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Prosecutors Allege Somerset Man Hit Elderly, Disabled Mother and Threw Her on Bed, Where She Was Found Dead


FALL RIVER — Prosecutors allege Michael Kostek twice punched his disabled 88-year-old mother in the face during an argument, and that he then threw her on a bed, where police found her dead Thursday afternoon in the family’s Somerset home.

When Somerset police officers, responding to a friend’s request to check on Kostek, 62, entered the house at 857 Wilbur Ave., they found him lying on his back, “rambling and not making any sense,” in his bedroom, which was littered with nine bottles of Jack Daniels and multiple containers of prescription pills, prosecutors said.


Kostek, through his defense attorney, Frank Camera, denies killing his mother, Sophie Kostek, whom he lived with for several years.

“I’m confident the medical examiner’s report will show that,” Camera said.

An autopsy is being conducted to determine Sophie Kostek’s cause of death. Assistant District Attorney Courtney Cahill, chief of the Bristol County District Attorney’s Domestic Violence Unit, said additional charges may be filed against Michael Kostek, who officials said has a long history of alcohol and substance abuse, and mental illness. He has three prior drunken-driving arrests, for which he served jail time. He lost his driver’s license after his third drunken-driving arrest in January 2009. He has also been in and out of detox for several years. In 1995, Sophie Kostek took out a restraining order against him.

“It’s clear he has a very severe substance abuse problem, which goes back many years,” Camera said.

Kostek was hospitalized twice Thursday at Charlton Memorial Hospital for acute symptoms of alcoholism. While speaking with a court-appointed psychologist Friday, he displayed symptoms of alcohol withdrawal, including tremors. Kostek requested the court to section him for treatment, but Bracket said the Dartmouth House of Correction is “well-equipped” to have him go through detox.

Cahill said Kostek was also violent toward police officers, and alleged that he had to be restrained from attacking detectives who interviewed him. Somerset police reports also indicate that Kostek has a known history of being violent toward police. Camera, Kostek’s lawyer, said Friday that he had not previously heard about the alleged violence toward police, and he questioned why prosecutors had not charged him with those offenses.

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