Trial begins Thursday for the murder of a 37-year-old Fall River man

This is a photo of Robert Rose, who is accused of murdering his drug dealer in 2020. (WLNE)

FALL RIVER, Mass. (WLNE) — The trial for the murder of a 37-year-old  man began Thursday in Fall River Superior Court.

Robert Rose, 52, is accused of shooting and killing Joseph Tavares, 37, on Dec. 22, 2018 outside the Regency Hotel on Faunce Corner Road in Dartmouth.

Dep. District Attorney William McCauley told the jury Rose approached Tavares’ car for a planned meeting.

Rose allegedly fired three shots within minutes of getting into Tavares’ car, striking him in the head and neck.

McCauley said Rose is also accused of shooting Tavares once more in the left cheek after leaving the car.

Supposedly, Rose would frequently buy drugs from Tavares.

Just after 10:30 p.m. on Dec. 22, 2020, Dartmouth police received a call from the hotel’s night manager that a man was heavily bleeding in a car in the hotel’s parking lot.

After arriving to the scene, first responders found Tavares sitting in the drivers seat. He was unresponsive.

He was rushed to St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford where he died just about thirty minutes after police received the 911 call.

McCauley told the jury the motive of the killing was robbery.

During the next two weeks, McCauley will be presenting the jury with forensic, digital, and surveillance evidence to prove that Rose is guilty.

Evidence includes a coat that belonged to Rose with a gun in the pocked that matches the murder weapon, and the shell casing discovered at the scene.

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