A Shrewsbury man on supervised release for selling steroids was acquitted Thursday of beating a federal probation intern during a urine screen.
Daniel M. Frederickson, 30, was acquitted by a jury in U.S. District Court of assault on a federal employee causing injury, a crime which carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison.
Frederickson, who has been in custody since his Aug. 20 arrest, was not immediately freed, as he is still accused of a supervised release violation that has not yet been heard.
In a statement to the Telegram & Gazette Thursday evening, U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts, Andrew E. Lelling, said the verdict does not change his office’s belief that Frederickson brutally assaulted a probation intern who was doing his job.
Frederickson, a former Worcester State University football player, was accused of injuring U.S. probation intern Paul Walter in an Aug. 20 attack inside a urine testing bathroom at 370 Main St.
Walter, 26, testified that Frederickson – whose father had died three days before – punched him, slammed him into the floor and tried to strangle him after being informed he hadn’t provided enough urine.
Frederickson took the stand in his own defense, alleging that Walter had “patted” his penis and told him he could “do a little better” at providing urine. He said he punched the man in reaction to alleged sexual assault, and denied strangling him.
Walter testified upon being recalled to the stand that he never sexually assaulted Frederickson and had tested hundreds of people without ever being accused of sexual assault.
Two probation employees had testified for the government, including one who said he saw Frederickson holding Walter in a choke hold and another who reported Walter told her afterward he thought he was going to die.
The jury, which deliberated for about three hours, asked one question of the court before rendering its verdict, requesting more details about pictures of Walter’s injuries that were admitted into evidence.
Frederickson’s lawyer, Leonardo A. Angiulo, argued the photos, along with medical records, supported that a punch had been thrown, but not that a brutal assault had occurred.
The photos, he argued, did not show any evidence of bruising around Walter’s neck, while the medical records showed Walter was diagnosed only with a facial contusion.
The evidence didn’t square, he argued, with descriptions by prosecutors about a prolonged, brutal attack.
Walter was visibly upset after the verdict. Angiulo declined comment, as did Frederickson’s mother, who came to support him.
In his statement Thursday, Lelling wrote that the U.S. probation Office “plays an essential role within our judicial system, and the men and women who serve in that capacity should be protected from harm visited upon them by the people they supervise.
“Our office prosecuted this matter with the firm belief that Paul Walter was the victim of a brutal assault simply because he was doing his job – and doing that job appropriately,” he wrote. “We respect the jury’s verdict, but nothing that has occurred today has shaken that belief.”
Accordingly, U.S. District Court Judge Landya B. McCafferty, who came from New Hampshire to hear the case, ordered Frederickson remanded to the marshals until a Dec. 20 hearing on whether he is entitled to bail.
Angiulo asked Thursday that McCafferty consider setting bail for Frederickson immediately. Assistant U.S. Attorney Lucy Sun argued against that, noting a separate federal judge earlier this year had found that Frederickson was too dangerous to release.
Asked by the judge about Frederickson’s record, Sun said he has twice violated the terms of supervised release on his 2018 federal conviction for selling steroids.
The first time, Frederickson’s mother and father filed restraining orders against him, Sun said, after he allegedly pushed them during an argument.
The second time, Frederickson was sent to prison for four months, she said, after he admitted that he violated supervised release by getting arrested by Worcester police.
Frederickson was charged along with another man in September 2018 with stealing a woman’s purse on Main Street. The charges were dropped in Central District Court after the alleged victim declined to testify.