Massachusetts Cop Forum banner
1 - 1 of 1 Posts

MassCops Angel
121,496 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
By Brian Fraga
Standard-Times staff writer
July 30, 2008 6:00 AM

NEW BEDFORD - A district court judge has denied bail for a city man charged with drug distribution and firearms offenses.
Vasco Lisboa, 35, described by police as a "career criminal" for his lengthy rap sheet, was detained Friday following a dangerousness hearing.
Mr. Lisboa's court appearance marked the 150th illegal firearm-related dangerousness hearing argued by the Bristol County District Attorney's Office since C. Samuel Sutter became district attorney last year.
Following his office's latest successful dangerousness argument, Mr. Sutter seized the opportunity to drum up support for his policy of moving to deny bail for anyone arrested on a felony gun charge.
"We do it every single time," he said. "That's the effectiveness of my policy."
Prosecutors have prevailed in 70 percent of illegal firearm-related dangerousness hearings since January 2007. In New Bedford, 46 of 58 defendants have been held following dangerousness hearings.
However, Mr. Sutter will have to defend his interpretation of the dangerousness statute before the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. Defense lawyers are challenging his interpretation of the statute, which was previously used mainly in domestic violence cases.
Mr. Sutter said he expects the case to go before the high court sometime in the fall. His use of the statute has been thus far validated by a Superior Court judge and a single justice of the SJC.
Mr. Sutter also bemoaned the "languishing" state of the legislation he cosponsored last year with Sen. Mark Montigny, D-New-Bedford, to specifically include guns in the dangerousness statute and increase the length of time a defendant can be held from 90 days to 120 days.
"It sends a message to the community and the criminals that illegal firearms in Bristol County will not be tolerated," Mr. Sutter said. "You will be prosecuted, swiftly, severely."
He argued the dangerousness statute is appropriate for a defendant like Mr. Lisboa, who has two prior convictions for unlawful possession of a firearm and a slew of other offenses.
Last Monday night, police executed a search warrant at his Pleasant Street apartment, where they confiscated 267 grams of marijuana, OxyCodone and Valium pills, $400 in cash and a high-capacity Smith & Wesson 9 mm handgun loaded with a 17-round magazine.
Assistant District Attorney Robert DiGiantomaso cited those facts and the defendant's criminal record in successfully arguing he be held without bail.
1 - 1 of 1 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.