Supreme Court Upholds Convictions Of Three Policemen In King Arthur's CaseJAMES SIMON , Associated Press
May. 8, 1985 4:17 PM ET
BOSTON (AP) _ The state Supreme Court on Wednesday rejected the appeals of three policemen convicted in the bloody 1982 death of a man in a ''police brawl'' at the King Arthur's Motel in Chelsea.
The justices upheld all 14 counts against the Everett police officers stemming from the police-civilian battle.
Sgt. John W. McLeod and Office Richard P. Aiello were convicted of second- degree murder and Officer John T. Macauda was convicted of manslaughter in the death of Vincent J. Bordonaro.
The legal arguments in their appeal included extensive pre-trial publicity about the case, potential errors in the judge's instructions to the jury and alleged improprieties in the prosecution's closing argument.
But in its unanimous, 30-page decision, the Supreme Court said it found no grounds for reversing the convictions and affirmed the Superior Court jury's verdict.
The case began with a violent police raid July 23, 1982 on King Arthur's, a tough hangout in the blue-collar suburb of Chelsea north of Boston.
According to trial testimony, McLeod, an off-duty officer in the nearby city of Everett, got involved in a fight with four men in the motel bar and was thrown out. He had a guard at a nearby building call Everett police and ask for help.
Everett and Chelsea police arrived and cornered a dozen customers in a room above the bar, including some who had fought with McLeod, witnesses said.
When the customers refused to leave the room, witnesses said the police battered down the door with a tire iron, nightsticks and axe while shouting, ''We're going to kill you,'' then beat seven men.
''With each of the several hits, witnesses reported that McLeod yelled, 'My name is John McLeod and don't you forget it','' the Wednesday decision said.
Aiello and a bloody, stumbling McLeod re-entered the room. McLeod, using a baseball bat, repeatedly hit Bordonaro and Alfred Mattuchio, the decision said.
Bordonaro, a 54-year-old Everett man, died a week later of head injuries.
The blood-splattered room remains in the same condition today as it did during the brawl, both as a memorial to the incident and because of pending lawsuits, said King Arthur's owner Arthur Guttadauro.
McLeod and Aiello are serving life terms, with parole eligibility after 15 years, while Macauda is serving a six- to 10-year term.
A fourth Everett officer was acquitted of murder charges while a Chelsea patrolman was found innocent of assault charges and civil rights violations.