PLANET VALENTI News and Commentary

(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, THURSDAY, JAN. 23, 2014) — THE PLANET looks with amusement as the faux “controversy” making the local rounds about why we haven’t provided coverage or commentary on the Adam Hall “Trio Trial.” Fair question, granted, although we shall puncture the balloons of more than a few of our most loyal followers (they would be our critics) in saying that there aren’t any deep, dark reasons for our reticence.

There’s not a grassy knoll here. Sorry, all you cabalists.

Both the Springfield Republican‘s site and the Boring Broadsheet have been providing daily coverage of The Trio Trial. Granted, he story has been a headline grabber since it first surfaced.  THE PLANET has never said otherwise. Granted, our coverage would blow both out of the water.

Keep in mind a couple of points:

(1) THE PLANET doesn’t have time in our busy schedule to be in Springfield for days on end. How else could we be making out West Coast commutes, for instance? Earlier this week, if was in the low 70s in Needles, Calif., by the way.

(2) Since we are honest to a fault with our readers, we would never provide coverage of a case like this if we weren’t actually sitting on press row, in the flesh, in the Hampden Superior Court for a first-hand view. In court cases, you simply have to be there. If other outlets are doing it in abstentia, that’s their business.

The key to a story like this isn’t the process. It’s the outcome. In a trial, the outcome will be the verdict.

Keep in mind a third point:

(3) Our first loyalty here on THE PLANET is to our readers, and we have judged they will be best be served by our continuing to go where other local media fear to tread. As we say, the local media has The Trio Trial covered. THE PLANET would rather devote our limited time (what, you think this is all we do??) to essentially serve as the independent monitor of political power as well the thermometer and barometer of communal, civic, and political Pittsfield, primarily, and the county. Right now, the city is running a bad fever cause by the daily microbes that infect the corporate body. Some of those we touched upon in the last couple of days. The Trio Trial, while a product of that same disease, has been cut out — lanced, if you prefer — and has made its way to the Superior Court. The court will do the talking. We will let other media do the reporting.

Be clear, though: We have not claimed, are not claiming, and will not claim the story of the trial is insignificant or unworthy of coverage, as has been falsely implied. THE PLANET agrees with our critics: The Trio Trial can say much about the times and the places in which we live. Our involvement with the story, with whatever degree, doesn’t not alter that one bit or byte.

——- 000 ——- 000 ——-


THE PLANET has not done a formal content analysis of the respective coverages, but we’ve looked at enough of the dispatches to say that has been providing better coverage than the Boring Broadsheet, although in fairness to our good friend Andrew Amelinckx, it’s not clear he’s even in the courtroom.

That is to ask: Is the paper that $%^&*# cheap that it can’t pay his gas and mileage to and fro or, God forbid, put him up at Motel 6 (or even a Raid roach motel, if it came to that)? On Amelinckx’s Twitter account, he words it this way: “I’m live blogging the Adam Lee triple murder trial. Catch it on” He doesn’t say he’s in the courtroom, in person, only that he’s blogging live. Is he actually there? Naturally, when you click on the live link to the BB as AA asks you to do, it takes forever to find coverage of the Hall trial, the BB‘s website being about as negotiable as a three dollar bill and as user-friendly as cuneiform.

The Triple Trial has featured jilted lovers, hatchets and hacksaws, dismemberment, motorcycle gangs, David Capeless playing the part of Hamilton Burger, and other such spicey-bits. These elements provide what we term the “sensational.” Coverage of the sensational can and should produce “sensationalism,” and there’s no harm in that. We would be surprised if the media did not play up that angle. Outside of the time factor we mentioned above, THE PLANET has eschewed the opportunity to chew such low-hanging fruit so that we can go after stories right here in the backyard that would otherwise not see the light of day. We like to the digging. Having it handed to us isn’t necessarily an attraction.

