Police link stabbing suspect to Brighton attack, Pring-Wilson case
Police arrested, arraigned and announced a suspect Thursday in the Aug. 26 stabbing of a 53-year-old man and his young son on Pearl Street.
The suspect is Marcos Colono, 32, who is listed as being a resident of Woodrow Wilson Court — less than a quarter-mile from the Cambridgeport home police say he broke into at 1 a.m. with a butcher knife to assault an 11-year-old. It was in defending his son, according to information revealed at the noon arraignment, that the 53-year-old man was stabbed eight to 10 times in the chest and three times in the back.
Crimes such as this are extremely rare in Cambridge. Police data released in late July showed violent crime, a category that includes murders, rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults, at a 40-year low.
The top year for violent crime over the past four decades was 1990, when there were 1,077 incidents reported. Last year, there were 449 — the second-lowest number in 40 years and a 58 percent drop, according to the police Bridgestat data. This year had shown a further 17 percent drop from the end of last year.
The son had a single superficial stab wound and made a “frantic” 911 on his father’s cell phone to bring medical and police personnel, said Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone at the 1:30 p.m. Thursday press conference at Cambridge Police headquarters to announce the arrest.
“We believe there is no personal connection” between Colono and the father and son, Leone said to gathered media. “It is unclear what the motivation was. Robbery may have been the motivating factor.”
But Colono — said to have been identified by the Cambridge victims and witnesses — has been linked by a trail of fingerprint and DNA evidence to a similar Sept. 21, 2008, violent home invasion and sexual assault of two young women in Brighton, police said.
“The most striking commonality was the brutality with which they were committed,” Suffolk District Attorney Dan Conley said of the crimes. Police did not know if Colono lived in Brighton at the time of the earlier assault.
Colono is listed as living in Woodrow Wilson Court now with several family members, but the accuracy of the listing isn’t known; his brother Michael is listed at the same address, although he was stabbed to death in 2003 by Harvard graduate student Alexander Pring-Wilson. Police consider the connection to another violent crime to be coincidental.
The charges against Marcos Colono are for armed home invasion, armed assault with intent to murder and rape of a child. Conley said an arraignment on charges stemming from the Brighton attack hasn’t been scheduled. The suspect had a history of petty crime in Boston and was known to police.
When arrested early Thursday near his home, he was cooperative, police said.
Police were reluctant to give other details.
His arrest should be “a monumental relief for four victims,” Conley said.
When asked if there could be yet other victims, Conley said, “Let’s hope not,” but urged anyone with knowledge of other such crimes to come forward and talk to police.
Cambridge Police Commissioner Robert Haas and Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis were also at the press conference.
Colono is being held on $1 million cash bail. He is due back in court Nov. 9.