WSAR NEWS Archives for 2022-12

New Year's Eve Programming to Move Indoors Due to Rain Forecast Fireworks still scheduled for 8:30 p.m.

New Bedford, Massachusetts– The City of New Bedford is moving to indoor programming on New Year’s Eve due to the rain forecast. Fireworks are still scheduled for 8:30 p.m.  

Broken Glass Projections 3D mapping will be postponed to a later date. 

Updated Events: (See the Destination New Bedford website for updates)

•    Vinny's Miracle Fish Puppets
The New Bedford Whaling Museum, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Meet magical creatures, embarking on an imaginative journey into 2023. 
•    Ever After Storybook Entertainment Characters

The New Bedford Free Public Library, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. 
Come sing, dance, and celebrate with Mirabel, Elsa, Winter Elf, and Spiderman. 

•    Cirque de Light
New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.  

A spectacle of fire and light! Improvisational fire spinning and LED performers light up the night.
•    Kaleidoscope Art and Entertainment: Magician and Face Painting
New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. 

Expect the unexpected and lots of laughs with an interactive show that will entertain the whole family.
•    Buttonwood Brass Band

UMass Dartmouth CVPA Star Store, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Lounge to the trio performing jazz, classical, and the Great American Songbook.
•    Toe Jam Puppet Band

The New Bedford Whaling Museum, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Get ready for the "family fun band" in the Jacob's Family Gallery with interactive silly songs and dancing.

•    Photo Booth
Whaling Museum Lobby, 5 p.m. –8 p.m.
funfotos2go has your keepsake special moments covered with complimentary photographs sent directly to your mobile device.

•    Inter Church Council Worship Service
Seamen’s Bethel, 5 p.m. – 6 p.m. 

•    City of New Bedford Fireworks Display

Head down to the bottom of Union Street just before Route 18, for ideal viewing of the spectacular fireworks over the harbor, commencing at 8:30 p.m.


“New Year’s Eve City Celebrates is a wonderful opportunity for area families and visitors to enjoy free, fun events for all ages in our historic downtown,” said Mayor Jon Mitchell. “We appreciate the generous support of Bristol County Savings Bank, which has sponsored City Celebrates for many years, and we are grateful that they are joined this year by Vineyard Wind and Claremont Companies.”

MassDOT Launching 2023 Massachusetts Freight Plan Process Public meetings scheduled in regard to the freight system in the Commonwealth, including air, rail, truck, maritime, and multimodal transportation Tuesday, January 10 and Thursday, January 12

 BOSTON – The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it is launching the 2023 Massachusetts Freight Plan Process.  Two public meetings will be held soon, a Freight Advisory Committee meeting on Tuesday, January 10, at 11 a.m., and a public information meeting on Thursday, January 12, at 6 p.m. Both meetings will be held virtually and recordings will be available on the MassDOT website. 


At the meetings, the study team will review the 2017 Freight Plan, provide an overview of the planning process, and engage attendees in a discussion of the vision and goals for the Massachusetts Freight Plan.  The Plan is a document that will define short and long-term vision for the freight system in the Commonwealth, and includes air, rail, truck, maritime, and multimodal transportation. 

Zoom webinar registration links are available for both meetings at the link below.
For more information, please visit the Freight Plan website:?

Defendant apprehended while allegedly attempting to rob a fifth bank

BOSTON – A Fall River man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for allegedly robbing four separate banks in Massachusetts within a five-day period and attempting to rob of a fifth bank. 


William Sequeira, 59, was indicted on four counts of bank robbery and one count of attempted bank robbery. Sequeira was previously charged by criminal complaint on Nov. 18, 2022 with one count of bank robbery and one count of attempted bank robbery.


According to the charging documents, between Sept. 26, 2022 and Sept. 30, 2022, Sequeira robbed four separate banks in the Fall River and Boston areas. Specifically, it is alleged that Sequeira robbed: a Citizens Bank branch in Fall River on Sept. 26, 2022; a Santander Bank branch in Boston on Sept. 27, 2022; a M&T Bank branch in Boston on Sept. 28, 2022; and a TD Bank branch in Boston on Sept. 30, 2022. During the TD Bank robbery on Sept. 30, 2022 in Boston, Sequeira allegedly approached a teller and stated, “give me all the $100s in the drawer,” and “give me all the money before I blow your brains out,” before fleeing on foot with money from the teller.


On Oct. 5, 2022, law enforcement surveilling the Back Bay area in an effort to locate Sequeira, spotted him entering a Citizens Bank branch on Boylston Street in Boston. There, it is alleged that Sequeira approached the teller, said “Give me hundreds,” and then threatened to shoot the teller if they did not move fast enough. Sequeira was immediately apprehended.


The charges of bank robbery each provide for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. The charge of attempted bank robbery provides for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal case.


United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins; Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division; and Boston Police Commissioner Michael Cox made the announcement. Valuable assistance was provided by the Fall River Police Department and the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Luke A. Goldworm of Rollins’ Major Crimes Unit is prosecuting the case.


The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

MBTA Rides For Free on New Year's Eve

Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority trains will have no admission cost for New Year’s Eve. According to cbs 12 in providence, the MBTA tweeted all trains after 8:00 p.m. on Dec. 31 will be free. MBTA said all last trains will be held until after the First Night firework event in Boston, except for the Needham and Fairmount railways.

Sutter Running For Mayor of Fall River

According to CBS 12 in Providence, Former Fall River mayor Sam Sutter has announced he plans on running for mayor again in the 2023 election. Sutter said a formal announcement will come by the end of January where he will focus on three key issues of crime, schools and affordable housing. Sutter served as the mayor of the city from 2014 until 2016. Prior to winning the mayoral race in 2014, Sutter served as the Bristol County District Attorney and is currently an attorney at a private practice.

Fairhaven Neighborhood Suffers Multiple Car Break Ins

Police are asking for public help in identifying the individual seen in surveillance footage breaking into several cars in Fairhaven. According to CBS 12 in Providence, The suspect reportedly broke into a number of cars and stole one of them the weekend before Christmas, occurring near Linden Avenue, Hemlock Street and Birchfield Street. 


Anyone who can identify the suspect or has any information on the incidents is asked to contact the Fairhaven Police Department.

Healey and Driscoll to Appoint Rebecca Tepper as Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary

BOSTON – Governor-elect Maura Healey and Lieutenant Governor-elect Driscoll today announced that they will appoint Rebecca Tepper as Secretary of the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA). Tepper is currently the Chief of the Energy and Environment Bureau in the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office.


“In my time working with Rebecca, I’ve known her to be a strong leader who cares deeply about our environment and also understands the great opportunity before us to partner with our workforce and businesses to drive our clean energy revolution and preserve our beautiful natural resources,” said Governor-elect Healey. “She’s smart, experienced and committed to the cause, and I know that she will be a consensus builder and deliver the results we so urgently need.”


“I’m honored to be chosen as EEA Secretary by Governor-elect Healey and Lieutenant Governor-elect Driscoll,” said Tepper. “The challenge of this moment is not lost on me – we have enormous work to do to deliver relief to Massachusetts residents and businesses who are struggling with rising energy bills and aggressively move forward on our climate goals. Our transition to a clean energy economy will  create good paying, sustainable jobs and deliver health, environmental and equity benefits to all Massachusetts residents.”


As EEA Secretary, Tepper will oversee the state’s six environmental, natural resource and energy regulatory agencies. She will work closely with the Climate Chief to deliver on Governor-elect Healey’s commitment to electrify our buildings and transportation system and create a climate corridor of innovation, technology and investment across the state.

MassDOT Advisory: Fall River Bridge Maintenance on Route 6 (Eastern Avenue) over I-195 Eastbound and Westbound Closure will be in place starting December 28 nightly from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following morning through Friday, January 6

FALL RIVER - The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing that it will be performing bridge maintenance operations on the Route 6 (Eastern Avenue) Bridge over I-195 starting Wednesday, December 28. Work will be performed nightly between 8:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. until Friday, January 6.



There will be no work Friday, December 30 through Tuesday, January 3, 2023. A minimum of two open travel lanes will be maintained at all times on I-195 eastbound and westbound in both directions. Traffic Police will be on site to assist with traffic control.


Drivers who are traveling through the affected areas should expect delays, reduce speed, and use caution. 
All scheduled work is weather dependent and/or may be impacted due to an emergency situation. 

Baker-Polito Administration awards $46 Million to Support Provider Home- and Community-based Services (HCBS) and Human Services Workforce Development

Funding supports community organizations’ workforce recruitment and retention in services across Massachusetts
BOSTON – Today the Baker-Polito Administration announced more than $46 million has been awarded to 85 community organizations for workforce recruitment, retention, and training, with the goal of reducing staff burnout and improving client outcomes in our human service and HCBS sectors across the Commonwealth. More than 472 applications were submitted totaling $270.1 million in requests. 

The home and community based (HCBS) and human services workforce grant opened in October through the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) for any Massachusetts provider, education/training institution, community organization, existing workforce program, or private foundation.

“We are experiencing a nationwide shortage of human service and HCBS workers who have been facing burnout and immense stress over the last several years,” said Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders. “Investing in community service organizations through this funding will better equip the Commonwealth with the resources and tools needed to recruit and retain this critical workforce, creating better patient outcomes for Massachusetts residents.”

EOHHS received funding for the grant through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The administration is committed to using the funds to strengthen access, family and natural supports, person-centered care, choice, and equity to HCBS for those with physical disabilities, intellectual and developmental disabilities, and for older adults with unique behavioral health needs.

Baker-Polito Administration Awards $4.1 Million to 11 Organizations to Improve Access to Reproductive Health Services

BOSTON (December 28, 2022) – The Baker-Polito Administration announced $4.1 million in grants to 11 community-based organizations and health care providers to improve access to reproductive health, including abortion care, across the Commonwealth.

The 11 funded organizations include existing health care organizations that provide abortion services, sexual and reproductive health care providers that will begin offering abortion services, and support for costs associated with receiving abortion care, for example, transportation, childcare payments, lodging, translation services, and abortion doulas. 

Rich Hill agrees to 1-year deal with Pirates (source)

This was first reported by

Justice delos Santos

The Pirates agreed to a one-year, $8 million deal with left-handed starter Rich Hill, pending a physical, a source told, the latest in what has been a long list of acquisitions for Pittsburgh over the past two months.

Hill, who will turn 43 in March, continued to defy Father Time in 2022, posting a 4.27 ERA and a 3.92 FIP across 124 1/3 innings with the Red Sox.

Even in his 40s, Hill has remained an effective starter. Since the beginning of 2020, Hill owns a 3.92 ERA and a 4.14 FIP with 8.11 strikeouts per nine innings to 3.05 walks per nine innings. Hill still possesses a penchant for minimizing loud contact, ranking in the 88th percentile of hard-hit rate in '20 and 79th percentile in '21 and '22.

Eovaldi signs 2-year, $34M deal with Rangers

This was first reported on


Ian Browne

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers wanted more depth in their starting rotation for 2023. Once they started adding, they never seemed to stop.

Right-hander Nathan Eovaldi has agreed to a two-year, $34 million contract with the Rangers, a source told's Mark Feinsand. The deal includes a third-year vesting player option along with performance bonuses.

Eovaldi will join a rotation that includes Jacob deGrom, who signed a five-year deal with Texas earlier this month. In 2022, Eovaldi spent two stints on the injured list, limiting him to 20 starts. He went 6-3 with a 3.87 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP.

According to the source, the deal includes a bonus of $3 million per year for reaching 160 innings pitched. The $20 million option for 2025 vests with 300 innings across the next two seasons, with another $3 million of incentives. Eovaldi will have a base salary of $16 million in both '23 and '24, plus a $2 million signing bonus. The deal can max out at $63 million

Kluber agrees to one-year deal with Red Sox (report)

This was first reported on

Thomas Harrigan

Two-time Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber has agreed to a one-year contract with the Red Sox, according to a report from ESPN's Jeff Passan. The team has not confirmed the deal, which Passan reported has a club option for 2024.