The unfortunate murder of three people, however tragic, is a one-and-done. Bad government, however, hammers We The People ever day. Like the woods walker in Frost‘s poem who faces a fork in the road, he knows he cannot take both and still “one traveler be.” Neither he nor THE PLANET are Yogi Berra (“When you come to a fork in the road, take it”). THE PLANET, therefore, watches the trial at a distance, with our gaze going where others will not dare go, for fear of rocking the boat on turbulent seas too close to home. The little tin captains want you to believe the water is smooth as a mirror.

It ain’t.


“America … Your machinery is too much for me. You made me want to be a saint. There must be some other way to settle this argument.”Allan Ginsberg, “America,” (1956).







  1. Jonathan Melle
    January 22, 2014 at 9:34 pm #

    The Berkshire Eagle is a corporate-owned, third-rate, “newspaper” without a conscience. The Beagle backed the Consent Decree. They backed all of the Good Old Boys who have run Pittsfield into the ground. They don’t pay their staff living wages. It has been a generation ago since the Beagle was a worthy member of the Fourth Estate. Jonathan Levine’s Pittsfield Gazette is a good weekly newspaper that covers Pittsfield politics. Dan Valenti does a good job commenting on Pittsfield politics, too.

    • dusty
      January 23, 2014 at 3:00 am #

      Jonathon do not forget the Eagle backed the CIVIC AUTHORITY.

      They pushed and pulled and screamed and cried and cajoled and maneuvered to get this phony pseudo govt to take over Pittsfield. And when all their below the belt efforts failed they rained retribution on their detractors.

      I would love to see Dan do a piece on the Civic Authority in review as I bet many or most of Pittsfield current residents are unaware of what almost happened to their city and the powerful underbelly politics that exist within.

      • shakes his head
        January 23, 2014 at 12:39 pm #

        Thank goodness there is no Civic Authority, can you imagine what Hizzoner would do with even more proclamations to read and ceremonial pitches to cheese up to?

        • levitan
          January 23, 2014 at 1:11 pm #

          Bianchi was outspoken in his opposition to the CA. How does your post make sense?

          • dusty
            January 23, 2014 at 3:16 pm #

            I do not recall referencing Bianchi in that post. But I would be surprised to learn that everything is on the up and up nowadays either. For instance, I do not think the charter change was aimed at making things better for the run of the mill citizen as opposed to the power brokers who run the city.

          • Donald
            January 23, 2014 at 3:22 pm #

            Doesn’t mean he wouldn’t have taken credit if it was a success. Isn’t that all he’s done so far?

          • Toland
            January 24, 2014 at 9:22 am #


        • levitan
          January 23, 2014 at 3:19 pm #

          Dusty, apologies – my post is directed to Shakes his Head who implies a connection between the CA and D. Bianchi. A connection that is wholly unfair given his outspoken resistance to it.

          • Bball8
            January 23, 2014 at 7:32 pm #

            Dan B , Scapin, and Guzzo were opposed.. But it was because of the stadium… Bianchi (ward 6) , Scapin (ward 5) where it would have been, Guzzo (ward 7).. To preserve wahconah park.. It wasn’t the concept of CA they opposed.. It was stadium, and CA which was needed to do stadium.

  2. Giacometti
    January 22, 2014 at 10:23 pm #

    Dan…you’re right not to cover the TRIO TRIAL every day because
    at the end of the day the trial is just stupid and you can’t fix stupid.

    • levitan
      January 23, 2014 at 9:44 am #

      Is it ‘stupid’ because the victims lived on the margins?

      I wrote prior to the tale of the Hells Angels/Hall murder as a manifestation of profound evil; evil that we hall likely encountered in regular transactions with any number of the witnesses/collaborators.

      Has the time come for us to discuss the more banal evil, if even that, that pervades sites such as this that are comprised solely of self-agrandizement, baloney, and malicious gossip?

      Granted, our coverage would blow both out of the water.

