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Pittsfield City Councilman pleads not guilty to drug charges

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Albany/HV: Pittsfield City Councilman pleads not guilty to drug charges
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A Pittsfield City Councilor is in trouble with the law. Paul Capitanio was in court on Tuesday after he was accused of tipping off drug dealers to police drug raids. YNN's Madeleine Rivera reports.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. -- Pittsfield City Councilman Paul Capitanio walked into Central Berkshire District Court on Tuesday, and barely spoke a word. He pleaded not guilty to serious drug charges.

"It's a sad situation and nothing to feel good about," said Mayor Dan Bianchi.

According to police, this goes back to a wire tap investigation of a drug organization happening months ago in the Berkshires. They said Capitanio had tipped off drug dealers about a drug raid that he thought police would conduct on April 28.

"There's a lot of people I know that actually stand up for him and support what he's trying to do for the city council wise. He does what he needs to do for the city," said Pittsfield resident Matthew Brennan.

However, sources from the Berkshire County Drug Task Force say Capitanio may have struggled with drugs. They say Capitanio is an Oxycodone addict who had been buying pills from one of the drug dealers for almost two years. Police believe that Capitanio tipped off the drug dealers to ensure his supply of Oxycodone pills.

"I'd like to be sensitive to this issue. I'd like to talk to the councilman and make sure his service to the constituents isn't affected," said Bianchi.

"Something like that, I hope that's not true because that's something we don't need in this city especially at this point right now," said Brennan.

YNN reached out to Capitanio's defense attorney for comment and has yet to receive a response. Capitanio has served in the city council for four years. He announced earlier this summer that he will not be seeking re-election.

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