Update: Caius Veiovis guilty on all counts in murder of 3 Pittsfield men
SPRINGFIELD - In a deep voice, the defendant growled loudly at the jurors that he would see them all in hell.
Caius Veiovis was convicted in Hampden Superior Court on Friday on multiple counts of murder and other charges in the slayings of three Pittsfield men in late August 2011.
Veiovis, 34, of Pittsfield, looked shocked when the court clerk read the first guilty verdict for kidnapping. He was immediately handcuffed and then sat down. He shook his head in disbelief as the rest of the guilty verdicts were read.
All told, he was found guilty of three charges each of first-degree murder with deliberate premeditation, kidnapping and witness intimidation.
After all the verdicts were read, the jurors were released by Judge C. Jeffrey Kinder, who thanked them for their service. As they were filing out of the courtroom, Veiovis shouted "I will see you in hell; every single f---ing one of you. Remember that. I'll see you all in hell," drawing gasps from those present in the courtroom.
Court security quickly swarmed Veiovis, and his attorney, James Gavin Reardon, sought to calm him down.
None of the victims' friends and family were present on Friday. Veiovis' girlfriend, Abigail Elwood, who had been in court earlier in the trial was absent, but a friend of the defendant's who owns the apartment where he once lived, was present.
Veiovis, who is scheduled to be sentenced at 2 p.m. Monday, is facing life in prison without the possibility of parole. Before the case went to trial, there were plea negotiations that could have led to a shorter prison sentence.
Berkshire District Attorney David F. Capeless said he planned to ask for consecutive sentences, just as he had for Veiovis' co-defendants.
Adam Lee Hall, 37, of Peru, and David Chalue, 47, of North Adams, were convicted earlier this year and are each serving three consecutive life sentences.
The eight women and four men on the jury deliberated for more than 36 hours before rendering the guilty verdicts. The trial lasted about three weeks.
Veiovis was convicted of helping Hall and Chalue kidnap and murder David Glasser to prevent him from testifying against Hall. Two other men, Robert Chadwell and Edward Frampton, were killed to eliminate any witnesses, prosecutors say.
The victims were last seen at Frampton and Glasser's Linden Street apartment on Aug. 27, 2011. Their dismembered bodies later were found buried in a trench in Becket.
Reardon had argued there was no scientific evidence tying his client to the crimes and no testimony linking him to the victims. He said police still don't know where the murders took place and never found the murder weapons.
Capeless has said that although the case was circumstantial, there was enough evidence to convict. He pointed to testimony that Hall brought guns over to Veiovis' apartment and cleaned a pistol there just hours before the killings. The lack of DNA and other trace evidence was due to the men taking simple precautions, like wearing gloves and destroying evidence, to prevent leaving anything behind, he said.
After the trial, Reardon said he "still strongly believed in the American jury system," believing it was the best that exists, but "obviously, respectfully" disagreed with the jury's results and believed that the evidence "didn't really support that" outcome.
"He will have an automatic appeal... to the Supreme Judicial Court and they will go over the case stem to stern," he said. "I think there were some important legal issues about circumstantial evidence and reasonable inferences from circumstantial evidence. I put some hope in the fact an appeal may reverse this."
An appeal could take 2 to 3 years.
Reardon said he respected the efforts of the DA, the police and the jury. He said his legal team did an outstanding job.
"For my client, I wish it would have turned out differently," the attorney said.
Capeless thanked the jury, saying they had taken the time to look at the evidence and were "conscientious."
"We have never wavered in our belief that we had charged all three of these people properly," he said.
"This has been an awful ordeal for the family and friends of David Glasser, Robert Chadwell and Edward Frampton," the DA said. He hoped this latest conviction would help "assuage their grief."
He thanked the various police agencies who put their "heart and soul" into this "incredible investigation."
To reach Andrew Amelinckx: email@example.com or (413) 496-6249. On Twitter: @BE_TheAmelinckx
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