      Self-aggrandizement; how can you claim that if you believe it’s just a sensational story? Are you in the habit of outdoing sensation, Mr. Valenti?

      The key to a story like this isn’t the process. It’s the outcome. In a trial, the outcome will be the verdict.

      False: The verdict barely closes the story which continues on in the form of hells angels activity and those who will continue to scrap their cars, etc…

      • Joe Blow
        January 23, 2014 at 12:01 pm #

        It seems you don’t like this blog…why not start your own? That way you could cover the stories you think are important. Let’s not forget Dan does this blog as a public service and donates his time.

        • levitan
          January 23, 2014 at 1:13 pm #

          I’d have to do the hard work of finding dozen ‘yes’ men I suppose.

        • levitan
          January 23, 2014 at 1:15 pm #

          Respects to Dan Valenti for letting contrary positions stand.

  3. Ron Kitterman
    January 23, 2014 at 5:37 am #

    Dan, The days of ambitious nose for the news rival newsmen getting the scoop are long gone, why would you wish to punish Andrew Amelinckx by sitting him through the Hall trial ? They can’t even make a movie out of that story. Once you get the plot covered how the hell would you do the cast for the other clowns ?

    • levitan
      January 23, 2014 at 9:51 am #

      Respectfully, Ron, if you want to know the long history of journalism, read Waugh’s ‘Scoop.’ The successful journalists sequestered themselves in rooms and waited for ‘contacts’ to feed them stories and then burst on the scene claiming they got the scoop.

      I sure hope that they don’t make a movie from these murders, Ron, anymore than I care for them sweeping them under the rug.

      • dusty
        January 23, 2014 at 10:09 am #

        Making a movie of these murders might just be the economic engine the city needs. A studio could be built on the PEDA site. The city has enough low lifes (that would not even need makeup) to play the characters and we have food trucks waiting for a place to park and sell. We now have an airport big enough to land Charlie Sheen’s jet and he could play the Hall character. If we really want to promote the arts this sounds like a good place to start.

        Get Mayor what’s his name on the phone right now! It’s an economic engine I tell ya. Let’s put this county on the map. Jobs jobs jobs It has been right in front of us the whole time Follywood, Massachusettes

        • levitan
          January 23, 2014 at 1:18 pm #

          Sad use of the word, ‘low life.’ I refer you back to my response to Giacometti. The victims are marginal folk, perhaps they were low life too in life.

          Makes it all good then? Hall murders them and takes care to keep it (mostly) out of our downtown, so it’s not much of a story it seems.

          • scott
            January 23, 2014 at 4:05 pm #

            I think your personal opinion based on the nilan coverage is getting the best of you. Youre better than that I know you are and you bet your ass if the chief of probation killed three people dv would be all over it like milk in a paper cup in a snow storm With that said put me down for three t shirts with the bold text “who the F*** is Peter Moore?”

          • levitan
            January 23, 2014 at 5:45 pm #

            Scott, that really is my point. If a VIP were involved in the murder, Dan would be all over it. Sensational!

            Ok, Dan’s a busy guy and not all fruit are suitable for market. Perhaps the next time this happens he’ll notice it.

          • levitan
            January 23, 2014 at 5:46 pm #

            PS., we’ll be seeing each other I hope at the range. Sending in my form today 🙂

        • B
          January 25, 2014 at 1:36 pm #

          Dusty, it looks like you just found the answers to all our problems here in Pittsfield. A movie we shall have.

    • levitan
      January 23, 2014 at 9:54 am #

      That is to say, “the great journalists sequestered themselves in their hotel rooms, plugged the door jambs to make it look empty, and fool the other reporters to believe he was busy on the streets.”

  4. eddiep
    January 23, 2014 at 12:00 pm #

    You cannot trust the bb to report any story accurately.
    In the article about the BRTA CharlieCard, they mis-spelled the administrators name twice and gave out the wrong web address.
    Like I said, for entertainment purposes only. And they want me to subscribe to that? Sofar they have not printed a correction.