After signing a one-year, $8 million deal with the Rays last offseason, Kluber tossed 164 innings over 31 starts and finished 2022 with a 4.34 ERA and a 1.21 WHIP.

The veteran had thrown just 116 2/3 innings in the previous three seasons combined due to several major injuries, including a fractured right forearm in 2019, a torn teres major muscle in his right shoulder in 2020 and a right shoulder strain in 2021.

Kluber was one of the top pitchers in the game with Cleveland from 2014-18, winning two American League Cy Young Awards and recording a 2.85 ERA with 1,228 K’s over 1,091 1/3 innings.

He pitched for the Rangers in 2020 (1 IP) and the Yankees in 2021 (80 IP) before joining Tampa Bay, his fourth team in as many years.

Heroux Introduced to the Bristol County Jail and House of Corrections

According to CBS 12 in Providence, Sheriff-elect Paul Heroux was introduced to the inner workings of the Bristol County Jail and House of Corrections yesterday. Heroux toured both the Ash Street Jail in New Bedford and the House of Corrections in Dartmouth alongside outgoing Sheriff Thomas Hodgson. The Attleboro mayor defeated Hodgson for Bristol County Sheriffs, a position Hodgson held for the past 25 years. Heroux was the first challenger to run against Hodgson in 12 years. Heroux says his top priorities as sheriff include keeping people safe, boosting staff morale and addressing recidivism among inmates.


Heroux is expected to begin his six-year term as sheriff in the new year.

Six Injured in Lakeville Crash

According to CBS 12 in Providence, six people were injured, including two seriously, after a car crash in Lakeville late Friday night. The Lakeville Fire Department posted on social media around 10:30 p.m. that  they were called to Route 140 for a report of a crash finding vehicles off of the highway, on the median, and on the shoulder of the road. Six victims, who have yet to be identified, were taken to St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford as the cause of the crash remains under investigation.

NBFD "12 Days of Christmas"

This holiday season members of the New Bedford Fire Department are helping spread the useful information with their new rendition of the "The Twelve Days of Christmas." in explaining fire hazards that may pop up around the holidays. According to NBC 10 in Providence, firefighters even went to elementary schools around the city to help kids learn how to stop, drop and roll. They also spread tips for residents who have real Christmas trees and how to prevent them from catching on fire such as keeping it away from all heat sources like fireplaces, radiators and even air ducts.


While the fire safety videos were geared more toward kids and young adults, NBFD is hoping that adults take away an important message to prevent fires this holiday season

_Massachusetts Gas Prices Down 10 Cents

Westwood, MA, December 19, 2022 — The average gas price in Massachusetts is down 10 cents from last week ($3.54), averaging $3.44 per gallon. Today’s price is 38 cents lower than a month ago ($3.82), and 5 cents higher than December 19, 2021 ($3.39). Massachusetts’ average gas price is 30 cents higher than the national average.


“The cost of oil, gasoline's main ingredient, has been hovering in the low-to-mid $70s per barrel, and that's $50 less than the peak last Spring,” said Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Vice President of Public and Government Affairs. "Combined with low seasonal demand, gas prices could slide a bit more before leveling off."  


AAA Northeast’s December 19 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 12 cents lower than last week ($3.26), averaging $3.14 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 54 cents lower than a month ago ($3.68), and 16 cents lower than this day last year ($3.30).


New Policy for Disposal of Mattresses and Box Springs in effect January 1, 2023 Fee Set Below Other Municipalities; Limits Cost To Residents

New Bedford, Massachusetts – As a consequence of a new statewide ban on the disposal of mattresses and box springs established recently by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP), effective January 1, 2023, a $10 fee will be required of New Bedford residents seeking to have their mattresses and box springs removed by the City’s private solid waste hauler Harvey Waste & Recycling Services.


MassDEP expanded the state’s existing list of “waste bans” to include mattress and box spring disposal in support of its goal to reduce disposal statewide by 30 percent (from 5.7 million tons in 2018 to 4 million tons in 2030) over the next decade.  MassDEP has set a long-term goal of achieving a 90 percent reduction in disposal to 570,000 tons by 2050.  For more information, visit or,


With many municipalities now charging fees of $20 to $55 for mattress and box spring pick-up, New Bedford has established a fee of $10 in order to limit the cost to residents.  Residents are advised that there is a limit of one mattress and one box spring per dwelling unit per six-month period (two mattresses and two box spring over a one-year period).  To schedule a pick-up appointment and make payment, residents should contact the New Bedford Department of Facilities and Fleet Management at (508) 979-1520.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission Votes to Award MGM Springfield with a Category 1 Sports Wagering Operator License

During a public meeting of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) where MGM Springfield presented and Commissioners reviewed that entity’s application for a sports wagering operator license, Commissioners voted unanimously to award MGM Springfield with a Category 1 sports wagering operator license. 
The MGC set a goal to launch retail sports wagering at the three casinos in the Commonwealth, which are eligible for Category 1 sports wagering licenses, in late January. 
MGM Springfield now must obtain an operations certificate and meet additional conditions before bets can be accepted. More information on a universal launch day for retail sports betting will be released in the coming weeks.  

_Trump Must Never Again Hold Public Office

“The bipartisan January 6th Committee has affirmed, via thorough and transparent fact-finding, that Donald Trump committed insurrection. The Department of Justice should prosecute him”


Washington, DC — Today, Congressman Jake Auchincloss (D, MA-04), released the following statement in response to The January 6th Committee making criminal referrals against former President Donald Trump: 


“The bipartisan January 6th Committee has affirmed, via thorough and transparent fact-finding, that Donald Trump committed insurrection. The Department of Justice should prosecute him. Congress should enact the Electoral Count Act Reform to prevent another constitutional crisis. 


“And the American people, of all political persuasions, should heed Abraham Lincoln’s warning: ‘If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time or die by suicide.’ Donald Trump tried to be the ‘finisher’ of our democracy. He must never again hold public office.”

Bristol County Cold Case Rape Arrest

A 48-year-old former fugitive arrested last month for the 1994 violent rape of a woman in Attleboro was ordered held without bail today in Fall River Superior Court, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III announced.


Eduardo Mendez was apprehended last month in New York City on an arrest warrant issued by our office for the 1994 violent rape of a woman in Attleboro.


The crime occurred on June 9, 1994 when the victim was accosted by three men in Attleboro as she walked near the Pleasant Street Bridge in Attleboro.  The three men forced her into the stairwell of a nearby building, covering her mouth as she attempted to scream.


 In the stairwell, two of the men held her down while the third violently raped her before fleeing the scene.  The victim immediately reported the case to the police, who responded to the area but were unable to identify any of the suspects.  At that location, however, they found the victim’s purse.  The victim provided a description of her assailants, noting that the man who had raped her had gold on his teeth.  Despite her descriptions of the individuals who had assaulted her, no suspect was identified at that time.  The victim was transported to Sturdy Hospital where she was treated and a sexual assault evidence collection kit (rape kit) was recovered. 


As part of a county-wide project focusing on unsolved homicides and other violent crimes dating back to the 1970s, the District Attorney’s Office is also working with local police to re-examine evidence from unsolved rape cases from previous decades.


 This includes testing evidence from rape cases that were not previously tested or by resubmitting evidence to be re-tested using the most recent DNA technology.  This effort is being overseen by the District Attorney’s Office’s Cold Case Unit in collaboration with the Unresolved Crime Unit of the Massachusetts State Police.  In furtherance of this project, the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office sought and was awarded 2.2 million dollars of federal grant money to ensure that all untested evidence from old sexual assault cases would be tested using the most modern methods.


In recent years, evidence recovered from the victim of the 1994 rape was sent to the state crime lab for re-testing.  The recent testing related to this case revealed a DNA profile that was then uploaded to the national CODIS system.  That upload revealed a match to Eduardo Mendez, who was in the national system as a result of a conviction for a stabbing which occurred in New York later in the 1990s.  In addition to the DNA match, the investigation has revealed that Mendez’s physical description matches the one given by the victim and that he had lived just a few houses away from where the crime was committed.  Investigators also learned that he has gold in his teeth. 


The rape kit in this case was sent to a private lab as part of a grant the state crime lab received in an effort to cut into the rape kit testing backlog.

In September of 2020, our office announced that an arrest warrant had been issued in this case, thanks to DA Quinn’s Untested Rape Kit Initiative.  For the past two years, state police detectives assigned to the district attorney’s office, the Massachusetts State Police Violent Fugitive Apprehension Section, the state police’s Unresolved Unit, Attleboro Police and the US Marshals have been actively searching for this defendant.  Last month, the defendant was apprehended in Brooklyn, NY by US Marshals, the New York City Sheriff’s Office and New York City Police.

Fall River Break In Arrests

On December 10 and 11, 2022, Fall River Police Department Officer Jennifer Deleon responded to two separately reported breaks and larcenies at the Pumpkin Patch Daycare located at 1310 South Main Street.

In both incidents, entry appeared to have been made through a broken window. Multiple items were reported stolen, that included boxes of brand new toys, children’s learning resources, tools, and other items.

Officer Deleon initiated her investigation by searching for evidence of the crime, as well as canvassing the neighborhood for possible eyewitnesses or video surveillance. These cases were subsequently assigned for follow-up by Major Crimes Division Detective Cheyenne Fortin.

Over the following days, the investigation developed and resulted in a search warrant being issued and executed by the Major Crimes Division at an apartment on the 1200 block of South Main Street. Multiple arrests were made and suspected evidence from the aforementioned breaks was seized.

Simultaneous to this effort, Detectives from the Vice/Intelligence Unit located several items suspected to have been stolen from the daycare in a separate search at a different apartment at that address.

Eric Teasdale, 44, and Renae Frank, 37, were subsequently charged with offenses related to the daycare breaks and other related incidents. Charges include but are not limited to multiple counts each of breaking and entering a building in the nighttime with intent to commit a felony, larceny from a building, and larceny under $1200.
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Massachusetts Unemployment & Job Estimates for November

BOSTON, MA – December 16, 2022 – The state’s November total unemployment rate was 3.4 percent, down one-tenth of a percentage point over-the-month, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.


The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts gained 17,300 jobs in November. This follows last month’s revised gain of 10,000 jobs.


The largest over the month private sector job gains were in Leisure and Hospitality, Education and Health Services, and Trade, Transportation, and Utilities. Employment now stands at 3,710,600.  Since the employment trough in April 2020, Massachusetts gained 677,100 jobs.


From November 2021 to November 2022, BLS estimates Massachusetts gained 144,200 jobs. The largest over the year gains occurred in Leisure and Hospitality, Education and Health Services, and Professional and Business Services. 


The November unemployment rate of 3.4 percent was three-tenths of a percentage point below the national rate of 3.7 percent reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 


The labor force decreased by an estimated 13,000 from 3,745,600 in October, with 7,300 fewer residents employed, and 5,800 fewer residents unemployed over-the-month.


Over-the-year, the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was down by 1.4 percentage points. 

The state’s labor force participation rate – the total number of residents 16 or older who worked or were unemployed and actively sought work in the last four weeks – dropped by 0.2 percentage point at 65.3 percent over-the-month. Compared to November 2021, the labor force participation rate was down three-tenths of a percentage point.

Healey and Driscoll Announce Appointment of Patrick Tutwiler as Secretary of Education

BOSTON – Governor-elect Maura Healey and Lieutenant Governor-elect Driscoll today announced that they will appoint Patrick Tutwiler, PhD as Secretary of the Executive Office of Education.


