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Florence restaurateur denies sexually assaulting employee

Detail of exterior of courthouse

Detail of exterior of courthouse

Santos L. Carballo, 31, of Chicopee, pleaded not guilty in Northampton District Court Monday to a single count of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14.

Carballo is the co-owner of Starr’s Pizza at 59 Main St., according to police and a February 2013 Gazette article about the business.

According to court records, the alleged victim, who is 16, had begun working at the restaurant in June and accepted a ride to a friend’s house from Carballo at the end of her shift the night of July 5.

As a matter of policy, the Gazette does not identify alleged victims of sexual assaults.

The alleged victim told police that instead of taking her to her destination, Carballo instead drove his car to a path near a section of the Mill River off Federal Street.

The victim told police that she followed Carballo out of the car and followed him into the woods. But when Carballo put his arm around her waist and “groped” her buttocks and “bit and licked” her neck she said, she pushed him away, told him she didn’t like his advances and walked out of the woods. Carballo then drove her to her friend’s house, according to court files.

On July 20, according to court records, Carballo was interviewed by police and confirmed he gave the woman a ride to a her friend’s house in Holyoke after work on July 5 but denied making any stops along the way, according to police.

Carballo was released on his own recognizance by Judge W. Michael Goggins on the conditions that he stay away and have no contact with the alleged victim, not employ anyone under 16 at his restaurant and stay away from a local school.

He is due back in court on Oct. 10 for a pre-trial hearing. If convicted, he faces up to five years in state prison.

Bob Dunn can be reached at bdunn@gazettenet.com.

Legacy Comments7

I'm a tad confused by this story. A 16 year old girl accepts a ride home from her boss at about 11:30 pm. Instead of taking the most direct route to Holyoke (Route 9) he takes a detour and pulls into a secluded parking area on Federal St. Probably the area at the start of the trail along the mill river. A residential area with houses all around. He gets out of the car and walks into the woods and, this is the confusing part, she follows him. A little late for a picnic with the boss. What could possibly have been going through her mind assuming that she was of average intelligence.

It doesn't matter. She is 16! What is not to get. The adult is wrong here.

this guy is creepy, who in their right mind can't see this. at 16, one does not always use the best judgement but an adult...he know's better. Makes me wonder how many others there are and how many times nothing has been said. Guarenteed he's a repeater. This place sucks anyway, food is horrible!! I'll never go back. hope they lock him up. And to those of you in denial about this guy, think about this...WHAT IF IS WAS YOUR DAUGHTER!!!

Hope the youth will heal emotionally quickly, if possible. Hope the accused gets a fair trial. As a rule of thumb, don't follow anyone into the woods......ever....for anything.

Plenty more to come out here. Parents of 16-y/o are fine with relative stranger giving their daughter a ride to friends house? Might as well go to the nearby well-known bar and hitch-hike. Good restaurant---hope this alleged incident doesn't hurt business.

You're trying to turn the spotlight of attention to someone other than the defendant? Assuming the rule of law finds the defendant was guilty, in that case, why shouldn't news of this incident hurt the business?

What is wrong with you? What if the parents did allow their daughter to accept a ride with her employer? Bad parenting does not allow a grown man who is in the position of power to make any sexual advances to a 16 year old. If he is guilty I hope this closes his business. His pizza can't be that good!

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