BOSTON (CBS) — A Leominster man was arraigned Thursday morning in the stabbing of a 50-year-old man inside a North End apartment earlier this week.

Anthony Spinelli, 44, is charged with armed assault with intent to murder. He was ordered held on $1 million bail.

Prosecutors say he stabbed Bobby Pirelli inside his apartment on Tuesday afternoon.

“He has numerous stab wounds – one to the neck, one to the torso and one to the abdomen,” prosecutor Catherine Ham said.

Pirelli, who suffered serious injuries, was taken to a local hospital for treatment and is expected to survive.

Court documents show Spinelli once dated Pirelli’s cousin, but it’s unclear why Spinelli allegedly showed up at Pirelli’s apartment on Fulton Street. Prosecutors say what began as a conversation in the kitchen quickly turned into a struggle in Pirelli’s bedroom.

Anthony Spinelli is arraigned Thursday for the stabbing of a North End man. (WBZ-TV)

Anthony Spinelli is arraigned Thursday for the stabbing of a North End man. (WBZ-TV)

“He has a pillow on his face by the defendant. The defendant has the knife in his hand the struggle ensues,” Ham added.

Prosecutors say Pirelli lives in an apartment for the disabled and elderly. They say he was able to pull an alarm inside his bedroom, scaring Spinelli off.

Police say they found and arrested Spinelli Wednesday, hiding behind a shed in Revere.

In court Thursday, his hand was wrapped in bandages.

His attorney says Spinelli received a stab wound from the fight and cast doubt on the victim’s version of the story.

“If Mr. Spinelli were to have started a fight with Mr. Pirelli, things would not have gone down as the way Pirelli describes them in the police report,” defense attorney Justin Drechsler said.

Spinelli, who prosecutors say has a lengthy criminal record, will be back in court on January 17th.

Spinelli has made headlines before when he filed a lawsuit against convicted sex offender Jerry Sandusky, a former assistant football coach at Penn State University.

Back in 2014, Spinelli told CNN Sandusky’s abuse derailed his life. Sixteen years ago, Spinelli was convicted of beating a Fitchburg man to death.

He was 16 when he says the coach sexually assaulted him twice. After Pennsylvania prosecutors said the statute of limitations had run out, his attorneys held a news conference last year, vowing to press on.

“His life went out of control,” Pennsylvania attorney Steven Passarello said in 2015. “We’re talking drugs, alcohol, substantial criminal activity, for which he was incarcerated for. It’s a sad story from the very beginning.”

In addition to his bail, Spinelli was ordered to stay away from Pirelli and the scene of the attack, and had his bail revoked in an open OUI case in Winchendon.


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