Tutwiler is the Senior Program Officer for Education at the Barr Foundation, and he has more than twenty years’ experience in public education as a high school history teacher, as a high school principal and as the superintendent of the Lynn Public Schools.


“Dr. Patrick Tutwiler has the experience, the empathy and the vision to make sure that every Massachusetts resident receives a high quality education at each stage of their life – from early education, to K-12 to higher education,” said Governor-elect Healey. “From his time working as a high school history teacher to leading a large, diverse, urban school district, he has earned his reputation as a consensus builder who puts diversity, equity and inclusion at the center of everything he does, and delivers results.”


“I’m honored to be named Secretary of Education for the Healey-Driscoll Administration. Our office is going to be all about the people – the students, the families, the educators and the staff who we serve will drive all of our decision making,” said Tutwiler. “I’m excited for the opportunity to build a strong team who will help us ensure that we have a high-quality, equitable and thriving education system.”


“As Mayor of Salem, I’ve worked closely with superintendents and seen firsthand the significant impact they can have in strengthening public education,” said Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll. “I’ve often said that schools are the most important investments for any mayor, and supporting those school systems is of particular importance right now as we continue to grapple with the long-term impacts of the pandemic on our students. I’ve been incredibly impressed by Dr. Tutwiler’s experience as Lynn Superintendent and I know that his decades of public education experience will make him an excellent Secretary of Education.”


In his current role, Tutwiler specializes in developing new high school models that will have a positive impact across the entire school system. He’s previously worked at Brighton High School, Boston English High School, Westford Academy, Wayland High School and Lynn Public Schools. As Lynn Superintendent, Tutwiler led a collaborative, equity-centered effort that resulted in increased graduation rates, decreased push out rates, a more racially diverse faculty and staff, and the establishment of Massachusetts’ second largest early college program.


Tutwiler earned a BA in history from The College of the Holy Cross, a master’s in education from Harvard University Graduate School of Education, and a PhD in curriculum and instruction from the Lynch School of Education at Boston College. While sincerely grateful for each one of these pivotal experiences, he credits his students as the people from whom he has learned the most over the years. He lives in Andover with his family.

Murder Conviction and Life Term for Rose

After a two-week trial in Fall River Superior Court, Robert Rose was convicted by a jury of his peers late Thursday afternoon of the First Degree Murder of Jospeh Tavares, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III announced.

The 52-year-old former New Bedford resident was also convicted of carrying an illegal firearm, unlawful possession of ammunition and possession of a an illegal firearm with a defaced serial number during a felony.  He was sentenced by Judge Thomas McGuire to life in prison with no possibility of parole.

The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney William McCauley and Assistant District Attorney Matthew Lopes.

Mr. Rose was charged with shooting and killing 37-year-old Joseph Tavares on December 22, 2018 outside the Regency Hotel on Faunce Corner Road in Dartmouth.

On that night, the defendant approached the victim's vehicle for a planned meeting with him.  Within minutes of getting into the passenger seat of the victim's vehicle, the defendant is accused of firing three shots, striking the victim in the head and the neck.


 After exiting the vehicle, the defendant is accused of shooting the victim again in the left cheek.  The two men knew each other through drug dealing, with the defendant frequently purchasing from the victim.

At around 10:34 p.m. on December 22, Dartmouth Police received a 911 call from the night manager at the hotel. The night manager reported to police that a man was bleeding heavily inside a car in the hotel’s rear parking lot.

When first responders arrived minutes later, they found the victim sitting unresponsive in the driver’s seat of the vehicle. Mr. Tavares, who resided in Fall River, was suffering from apparent gunshot wounds and was rushed to St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford, where he was pronounced dead at 11:07 pm.

The motive for the killing was robbery.

"I am very pleased that the jury held the defendant accountable for the senseless and violent death of the victim, which was connected to drugs. I want to thank the prosecution team for their efforts in putting together a very strong case against the defendant. I also want to thank the victims family for their patience and perseverance while the case was pending. Justice has been served in this case," District Attorney Quinn said.

Massachusetts Adding Cannabis Education to Driving School Curriculum

New video curriculum “Shifting Gears: the Blunt Truth about Marijuana and Driving” module to become effective January 1, 2023
Curriculum incorporates Cannabis, how marijuana affects the brain, physical affects, visual and physical reaction time, and dangers of impaired driving
BOSTON – The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV), in partnership with members of the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission and AAA Northeast today announced that as of January 2023, Massachusetts will be the first recreational-use cannabis state in the nation to adopt, “Shifting Gears: the Blunt Truth about Marijuana and Driving,” a AAA curriculum that educates teens on the risks of cannabis-impaired driving.   The curriculum is taught through a 25-minute informative and easy to follow educational video that can be found at:


The announcement was made at the Worcester Registry of Motor Vehicles by Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Registrar of Motor Vehicles Colleen Ogilvie, Cannabis Control Commission Commissioner Kimberly Roy, AAA Northeast Vice President of Public & Government Affairs Mary Maguire, and Newton Chief of Police John Carmichael.
The current driver education module addressing impaired driving will be updated to include research-based information on cannabis, explaining how tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active chemical in marijuana, affects cognition, vision, reaction time, and perception of time and distance.  This is the first generation of driver education students to be licensed since cannabis became legal in Massachusetts, and AAA research shows that impaired driving crashes may increase and continue to injure and kill motorists and their passengers.


The Shifting Gears, cannabis-impaired driving curriculum, will be taught to approximately fifty-thousand young drivers per year in over 460 Massachusetts driving school locations.


“Adding information about cannabis to the Massachusetts’s Registry’s driver education class is important for the safety and wellbeing of teens that are just learning to drive,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “The new cannabis instruction will help individuals make informed decisions and I am pleased that Massachusetts is leading in including it in driver education.” 
“The new cannabis curriculum is an important addition to driver’s education in the Commonwealth and will help inform and educate new drivers of the inherent dangers of being cannabis-impaired while driving,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “The curriculum was collaboratively developed and reviewed by public and private stakeholders, academia, students and their peers to ensure that critical research-based information and safety messaging on cannabis was incorporated as a key component of all driver’s education to help reduce crashes and help keep all roadway users safe.” 
“We are pleased to incorporate this new cannabis curriculum video into the RMV’s educational tools and resources that are currently available help new drivers learn about safety impacts, rules and responsibilities, and risks associated with operating motor vehicles on statewide roadways,” said Registrar of Motor Vehicles Colleen Ogilvie. “The video provides detailed information on affects cannabis use has on driving including impacts to an individual’s cognitive ability to safely operate a motor vehicle, delays in response time, attention and coordination issues, and the ability to drive straight or ‘track’ and underscores the importance making smart decisions when deciding to operate a vehicle or be a passenger in a vehicle in which the driver may be cannabis impaired.” 
“Today’s young drivers in Massachusetts are the first generation to get behind the wheel since cannabis became legal in the state. Considering that, it is critically important they also understand how THC can impact the body including the risks associated from cannabis impaired driving,” said Cannabis Control Commission Commissioner Kimberly Roy. “With today’s announcement, Massachusetts takes the lead in prevention and increasing awareness around this issue by providing every driver’s education student a comprehensive, evidence-based cannabis-impaired driving information curriculum to help them understand those risks and make safe decisions.”
“Research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety sheds light on the fact that in legalizing recreational marijuana, states face the consequential risk of increased cannabis-impaired driving,” said AAA Northeast President and CEO John Galvin.  “As a countermeasure, AAA Northeast developed a curriculum to educate young drivers on how THC impacts driving abilities. We are happy to share this curriculum with the Commonwealth to ensure every new driver licensed in Massachusetts will be equipped with the facts.” 
“Law enforcement across Massachusetts fully supports education and awareness as a preventative measure to enhance public safety, especially amongst our most vulnerable drivers, said Newton Chief of Police John Carmichael. “This comprehensive driver’s education curriculum will teach student drivers the risks associated with impaired driving with an added emphasis on how cannabis may cause a diminished capacity to operate their vehicle safely.” 
The driver’s education module previously referenced alcohol and drugs overall, but going forward, the curriculum will include a section, Cannabis Impaired driving.  In addition, the Implied Consent Law will be defined, and sanctions mentioned.  
Massachusetts drivers’ education is managed by the RMV and requires all first-time drivers younger than 18 to complete 30 hours of classroom instruction and 12 hours of actual behind-the-wheel instruction and 6 hours of observation while another student is taking behind-the-wheel instruction before they can receive a full, Class D or Class M license.  For more information, please visit:
The Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission is charged with regulating both the adult use and medical marijuana industries. The Commission was established by the ballot initiative approved by voters in November 2016 and in bipartisan legislation signed by Governor Charlie Baker in July 2017, consisting of one appointee each from the Governor, Treasurer and Attorney General, and two members to be agreed upon by the majority of those three constitutional officers.  For more information:

Overhead Sign Removal and Temporary Ground Mounted Sign Installation on I-195 Eastbound at Shawmut Avenue

Overnight work will occur from 9:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 18 until 5:00 a.m. on Monday, December 19

NEW BEDFORD - The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it will be performing sign removal and temporary sign installation operations on I-195 eastbound near Shawmut Avenue in New Bedford.


The overnight work will occur from 9:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 18 until 5:00 a.m. on Monday, December 19. The eastbound right travel lane and breakdown lane will be temporarily closed until the work is completed.


Drivers who are traveling through the affected areas should expect delays, reduce speed, and use caution. 
All scheduled work is weather dependent and/or may be impacted due to an emergency situation. 

For information on traffic conditions travelers are encouraged to:

•    Dial 511 before heading out onto the roadways and select a route to hear real-time conditions.
•    Visit, a website which provides real-time traffic and incident advisory information, access to traffic cameras, and allows users to subscribe to text and email alerts for traffic conditions.
•    Follow MassDOT on Twitter @MassDOT to receive regular updates on road and traffic conditions. 
•    Download MassDOT’s GoTime mobile app and view real-time traffic conditions before setting out on the road. 

MassDOT Travel Advisory: Winter storm watch/warnings in effect into the day Saturday in some regions Forecasters predicting 4 to 10 inches snow in Franklin, Berkshire, Hampshire counties Rain may be heavy at times during the day Friday in Eastern Mas

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is advising the public to plan ahead if traveling late today through Saturday as a winter storm is forecast to impact roadways in many regions especially west of Worcester.  


The storm system will travel west to east with accumulating snow up to 12 in some areas predicted in Franklin, Berkshire, and Hampshire counties and mostly light rain and heavy rain for Eastern regions of the state.
“The weather should be monitored closely if you are planning to travel in the next three days,” said MassDOT Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver. “Several inches or more of snow is in the forecast Western and Central regions of Massachusetts and periods of heavy rainfall are in the forecast for Eastern Massachusetts.  Please plan ahead and make smart decisions about travel as conditions will vary region to region.” 

MassDOT has approximately 3,600 pieces of state and vendor equipment available should it be needed, and processes in place to reallocate vehicles and equipment should an instance occur where additional resources are needed in a particular area of the state. MassDOT Highway District offices deployed crews and equipment several days ago and deployment decisions for this storm will be made, in part, according to the timeline of precipitation.

Massport advises travelers flying to check with airlines about flight schedules as plane arrival and departures will depend on how the storm system impacts states outside of Massachusetts.   
For the most up-to-date information on transportation impacts, please check Twitter: @MassDOT @MBTA @MBTA_CR, @MassDCR, and @MassRMV.

Wanted MA Man Found in Guatemala

According to CBS 12 in Providence, after more than three decades, authorities have apprehended one of Massachusetts’ most wanted fugitives. Mario Garcia, 50, was found Wednesday living under an alias and operating a shrimp farm in Guatemala. MA State Police said Garcia attempted to evade capture by jumping into the water at the shrimp farm, but was quickly apprehended. Garcia was wanted for stabbing Ismael Recinos-Garcia to death back in November 1991 during a fight in Attleboro. 


