3 face charges in fake stabbing in Lawrence
LAWRENCE, Mass. (WHDH) -- Three people who allegedly filmed a fake stabbing meant for YouTube are facing charges.
Three men staged the stabbing while a religious ceremony was being held on a Lawrence street. Police said one suspect wore a large trench coat and carried a sharp knife.
“He came up and he pretended to fake stab me. And I fell down, played the part, and that was over and done with. That was it,” said Vincent Bencivenga, a suspect.
Bencivenga defended his role in a video he and his two friends were making for YouTube Saturday night.
“The initial call came in for a possible stabbing at 35 Essex Street and when we got there we found a pool of blood,” said Chief John Romero, Lawrence Police Department.
“That coincided with red dye. That wasn’t real. We squeezed it out on the ground just to make it look like it was real and recorded it and that was it,” Bencivenga said.
Police said Josette Osorio was also acting in the video and Mark Hatch was filming it.
All three suspects are facing charges including disorderly conduct and disturbing the peace.
Police said their scene was being played out in front of thousands were celebrating the Feast of the Three Saints.
“There’s a guy with a long black trench coat on and I don’t know whether it’s a joke or not but he’s got a giant butcher knife and it looks like it has blood on it,” a witness told a 911 dispatcher.
“We were nowhere near anybody that was enjoying the festival at that Saints fest,” said Bencivenga. “I did not mean any harm by anybody and I’m sorry if I did scare anybody.”
“It’s no misunderstanding on our part. Clearly what these individuals were engaging in put people at risk…They didn’t have a permit from the city. Had no authorization to do so,” Chief Romero said.
Bencivenga said he thought the group had a permit to film the scene.