FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — A Fall River man who assaulted three men holding “Back the Blue” signs outside the city’s police station will spend some time behind bars, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quinn III announced Tuesday.
Jajuan Torres, 25, pleaded guilty to three counts of assault and battery on a person over the age of 60. He was sentenced to two years in prison with 120 days to serve and the remainder suspended for two years.
Police said Torres confronted the 84-year-old, 66-year-old and 64-year-old after seeing them holding the signs, and officers witnessed him slap the 66-year-old on the head.
The 84-year-old testified that Torres demanded the men to give him the signs, then tried to take them and pushed the men to the ground, according to Quinn’s office.
The 64-year-old also testified that Torres spat on him when he tried to intervene. When they threatened to call 911, prosecutors said Torres threatened to slap them.
In addition to the prison sentence, Torres was ordered to undergo mental health treatment.
Quinn said two of the victims were present for the plea hearing and forgave Torres, saying they hope he gets the treatment he needs.
“This conduct is simply unacceptable, especially when directed at older victims who were exercising their First Amendment rights,” Quinn added. “I am pleased that the defendant was held accountable for his actions.”