. No arrests have been made in that case.
If convicted of first-degree murder, the defendants will be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Bob Dunn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, at @BobDunn413 on Twitter and 413-496-6249.
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