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Pavano Targeted in Extortion Attempt

Southington resident tries to extort former classmate MLB pitcher Carl Pavano

A warrant released Thursday on a Southington resident states that the man targeted MLB star Carl Pavano starting in late 2011.

The warrant claims Christian Bedard, of Southington, threatened to publish a tell-all book alleging Pavano was gay if Bedard did not receive proper compensation.

Pavano family members told detectives that Bedard posted a series of harassing messages on the Facebook wall of Pavano’s 42-year-old sister, Michelle DeGennaro. 

The warrant also shows Bedard wanted to be given with a navy Range Rover.
“Messages posted by Bedard demanded that Pavano pay a substantial amount of money to Bedard or he would reveal personal information about Pavano to the Mass Media,” Southington police officer Gerald Triano wrote in the warrant.

Bedard released this statement Thursday afternoon:

"I have been openly gay for most of my adult life. For years, my physical high school relationship with Carl Pavano has been well-known to my close friends and family. Carl Pavano's sister, Michelle DeGennaro, contacted me on Facebook asking under what conditions would I not talk about my relationship with Carl.  

I have not been charged with any crime  I will allow my local police department to conclude their investigation and I will have no further comment."

Information regarding the active investigation came to light late last week when officers at Bedard’s Hunting Hill Drive home on March 21.

Officers collected evidence including a laptop computer and a personal journal from Bedard, who later wrote on his Facebook page that he felt violated. Bedard is the son of police commissioner and Southington Democratic Town Committee Chairwoman Elaine Bedard.

No arrests have been made in the case, although the warrant states that police are determining whether Bedard’s behavior would justify pressing charges for second-degree harassment and/or first-degree larceny.

According to the warrant, DeGennaro first filed a complaint with the in December, after she received numerous messages from Bedard, 36, on her Facebook wall after he refused to leave her alone. The communication from Bedard, which began on Dec. 18, 2011, demanded “closure” from Pavano.

During a two-week period before she contacted police, DeGennaro allegedly made several requests for Bedard to cease contact with her, but Bedard refused. The warrant includes six separate messages delivered by Bedard through the social networking site.

In the first message, Bedard tells DeGennaro that he had “an underground” sexual relationship with Pavano that started when the two were 14 years old and lasted for three years. In the message, he also claims Pavano was his first love.

Phone and email messages left with both Pavano’s agent Tom O’Connell and public relations staff with the Minnesota Twins on Tuesday evening and again Wednesday morning were not returned.

DeGennaro told police the information is false, according to the warrant. She could not be reached by phone Thursday and no one was present at her Southington home. Pavano’s parents, Carmen and Anne Pavano, have declined comment.

“I have seriously juicy book offers to the point that the only way your brother is getting out of this is with a heartfelt apology and a navy range Rover with tan leather. If I am going to drop a $1.2 million book deal I want something,” Bedard wrote, according to the warrant.

Bedard said on his Facebook page last week that he wanted police to arrest him so his story could be told. He said in a post on the social media site that all he is really seeking is closure after he believes Pavano mistreated him when the relationship ended.

Pavano and Bedard were classmates together at Southington High School in the early 1990s. Pavano excelled as a baseball player at the school and eventually went on to sign a $40 million major league contract with the New York Yankees.

He is scheduled as the opening day starter for the Twins when they take on the Baltimore Orioles on April 6.

Police said Thursday that the investigation is ongoing and an arrest does not appear imminent at this time. Sgt. Lowell DePalma said the department could not comment further on an open investigation.

“We are aware of the information that is out there now, but because our investigation is ongoing, we can not elaborate on it at this time,” said Sgt. Lowell DePalma, Southington police spokesman. “It does not appear that the release of this information is affecting the case.”

Bedard has a history of alcohol-related arrests, including convictions on two counts of driving under the influence, breach of peace and third-degree burglary between 2002 and early 2011.

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