Police: Man Facing Robbery Charge in 'Cigarette Dispute'

A Southington man is facing multiple charges including robbery, assault and larceny after police said he attacked another local man when the victim refused to let him have one of the cigarettes.

Cigarettes have reached a new high in average cost per pack, but one man took the term "bumming a cigarette" to new heights earlier this year when officers with the said he attacked another man in an effort to get one.

A local man was taken to the Hospital of Central Connecticut in New Britain with minor injuries and Southington resident Nelson Bronco Pires is now facing multiple charges after police said Pires became violent and attacked the victim repeatedly in June when the victim refused to give him a cigarette.

"The victim was walking along North Main Street between Chapman Street and Hobart Street when Pires approached him and asked for a cigarette," Sgt Jeffrey Dobratz said. "When the victim refused to give him one, Pires began to punch him repeatedly."

The name of the victim has not been released, but police said he was treated for minor injuries and able to leave the hospital the same day.

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Pires, 41, was charged with third-degree assault, sixth-degree larceny and second-degree robbery. He was released after posting a $25,000 bond and is due in Bristol Superior Court for arraignment on Aug. 27, according to court records.

The incident occurred on the evening of June 14, not far from Pires residence at 297 N. Main St., Dobratz said. The victim did not know Pires, but was able to identify him after providing police with a description and choosing his photograph from a line-up, according to the arrest warrant.

It did not appear that Pires ever received the cigarette for his troubles, police said Tuesday. The brand of cigarette he was seeking was also unknown.

Pires was taken into custody on Monday evening at his North Main Street home without incident. The arrest warrant did not include any statements from Pires regarding the alleged incident.

This isn't the first time that Pires has had trouble with the law. He was convicted of assult in Waterbury in 2005 and possession of narcotics in 2007, according to records with the state Judicial Branch. He is also facing charges stemming from a possession of narcotics arrest on June 28, 2012, in Waterbury.

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