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Ex-‘Sopranos’ actor pleads guilty to assault

Pastore sentenced to community service, anger management classes
/ Source: The Associated Press

Vincent Pastore, who played gangster Salvatore "Big Pussy" Bonpensiero on "The Sopranos," was given a conditional discharge Monday after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor count of attempted assault following an altercation with a girlfriend.

As part of the plea deal, Pastore will perform 70 hours of community service, attend six months of weekly anger management therapy and pay a $190 fine. If convicted at trial, he could have been sentenced to as much as a year in jail.

Pastore, 59, was originally charged with two counts of assault, attempted assault and harassment for allegedly attacking Lisa Regina, 44, during an altercation in Little Italy last April.

Prosecutors said he punched her in the back of the head, grabbed her hair, and forced her head down on a car's gear shift during an argument. During his allocution before Manhattan Criminal Court Judge Ellen Coin, Pastore admitted striking Regina.

"Yes, I did," the actor told the judge. He declined further comment.

Coin also warned Pastore that an order of protection against him contacting Regina has been filed. She said any violation could land the actor in prison for four years.

The actor, who said he served in the U.S. Navy from 1964-67, said he intended to serve his community service at the Kingsbridge Veterans Administration Hospital in the Bronx. He said he intended to help serve food this Thanksgiving and Christmas, and help with other projects benefiting veterans.

On the subject of anger management, Pastore's attorney Dominic Barbara said his client has been receiving therapy for 10 months.

Pastore's "Sopranos" character was killed early in the series as payback for snitching on the mob.