EDITOR'S NOTE: The following police log information has been taken from public record police incident and arrest reports provided by the Johnston Police Department and other local law enforcement agencies.
Around 5:52 a.m., Oct. 3, Johnston Police officers responded to a business in town after callers reported a woman banging on the front door of the business with a baseball bat. Dispatch informed responding officers that the woman was still on the scene and wearing blue pants with a dark colored sweatshirt.
Upon arrival, Johnston Police Patrolman Derek Parascandolo allegedly saw the woman standing at the front door with a metal baseball bat in her hand. A Nissan Rogue was also parked on the front curb of the business.
When the woman saw police, she dropped the bat, laid face down on the ground and placed her hands behind her back, according to the arrest report. She was handcuffed and secured at the scene. The reporting party spoke to police and told them the woman was yelling “give me my (expletive deleted) cat you mother (expletive deleted).”
Police noticed a crack in the door. The woman, later identified as Melissa Manocchia, of 242 Waterman Ave., Apt. B1, North Providence, allegedly told police, “Yea, I did that.”
Police later spoke to the business’s manager, who told them that Manocchia had previously shown up at the business inquiring about her cat.
“She stated that she had told her several times that they do not have her cat at which time Melissa would leave the business without incident,” Parascandolo wrote.
Manocchia was placed under arrest without further incident, transported to police headquarters, processed and secured in a cell. She was later released with a Third District Court summons to appear on misdemeanor charges of Vandalism/Malicious Injury to Property and Disorderly Conduct.
Around 6:23 a.m., Oct. 8, Johnston Police were dispatched to a local business in town after receiving a report of a man with a knife. Upon arrival, Johnston Police Patrolman Mario Mennella Jr. saw two men yelling at each other in the parking lot. Additional officers arrived on the scene and secured one of the men. The other man was separated and questioned.
The man told police that the other man was allegedly “attempting to buy $175 worth of items with a declined credit card” and was “Yelling at the cashier and would not settle down,” according to the arrest report.
The man asked the irate customer, later identified as Steven F. Dibenedetto, of 168 Alverson Ave., Apt. 3, Providence, to put the items back and leave the store.
“After arguing with both employees Mr. Dibenedetto exited the store without putting the items back,” Mennella wrote.
An employee followed him outside, and was waiting for police, when Dibenedetto allegedly turned toward one of them holding a pocket knife, and said he was going to kill him, according to the arrest report. The employee followed him to try to keep him on-site until police arrived.
Dibenedetto allegedly put the knife away, but then punched the employee “in the right side of his head,” Mennella wrote.
The two men fought.
After police arrived, they said they did find an open pocket knife in Dibenedetto’s front pocket. He was taken into custody and charged with Simple Assault and Disorderly Conduct. His car was towed from the scene and Dibenedetto was processed and later released with a District Court summons to appear.