Stoughton gym owner addresses steroid incident

Candace Hall

As the owner of Gold’s Gym in Stoughton, Tom Martini says he hears a lot of gossip about clientele using steroids. But until a few weeks ago, nobody’s gotten caught.

That changed on Aug. 28, when police nabbed two Stoughton men, John Schifone, 25, of Rayburn Road., and Denis Melo, 49, of Sumner Street., at the gym’s parking lot.

“I’m glad they caught them,” Martini said.

The charges were the result of an investigation that state police had been conducting.  

According to Norfolk County District Attorney Spokesman David Traub, both state and local police work to enforce drug laws in the region. He said this is the first steroid violation enforcement by state police in the Stoughton area for at least two years.   He added neither man was arrested, but summoned for court appearances.

Traub said Schifone, who had been released on bail for another violation, was charged with distribution of steroids, and conspiracy to violate a drug law. He was arraigned on Sept. 17, and he will have a pretrial conference on Oct.8.

He said Melo is charged with possessing steroids. His arraignment will be on Oct. 14.

Martini said police told him on Aug. 29 about Schifone and the allegations against him, and Martini said he immediately terminated the man’s membership at the gym. 

“There had been rumors, but no one had every caught him,” he said.

He said Melo was not a regular gym member, and he guessed that he was there on a day pass.

Martini said his gym does its best to discourage steroid use, but it’s impossible to keep people from talking about them when they come to the gym. He says young men, in particular, are mesmerized by the big-muscle look glamorized in health and fitness magazines.