Attorney Scully Defending Brockton Man Accused of Murdering His Father

By Benjamin Paulin
The Enterprise • July 26, 2016

 BROCKTON, MA — Despite his older brother being on trial for allegedly murdering their father, Joel Goncalves said he still loves and cares about him.

The trial for Amilton Goncalves began Tuesday in Brockton Superior Court. The 23-year-old is charged with murdering his father, 44- year-old Joaopedro Goncalves, outside their Brockton home on June 23, 2014.

Joel Goncalves, 20, of Brockton was the first person to take the witness stand to speak about what happened that night between his father and his brother.

Authorities said Amilton Goncalves fatally stabbed his father once in the chest during an altercation in front of their home at 16 Louis St.

The deadly incident was preceded by an argument earlier in the day about Amilton playing music too loudly in the house the night before, police said.

Joaopedro Goncalves had threatened to call the police about the loud music and Amilton said he was going to kill him if he called the police, Plymouth County Assistant District Attorney Catherine Ham said during his arraignment in 2014 in Brockton District Court.

As Joaopedro went outside to call police about 3:30 p.m., Ham said, Amilton punched his mother twice in the face as she was trying to block her son from walking out the door after him.

His mother was taken to the hospital and Amilton left the house and went to his cousin’s house in Dorchester. A warrant for his arrest was issued by police on two counts of assault and battery. He returned to the house later that night around 9 p.m.

That’s when Joel Goncalves heard his grandmother screaming from inside his bedroom.

“I heard my grandmother saying something about seeing my brother and my father outside. I ran outside. I saw my father lying down on the pavement,” he said.

Amilton Goncalves confronted his father on the front lawn of their home and an altercation ensued and he pulled out a pairing knife and stabbed his father once in the chest, police said.

Next door neighbor Leslie Lussier, who works at a hospital in Boston, overheard the commotion and heard a person yell out asking if anyone knew CPR.

“I heard some yelling outside, wailing, almost crying,” Lussier said while testifying in court Tuesday.

She went outside to see Joaopedro Goncalves on the ground bleeding from a stab wound to his chest. He was unconscious and had no pulse.

Lussier gave him CPR for about five minutes until paramedics arrived. He was taken to the hospital where he died a short time later. Joel Goncalves testified that Amilton and their father often argued over things resulting in his brother being kicked out of the house for weeks or months at a time.

The arguments were typically over small matters and would escalate sometimes to the point where Amilton would challenge his father to a physical fight, Joel Goncalves said.

Amilton was arrested by police on nearby Ames Street. Investigators found a small serrated paring knife with a black handle about 6 inches in total length near the crime scene.

“He kept asking “All I want to know is if he is all right,‘ ” Ham said. “That little knife killed my father?”

“There’s no way. That can’t kill my father,” Goncalves allegedly told police.

Throughout the trial Tuesday, Amilton Goncalves looked back at his family members sitting in the audience and smiled and blew them kisses several times while testimony was ongoing. A court officer told him multiple times he was not allowed to communicate with them while court was in session, but he continued to do so.

Joel Goncalves said he shares a close connection with his older brother.

“We had a good relationship. We would talk. Just brother bonding. We would go and play basketball down the street. If I was home when he was home we would be down in the basement just talking. Things like that,” he said.

Although he currently stands trial for murdering their father, Joel Goncalves said he still loves his brother very much. On Monday, Amilton Goncalves waived his right to a trial by jury and the case is being presided over by Judge Cornelius Moriarty. If convicted of first-degree murder, Goncalves faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole.

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