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Man accused of harassing interracial couple on Facebook faces federal charges

When the couple told the man that they were reporting him to law enforcement, he sent them a message that said, "SNITCHES GET STITCHES," with a picture of brass knuckles, according to the federal indictment.

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A Massachusetts man is facing federal charges, accused of threatening an interracial couple on Facebook, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Stephen DeBerardinis, 45, of Boston and Dedham, allegedly sent the couple harassing messages on Facebook Messenger. Investigators said he did not know the couple but was able to see their engagement pictures.

On or about Jan. 6, 2021, DeBerardinis used the social media app to send a series of threatening and harassing messages concerning the couple’s interracial relationship, according to federal investigators. According to the indictment, DeBerardinis used racial slurs and obscenities in the messages.

When the couple told DeBerardinis that they were reporting him to law enforcement, he sent them a message that said, "SNITCHES GET STITCHES," with a picture of brass knuckles, according to the federal indictment.

DeBerardinis also told the couple, "white w---- like you well…. get rape and killed THAN (sic) we cut off body parts and mail them to your family lol," according to the federal indictment.

The victims reported the incident to local police, who contacted federal law enforcement.

Investigators were seen Wednesday afternoon at DeBerardinis' white ranch-style home in Dedham, Massachusetts, photographing the property and carrying evidence bags.

DeBerardinis was charged with one count of transmitting in interstate commerce threats to injure a person, one count of tampering with a witness and victim by intimidation, threats, and corrupt persuasion, and one count of tampering with a witness and victim by harassment. He was held without bail following his arraignment in federal court.

If convicted, he could face up to 20 years in prison and hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines.

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