Life is funny sometimes. You wake up the morning that you are going to die often not knowing what the day will bring. Often, if you are murdered, it comes at the hands of someone you know. Someone that you felt safe enough to have in your home with you. This case was one of those cases that makes you really think about who you are friends are.
Kent “Rusty” Taber was born in June 9th, 1955 in Stoughton, MA. Taber lived in a 5 room apartment about the Wales Funeral Home on Spring Street in E Bridgewater. At 37 years old, he worked as a Chef at Dewey’s Restaurant in Lakeville and part time as an Embalmer at the funeral home he lived above.
Rusty was found dead on the morning of December 7, 1992 in what was described as a gruesome scene. It appeared that Rusty had been having a friend over – 2 beers sat abandoned next to the pizza Rusty had picked up at Stelio’s – and just a few feet away lay Rusty’s savaged, bloody body.
Reports of the crime detail that Rusty had been stabbed multiple times in the neck nearly decapitating him, and multiple times in the back. Police reports determined the time of death to be between 4 pm and 6 pm. There were no finger prints at the scene – there was no forced entry. It was clear that Mr Taber must have known his killer.. and it appeared that he may have been sitting on the couch when he was attacked. The case went cold…and stayed frigid for 18 years.
After 18 years a startling arrest was made after witnesses were re-interviewed by the Cold Case unit, and reportedly discussed admissions of murder by a then 19 year old suspect Christopher Colucci, a Middleborough resident and a former Dewey’s Restuarant coworker of Taber’s. Colucci was arrested the same day that he was indicted by the grand jury.
Police alleged the motive in the crime was that Taber had made a sexual advance and it had angered Colucci, but there is only one person that know the truth and that’s apparently Mr. Colucci. Mr. Taber was known to be gay, but it’s difficult to say what triggered Colucci who suffered from mental health issues.
At the time of his arrest in April 2010, Colucci was paralyzed and he had to be brought into court on a gurney. He had suffered major injuries in a car accident in 1997, where he reportedly had been driving erratically and under the influence and went through a red light in MIddleboro, hit a car and that car hit another car. Colucci’s vehicle rolled and according to reports, he was thankfully the only one seriously hurt in the crash. His injuries left him paralyzed from the waist down.
Here’s the part where you get mad, after 18 years of being denied justice and just 17 months after his indictment, Colucci was deemed incompetent to stand trial and he was allowed to leave the Shattuck Hospital and go home. He allegedly violently killed a man by stabbing him so many times that he nearly took his head off and was allowed go back to his parents home in Lakeville without a trial. He was deemed to not be a threat to himself or anyone else. There will be periodic redetermination hearings but Colucci’s status is not likely to change and therefore the Taber family are unlikely to get the justice that they deserve.