YEAR IN REVIEW: Top stories in Easton in 2018 – News – The Enterprise, Brockton, MA

These are some of the top stories that impacted Easton in the last year.

1. Death of Stonehill football player leaves Easton campus heartbroken

The sudden, predawn death of a Stonehill College football player left the campus reeling in early October.

Marc Tarabocchia, a junior offensive lineman from Ramsey, New Jersey, was found dead at the football stadium where he used to suit up in Skyhawk colors.

Stonehill College Police Department responded to W.B. Mason Stadium about 3:30 a.m. Officers quickly closed the sports complex area and called the Easton Fire Department to the scene for a medical emergency.

The Bristol County distict attorney’s office later said the death was an apparent suicide. Tarabocchia was 20 years old.

He is survived by his parents, Anthony and Angie, and two younger siblings, Tyler and Dylan.

At Stonehill, where he studied accounting, Tarabocchia played in one football game in the 2018 season and was on the college and conference honor roll the previous year.


2. When dream homes become nightmares — Easton builder at center of case

Rhonda Messia and her husband wanted to build their dream home. But after purchasing from a “respectable landowner,” they hired a not-so-respectable builder, they say.

With their house close to completion, the Messias soon learned that Easton’s DKW Builders had kept  more than $80,000 the company was supposed to pay its suppliers and subcontractors with.

After disappearing for months, only to call the Messias once to attribute the mismanagement to a mental health crisis, DKW Builders — owned and operated by husband and wife David and Karen Welch — have resurfaced.

In Norton, they have re-registered with the state under a new building license. But in Taunton, they are being prosecuted for larceny by the Bristol County district attorney’s office.

It turns out the Messias weren’t the only ones who found themselves “swindled” out of tens of thousands of dollars, as the Bristol County district attorney’s office put it in an investigative report. A bankruptcy petition filed by DKW Builders in 2016 stated that the Welch’s business owed just under $3 million to more than 100 creditors.

The Welches are due back in court Jan. 17. Meanwhile, the Messias say the fraud has crippled them financially.

“We saved every penny we could to build this house and they took it,” said Rhonda Messia. “The joy of building a house is gone.”


3. Before hail of Easton gunfire, man pointed pellet gun at officers

Police shot a man from Hyde Park earlier this month after he allegedly pointed a pellet gun at officers and exhorted them to kill him.

Easton police first responded to a home in the 300 block of Bay Road after a homeowner called to report a man, who police later identified as Serge Andre, who they thought was trying to enter a home illegally.

When police arrived on scene, Andre fled. Due to speeds which reached about 60 mph, the chase was called off, according to prosecutors, but the officer soon came upon a crash involving the vehicle Andre was driving.

Andre exited the SUV and went toward a home, where a homeowner called police after she thought she saw Andre display a firearm.

When police caught up to Andre, they say he brandished what they believed was a gun at them. Police fired multiple shots, striking Andre at least once, prosecutors say. The officers immediately rendered aid to Andre before an ambulance transported him to a hospital.

Police later identified the object Andre was holding as a pellet gun.

Following a video-conference arraignment, Andre was held without bail in Taunton District Court on charges of attempted breaking and entering, failure to stop for police, reckless operation of a motor vehicle and a subsequent offense of driving with a suspended license.

Andre is due back in court Jan. 15 for a pre-trial conference.


4. Six week search for Easton’s Greg Glavin ended half-mile from home

The mysterious story of Gregory Glavin, an Easton man missing for more than six weeks, took a turn in less than a half-mile from his childhood home.

The discovery, conducted by a specialized state K-9 unit, closed a painful chapter of uncertainty in the lives of Glavin’s parents, Paul and Helen. The Glavins said their son’s body was discovered at Wright Farm — the same location of a massive search involving dirt bikes, ATVs, K-9s and a helicopter conducted five weeks earlier. Glavin’s body was found next to his maroon moped beneath a camouflage tarp.

The entrance to Wright Farm is about 3/10ths of a mile from the Glavin home on Bay Road. The Glavins said their son knew the trails there like the back of his hand.

Before Gregory went missing, his mother said he had texted a friend, telling them he was afraid someone was after him.

Police said foul play was not suspected in the death.

Hypothermia remains a possibility; Glavin was wearing only a leather jacket and jeans at the time of his death. The night he went missing, on Feb. 17, it rained, sleeted and snowed.

A 35-year-old electrician and Oliver Ames High School graduate, Gregory Glavin lived his whole life in Easton, his parents said.


5. Upscale Easton restaurant already the talk of the Towneship

Towneship, the latest project of chef Chandra Gouldrup that serves as a sister venue to The Farmer’s Daughter, opened its doors in April.

In a word, Towneship is swanky — seemingly suited for Boston’s North End with its mood lighting and elegant menu. At the time of its opening, foie gras parfait and monkfish loin were featured on the restaurant’s seasonal menu.

But the venue also carries a rustic feeling with its exposed beams and brick walls. Towneship’s building, more than 150 years old, was formerly a Swedish church in Easton, and long abandoned.

When Gouldrup and partner David Howe first entered the building about five years ago, there were still dusty pews inside and it was used for storage.

“We instantly saw parts of it that were gorgeous, like the ceiling,” Gouldrup said. “The space led us.”

The restaurant, at 140 Main St., seats more than 240 people, including a table for six where chefs create and prepare a custom menu for the group.

Gouldrup teamed up with chef Corey Williams, a New Hampshire native well known in the Boston dining scene, to form the restaurant’s dining menu.

Two Easton police officers worked a detail at the corner of Mechanic and Main streets to help direct the traffic that accompanied the restaurant’s grand opening.


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