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Rhode Island man convicted of violently assaulting father & son who came to aid of harassed woman



Attorney General Peter Neronha announced today that a Cranston man has been found guilty in Providence County Superior Court of violently assaulting a 64-year-old man and his adult son during a 2018 altercation.

On July 6, 2023, following the conclusion of an eight-day jury trial before Superior Court Justice Joseph A. Montalbano, the jury found 50-year-old Willard Whiting guilty of one count of felony assault resulting in serious bodily injury and one count of felony assault on a person over the age of 60.

During the trial, the State proved that on July 22, 2018, the defendant assaulted two victims, one of whom was over 60 years old, after the victims witnessed Whiting harassing a woman and subsequently intervened. The defendant knocked both victims down and assaulted them while they were on the ground.

“Physical violence is always unacceptable, but the outlandish assault committed by the defendant against two Good Samaritans is especially tough to stomach,” said Attorney General Peter F. Neronha. “These two gentlemen tried to help someone they saw in distress and were met with serious injuries instead of praise. The jury got this one right, and this verdict sends a clear message that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated in Rhode Island. I am grateful to the Cranston Police Department for their outstanding work and partnership during the investigation and prosecution of this case.”

In the early morning hours of July 18, 2018, while riding a motorcycle, Whiting approached his wife, who was walking on Walnut Grove Avenue, and screamed at her to get on the bike. Close by at their place of business, the victims heard the screaming and went over to check on the woman’s well-being. When they arrived, Whiting got off his motorcycle and struck both men, knocking them to the ground. After they fell, Whiting continued to physically assault them before fleeing on his motorcycle.

Rescue personnel transported both victims to Kent Hospital, where they were treated for their injuries. Whiting inflicted serious bodily injuries to the face and head of the younger victim that required subsequent surgery.

Two witnesses on scene recounted what transpired, and their version of events corroborated statements given by the victims. One of the witnesses provided a description of the motorcycle to police dispatch, including the license plate number, which helped them identify Whiting as its owner.

Investigators compiled a photo lineup, which included Whiting, and one of the victims positively identified him as the assailant. They then sought a warrant for Whiting’s arrest, and he turned himself in on July 23, 2018.

“The Cranston Police Department works tirelessly to keep our communities safe from senseless acts of violence such as this one and bring justice to those who perpetrate these offenses,” said Cranston Police Chief Col. Michael J. Winquist. “The victim received permanent and life-long lasting injuries as a result of this vicious and unprovoked attack, and we continue to wish him well. I am grateful for the work of our detectives and officers, as well as the Attorney General’s Office, during the investigation and prosecution of this case.”

The Court granted bail for Whiting, setting it at $10,000 pending his sentencing hearing that will be held on a later date.

Special Assistant Attorney General Molly Kapstein Cote of the Office of the Attorney General and Detective Jonathan Nelson of the Cranston Police Department led the investigation and prosecution of the case.



  1. MortisMaximus

    July 10, 2023 at 6:10 pm

    Give this Antifa Goon the death penalty!

  2. Go away

    July 11, 2023 at 9:51 am

    Send him back to where he cam from.

  3. Donna

    July 11, 2023 at 2:28 pm

    Rhode Island needs to keep it’s beautiful State . They did good by putting this man behind bars. Well done

  4. HuntersCrackPipe

    July 12, 2023 at 12:36 pm

    Another avowed member of the psychotic psyop group ANTIFA!

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