Police said Guatemalan authorities are facilitating Garcia’s extradition to the United States, where he will eventually be prosecuted for the murder.

Governor Baker and The NCAA

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) today announced that Charlie Baker, the Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, will serve as the next NCAA President, assuming the role effective March 2023. A former collegiate athlete at Harvard, Governor Baker is credited with bringing bipartisan leadership to the state, successfully guiding Massachusetts through an exceptionally turbulent period for government officials. In addition to his two terms as Governor, he brings decades of experience spearheading transformations at high profile institutions in the private and public sectors.


Governor Baker's appointment marks the culmination of a comprehensive and inclusive national search process, led by a subcommittee of the NCAA Board of Governors and TurnkeyZRG, the top search firm in the space (which recently placed the commissioners of the ACC, Pac-12 and Big 12). Baker's term as Governor ends January 5, 2023.


"We are excited to welcome Governor Charlie Baker to the NCAA and eager for him to begin his work with our organization," said Linda Livingstone, President of Baylor University and Chair of the NCAA Board of Governors, who helmed the presidential search committee. "Governor Baker has shown a remarkable ability to bridge divides and build bipartisan consensus, taking on complex challenges in innovative and effective ways. As a former student-athlete himself, husband to a former college gymnast, and father to two former college football players, Governor Baker is deeply committed to our student-athletes and enhancing their collegiate experience. These skills and perspective will be invaluable as we work with policymakers to build a sustainable model for the future of college athletics."


"We know that to be successful, the NCAA president needs to possess the ability to balance competing priorities, inspire a shared vision, and create a broad sense of trust," said Grant Hill, an independent member of the NCAA Board of Governors and member of the presidential search committee. "As Governor of Massachusetts and a successful private sector CEO, Charlie Baker has demonstrated the type of results-oriented, bipartisan approach that we will need to bolster the well-being of student-athletes, realize the opportunities and overcome the challenges facing the NCAA."


Governor Baker arrives at the NCAA at a moment of significant transformation. Legal shifts in the environment surrounding college sports have challenged the NCAA's ability to serve as an effective national regulator for college athletics, resulting in an untenable patchwork of individual state laws. Partnering with federal policymakers to develop a consistent, sustainable legal framework to address issues common to student-athletes and athletic departments across the country will be a top and immediate priority. Throughout the search process, Governor Baker's history of successfully forging bipartisan solutions to complex problems stood out to the search committee as uniquely suited to the NCAA's present needs.


"I am honored to become the next president of the NCAA, an organization that impacts millions of families and countless communities across this country every day," said Governor Baker. "The NCAA is confronting complex and significant challenges, but I am excited to get to work as the awesome opportunity college athletics provides to so many students is more than worth the challenge.  And for the fans that faithfully fill stadiums, stands and gyms from coast to coast, I am eager to ensure the competitions we all love to follow are there for generations to come. Over the coming months, I will begin working with student-athletes and NCAA members as we modernize college sports to suit today's world, while preserving its essential value."


As the NCAA strives to enhance the experience of more than 500,000 young people that compete in college sports each year, student-athletes' input factored significantly in the development of the president's job description.  


"As a student-athlete representative on the search committee, I focused my conversations with Governor Baker around many of the issues that student-athletes face today," said Isaiah Swann, a former baseball student-athlete at the University of Texas-Dallas and a current second year MD-PhD student at the University of Virginia. "Throughout our discussions, he not only demonstrated a command of the top issues confronting college sports but, more importantly, also displayed empathy, open-mindedness, and a desire to better understand and address student-athletes' perspectives. The Baker family's connection to collegiate athletics runs deep. He's one of us. He thinks like a student-athlete and will lead us forward with our perspectives in mind."


Prior to recruiting candidates, the search committee spent months identifying and assessing the qualities most needed in the organization's next president, including input from more than 300 individual NCAA stakeholders.


Governor Baker succeeds Dr. Mark Emmert, a passionate leader and ambassador for college sports. Dr. Emmert will continue to serve the NCAA as a consultant through June 2023.


Governor Baker will be charged with building on the NCAA's ongoing transformation efforts. In early 2022, the NCAA ratified a new constitution, assigning greater powers of self-governance to each of its three divisions, its dozens of athletic conferences, and its member schools. The NCAA also appointed committees in Divisions I, II, and III to implement the new consitiution at their respective levels, including a Division I Transformation Committee. The Division I Transformation Committee is now concluding its work putting forward a comprehensive series of recommendations to modernize Division I to better support today's student-athletes.

Massachusetts opioid-related overdose death rate declines 1.5 percent in the first nine months of 2022

BOSTON (December 14, 2022) – Opioid-related overdose deaths in Massachusetts decreased in the first nine months of 2022 compared to the same time last year, according to preliminary data released today by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH). In the first nine months of this year, there were 1,696 confirmed and estimated opioid-related overdose deaths, approximately 25 fewer deaths than in the first nine months of 2021, or a 1.5 percent decrease. 


The decline in opioid-related overdose deaths in the state occurred despite a drug supply that is heavily contaminated with illicit fentanyl, a potent synthetic opioid detected in the toxicology of nearly every opioid-related fatal overdose in the first half of the year. 


The preliminary data also show that in 2021, there were 2,301 opioid-related overdose deaths, a 9.4 percent increase over the previous year. The 2021 opioid-related overdose death rate of 33.1 per 100,000 people was 11 percent higher than in 2020 (30.0 per 100,000). 


The Baker-Polito Administration has long prioritized fighting the opioid epidemic on multiple fronts and has maintained that focus throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Working closely with the Legislature, the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2023 (FY23) budget invests $597.2 million in total funding for a wide range of harm reduction, treatment, and recovery programs to support those struggling with substance use disorder, and programming that mitigates substance addiction, including through prescription monitoring and education for providers and communities.


“Since taking office in 2015, our administration made the opioid epidemic an urgent priority, signing two landmark laws to strengthen and expand efforts addressing this public health crisis and working with the Legislature to exponentially increase funding to support prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery services in the Commonwealth,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “We are proud of our efforts to make these services more accessible and available to individuals and their families across Massachusetts, but also recognize that the work must continue, especially given the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic which has exacerbated substance misuse here and across the country.”


“Our administration’s work in fighting the opioid epidemic has always been informed by the valuable insight shared by families directly impacted by this crisis, individuals with substance use disorders, service providers, recovery coaches, and first responders,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “That insight helped us build a foundation of policies and community-level supports aimed at tackling an epidemic that has devastated too many Massachusetts families.”


Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Administration has expanded existing substance use disorder treatment and overdose prevention initiatives to help ensure uninterrupted support for individuals, families, and communities. DPH has distributed more than 210,000 naloxone kits to opioid treatment providers, community health centers, hospital emergency departments, and county houses of correction since March 2020. Federal flexibilities put in place at the start of the pandemic for take-home doses of medication for opioid use disorder (MOUD) have allowed 37 percent of Massachusetts opioid treatment program patients to receive this life-saving treatment as of October 2022, more than double the pre-pandemic average of 16 percent in December 2019.


Funds from the state’s Opioid Recovery and Remediation Fund are being invested to support prevention, treatment, and recovery programs, including $1.7 million to expand access to naloxone, approximately $3 million to increase access to MOUD, and $5 million to increase access to low-threshold housing for homeless or housing unstable individuals struggling with substance use disorder.  


“We have created a framework of evidence-based harm reduction tools, clinical treatment, low-threshold housing and recovery supports across communities to ensure access for every individual with substance use or co-occurring illness in the Commonwealth,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders. “Our efforts are rooted in destigmatizing addiction and increasing public awareness that substance use is an illness and that treatment works.” 


“Every life lost to opioid overdose is its own tragedy,” said Public Health Commissioner Margret Cooke. “With this report, we are encouraged by the decrease, however modest, in opioid-related overdose deaths in Massachusetts so far this year. We will continue to build on our data-driven and equity-based public health approach as we address the impacts of the opioid epidemic and the COVID-19 pandemic, especially among vulnerable populations.”

As part of the Administration’s commitment to transparency and data sharing, DPH’s Bureau of Substance Addiction Services (BSAS) launched a new dashboard to report data from BSAS-licensed or -funded programs providing services to people with substance use disorder. The dashboard will be updated semiannually and allows individuals to navigate data broken out by year, geography, and demographic characteristics.

Fentanyl continues to be the main driver of opioid-related overdose deaths in Massachusetts. In the first six months of 2022, fentanyl was present in 94 percent of opioid-related deaths where a toxicology report was available, preliminary data show. Two milligrams of fentanyl can be lethal, according to the US Drug Enforcement Administration, which issued a warning to states in the spring of a nationwide spike in fentanyl-related mass-overdose events. Since August, DPH has distributed 100,000 rapid test strip kits that detect the presence of fentanyl in drugs to providers and organizations as a tool to help reduce the chances of overdose among people who use drugs.

Cocaine is the next most prevalent drug among opioid-related overdose deaths, present in 53 percent of toxicology reports in the first six months of 2022. This marks a 6 percent increase over the first half of 2021. The presence of cocaine in toxicology has increased about 2 percent each quarter since 2014. 

Alcohol was present in 28 percent, benzodiazepines in 26 percent, prescription opioids in 11 percent, and amphetamines in 9 percent of opioid-related deaths in the first half of 2022. The rate of heroin or likely heroin present in opioid-related overdose deaths was 7 percent and has been declining since 2014. 

The veterinary sedative xylazine, a non-opioid, was present in 5 percent of opioid-related overdose deaths since June 2022, when it began to be routinely reported in toxicology. 

Among the other findings of the latest opioid report:

•    Males comprise 72 percent of all opioid-related overdose deaths occurring in the first nine months of 2022. 

•    48 percent of all opioid-related overdose deaths in the first nine months of 2022 were between 25 and 44 years old; 42 percent were between 45 and 64 years old. 

•    Between 2020 and 2021, the confirmed opioid-related overdose death rate per 100,000 decreased slightly for all Black non-Hispanic residents and remained stable or slightly increased for all other race/ethnic groups.

•    In the same time period, the confirmed opioid-related overdose death rate per 100,000 for Black non-Hispanic men decreased slightly.

•    Females comprise 28 percent of all opioid-related overdose deaths occurring in the first nine months of 2022.

•    Between 2020 and 2021, the confirmed opioid-related overdose death rate among all females increased from 16.4 to 17.2 per 100,000.

•    In the same time period, the confirmed opioid-related overdose death rate decreased for American Indian/Alaska Native non-Hispanic women. 

•    Males aged 35-44 accounted for 21 percent of opioid-related incidents with a known age and sex treated by Emergency Medical Services (EMS).

•    Naloxone was administered in 97 percent of acute opioid overdoses during the first nine months of 2022. Of all opioid-related EMS incidents in that time, 58 percent were categorized as acute opioid overdoses.

•    The rate of individuals with multiple provider episodes (when a person uses multiple prescribers and pharmacies to obtain controlled substances) decreased over 95 percent from 14.3 to 0.7 per 1,000 individuals between 2013 and the first nine months of 2022. 
o    Between 2020 and the first nine months of 2022, it went from 4.2 to 0.7 per 1,000 patients, a decrease of nearly 83 percent.

