Alleged Christmas Tree Scammer Held on Bail
The Shrewsbury case was one of several heard in Westborough District Court on Monday.
Monday, Jan. 14
A judge ordered a Shrewsbury man held on $1,000 cash bail following his arraignment Monday on charges that he scammed a local church parish out of nearly $500 by pretending to return Christmas trees that he never purchased.
Bernard H. Hosking, 50, of 24 Artemas St., Shrewsbury, was summonsed to court on a complaint from Shrewsbury police to face charges of larceny over $250 by single scheme and larceny under $250 by single scheme.
Police allege that on several dates during December, Hosking went to the Christmas tree sale run by the Trinity Episcopal Church and asked for refunds for trees he claimed to have purchased recently. He told workers that he had already placed the tree he wanted to return back among the others at the stand.
The "defendant plied this scam several times with different parishioners working the stand," police said in their report. Police allege Hosking conned the parish out of $488.
Hosking is also charged with pulling the same con at Paquette Farm on one occasion.
Judge David Locke ordered Hosking held on $1,000 cash bail or $10,000 surety and scheduled a pretrial hearing for Feb. 8. Last Spring, Hosking was sentenced to serve eight months in the House of Corrections on identity theft and fraud-related charges.
Anthony Buskey, 19, of 26 Proctor St., Apt. 2, Framingham, was arrested by Shrewsbury police and charged with disorderly conduct. Judge David Locke found Buskey guilty of a decriminalized version of the charge and ordered him to pay $100 in court costs. According to police, Buskey was the passenger in a car stopped by police on Sunday. When the driver was arrested on a warrant, Buskey refused to allow the vehicle, which was registered in his name, to be towed. Police said Buskey locked himself in the car at one point and repeatedly blew the horn and once out of the vehicle, shouted at police and attempted to stop the tow truck driver from removing the vehicle before he was finally arrested.
Catherine Langmaid, 35, of 308 Boston Rd., Shrewsbury, was summonsed to court on a complaint from Shrewsbury police to face charges of identity fraud and larceny over $250. Judge David Locke released Langmaid on personal recognizance and scheduled a pretrial hearing for Feb. 20. Police allege that Langmaid opened a line of credit account at Best Buy in the name of a Shrewsbury resident and then purchased a refrigerator and stove worth more than $1,000. Police said they identified Langmaid after working with SELCO to locate the Internet connection form which the transactions were made.
James A. Fancy, 27, of 80 Laurel St., W. Boylston, was arrested by Shrewsbury police and charged with breaking and entering in the daytime for a felony, destruction of property over $250 and larceny from a building. Judge David Locke found Fancy guilty on all charges and ordered him to serve 2.5 years in the House of Corrections.
Vencenzo Brancaccio, 25, of 28 Ellsworth St., Worcester, was arrested by Westborough police and charged with shoplifting and furnishing a false name to police. Judge David Locke found Brancaccio guilty on both counts, filing the shoplifting charge and ordering 30 days in the House of Correction on the second charge, with credit for three days served.