Taunton man charged with hate crime, pistol-whipping Raynham man

SE Mass

TAUNTON, Mass. (WPRI) — A Taunton man accused of pistol-whipping another man and yelling racial and derogatory remarks at him and his friends faced a judge on Friday.

Joseph Amaral Jr., 59, was arraigned on several charges including assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and a civil rights violation.

Police said they responded to a parking lot on Bay Street around 10:15 p.m. Thursday and were met by three men who said one of them, a 23-year-old Raynham man, had been pistol-whipped outside of a home on North Avenue.

The man was bleeding from his nose and had a bump on the side of his head but declined medical attention, police said.

The three men told police they were driving when the victim got out of the car and started urinating on a fence as Amaral arrived home.

When he tried to apologize, Amaral reportedly got out of his vehicle, pointed a black pistol at him and started yelling obscenities, according to police. It was then he allegedly struck the victim twice in the head with the gun before pushing him into the fence and kneeing him. Police said he also damaged the car the victim’s friends were sitting inside.

The victim, Kadison Ciffolillo, told 12 News he’s still shaken up by the incident.

“Pushes me against the fence, hitting me with the gun, calling us all the N-word,” he recalled. “And while he is hitting me with the gun, his finger was wrapped around the trigger.”

While speaking to Amaral at his home, police said they saw a black pistol that matched the one described by the victims. Amaral, who they said appeared to be intoxicated, was placed under arrest and the officers seized the firearm as evidence.

The officers swept the home and also found three rifles, two shotguns, a revolver, and boxes of ammunition, police added. His license to carry a firearm was also seized for review.

Amaral’s defense attorney claims police found no signs of injury and his client had drank after the incident took place. He said Amaral thought his house was being broken into, as it had been in the past.

“He sees an individual running from the breezeway into a car. He goes to the car, addresses the individual,” the attorney said. “Finally, one of the individuals comes out and then begins mouthing off, threatening and walking over to my client.”

According to police, there is a video of the incident circulating on the internet calling Amaral “Taunton’s finest.” Police noted that Amaral is not a member of the police department, nor is he believed to be a member of any law enforcement agency.

In addition to the charges mentioned above, Amaral was also charged with armed assault and battery to intimidate causing bodily injury, intoxicated licensee carrying a firearm, vandalizing property, threat to commit a crime, and improper storage of a firearm.

Amaral was ordered held without bail, and he’s due back in court on Monday for a dangerousness hearing.

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