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Host of Tisei fund-raiser faces criminal charges

Richard Tisei.

AP/file

Richard Tisei.

The Marblehead investor who hosted a Thursday evening fund-raiser for congressional candidate Richard R. Tisei was arrested two months ago on charges of hitting someone with a Land Cruiser after an argument in a Wellesley parking lot, police say.

Steven P. Rosenthal, 56, hosted the fund-raiser at the Harvard Club in Boston for Tisei and his featured guest, US House majority whip Kevin McCarthy.

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Tisei campaign spokesman Charlie Szold said that the campaign was not aware of the charges.

“This incident was just brought to our attention yesterday,” Szold said in a statement. “Steve Rosenthal is a very well-respected member of the community, and we’re confident this incident will be dealt with through the legal process appropriately.”

Rosenthal, president and chief executive officer of Northland Investment Corp., was arrested Feb. 27 after an altercation with a parking lot employee near the Papa Razzi trattoria in Wellesley, court documents show.

Wellesley police originally charged Rosenthal with assault to murder; assault and battery with a dangerous weapon; leaving the scene of a personal injury collision; negligent operation of a motor vehicle; and resisting arrest, according to a police report. The assault to murder charge has since been dropped by Norfolk District Attorney Michael W. Morrissey.

Rosenthal would not speak to the Globe, but issued a statement through a spokesman Friday disputing the charges and explaining why he continues to participate in political fund-raising while the case continues.

“Unfortunately, I am not allowed to discuss the details of this parking dispute and the irresponsible and false charges that have been made against me,” Rosenthal said in the statement. “I intend to continue my business, philanthropic, civic, and political activities in exactly the same manner as I have done for more than 35 years.”

Wellesley police said in their report that they responded to a call from a parking lot employee who told police that the driver swore at him after he told him the area where he was parking was private.

The vehicle then accelerated toward the employee, swerved at him, and struck his body, according to his account in the police report. The employee told police that he put out his left arm and pushed off the vehicle to avoid being run over.

Police tracked Rosenthal from a photo the employee took of his license plate and joined Newton police to confront him at his office, just over the Newton line. Rosenthal repeatedly told police he did not understand why he was being arrested, the report says. He was uncooperative, the report states.

Rosenthal is a consistent contributor to political campaigns on both sides of the aisle. In years past, he even contributed to the campaign of US Representative John F. Tierney, whom Tisei is challenging for the second time this year.

Stephanie Ebbert can be reached at Stephanie.Ebbert@
globe.com
. Follow her on Twitter @StephanieEbbert.
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