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Boston attorney, ex-prosecutor, arrested on rape charge

Gary Zerola.
Gary Zerola.Boston Police Department

A Boston defense attorney surrendered to police on Friday, three days after an arrest warrant was issued, charging him with rape and breaking and entering in the nighttime, authorities said.

Gary Zerola, 49, was arrested around 12:50 p.m. and later arraigned in Boston Municipal Court. He was ordered held without bail, pending a dangerousness hearing scheduled for Thursday, the office of Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins said.

A warrant had been issued Tuesday for Zerola’s arrest on charges of rape and breaking and entering in the nighttime.

Prosecutors said Zerola met the alleged victim at a gathering on Jan. 11. He and a mutual acquaintance accompanied the woman back to her apartment. Early the next morning, Zerola allegedly entered the apartment without the permission of the woman, who “awoke to find him sexually assaulting her,” prosecutors said in a statement.

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Rollins called the allegations “deeply troubling.”

“What’s worse, the offense for which Mr. Zerola was arraigned today is alleged to have occurred while he was out on bail in a prior sexual assault case,” she said.

The case Rollins referred to was Zerola’s alleged rape of a woman in 2016. He faces charges in Suffolk Superior Court but had posted $10,000 bail in that case.

Since 2004, Zerola has been accused of rape multiple times. He was acquitted in two rape cases in Massachusetts and one in Florida, the Globe reported.

Additionally, Zerola is awaiting trial on two other charges of rape for an alleged sexual assault of a victim he knew, the Middlesex district attorney’s office said.

Zerola is a former prosecutor in Suffolk and Essex counties.


Charlie McKenna can be reached at charlie.mckenna@globe.com.