Bristol County Cold Case Rape

Patrick Avila, 37, of Attleboro has been indicted by a Bristol County Grand Jury on a charge of rape of a child with force in connection to the rape of a 13-year-old girl in Fairhaven in October of 2001.
Avila, who was initially charged earlier this year in Juvenile Court due to his age at the time of the crime, had his case transferred to adult court by a Juvenile Court Judge after a Transfer Hearing was held in September.  Since that time, the grand jury indicted him.  He was arraigned in Fall River Superior Court Tuesday afternoon and posted $10,000 cash bail.  He is due back in court February 7th


On October 26, 2001, the victim went to a school dance where she later met up with a 17 year old named Brandon St. Don, who was known to her.  At some point during the evening, the victim left the dance with St. Don and went to a location where he provided her with alcoholic mixed drinks.   After drinking this drink, she became dizzy and felt like passing out.


 St. Don then took her to a friend’s home on Delano Street, telling her he was taking her to “a safe place.”  They eventually arrived at his friend’s house, at which point he dragged her into a car where she blacked out.  While she was unconscious in the car, a witness observed St. Don inside the vehicle raping the victim, who was now stripped naked.  


The witness was upset upon seeing St. Don with the victim, whom he knew to be a child.  Upon seeing this, the witness pulled St. Don off of the victim and punched him and forced St. Don to leave the property. Hearing this commotion caused the victim to regain consciousness.  When she did, the victim realized that she was cold and naked.  The witness gave the victim clothes and helped her to his basement where he allowed her to sleep.  Patrick Avila was also present when the victim was discovered naked in the car with St. Don and when she was assisted by the witness into the house.


Based upon witness statements and other evidence, St. Don was charged at the time with the girl's rape. He was later convicted and served a state prison sentence.  Although the victim did submit to a rape kit following the incident, that kit was one of several thousand from throughout the state that was never fully tested by the state lab.


The rape kit was also one of more than 1,100 from Bristol County alone that was never fully tested by the state lab. However, after our office became aware of the scope and breadth of the problem with untested rape kits throughout the state, we took action to obtain a federal grant. We then began the painstaking process of inventorying and prioritizing all untested rape kits in our county, and are now in the process of getting all 1,148 previously untested Bristol County rape kits fully tested by a private lab under the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative (SAKI) grant obtained by District Attorney Quinn in 2019. 


As part of DA Quinn's Untested Rape Kit initiative, this previously untested rape kit was recently fully tested by a private lab. The testing revealed that Avila’s DNA (i.e. sperm cells) was found on the oral swabs from the rape kit.  The victim has indicated that although she knew who Avila was at that time, she did not have any relationship with him, has no memory of seeing him that night, and never consented to any sexual contact with Avila.  

When recently advised that there was evidence of sexual contact with Avila on that date, the victim was shocked and upset.  It is now alleged that defendant Avila sexually assaulted the young victim in the basement after she had already been raped by St. Don.


Avila's DNA had been uploaded into CODIS (Combined DNA Index System) in 2010 as a result of a felony conviction.  If the victim's rape kit had been fully tested, this defendant would have been arrested and charged in connection with this incident 12 years ago.  Furthermore, if District Attorney Quinn had not undertaken this initiative and brought this issue to light statewide, the kit would likely never have been fully tested and the case would have remained unsolved.  This is now the fourth cold case rape our office has solved as a result of District Attorney Quinn's Untested Rape Kit Initiative. 

Governor Baker Signs Executive Order to Establish Massachusetts Cyber Incident Response Team

Team will advise on policies and strategies to manage the risk of cyber threats and will lead the Commonwealth’s response to cyber incidents
BOSTON – Today, Governor Charlie Baker signed an executive order to establish the Massachusetts Cyber Incident Response Team (MA-CIRT). Led by the Secretary of the Executive Office of Technology Services and Security (EOTSS), MA-CIRT is established with the mission of enhancing the Commonwealth’s ability to prepare for, respond to, mitigate against and recover from significant cybersecurity threats. The Governor signed the executive order as Massachusetts and other jurisdictions confront an overall increase in cybersecurity threats to websites and networks.
“State governments and other organizations across the country are increasingly being targeted by bad actors aiming to disrupt operations and compromise information systems,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “This executive order will further strengthen the Commonwealth’s policies, procedures and resources required to prevent potential threats and appropriately respond to attacks on government infrastructure and services. As state governments expand their digital footprints, moving more services online and allowing for a more connected workforce, it’s critical that we make the necessary investments to protect this critical technology infrastructure from acts of terrorism and criminal, organized crime and gang activity.”
“Cybersecurity attacks threaten Commonwealth technology networks and the continuity of essential government services we provide to the constituents we serve,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “With the establishment of MA-CIRT, the Baker-Polito Administration continues to invest and prioritize the delivery of effective and reliable government services to the people of the Commonwealth.”
“With my background in public safety, I know the importance that leadership buy-in plays in swift, organized and effective response to an external threat,” said Secretary of Technology Services and Security Curt Wood. “The Baker-Polito Administration is once again leading from the front on government cybersecurity and I thank Governor Baker, Lt. Governor Polito and my fellow leaders in cybersecurity and public safety for their partnership on the issuance of this critical executive order that will serve the Commonwealth for years to come.”  
Under the direction of the EOTSS Secretary, the formation of MA-CIRT convenes cybersecurity and public safety experts from across state government as required members, including leadership representatives from:
•    The Executive Office of Technology Services and Security 
•    The Commonwealth Security Operations Center
•    The Executive Office of Public Safety and Security
•    The Commonwealth Fusion Center 
•    The Massachusetts State Police Cyber Crime Unit 
•    The Massachusetts National Guard
•    The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency
The Executive Order reinforces Massachusetts as a leader in cybersecurity enhancement efforts through a variety of strategies. To prevent against attacks and increase the Commonwealth’s cybersecurity resiliency, the Order underscores the need for preparing for and marshalling a coordinated response, mitigation and recovery effort from significant cybersecurity threats or incidents. Additionally, the Order:
•    Requires MA-CIRT to review cybersecurity threat information and vulnerabilities to make informed recommendations and establish appropriate policies to manage the risk of cyber incidents for executive department agencies and all other state agencies served by EOTSS.
•    Requires MA-CIRT to develop and maintain an up-to-date Cyber Incident Response Plan, which will guide the actions of the Commonwealth’s key public safety and information security and technology teams, state agency resources, and security professionals in responding to and minimizing the impact of significant cybersecurity threats to Commonwealth systems. The Plan is required to be submitted annually to the Governor for review and approval.
•    Empowers the EOTSS Secretary to serve as MA-CIRT lead, with the approval of the Governor, to direct MA-CIRT in response to a significant cyber incident.
•    Requires the routine exchange of information related to cybersecurity threats and reported incidents between the Commonwealth Fusion Center and the Commonwealth Security Operations Center.
•    Requires EOTSS and MA-CIRT to consult with the Massachusetts Cyber Center and assist the Center with efforts to foster cybersecurity resiliency through communications, collaboration, and outreach to state agencies, municipalities, educational institutions and industry partners.
•    Requires executive department agencies to comply with protocols and procedures established by MA-CIRT and all related policies, standards and Administrative Directives issued by EOTSS.
•    Requires Commonwealth executive department agencies and other state agencies served by EOTSS to identify and report significant cybersecurity incidents and coordinate efforts to mitigate and prevent further damage from cyber incidents.
•    Requires all executive department personnel to annually complete the EOTSS approved security awareness training program administered by the Human Resources Division.
•    And strongly encourages other governmental entities throughout the Commonwealth not served by EOTSS to report cybersecurity threats or incidents to the Commonwealth Security Operations Center.
In 2021, Congress recognized the increased cyber threat posed to state and local governments by establishing a $1 billion State and Local Cybersecurity Grant Program as a part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The four-year grant program requires 80% of funds go toward assisting municipalities in enhancing their cybersecurity posture. This new federal program compliments the various support for municipal cybersecurity efforts offered by the Baker-Polito Administration, including: the Municipal Cybersecurity Awareness Grant Program, Free Cybersecurity Health Check Program and the Community Compact IT Grant Program, which was established by Governor Baker’s Executive Order 554 in 2015.

EOTSS was established in 2017 as the Commonwealth’s lead technology and cybersecurity agency via Article 87 government restructuring legislation filed by Governor Baker and approved by the Legislature. Its mission is to lead initiatives to modernize the Commonwealth’s IT infrastructure assets, continually strengthen government cybersecurity operations and standards via the consolidation of infrastructure and cybersecurity operations for the Commonwealth into a centrally managed state agency and leverage innovative technology solutions to offer user-friendly digital services to its constituents.
Click here to view the Executive Order.

More on The Rehoboth Fatal

A 54-year-old Attleboro man died TuA 54-year-old Attleboro man died Tuesday afternoon in Rehoboth as a result of a single vehicle crash on Route 118.

The deceased has been identified as Steven Lacombe.

Rehoboth Police received a 911 call at around 3 pm from an employee at the Attleboro Rehoboth Building Supply store who stated that a van had rear-ended a parked flatbed truck across the street from his business.

When first responders arrived on scene, they located five injured victims, including the driver, all of whom were taken to an area hospital.  The sixth victim, Mr. Lacombe, who was seated in the rear passenger’s side seat, was declared deceased at the scene.  

During the initial preliminary investigation, it was learned that the occupants of the vehicle were all Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH) patients who were being transported from their day care facility in Taunton to the group home they reside at in Attleboro.  The driver of the Toyota Sienna is a 67-year-old Providence, Rhode Island man who had been working for DMH as a livery driver for the past six years.

All of the injured individuals are expected to survive. 

The preliminary investigation indicates the driver was travelling north on Route 118 in the vicinity of 44 Park Street.  For an unknown reason, the vehicle left the roadway and struck the back of a flatbed truck, which was parked and unoccupied off the roadway.  There was no initial evidence the driver applied his brakes prior to impact.

The crash is under active investigation by State Police detectives assigned to the district attorney’s office, Rehoboth Police and The Massachusetts State Police Collision Analysis & Reconstruction Section. No criminal charges have been filed at this time. 

esday afternoon in Rehoboth as a result of a single vehicle crash on Route 1

Who Dumped The Tires?

On Tuesday December 13, 2022 at 1:30 p.m. we responded to New St. ( former Shell Oil location) regarding illegal dumping. Upon arrival it was discovered that 101 used car tires had been illegally dumped at this location during the overnight hours.


The Fall River Police Department is seeking the public's assistance. Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact Detective Nicholas Custadio at 508-676-8511 ext. 259. Information can also be provided anonymously at 508-672-TIPS (8477).

Massachusetts public health officials remind residents about the importance of flu and COVID-19 vaccinations

BOSTON (December 14, 2022) – With flu season underway, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) is reminding residents of all ages to get vaccinated. Flu activity across the country is higher than usual so far this year. Residents can get both a flu shot and a COVID-19 booster in the same visit.


"This flu season, residents can protect themselves and their families by getting a flu vaccine even if they haven’t gotten a vaccine in years past,” said Public Health Commissioner Margret Cooke. “It’s easy to get your flu shot along with your COVID-19 booster if you’re eligible for one, and both vaccines are widely available.”


The flu can lead to serious illness, hospitalization, or death. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that there have already been 13 million cases, 120,000 hospitalizations, and 7,300 deaths due to flu this season. The most common symptoms of flu are fever, cough, and sore throat. Symptoms can also include body aches, headaches, chills, runny nose, and fatigue.


Flu vaccination is especially important for people who are at higher risk of severe disease which could result in hospitalization or death. People at higher risk include those who are over age 65 or under 2 years, and anyone with a chronic respiratory condition, heart disease, a weakened immune system, or who is pregnant. Antiviral medications, such as Tamiflu, are available with a prescription to help reduce disease severity.


“Everyone over the age of 6 months is eligible for both the flu and COVID vaccines and can receive both vaccines at the same time. Spending time around more people increases the chances you will be exposed to one or more viruses,” said Dr. Larry Madoff, Medical Director of DPH’s Bureau of Infectious Disease and Laboratory Sciences. “The current flu vaccine is a good match to the circulating strains and gives you the antibodies you need to help fight off infection.”


