Beds, Herts & Bucks

Shot Facebook 'grass' tried to enter Bedford home

A man shot after being branded a police grass on the internet made a "serious" attempt to get into a house before he was gunned down, a jury has heard.

Domenico Masciopinto was shot near his Bedford home after doctored images of his police record were put on Facebook.

Brothers Malik Blackburn, 26, and Aaron Romain, 24, both deny attempted murder in January 2011.

St Albans Crown Court heard Mr Masciopinto had tried to get into Mr Blackburn's girlfriend's home.

Mr Blackburn has also pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit an act of misconduct in a public office.

Banging on windows

Mr Masciopinto, 30, believed that Mr Blackburn had been responsible for placing his photograph and the words "Police Informant since 2009" on Facebook.

The jury has heard he was put in a position of "severe risk" and made inquiries to find out who was behind it.

The court heard a statement from Naomi Rutter, the girlfriend of Mr Blackburn, who said that Mr Masciopinto made a "serious attempt" to get into her home.

Mr Masciopinto, who was with an associate Stafano Daniello, was banging on the windows and door demanding to know why his picture had been put on Facebook, she said.

Ms Rutter said she was frightened and telephoned Mr Romain because she thought he could "calm Dom down".

She said she did not answer the door and the two men left. Shortly afterwards, Mr Romain turned up.

The prosecution allege that the brothers then went to Masciopinto's home, where he was shot at least three times on his doorstep.

The court has been told that Mr Blackburn had contacted a civilian detention and escort officer at Bedfordshire Police, Jonpaul Pasqualone.

It is alleged he paid Mr Pasqualone to access Mr Masciopinto's record on a police computer system.

The court heard Mr Pasqualone took an image of the record and it was put on the web, the prosecution said.

The jury was told Mr Blackburn said he had not given Mr Pasqualone any money for the images and denied putting them on Facebook.

The trial continues.

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