  5. scott
    January 23, 2014 at 1:36 pm #

    Its a shame we dont have capital punishment but a narcissistic dweeb like hall will suffer and hopefully after 50 years he’ll hang himself only then will there be justice.

    • levitan
      January 23, 2014 at 2:24 pm #

      Justice would be having Hall face the power of nature. He could even be humbled by the experience.

      • scott
        January 23, 2014 at 4:00 pm #

        I know its funny how murder in the general sense can be so primitive, unjust and gruesome on one hand and pure righteous and just on the other.

    • dusty
      January 23, 2014 at 3:23 pm #

      There is a guy in jail now for life for having killed his wife. A judge has just ruled that the taxpayers must pony up $50,000 to pay for a sex change operation for this guy. I sure hope this does not catch on because it could get kinda pricey with the jail population bursting at the seems.

      • scott
        January 23, 2014 at 3:54 pm #

        Ill give him a sex change for half that but you know what they say you get what you pay for!

  6. MrG1188
    January 23, 2014 at 3:26 pm #

    Levitan, that may ultimately be what happens because so far, from what has been reported, the prosecutor has presented zero direct evidence linking the three amigos to this heinous crime. On the other side of this set-to though, I don’t understand what you’re trying to accomplish in castigating this blog for its lack of coverage of such a big story. Dan has conceded that it is indeed a big story. I see no value in a testicle measuring contest to determine which is more important; gang violence and death among white guys in Pittsfield or gang violence and death among minority guys. Gang violence is gang violence and death is death. The local paper is covering one extensively every day, currently, on the front page, and not covering the other nearly as sensationally. The fact is, neither bodes well for Pittsfield.

    • scott
      January 23, 2014 at 3:57 pm #

      Mrg1188 I agree with you gangs are scum white or black.

    • levitan
      January 23, 2014 at 5:30 pm #

      Ok, I can understand the logistics of not covering this case. I do not understand demeaning those who feel this case is important.

      I think there is no reason not to cover various issues here. Like the role of Hells Angels and the drug issues in our town. And maybe, more importantly in regards to this particular case, the DA’s failure to act on the protection of the citizry.

      It would seem that the Berkshire Eagle who went to the State to force the DA’s office to relinquinsh documents under the Freedom of Information Act is worthy of a story. At least worthy of an opinion.

      So while you may not cover the court trial, to not discuss the impact of the hells angels in our community and the impact of the DA who will use the likely victory in this case as absolution should be covered.

      • levitan
        January 23, 2014 at 5:32 pm #


        My wife would like to get a word in edgewise, but you’re not publishing her comments!

  7. amandaWell
    January 23, 2014 at 4:14 pm #

    Is this Hall character from Pittsfield?

    • Socrat
      January 23, 2014 at 5:17 pm #

      He was a fixture in Pittsfield. He owned property on Linden St, and made the rounds regularly in town. So, yes, one can say he is from Pittsfield.

    • levitan
      January 23, 2014 at 5:34 pm #

      Yes. Owned properties in town and stomped on plenty a head here, frequented the businesses, bars, restaurants. Apparently spent most of his time here. More importantly, the victims were from the bad end of Pittsfield.

      • ed shepardson
        January 23, 2014 at 6:07 pm #

        What properties? What town? What businesses? What bars? What restaurants?

    • joetaxpayer
      January 23, 2014 at 6:28 pm #

      Hall lived in Peru on route 143.

      • levitan
        January 23, 2014 at 7:12 pm #

        Hall owned a property in Peru. He also owned a property on Linden Street, where testimony indicates he lived at least part time.

        He also lived at the hells angels when avoiding police.

        Ed: Pittsfield is his primary or secondary residence. Lumpy lived next to Angelinas on West Housy.