COVID and flu vaccines are both widely available for everyone 6 months and older. Other actions that people can take to help prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses like the flu and COVID-19 include staying home when sick, keeping children home from daycare or school if sick, covering coughs and sneezes, and practicing good handwashing hygiene. 


More information on how to find a flu and/or COVID-19 vaccine site near you can be found here. Information about influenza and COVID-19 is available by visiting or, calling your health care provider, local board of health, or DPH at (617) 983-6800.

Massachusetts Gas Prices Down 12 Cents

Westwood, MA, December 12, 2022 — The average gas price in Massachusetts is down 12 cents from last week ($3.66), averaging $3.54 per gallon. Today’s price is 32 cents lower than a month ago ($3.86), and 14 cents higher than December 12, 2021 ($3.40). Massachusetts’ average gas price is 28 cents higher than the national average.


The national average pump price plunged 14 cents since last week to $3.26, six cents less than a year ago. There are now approximately 34 states with averages lower than last year.  


“The seasonal pattern of less driving due to shorter days and crummy weather, combined with a lower oil cost, is driving gas prices lower,” said Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Vice President of Public and Government Affairs. "If this trend continues, many states could see their average prices fall below $3 a gallon by early next year."


AAA Northeast’s December 12 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 14 cents lower than last week ($3.40), averaging $3.26 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 52 cents lower than a month ago ($3.78), and 6 cents lower than this day last year ($3.32).

Patriots Raiders for Sunday

The Patriots are a one point road favorite Sunday versus the Raiders in Las Vegas, as both teams remain within striking distance of one of three AFC Wild Cards with four games remaining in the NFL regular season. 


Fox Radio will provide live real time coverage of college basketball and start of the College Football Bowl Season beginning Saturday Afternoon on WSAR; the Patriots Network on 95.9 and 1480 begins coverage at 1pm with a 4:05 kickoff.


Its the first Sunday afternoon game for the Patriots since the Jets game on November 20, after the game was flexed out of a Sunday Night time slot. 

Massachusetts Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Commission Releases Lists of Certified Law Enforcement Officers and Newly Certified Graduates

Boston – Following the first round of recertification of police officers, the POST Commission released today the current list of certified law enforcement officers.


 The first installment of this public database contains 8,228 recertified officers with last names A-H and 1,094 officers who have graduated from academies since December 1, 2021.  


The database is available on POST website: and contains 9,322 records from 431 law enforcement agencies. The data is current as of December 9, 2022. 

Executive Director Enrique Zuniga commented, “We are pleased to meet another major milestone of our statute. Since its inception, the POST Commission has ensured that we meet statutory obligations and deadlines while focusing on the critical tasks associated with building a new agency. The public can now look up certified law enforcement officers by name or by law enforcement agency.  We anticipate constantly updating this database and releasing additional information on officers going forward.”


The POST Commission was established as part of a 2020 criminal justice reform law to focus on efforts to improve public safety and increase trust between members of law enforcement in the Commonwealth’s communities.  The POST Commission is charged with creating a mandatory certification process for police officers, as well as processes for decertification, suspension of certification, or reprimand in the event of certain misconduct.

The summary of certified status records of officers and 2022 graduates can be found at  Users can search for certified officers by law enforcement agency, or by officer name.  While the recertification data includes officers with the last name A-H, the new graduate data includes last names A-Z.  

The next round of recertification for officers with last names I-P will begin early next year.

MILLIONS WILL TRAVEL AWAY FROM HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS AAA expects nearly 113 million Americans will wrap up 2022 by land, air, and sea

’Tis the season to travel, and AAA estimates 112.7 million people will journey 50 miles or more away from home from December 23 to January 2. That’s an increase of 3.6 million people over last year and closing in on pre-pandemic numbers. 2022 is expected to be the third busiest year for holiday travel since AAA began tracking in 2000.

This year, almost 2.25 million Massachusetts residents will be among those traveling, more than 1.9 million by car, both up from a year ago.

“This year, travel time will be extended due to Christmas Day and New Year’s Day falling on Sundays,” says Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Vice President of Public and Government Affairs. “With hybrid work schedules, we are seeing more people take long weekends to travel because they can work remotely at their destination and be more flexible with the days they depart and return.”

Nearly 102 million Americans will drive to their holiday destinations. Despite roller-coaster gas prices in 2022, this holiday season will see an additional 2 million drivers compared to 2021. Travel by car this year is on par with 2018 but shy of 2019 when 108 million Americans drove out of town for the holidays, the highest year on record.

Air travel will see a 14% increase over last year, with nearly 7.2 million Americans expected to fly. Flights and airports will be packed this holiday season, reminiscent of pre-pandemic days. Demand for flights has surged despite higher airline ticket prices.


AAA expects the number of people taking holiday flights this year will come close to matching 2019 when 7.3 million Americans traveled by air. 

“If the distance is not reasonable to drive, more people are taking to the air to maximize the time spent at their destination,” Ms. Maguire adds. “Conversely, if the travel distances are reasonable and more than one or two people in the household are taking the trip, it may be more cost-effective to drive rather than buy multiple air tickets, rent a car, and spend too much money before the fun even begins.”

Other modes of transportation are also rebounding in a big way. AAA estimates travel by bus, rail, and cruise ship will rise to 3.6 million this holiday season, a 23% increase from last year and nearly 94% of 2019’s volume.

Drought Persists in Several Regions of the Commonwealth Cape Cod, Islands, and Northeast Continue to be Impacted

BOSTON — While some parts of Massachusetts experienced minor improvements through the month of November, several regions within the state continue to be impacted by long-term drought conditions, and today Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Beth Card announced the following drought declarations:


the Northeast and Cape Cod Regions have been downgraded and will join the Islands Region at Level 2-Signficant Drought, the Connecticut River Valley Region will remain at Level 1-Mild Drought, and the Western, Central, and Southeast Regions will remain at Level 0-Normal Conditions.


Recent rain and snow events in the past few days offer potential improvements, particularly in the Northeast Region of the state; however, precipitation will need to continue in order to make a difference.

Healey and Driscoll Announce Administration and Finance Secretary, Top Staff

BOSTON – Governor-elect Maura Healey and Lieutenant Governor-elect Driscoll today announced their first round of hires for their incoming administration. Matthew Gorzkowicz will be appointed as Secretary of the Executive Office for Administration and Finance. Kate Cook will be Chief of Staff and Gabrielle Viator will serve as Senior Advisor.


Matthew Gorzkowicz has more than 25 years' experience in state finance and budgeting in the Commonwealth. He has served as the Associate Vice President for Administration and Finance at the University of Massachusetts President's Office for more than a decade, where he has had a direct role in setting the University’s long-range administrative and financial goals and managed the development of an annual operating budget of $3.8 billion.


Prior to UMass, Matt worked in the Massachusetts Senate, the Department of Mental Health, the School Building Authority, and the Executive Office for Administration and Finance under Governor Deval Patrick, where he served as Assistant Secretary for Budget and then Undersecretary. He is a graduate of Northeastern University and lives in Winthrop, MA with his wife and two children.
“In this time of record state revenues and economic stress for so many of our residents, it’s essential to have an Administration and Finance Secretary with a proven record of maintaining economic stability and implementing processes that ensure efficiency and effectiveness,” said Healey. “Matt Gorzkowicz has done just that in his decades of service to Massachusetts, and I’m proud to have his leadership in our administration.”


“I’m honored to be appointed as Secretary of the Executive Office for Administration and Finance by Governor-elect Healey and Lieutenant Governor-elect Driscoll,” said Gorzkowicz. “This is going to be a dynamic and effective administration, and I’m proud to contribute my experience in state finance and budgeting to serve the Commonwealth. I’m looking forward to getting to work on a number of important priorities that center on equity and affordability and drive progress across the administration.”


Kate Cook currently serves as the First Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, where she assists AG Healey with oversight, operations and decision-making in all legal and policy matters across the office.


For over two decades, Cook has served as a trusted legal advisor and litigator for public officials and state and local government agencies. Prior to her appointment as First Assistant, Kate was a partner at Sugarman Rogers, where she chaired the government law and election law practice groups and had an active pro bono practice focused on civil rights and civil liberties matters. Kate formerly served as Chief Legal Counsel to Governor Deval L. Patrick, General Counsel to the Massachusetts Senate Ways & Means Committee and Assistant Corporation Counsel to the City of Boston. She holds degrees from Harvard University and Brown University and lives in Marblehead with her husband and daughter.


“Kate has been integral to the operations of the Attorney General’s Office and a wonderful addition to our team over the past year,” said Healey. “With her strong background serving both in state and city government as well as the private sector, I’m confident that she is the best person to lead our office and build a team that’s going to deliver real results for people.”


“I’m honored that Governor-elect Healey and Lieutenant Governor-elect Driscoll have placed their faith in me to lead the Governor’s Office and for the opportunity to continue my service to the Commonwealth,” said Cook. “We’re committed to building a strong, experienced and diverse team that is ready to get to work delivering for people and moving Massachusetts forward.”


Gabe Viator is the Chief Deputy Attorney General in the Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey. She oversees litigation efforts across the office and coordinates policy, government affairs and strategic initiatives. Gabrielle previously served as Chief of Staff and Senior Policy Advisor to AG Healey, and as an Assistant Attorney General in the Civil Rights Division. Before joining the Attorney General’s Office, Gabrielle practiced commercial litigation as an associate at Ropes & Gray. She also served as a Legislative Director in the State Senate and as a legislative aide in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. She is a graduate of Boston College and Suffolk University Law School, and lives in Beverly with her husband and two daughters.


“Gabe has been a close and trusted advisor to me for many years, and I’m thrilled to have her guidance with us in the Governor’s Office,”  said Healey. “She has outstanding legal and policy experience, a strong commitment to public service and a passion for teamwork, all of which will be invaluable for our team.”


“From working with Governor-elect Healey for more than a decade, I’ve seen firsthand her commitment to the people of Massachusetts and her ability to bring together the very best team to make real progress,” said Viator. “I’m honored to continue this partnership in the Governor’s Office and excited to get to work creating a stronger Massachusetts.”


Baker-Polito Administration Distributing At Least 3.5 Million More Free At-Home COVID-19 Tests for Massachusetts Residents

Administration Also Distributing Free Personal Protective Equipment to Municipalities and Community Organizations


BOSTON – The Baker-Polito Administration today announced plans to distribute another 3.5 million free at-home COVID-19 rapid antigen tests and personal protective equipment (PPE) for municipalities and community organizations to make available to residents across the Commonwealth.


This latest distribution builds upon the successful distribution of nearly 30 million at-home tests to a range of settings across the Commonwealth over the last year.
Municipalities may request to receive tests, KN95 masks, surgical masks, face shields and nitrile gloves to combat the spread of COVID-19 and should expect to receive a link to request these items through an email sent to their local board of health today.


The Commonwealth is also making these tools available to other settings and organizations including day programs, councils on aging, community-based organizations, health care providers, providers of affordable housing for seniors, Aging Services Access Points (ASAPs) and assisted living residences.


“Over the past several years, we have partnered with communities to make sure residents can access the tools needed to manage COVID-19, like rapid antigen tests,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “These tests build on the availability of vaccines, boosters and therapeutics, all of which are widely available across Massachusetts.”


“We have been pleased to work with municipal leaders to expand access to free COVID-19 rapid antigen tests and PPE,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. “Local officials know their communities best and have played an important role in getting these resources into the hands of those who need them”


“By expanding access to tests through the places where people regularly visit, and to municipalities who know their communities best, we will ensure that all Massachusetts residents have access to free tests and PPE to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” said Secretary of Health and Human Services, Marylou Sudders. “Everyone can continue taking steps to help manage COVID-19 – including staying up to date on vaccines, staying home when sick, and wearing masks as needed.”


