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Massachusetts Appeals Court Affirms Involuntary Manslaughter Conviction Against Brockton Man

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Contact: Beth Stone 508-584-8120

BROCKTON – The Massachusetts Appeals Court has affirmed the conviction of a Brockton man for a 2017 homicide, Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz has announced.

On February 21, 2017, at approximately 12:15 a.m., Brockton Police received a 911 call from a resident in an apartment at 18 Menlo Street for a report of an assault. The female caller reported that her boyfriend, identified by police as Michael Pircio, now 41, had struck another man in the head twice with a roofing shovel. Brockton Police and emergency medical services responded to the scene and the victim was transported to Good Samaritan Hospital in Brockton where he was pronounced dead of his injuries. The victim was identified as William James Porter, 30, who lived at that Menlo Street address.

In December, 2019, a jury found Pircio guilty of one count of Voluntary Manslaughter. Brockton Superior Court Judge Angel Kelley sentenced Pircio to serve 10-13 years in State Prison. The Commonwealth sought a Murder conviction against Pircio and recommended a sentence of 14-16 years in State Prison.

On Appeal, Pircio argued that the motion judge erred in denying his motions to suppress his statements to police and evidence seized from his cell phone and laptop computer. The Appeals Court concluded that the Pircio was not in custody when he made the statements, police properly seized the cell phone and got a warrant before searching it, and Pircio’s girlfriend consented to the search of the laptop and had authority to do so.

The Appeals case was handled by Assistant District Attorney Mary Nguyen. The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Jennifer Sprague and Amanda Fowle, and was investigated by State Police Detectives assigned to the Plymouth County District Attorney’s Office and Brockton Police.

AUGUST 16, 2023