Thursday, 4:30 PM
Debt collectors charged with assaulting young mother
By Maria Cramer, Globe Staff
A debt collector trying to repossess a 2000 Ford Focus tried to yank a young mother out of her car so violently that he ripped off her necklace and punched her in the face, a prosecutor said today in court.
While the woman's 5-year-old daughter watched in horror Friday, another debt collector jumped on the hood like a “madman,” said Brendan Barnes, a prosecutor for the Plymouth County district attorney's office.
Afraid she was being carjacked, Sara Bradley, 25, drove to the Abington Police Department with the man clinging to her hood while his partner followed in another car. The two debt collectors from South Shore Auto Recovery -- Robert Simeone, 21, and his brother, Michael, 17 -- were arrested and charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.
"This appears to be two young men in the repo business going above and beyond the call of duty," said Barnes at the brothers' arraignment today in Brockton District Court.
Aurelie M. Couturier, the Simeone brothers' defense attorney, told a much different story. Bradley drove over Michael Simeone’s foot and then used her car to ram Robert Simeone, which is how he ended up on the hood. Bradley had fallen behind on her payments for the Ford and the men were trying to repossess the car on behalf of Crown Auto Sales, Couturier said.
The men pleaded not guilty today to the assault and battery charges and plan "to fight this case ... all the way to jury trial," Couturier said.
They were ordered held on $10,000 cash bail and are scheduled to appear again in court June 21.