Since December 2021, the Baker-Polito Administration has distributed nearly 30 million rapid antigen tests to Massachusetts residents through municipalities and a broad range of educational, health, human services, food access, shelter, correctional, senior, low-income housing, and other community-based organizations. Today’s announcement marks the latest step in the Administration’s effort to provide residents across the Commonwealth with the tools needed to manage COVID-19. 


Applications will be available to municipalities and eligible settings and organizations, with tests and PPE distributed while supplies are available. Every test shipped to municipalities in this distribution has an expiration date that has been extended beyond the date printed on the box, until at least June 2023, per the FDA. Further extensions are possible and will be posted at


Massachusetts is a national leader in vaccination rates with over 84 percent of eligible residents fully vaccinated and over half of adults boosted. The Department of Public Health advises residents to observe the following protocols to protect themselves and their loved ones from COVID-19:


•    Get vaccinated and stay up to date. The best protection against COVID-19 is staying up to date on COVID-19 vaccines. That means being fully vaccinated and getting a booster. Fully vaccinated people are much less likely to get sick or spread the virus that causes COVID-19, especially if they have their booster shot. Learn more at

•    Take a test for COVID-19. Testing for COVID-19 is widely available, including at-home rapid tests. Get tested if you have symptoms. Learn more at
•    Get treatment. If you test positive, talk to your doctor right away about treatment options that are available for people who have mild to moderate symptoms. Learn more at
•    Stay home when you are sick. Staying home helps prevent the spread of illness.
•    Mask up if you need to. Learn more at
•    Enable MassNotify on your smartphone. Learn more at
•    Wash your hands. Wash your hands often with soap and warm water. Or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

Francis Street Road Conditions Repair Status In Rehoboth

Highway Department
POSTED ON: DECEMBER 13, 2022 - 11:53AM
The paving company was unable to finish paving Francis Street due to the cold weather.  When the weather gets below a certain temperature, they are unable to put any material on the road.  It will not spread or adhere to the road.  Unfortunately, because of this the road will not be able to be fixed until the Spring.

Please accept our sincere apologizes for this.  We are truly sorry for the inconvenience.

At this time, we are asking for your patience with the situation.  We understand that the road is in poor condition.


Rehoboth Highway Department

MassDOT Advisory: New Bedford Overnight Bridge Shielding Installation Operations on Hillman Street Bridge over Route 18

Work will occur weeknights from Tuesday, December 13, through Monday, December 19, during overnight hours from 7:30 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. the following morning
NEW BEDFORD - The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it will be conducting overnight bridge shielding installation operations on the Hillman Street Bridge located over Route 18 northbound and southbound, and the bridge ramp that comes off of Hillman Street to Route 18 in New Bedford. 

 The work is scheduled to take place weeknights beginning tonight, Tuesday, December 13, and continuing through Monday, December 19, during overnight hours from 7:30 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. the following morning.  There will be no work Saturday or Sunday nights.  The work is expected to be conclude by 5:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 20.
Standard traffic control management operations will be utilized. A minimum of one open travel lane will be maintained at all times on Route 18.
Drivers who are traveling through the affected areas should expect delays, reduce speed, and use caution. 
All scheduled work is weather dependent and/or may be impacted due to an emergency situation. 


Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Bill Keating led a bipartisan group of twenty-eight House Members and Senators urging the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to redefine its proposed definition of “healthy,” which would exclude most cranberry and tart cherry products.


Like Congressman Keating, who represents Southeastern Massachusetts where cranberry bogs are prevalent, the signatories of the letter all represent states and/or districts where cranberries and tart cherries are locally grown.
Currently, the FDA’s proposed rule redefining “healthy” only includes dried fruits containing no added sugars.  Because both cranberries and tart cherries have low intrinsic sugar content, they require sweetening for most consumers and products.


 According to the FDA’s own findings, this added sugar is indistinguishable from naturally occurring sugars in fruits.  Further, both cranberries and tart cherries are known to be nutrient-dense foods with similar or lower sugar content than other dried fruits where the sugars are naturally occurring like raisins.  Thus, the proposed rule would undermine its intent to encourage Americans to have a healthier diet. 
As stated by the Members in the letter to FDA Commissioner Robert Califf:
“As currently written, the proposal will discourage the consumption of nutrient-rich cranberry and tart cherry products, undermining the purpose of the proposed rule…While the proposed rule recognizes exceptions for other unique products (e.g., eggs, shellfish), if the rule remains as proposed, dried cranberries and tart cherries will be unfairly disadvantaged in the marketplace. This would not only harm farmers who cultivate these fruits, but also American consumers who could be discouraged from consuming these nutrient-dense products.”
The comment period for this proposed rule ends on February 16, 2023.  In addition to Congressman Keating, the letter was signed by:

Massachusetts Senators Elizabeth Warren and Edward J. Markey, 
Michigan Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary C. Peters, 
Wisconsin Senators Tammy Baldwin and Ron Johnson,
Utah Senators Mitt Romney and Michael S. Lee
Washington Congressman Derek Kilmer
Massachusetts House Members Stephen F. Lynch, James P. McGovern, Jake Auchincloss, Lori Trahan, Seth Moulton, Ayanna Pressley, Richard E. Neal, and Katherine M. Clark
Pennsylvania House Members Susan Wild and Brian Fitzpatrick
New Jersey House Members Andy Kim, Jefferson Van Drew, and Josh Gottheimer
Utah House Members Blake Moore, Burgess Owens, John R. Curtis, and Chris Stewart
Wisconsin House Member Mark Pocan and Tom Tiffany
Congressman Keating is the chair of the House Cranberry Caucus and Senator Baldwin is the Chair of the Senate Cranberry Caucus.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission Votes to Award WynnBET with a Category 3 Sports Wagering Operator License

During a public meeting of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) where WSI US, LLC (WynnBET) presented and Commissioners reviewed that entity’s application for a sports wagering operator license, Commissioners voted unanimously to award a Category 3 sports wagering operator license to WynnBET. This license will be tethered to the Category 1 license awarded to Encore Boston Harbor.  
Commissioners put conditions on the awarding of this license, including WynnBET providing the MGC with information on the company’s current vendor diversity statistics and establishing goals on diversity spend in advance of operating sports wagering in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.  
The MGC set a goal to launch retail sports wagering in late January 2023 and online/mobile sports wagering in March 2023. 
WynnBET now must obtain a certificate of operations and meet additional conditions, including but not limited to the conditions noted above, before they can accept wagers on approved sporting events. More information on a universal launch for retail wagering, followed by online wagering will be released as it becomes available.  

Governor-elect Maura Healey Issues Statement on Signing of Respect for Marriage Act

Healey led the first successful state challenge to DOMA, was recently elected one of the first lesbian Governors in the country


BOSTON – Massachusetts Governor-elect and Attorney General Maura Healey, who recently made history when she was elected one of the country’s first lesbian Governors and Massachusetts’ first woman and LGBTQ person elected Governor, issued a statement following President Biden’s signing of the Respect for Marriage Act.


As Chief of the Civil Rights Division in the Attorney General’s Office, Healey led the country’s  first successful state challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act in 2009, paving the way for marriage equality nationwide. The Respect for Marriage Act repeals DOMA, as well as codifying other protections for LGBTQ+ couples.


“When we first challenged the Defense of Marriage Act, many people doubted that we would be successful. But we knew it was too important not to give it everything we had. We brought that case all the way to the Supreme Court and we won, laying the groundwork for marriage equality nationwide. I never imagined that more than a decade later, those rights that we fought so hard to secure would come under threat by extremists who want to roll back the progress we’ve made.


“That’s why the Respect for Marriage Act is so essential. It repeals DOMA once and for all. It guarantees that your marriage will be recognized and respected across the country, no matter who you love. I’m grateful to President Biden and Congressional leaders for seeing this through, and I’m especially grateful to all of the LGBTQ+ couples who shared their stories, made their voices heard and never gave up the fight for true equality. I’m also thinking of my co-counsel Mary Bonauto, a trailblazer who has led this fight for marriage equality, from Goodridge to the DOMA challenge to Obergefell and beyond. We did it.”

Fall River Day Care Broken into Twice

Fall River police are investigating after a daycare center was broken into two times in one weekend with over $2000 dollars worth of items stolen. According to CBS 12 in Providence, the Pumpkin Patch Childcare Center on South Main Street which has not yet opened to children just yet, has already had their building broken into twice. The first break in was discovered Saturday morning with reports that the window to the childcare center was broken with a rock. A day later, someone broke that plywood that was placed over the broken window and entered the building a second time, stealing a power drill.


The Major Crimes Division in fall river continue their investigations into the incidents. Anyone with information is asked to call (508) 324-2796, and anonymous tips can be made by calling (508) 672-TIPS (8477)

Two BCSO Employees Involved in a Crash in Freetown

According to ABC 6 in Providence, two Bristol County Sheriff’s Office employees were involved in a crash last night in Freetown. The crash was between two cars, one being a sheriff’s office vehicle on County Street. The two Bristol County Sheriff’s Office employees were taken to the hospital, with their injuries believed to be minor.


Massachusetts State Police are currently investigating the cause of the crash. 

T.F. Green and Breeze Airways Adding More Destinations

According to CBS 12 in Providence, Breeze Airways announced it will soon offer more direct flights to more destinations. The airline said in 2023 they plan to add nonstop and direct service to Los Angeles, Columbus, and Cincinnati as well as direct one-stop services to Orange County, Jacksonville, Tampa, and New Orleans. The airline currently offers four destinations of Charleston, Norfolk, Pittsburgh, and Raleigh-Durham.


Breeze said it is planning to announce more destinations in the coming months.

Energy Bill Concerns Rising in MA

According to NBC 10 in Providence, some Massachusetts residents may have already seen an increase in their energy bills, and those who haven't should prepare for it as temperatures drop. National Grid and Eversource customers are expecting and or experiencing a 42% increase in their energy costs this winter. Starting on New Year's Day, residents will notice a spike on their electric bills. Public health officials say these hikes allow for the increase in the danger of people using unsafe methods to heat their homes. NBC 10 states that there are dozens of statewide programs to help residents who can not afford energy bills.

Seekonk Gathering Christmas Trees

According to CBS 12 in Providence, Heritage Tree and Arborist Services of Seekonk announced they will be offering free Christmas trees to families coping with childhood illnesses. Heritage Tree partnered with another local business, Oakdale Farms, to secure the trees, and it’s also working with Hasbro Children’s Hospital to contact potential families in need. There are currently around 30 trees ready to be donated with hopes for that number to grow. Families can apply or be nominated to receive a tree and Heritage will deliver it directly to their home, free of charge.


To apply or nominate a family, contact Heritage Tree via phone line or filling out their application form online.

Two Men Wanted on Assault and Robbery

Police are searching for two suspects who reportedly beat and robbed a man in Mansfield yesterday afternoon.  According to CBS 12 in Providence, Officers responded to South Main Street just before 1:30 p.m. for reports of a robbery in progress. Following an investigation into the incident, reports revealed the suspects had attacked the man and stole some of his belongings before taking off. The men were last seen turning onto Route 106 in a black Volkswagen sedan are believed to have Connecticut license plates. The victim suffered minor injuries in the attack and was treated by paramedics.


Anyone with any information is asked to contact the Mansfield Police Department.

Sox close Meetings with two big moves, one departure

SAN DIEGO -- The Winter Meetings started slowly for the Red Sox, but then they ended in a frenzy, with the club adding two key new players but losing a franchise cornerstone.


On Wednesday morning, the Sox reached agreement on a two-year, $32 million deal with veteran closer Kenley Jansen.