        Businesses in pittsfield: Debbie Wong (now closed), the HA bar downtown, Sayers, numerous car dealer. Clearly Pittsfield saw a lot of Mr, Hall.

        • joetaxpayer
          January 24, 2014 at 1:58 pm #

          Most people who live in the hill towns frequent businesses in Pittsfield. What does a persons preference of establishment’s have to do with anything.

          • LEVITAN
            January 24, 2014 at 7:03 pm #

            Starting with your the last question, the answer I provided is pointed towards Amandawell who asked. I find the question interesting because, contrary to original reports, Hall actually did live in Pittsfield. I had not known that. Who knows, maybe I passed him on the sidewalk during work breaks.

            The extent to his activity in Pittsfield is pertinent to this being a relevant and meaningful story for those who live here. At the very least, some of us have problem with the inhabitant of the suite at North and East Street – Capeless.

          • joetaxpayer
            January 25, 2014 at 4:38 pm #

            You make no sense. Every person that is living has many task that they do during a given day. They visit numerous businesses during that day.What is your point?

          • levitan
            January 26, 2014 at 11:40 am #

            Amanda asked the question, and I gave her the answer. That’s an appropriate thing to do when someone poses a question, correct?

            Now, for your question, “what’s the point?”

            He was a Pittsfield resident, property owner, and terrorized people in Pittsfield for many years. It also includes the Hells Angels who have extended their reach into this town and provided Hall with a literal stomping ground at the bar.

            Our DA, with his office within a shotgun reach of the victim & thugs, did not offer or provide protection to Glasser even though he requested it. I see this is a paramount Pittsfield Story and find it surprising that this story, has not been touched by any local media or blog, including this one.

            Let’s broaden the brush now. Gang violence is a big problem for Pittsfield. Gaining witness testimony is at best challenging. In 2006 the Governor signed the Witness Protection Act (verify name needed) and established a state fund to protect witnesses.

            This act was specifically written to support law enforcement’s combating gangs, and it has contributed to convictions throughout the State. The budget increased each year, yet Berkshire County has never made one application for witness protection.

            I suspect there is a quality issue within Capeless’ office, and it claimed three lives that I can name.

  8. joetaxpayer
    January 23, 2014 at 5:17 pm #

    levitan there is no evidence that the Hells Angles are involved in any of this. Hall was a member, the other 2 were not, and Mr Casey was not either. It appears he did this on his own.

    • levitan
      January 23, 2014 at 5:40 pm #

      Hall seems to have gained much of his hardware and resources from the hells angels. My point is that this is not an isolated case of an individual murdering, but a conspiracy to murder. And those who participated remain hidden from view.

      Doesn’t that bother you?

      • scott
        January 23, 2014 at 6:08 pm #

        The hells angels put up their club house in lee to bail his arse out. Nothing to see here. Are you suggesting DV gets free sea food dinner passes?

        • LEVITAN
          January 24, 2014 at 7:05 pm #

          Good memory, Scott. They are up to their collective eyes in it (unless they really thought he couldn’t have done such a thing.)

    • scott
      January 23, 2014 at 6:06 pm #

      Hall was second in command dont sugar coat it.

      • Joe Blow
        January 23, 2014 at 7:32 pm #

        Actually 3rd in command,right below the president and his v.p.

        • Edconnect
          January 23, 2014 at 8:40 pm #

          3rd in command after the pres and v.p. I guess that makes him speaker of the house or is it sec. of state?

        • levitan
          January 24, 2014 at 7:16 am #

          Turning a blind eye mixed with providing background support amounts to active involvement.

          Sure, the DA can’t prosecute the group, but we know where they stand.

          Are you claiming the Berkshire Chapter of hells angels are just a bunch of fat putz’s?

  9. Nota
    January 23, 2014 at 6:32 pm #

    Follywood, luv it! Dusty. Where truth is stranger than fiction.

