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Official says 3 slain men had throats cut

Drugs may be key in Waltham case

By Travis Andersen
Globe Staff / September 16, 2011

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The three men killed in a brutal attack this week in an apartment in Waltham died after their throats were cut, according to a law enforcement official with knowledge of the investigation.

The official requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak on the case.

According to a statement from the Middlesex district attorney’s office, the men died of “sharp-force injuries of the neck.’’ The office did not release additional details yesterday.

The victims have been identified as Brendan Mess, 25, of Waltham; Erik Weissman, 31, of Cambridge; and Raphael Teken, 37, of Cambridge. Mess lived at the apartment at 12 Harding Ave., where the men were found Monday.

Authorities have not disclosed a motive for the attack, except to say that the victims were targeted.

Another law enforcement official with direct knowledge of the case who requested anonymity said drugs are believed to be a factor in the killings.

The victims’ relatives either could not be reached yesterday or declined to comment.

Christopher Medeiros of Arlington and his roommate, Elizabeth Jason, said yesterday by phone that they were longtime friends of Mess. They said he told them Friday about a violent altercation he had the week before with his girlfriend.

They said that, according to Mess, his girlfriend threw knives and beer bottles at him after he refused to talk with guests that she had brought to the apartment.

She traveled out of state after the fight, they said, and returned to Waltham Monday, when she found the bodies. Jason and Medeiros said they do not know where she is now.

Authorities could not confirm or deny that Mess’s girlfriend had been questioned by police.

Weissman was charged in 2008 with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, according to a police report.

Teken received a bachelor’s degree in history from Brandeis University in 1998, a school spokesman said yesterday.

Mess received a bachelor’s degree in professional writing from Champlain College in 2008, according to friends and news reports. A school spokesman did not immediately return calls .

Peter Schworm of the Globe staff contributed to this report. Travis Andersen can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.