Former New Bedford man sentenced to prison nearly 20 years after brutal tire iron attack

This is a mugshot of David Reed (The Bristol County District Attorney’s Office)

NEW BEDFORD, Mass. (WLNE) — A former New Bedford man pleaded guilty last week to a brutal tire iron attack on a woman nearly 20 years ago.

Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quinn said David Reed, 54, pleaded guilty on Friday to charges of armed assault with intent to murder, armed robbery, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.

On June 10, 2003, a man was in his apartment on Emma Street when he heard a woman screaming for help just before 11 p.m. Quinn said the man opened the door to “get a better look” and saw a woman covered in blood.

According to Quinn, the victim had been hit with a tire iron and pretended to be dead in a successful effort to get her attacker to leave.

The woman said Reed had taken her to a secluded area and beat her with a tire iron. He stole her pocketbook, pushed her out of the car, and “left her to die” in a dark alley.

About two months later, the victim was at her New Bedford home on Durfee Street when she saw Reed circling her neighborhood in a truck. She immediately tried to call the detective investigating the case and informed her other family members.

Her nephew and five other people got into their minivan to follow the truck. Reed tried to flee from the nephew and struck a parked car. He continued driving.

A New Bedford police sergeant saw the cars and requested assistance from other police.

Additional officers were dispatched to assist in stopping the truck. One of the responding officers was approaching from the opposite direction with his lights on. Reed attempted to avoid being stopped but ended up crashing his truck head-on into the police cruiser.

After the crash, Reed tried to push the cruiser out of the way with his truck. Moments later, more officers arrived and were able to stop Reed.

Reed was then charged with robbery and assault of the victim, as well as the incident that involved crashing head-on into the police cruiser. However, he was released on bail.

Quinn said the case was scheduled for a jury trial on June 10, 2004, but Reed never appeared in court.

The attorney general added that Reed was held on an indictment for felony bail jumping and still had the pending charges that he had defaulted on related to his attempt to flee and the resulting police cruiser crash.

He was sentenced to serve three and a half to four years in the state prison on those charges.

Quinn said over the following years, investigators from his office and New Bedford police corroborated all of the details of the 2003 assault through various witnesses and sources. Many witnesses indicated that Reed himself admitted to assaulting the woman.

On Friday, Reed was sentenced to serve eight to twelve years in state prison.

Quinn said the 54-year-old is additionally awaiting trial connected to the March 2001 New Bedford cold case homicide of his half-sister, Rose Marie Moniz.

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