A Suffolk Superior Court jury today convicted Michael Doherty, 43, of several counts related to a 2015 incident in which the off-duty cop physically attacked an Uber driver, screamed racial and ethnic slurs at him and drove away in his car, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office reports.
The jury formally convicted Doherty of two counts of assault and battery and assault and battery for purposes of intimidation, which reflects "his use of racial and ethnic slurs during the confrontation," as well as use of a motor vehicle without authority for entering and driving several blocks in the victim’s Prius for the incident, the DA's office reports.
Jurors acquitted Doherty of violating the civil rights of a second man who intervened in the conflict on the victim’s behalf.
According to the DA's office:
During three days of trial, Suffolk prosecutors assigned to the DA’s Special Prosecutions Unit introduced evidence and testimony proving that Doherty took an Uber car from Charlestown to South Boston, where he told the driver they were in the wrong location and used a racial epithet in the verbal exchange that followed. The evidence proved that Doherty struck the victim, who exited the vehicle to escape the assault; Doherty then exited and chased him around the vehicle.
As the victim flagged down a passing car driven by another Uber driver, Doherty entered the victim’s 2005 Toyota Prius and drove away, prosecutors said. The victim entered the second Uber car and the two men followed Doherty until he stopped and exited the vehicle at East 1st Street and Farragut Road. There, Doherty continued to use racial and ethnic slurs in a second physical confrontation.
Doherty then left the scene. Massport Police arrived on scene seconds later and searched the area but were unable to locate the defendant, who later surrendered to Boston Police. He was arraigned the next day in South Boston Municipal Court and indicted three months later after prosecutors put the case to the Suffolk County Grand Jury.
In a statement, DA Dan Conley said:
The defendant’s conduct that night was reprehensible. His words and actions have no place in civilized society. They represented a crime against the victims, who were doing nothing more than trying to work for a living, and they were a slap in the face to countless police officers who work hard every day to earn the community’s trust with honor and professionalism.
Doherty's sentencing was set for April 17.