Must stay away from Bridget Villetto for a year
By Kevin E. Foley
Village Justice Thomas Costello found Richard Weissbrod, the defendant in a criminal case involving a shouting match that began at a Cold Spring polling station in 2014, guilty of one count of harassment in the second degree this week. In a decision rendered Tuesday (May 12) following a bench trial held April 30, Costello found that Weissbrod “engaged in a course of conduct or repeatedly committed acts which alarmed or seriously annoyed Bridget Villetto and which served no legitimate purpose.”
As part of the disposition of the case Costello ordered Weissbrod to avoid contact with Bridget Villetto, the complainant, for the next year. He also required Weissbrod to pay $400 in fines by June 24.
The case was unusual in that it went to an actual trial despite the minor nature of the charges. Weissbrod, in a phone interview, acknowledged he insisted on his right to a trial despite offers from the district attorney’s office to accept a plea. “All their offers involved admitting I did something wrong and I believe I was innocent of the charge,” he said.
Weissbrod added that he was not surprised by the decision but he was disappointed in the finding by Costello. He said he hadn’t decided whether to appeal or just get on with his life.