Crime

Billerica man allegedly yelled racial slurs, threw beer bottle and chair at Black bystander outside bar

The victim was waiting for a Lyft ride outside the bar when the incident began, prosecutors said.

A Billerica man is facing several charges after authorities allege he hurled racial slurs, a beer bottle, and a chair at another man, who is Black, prompting a fight outside a local bar over the weekend.

Jacey Bonaiuto, 44, was arraigned Monday in Lowell District Court on the charges of a civil rights violation causing injury, two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and disorderly conduct, according to Middlesex County District Attorney Marian Ryan’s office.

Bonaiuto was ordered held on $200 bail and, should he be released, to stay away and have no contact with the victim, officials said.

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Prosecutors allege that on Saturday, May 15, around 9:19 p.m., Billerica police responded to Playoffs Bar and Grill at 512 Middlesex Turnpike after receiving a report of a fight.

“Preliminary investigation suggests that a 24-year-old male was allegedly waiting for a Lyft ride on the Middlesex Turnpike near the bar when the defendant reportedly started to yell racial slurs from the patio of the restaurant at the other male,” officials said in a statement. “Mr. Bonaiuto allegedly threw a bottle of beer and a metallic chair at the 24-year-old male striking him.”

After that, a fight broke out, and Bonaiuto continued to use racial slurs, prosecutors said.

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Officers found Bonaiuto as he was walking away from the bar and, following an investigation, placed him under arrest, according to Ryan’s office.

The victim was evaluated by paramedics and ultimately brought to an area hospital for treatment of his injuries received during the fight, prosecutors said.

“Incidents of hate-based violence have no place in our communities. These intentional actions, meant to intimidate and discriminate, leave the victim and the victim’s entire community feeling fearful, vulnerable and victimized,” Ryan said in a statement. “Over the past few years, we have seen an increase in these incidents and it is important to address them and hold accountable the perpetrators. We are committed to continuing working with legislators to close the loopholes in our statutes and increase safety for the members of our communities who are the target of hate crimes.”

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Bonaiuto is due back in court on June 24.

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