BOSTON (AP) — Two former college football players who went to high school together were charged Wednesday with beating up a homeless man.
Craig Parsons, a former Boston College tight end, and Anthony Varrichione, an ex-quarterback at Marist College, were accused of kicking and punching the 50-year-old man unconscious early Jan. 26 in the city's Allston neighborhood.
Parsons and Varrichione were charged with assault and battery causing serious bodily injury and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon — their shoes. Parsons also was charged with intimidating a witness. The two men pleaded not guilty.
Parsons' attorney, Michael Doolin, said his client was wrongfully identified. "C.J. is a good kid from a good family. We are hopeful that he will be exonerated," he said. Varrichione's lawyer, Tim Flaherty, said the same of his client. Neither attorney would comment further on the allegations.
The charges stem from a grand jury investigation in which several witnesses identified the two men, said Jake Wark, a spokesman for the Suffolk County district attorney's office.
The victim, Michael Hudson, was panhandling for money outside a property in Allston when he got in an argument with the two, prosecutors wrote in court documents. When Hudson refused to leave, the men violently attacked him, prosecutors said. Witnesses called police and one woman jumped in to try to help Hudson, who was hospitalized for three days, according to Wark.
Parsons, 22, of Newton, Mass., is a Boston College senior. He was suspended and barred from campus less than a month before graduation, according to university spokesman Jack Dunn, who referred to the allegations as "disturbing" in a statement Wednesday.
Varrichione, 23, of Medway, Mass., was a quarterback at Marist and graduated from the New York school in the fall.
According to bios on their colleges' websites, each man is over 6 feet tall and weighs more than 200 pounds. They previously were teammates at Xaverian Brothers, a Catholic high school in Westwood, Mass.
They are due back in Suffolk Superior Court on June 4.