An attorney representing Stoneham resident Frank Petrillo, who is accused of assaulting Board of Selectmen candidate Tom Boussy on March 31, issued a brief press statement to Stoneham Patch related to the incident.
Mario Patalano, an attorney for Stoneham-based law firm Pinelli & Patalano, P. C., submitted the statement on behalf of his client.
"The unfortunate incident which took place on Saturday was not the result of Mr. Boussy’s candidacy for a position on the Stoneham Board of Selectman but rather his personal attacks against Mr. Petrillo regarding private business matters between the two and Mr. Petrillo’s pending project in Stoneham Square," reads the statement.
Stoneham Police are requesting a hearing in Woburn District Court related to the alleged assault of a Board of Selectmen candidate on Saturday morning, according to Police Chief Richard Bongiorno.
Stoneham Board of Selectmen candidate Tom Boussy claims he was verbally and physically assaulted while campaigning at the corner of Elm and Main Streets by Stoneham resident Frank Petrillo.
A court clerk at the summons hearing will determine whether to issue criminal complaints against Petrillo for a past assault and battery and willful and malicious destruction of personal property (election signs), according to the police chief. If the clerk decides to issue the complaints, Petrillo would be arraigned in the District Court and stand trial, he added. However, the clerk could opt not to proceed with the issuance of complaints by continuing the case and Petrillo would not be arrested, Bongiorno explained.
"It was a verbal altercation with minor assault and battery and no injuries," according to Bongiorno. He added that police did not witness the alleged assault, but there were "several witnesses who confirmed what Boussy alleges."
It's unclear when the hearing will take place.
Meanwhile, Stoneham Patch was able to speak with Petrillo Monday night and he plans to issue a statement on Tuesday related to the March 31 incident. He has hired an attorney to represent him should the case go to court.
Stoneham Board of Selectmen candidate Tom Boussy was reportedly verbally and physically assaulted by a man who owns property in town on Saturday morning near , according to several witnesses.
At 9:30 a.m. outside Walgreens on the corner of Elm and Main Streets, Boussy and his supporters were holding signs to support his candidacy for Selectmen, when Stoneham resident and land owner, Frank Petrillo, drove up to Boussy, exited his truck and proceeded to physically and verbally assault the candidate, according to witnesses.
"Today was a sad day," witness Karen Spinali on Stoneham Patch. "As I bring my children down to hold signs for a candidate for a better Stoneham, and a man (allegedly) assaults him in front of us for a better Stonaham. Where do I live??? I (s)tand here totally invested in Tom Boussy for Selectman. Good God! (W)here do people come from. Tom Boussy is my guy for the right reasons especially after today(.) I'm proud to be a supporter."
Stoneham resident Rich Lerman, who was campaigning with Boussy at the time of the alleged assault, on Stoneham Patch, saying, "The (alleged) physical assault on a candidate was at the least unfortunate."
The reason for the alleged attack, according to Boussy, is because Petrillo is upset with Boussy's bid for Selectman because he wants Petrillo to do something with the empty parcel of land he owns in downtown Stoneham between and the . Boussy wants to put something into the empty space to push forward the revitalization of downtown Stoneham and attract more business to the area. Petrillo is against this stance, according to Boussy.
Boussy claims Petrillo “jumped out of his truck and started saying, 'You (expletive) this and you (expletive) that' and then started grabbing my signs off the ground and smashing them against the nearby fire hydrants.”
Boussy claims Petrillo continued throwing around Boussy's signs and other personal possessions and then started pushing Boussy before Petrillo “took a shot at him.” The crowd that had gathered, along with Boussy's supporters, got between Boussy and Petrillo and held Petrillo back as he continued to try and punch Boussy.
In an email to Stoneham Patch, Boussy's campaign administrator and Woburn resident Nancy Cecchini described what she saw after getting to the stumping location following the alleged assault.
"I arrived shortly after the incident while (approximately five officers) were there," wrote Cecchini. "I originally thought it was due to the strong turnout Tom had for sign holding. When I got closer I noticed about six signs broken off their sticks. I was then told by several people who were also volunteers what happened.
"Tom spoke with police and was given some options on how he can handle the incident. He did go to the police station with the other volunteers that were directly involved with the altercation."
Boussy said he could seek to press charges against Petrillo for assault and battery and destruction of property, which amounted to roughly $100 in damages. As of Saturday afternoon, no arrests had been made, according to police.
“I can try to get a restraining order...or go over and get one on Monday, but I'm not sure," Boussy said. "The police said he wouldn't bother me anymore, so I might let sleeping dogs lie.”
When asked how he will handle proceedings with Petrillo in the future, Boussy said, “I'll treat him like any other resident in Stoneham.”
Boussy seemed most upset that Petrillo ruined his campaign initiative for the day, saying, “I was really upset by it because we had a lot of children out there and that's not how we want this town run. There is a process we have to go through, we can't just intimidate people who think differently than us. It isn't what we want in Stoneham.”
Petrillo could not be reached for comment.