Criminal charges were lodged against 44 year-old Timothy Dutcher on Thursday as a result of his confrontation with another man at a Braintree gym. According to Boston.com, Mr. Dutcher and an unnamed 27 year-old Quincy man were working out in a Braintree gym when Dutcher allegedly "became enraged" at the Quincy man.
Dutcher allegedly backed the "victim" into a corner, slapped him, and held two dumbbells over his head while verbally threatening him. The victim extricated himself and made tracks to a nearby gas station to call the police to report his humiliation. By the time the police got to the gym, however, Dutcher had left. They then went to Dutcher's home and arrested him. Based on the victim's narrative, the police charged Dutcher with Assault and Battery, Assault with a Dangerous Weapon, and Threats.
This is one of those cases that makes you wonder about the back story. What were these guys arguing about? Did the victim violate gym ethics by failing to rack his weights? Did the victim cut in on Dutcher's routine? Did they know each other? There must be witnesses. How big is the victim compared to Dutcher? Is there some code behind the word "enraged" as used in the article. Is someone implying "roid" rage? Why did the victim bother calling the police at all? There's the law and then there's just life. Apparently some people are just more prone to assume the victim role.
The charge of Assault with Dangerous Weapons (dumbbells) is a felony. If not for this allegation, there may not have been an arrest at all. If all of the charges were misdemeanors, Dutcher would have had a right to a Clerk's Hearing where all this could have been hashed out between the parties without the necessity of the criminal process. This would have been best in this circumstance.
As it stands, I expect that Dutcher made bail from the police station and was either arraigned on Friday or will be at some time in the near future. At arraignment, the judge may order him to stay away from both the victim and the gym while the case is pending. An experienced criminal defense attorney will obviously focus on avoiding convictions for any of these charges, especially the felony. Any conviction may involve a jail sentence, probation, fines, fees and further stay-away orders.
For better or for worse, the days of self-help after the bully kicks sand in your face are over.