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Man Killed, Driver Charged In Apparent Road Rage Incident In Belmont

BELMONT (CBS) – A judge ordered 54-year-old Dean Kapsalis of Hudson held pending a hearing after he allegedly killed another driver in an apparent case of road rage.

Police were called to Upland Road just before 4:30 p.m. Tuesday where they found 35-year-old Henry Tapia from Boston in the road suffering from serious injuries. He was taken to Mass General Hospital where he died.

Henry Tapia
Henry Tapia was struck by a car and killed in Belmont (WBZ-TV)

According to investigators, Tapia had been in an argument with another man, later identified as Kapsalis, moments earlier.

"Both men allegedly exited their vehicles before Mr. Kapsalis reentered his vehicle, a Dodge Dakota, and allegedly struck the victim," the Middlesex District Attorney's Office said in a statement Wednesday.

It happened in front of Brian Dawe's house. "I just heard the commotion, heard my daughter scream, came to the window and I saw the gentleman on the ground with my daughter and son-in-law trying to help," Dawe said. "He was just in pain."

Dean Kapsalis
Dean Kapsalis of Hudson is arraigned January 20, 2021 in connection with a Belmont road rage case. (WBZ-TV)

Police said Kapsalis drove off. About a half-hour later, he then went to the Belmont Police Department.

Kapsalis was arraigned Wednesday in Cambridge District Court on several charges including assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and civil rights violation with injury.

According to court documents, witnesses told police they heard Kapsalis yell a racial slur at the victim, a Black man, before getting back in his truck and allegedly accelerating toward the victim.

"These are the kinds of incidents of which we have sadly particularly over the last year, seen an increase across our country, across our nation and unfortunately even here in Middlesex County," District Attorney Marian Ryan said. "We cannot and will not tolerate behavior that is rooted in racial bias."

David Tapia is still in a state of shock over what happened to his older brother Henry Tuesday afternoon. "Words can't describe the pain I'm feeling right now," Tapia said.

He said his brother leaves behind a girlfriend and three kids all of them, devastated and hoping for justice. "I hope you get locked up for a long time man," David Tapia said.

Some neighbors expressed concern that it took too long for an ambulance to transport the victim. Ryan said police were called at 4:22 p.m. and officers arrived three minutes later and treated the victim until an ambulance arrived at 4:30 p.m.

According to Ryan, paramedics worked to stabilize the victim who had severe injuries and transported him to MGH at 4:47 p.m. He was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at MGH.

A judge ordered Kapsalis held pending a hearing on Monday. The incident remains under investigation.

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