  10. Giacometti
    January 23, 2014 at 8:06 pm #

    ” You can’t fix stupid ” does not refer to the poor souls who were murdered but rather those that saw no value in their lives.

    • levitan
      January 24, 2014 at 7:19 am #

      Yes. That’s the story that was ignored on this blog. More care, a whole two days amounting to cafeteria talk, given to a car crash. But a DA’s office that callously turned it’s back on Mr. Glasser leaving us with this horror is a shame.

      Capeless will be running for re-election, and no one will have had the balls to challenge him on the defense of a semi-indigent resident. And, I don’t see too many here calling them poor souls.

      • MrG1188
        January 24, 2014 at 12:26 pm #

        You do make a good point about that Levitan. While it was discussed early on, and the DA’s office claimed that Mr. Glasser refused protection/relocation, the question certainly should have been asked more insistently. Whether they didn’t or couldn’t protect him, the fact remains that a witness for the state in a trial was murdered, as were 2 others. They are indeed poor souls who certainly didn’t deserve their fate. And my biggest fear is that, with all the time that’s elapsed and all the mountains of “evidence” that’s been shared in discovery, these three are going to skate free because of ineptitude on the DA’s part

        • Levitan
          January 24, 2014 at 7:23 pm #

          Agreed with you last comment; thanks for your respectful reply.

          The DA does claim that Glasser ‘refused to comply with Witness Protection.” But they cannot provide any evidence that they even offered it. In order to offer protection, they need to request funds from the Witness Protection Fund, and no such requests were made.

          2011 saw the fewest number of applications, and only three percent denied; none granted for Berkshire County. The record shows the DA has no interest in the Witness Protection Fund, established in 2006 to combat gang violence. In this case, he should have offered police guard at the least.

          Glasser requested protection from the PPD, reportedly, and was instructed to ‘call if anything happens.’

    • levitan
      January 24, 2014 at 7:20 am #

      Perhaps this is the time to take measure of testicles…

  11. dusty
    January 24, 2014 at 1:50 am #

    The Eagle is selling pictures taken at the trial. Is this an act of total desperation? Who would buy one and where would you put it in your house?

    • scott
      January 24, 2014 at 6:49 am #

      On the dart board by the bar.

  12. Mad Trapper
    January 24, 2014 at 9:54 am #

    What is Meri-Death and her Pop the at the court up to these days?

    Same old sleaze?

  13. Giacometti
    January 25, 2014 at 7:52 pm #

    The Berkshire Eagle is all about revenue it gets from advertising so it must write sensationalized stories of the underbelly of our society…several years back there was a murder of a woman who was out jogging on a country road in Stockbridge… a crime that is still unsolved…but because is took place in the ” village beautiful” there has never been an expose written about it…the whole story seems to have been totally forgotten…I guess there just wasn’t any advertising money to be made surrounding that story. Did our
    DA forget that crime ?

    • levitan
      January 25, 2014 at 9:18 pm #

      Correct me if I’m wrong, but she was assassinated by professional hitmen in her home. That crime appears to be unsolved, but who knows if the assassins still walk, or have moved to the great Union Mob scene in the sky. That story actually got lots of coverage, including the town-wide counseling that the residents seemed to need.

      The Eagle does not cover the Hall case directly, and refuses to address the sensational element which is how the DA left Glasser to face the Hells Angels and Hall unprotected.

      Funny thing, Dan Valenti in Septermber 15, 2011, says, “we shall give him [Capeless] a pass” on the question of whether he offered Witness Protection.

      He can pass him on, but perhaps since I don’t need the privilege of interviewing Capeless, he’s on the hook. I’m thinking Recall.

  14. Giacometti
    January 26, 2014 at 6:57 pm #

    Dan I thought the woman was killed while out jogging…being that you reside in Stockbridge do you recall the facts surrounding that event and whether as Levitan says there was lots of coverage and town-wide counseling that the citizens of Stockbridge seemed to need at the time ?