Stamford Bouncer Pleads Guilty To Burglary Beatdown

Published on January 13, 2017, 5:04 pm
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One of the two Harbor Point bar bouncers accused of fracturing the eye sockets of a Glenbrook man during a 2015 home invasion has accepted a plea agreement.

Joseph Donofrio, 32

Michael Polizzi, 32, of Bronx, NY, pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of first-degree burglary and will be sentenced to 10 years in jail when he returns to court in early March.

Polizzi and Joseph Donofrio, 32, also of New York, were arrested September 21, 2015 after the two Sign of the Whale bouncers contrived a plan to beat up an Alton Road man because they heard he kept a lot of money in his home, police said.

They appeared at the man’s door about 11:00 p.m. that night and told the victim they hit his parked car and asked to exchange insurance information, police said.

The two men then began viciously beating the 46-year-old man, leaving his eyes swollen shut with bruises all over his face and head, police said.

Senior Assistant State’s Attorney James Bernardi said the homeowner suffered fractures in both eye sockets.

The homeowner managed to grab a hunting knife and stabbed Donofrio in the arm, while bull-rushing the two men out of the house, police said.

The fight continued in the front yard, where several neighbors heard screams and called police.

Police found Donofrio running down the street and he was taken into custody.

About 90 minutes later, Polizzi was found hiding under a van parked in the backyard and was charged with home invasion.

Bernardi said Polizzi admitted he and Donofrio heard the man had a lot of money in the house and they wanted to steal it.

Polizzi’s attorney, Richard Stannard, said the home invasion charge, which carries a minimum sentence of 10 years in jail, was reduced to first-degree burglary, which does not have a minimum requirement.

“It could have a positive effect on his parole eligibility,” Stannard said. “The state did have a very strong case. Mr. Polizzi is looking forward to putting this mistake behind him.”

Donofrio has a month to make a decision on his plea offer.

 

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