By mid-afternoon, they agreed to terms with Japanese outfielder Masataka Yoshida on a five-year, $90 million deal just hours after the 29-year-old had been posted by the Orix Buffaloes. The Red Sox haven’t announced either move, as both agreements are pending procedural matters.

Red Sox to sign Masataka Yoshida

But just when it seemed all was going well, Xander Bogaerts slipped away to the Padres shortly after midnight ET on Thursday. A source told’s Mark Feinsand that Bogaerts reached agreement on an 11-year, $280 million deal. San Diego hasn’t confirmed the deal, which is pending a physical.

Earlier in the day, reports surfaced that the Red Sox were building momentum toward re-signing Bogaerts.


Biggest remaining needs
1. Replace Bogaerts
Considering all Bogaerts meant to the Red Sox, the task of replacing him is daunting. Chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom had said since the first day of the offseason that finding a way to re-sign Bogaerts was the team’s top priority. Now that Bogaerts appears to be San Diego-bound, it will be interesting to see what strategy Bloom deploys for Plan B.


There are two elite shortstops still on the market in Carlos Correa and Dansby Swanson. The Red Sox hadn’t been linked to either of them while Bogaerts was still in play. It remains to be seen whether that will now change.


The Sox also have the option of moving Trevor Story back to shortstop after shifting him to second base in 2022. There are questions about the strength of Story’s right elbow, but Bloom had said earlier in the offseason that the club believes he can still play short.


Another option would be to move Kiké Hernández to short or have him replace Story at second base. But that would leave the Sox thin in center field. Jean Segura is the best free-agent option at second base, and he could be on Boston’s radar.


2. Add another starting pitcher

There is a lot of uncertainty in Boston’s starting rotation. The two most accomplished pitchers on the staff -- Chris Sale and James Paxton -- have been on the injured list far more than the active roster the past couple seasons. Garrett Whitlock is moving to the rotation full time, and Tanner Houck might follow him there, but both righties are still in the process of building a track record as starters. Nick Pivetta is durable yet inconsistent. Veteran righties Nathan Eovaldi and Michael Wacha are both free agents, but the Sox are keeping lines of communication open with both of them. The Red Sox have been linked with Japanese free agent Kodai Senga, a 29-year-old who has had a dominant career in NPB.

3. Add a catcher
The Red Sox have had a void behind the plate since they traded Christian Vázquez to the Astros in August. Sean Murphy from the A’s is an intriguing trade candidate and someone Boston has pursued in the past. Vázquez is a free agent, and a return to the Red Sox is at least possible. Reese McGuire did a solid job after being acquired from the White Sox, but he is more of a backup.

Healey & Driscoll to Hold Inauguration Celebration at TD Garden "Moving the Ball Forward" will serve as the theme of the celebration on January 5, 2023

BOSTON – Governor-elect Maura Healey and Lieutenant Governor-elect Kim Driscoll today announced the details of their inaugural celebration.


Following the swearing-in ceremony on January 5, 2023, they will hold an evening celebration at TD Garden inspired by the theme, “Moving the Ball Forward,” a nod to their time as college and professional basketball players and the history made with this election. This event will mark the nation’s first all-women executive team to serve a state. 


“This inauguration will be a celebration of teamwork, positivity and breaking barriers – and there’s no better place to hold the event than at TD Garden,” said Governor-elect Healey. “It’s about looking forward to the future and engaging directly with people about how we can deliver for them across this Commonwealth.” 


“We hope that anyone who attends this celebration will feel proud of Massachusetts’ history and excited about the bright future ahead,” added Lieutenant Governor-elect Driscoll. “We’re looking forward to honoring the fearless and groundbreaking women who made this moment possible, and laying the foundation for those who will follow us.”

The January 5th inauguration will mark the first time an all-women ticket is sworn in to lead a state in American history, and make Healey the first lesbian Governor in the country. Through their inaugural events, Healey and Driscoll plan to honor the people and movements that helped pave the way to make this historic moment possible. 

The event will be accessible and inclusive for all interested in attending with tickets becoming available in the coming weeks. More details on the timing, location, ticketing, program, and additional events will be available in the coming weeks. 


Murder Suicide in Fall River

A 25-year-old Fall River man shot and killed himself early this morning after fatally shooting his fiancé’s father and wounding two other of her family members.


At 3:05 am today, Fall River Police received a 911 call from the shooter’s fiancé stating that her fiancé had just shot members of her family and then himself at their home at 511 Bank Street.


When first responders arrived on scene, police found four shooting victims in total, two of whom are now deceased.


The shooter, who then shot and killed himself, has been identified as Christopher Jean Baptiste, 25, of 511 Bank Street.  He was rushed to Saint Anne’s Hospital in Fall River, where he was later pronounced deceased.


The female fiancé’s father, 69-year-old Hubert Labasquin,  was transported to Rhode Island Hospital, where he was later pronounced deceased.


The female fiancé’s mother, a 59-year-old woman, was rushed to Saint Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford for a treatment of a gunshot wound.   She is expected to survive.


The female fiancé’s sister, a 25-year-old woman, was also rushed to Saint Luke’s Hospital and is also expected to survive.


The preliminary investigation has revealed that the female fiancé’s family had been residing with the couple at Jean Baptiste’s Bank Street residence for the past several months while they apparently looked for another place to live.


 During the evening last night, Jean Baptiste told his fiancé that he was unhappy with her family continuing to reside with them.  Then later in the evening, while holding a firearm, Jean Baptiste apparently told his fiancé that her family had to leave the house immediately.  Shortly thereafter, Mr. Labasquin apparently engaged in a physical struggle with Jean Baptiste, at which point Mr. Labasquin was shot.


While the female fiancé was calling 911, Jean Baptiste apparently shot both her mother and her sister before then shooting himself.


The shooter had a valid License to Carry the firearm. 

The investigation remains active and ongoing and is being conducted by prosecutors, Massachusetts State Police detectives assigned to the district attorney’s office and Fall River Police.

City Encourages Residents to Explore Options to Reduce Impact of Rising Heating Costs

New Bedford, Massachusetts – The City of New Bedford is taking seriously the impact of rising energy costs on residents and businesses going into the winter months, particularly the anticipated sizable increases in the price of electricity.  


To help mitigate the impact of an anticipated January 1 change in the Eversource electric supply rate, the City is encouraging public participation in its Community Energy Aggregation Program.  To establish this initiative, the City built a collaborative of 25 municipalities drawn from across Southeastern Massachusetts.  This allowed customers in all the participating communities to negotiate and secure more favorable electricity rates by aggregating their purchasing power.

As a result, today New Bedford customers enrolled in the Community Energy Aggregation Program are paying 10.47 cents per kilowatt hour and are guaranteed this fixed rate until December 2023.  In comparison, residents and businesses that have opted out of community aggregation and are buying power directly from Eversource may see rates between 17 and 20 cents/Kwh.  
Importantly, if a resident or business has opted out of community aggregation, they can opt back in at the link above.  And if a resident or business has never been part of the Program, they can likewise opt in at the link above.   As of today, there are approximately 30,000 New Bedford electricity customers participating in the Program.


 The total cumulative cost savings for New Bedford customers since the Program’s inception stands at $16.5 million.  With electricity costs on the rise, the opportunity to lock in rates at more favorable prices, is only going to grow in importance--so again, we encourage New Bedford customers to take advantage of the Community Energy Aggregation Program if they have not already done so.
The City also strongly recommends that residents contact MassSave to complete a free Home Energy Assessment. Assessments can be an effective tool to identify opportunities to reduce energy consumption and save on costs.
Another resource for those struggling to meet energy costs, is PACE (People Acting in Community Endeavors).  PACE continues to provide heating assistance for low-income residents through a federal program and can be reached at 508-254-4271.


“With energy prices rising, our residents need to be aware of the lower cost options out there. Our Community Aggregation Program is a straightforward way to reduce bills,” said Mayor Jon Mitchell.


Beginning January 1, pending approval by the DPU, the average residential Eversource electric customer in Eastern MA using 600 kWh will see a 23% or $47 increase to their total bill. Eversource serves Basic Service to 29% of Eversource customers in Eastern MA.


This increase does not apply to customers that receive energy from another supplier or through municipal aggregation. A customer’s total bill amount depends on their energy use, the type of rate they are on, and weather conditions. The increase is a result of record-high natural gas prices, primarily driven by the Russian and Ukraine conflict. This is especially impactful here in New England, where natural gas is used to generate much of the region’s electricity.

Eversource customers may also wish to review ways to manage or get help with their bills.

Work on North Main Street in Fall River

Work on a section of North Main Street in Fall RIver begins the morning of Thursday, December 8 and will wrap on Friday, December 16. 


A section of Water Main will be shut down on North Main starting at 9pm the night of Tuesday, December 13. 


The Fall River Division of Water Distribution and Maintenance indicates that water service will be shut down  for at least eight hours in an area from President Avneue to Alton Street and isolated areas on the streets from North Main to Highland Avenue adjacent to the area. 

Red Sox add closer Jansen on 2-year deal (source)

This from and the Red Sox Website

Ian Browne


SAN DIEGO -- The Red Sox got the centerpiece of their revamped bullpen on Wednesday’s final day of the Winter Meetings, agreeing to terms on a two-year, $32 million contract with veteran righty Kenley Jansen, a source told’s Mark Feinsand.

ESPN’s Jeff Passan was first to report the signing, which hasn’t been confirmed by the Red Sox and is pending a physical.

Jansen would give the Sox the most established closer they’ve had since the departure of Craig Kimbrel after the 2018 season.

The ninth inning has been a revolving door in Boston the last four seasons.

In 2022, the bullpen was the biggest area of weakness for the Red Sox in a 78-84 season in which they finished in last place in the American League East.

The move reunites Jansen with Red Sox outfielder/infielder Kiké Hernández. Those two players were part of the World Series-winning Los Angeles Dodgers in 2020 and hope to make another deep postseason run together in Boston.

This is the third -- and most significant -- addition that chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom has made for a bullpen that finished 26th in the Majors with a 4.59 ERA last year while converting just 39 of 67 save opportunities.

The Sox signed lefty Joely Rodríguez to a one-year contract on Nov. 23 and agreed to terms on a two-year, $17.5 million deal with solid righty setup man Chris Martin last week.

John Schreiber, who came out of nowhere to have a dominant season in 2022, is also back in the fold, along with Matt Barnes, who had a resurgent second half last season. Tanner Houck, one of Boston’s most talented arms, could also be a big piece of the bullpen, though he could also factor into the starting rotation for manager Alex Cora.

One of the most accomplished closers in history, Jansen left the Dodgers after 12 seasons to sign a one-year deal with the Braves last March. Different uniform, same result -- Jansen led the NL with 41 saves and recorded a 3.38 ERA with 85 strikeouts in 64 innings.

Known for his excellent cutter, the right-hander has reached the 30-save mark eight times in his career, including four 40-save campaigns, and he ranks eighth in AL/NL history with 391 saves.

Jansen has had his share of high-profile hiccups in the postseason, but he owns a 2.20 ERA with 20 saves over 59 appearances in his playoff career.

Originally a catcher, Jansen transitioned to the mound in the Minors before making his MLB debut with the Dodgers in 2010. He was consistently closing for Los Angeles by 2012 and recorded a career-high 44 saves two years later.

Jansen’s best season arguably came in 2017, when he finished fifth in the NL Cy Young Award voting after posting 41 saves (in 42 chances), a 1.32 ERA, a 0.75 WHIP and a 109-to-7 K/BB ratio over 68 1/3 innings.

With the closer’s spot filled, Bloom will continue to prioritize the team’s other areas of need this winter, which include re-signing shortstop Xander Bogaerts, acquiring a catcher and adding another starting pitcher.


DRRSD School Committee Offers Mediation

In an effort to try to resolve a lawsuit filed by the Town of Rehoboth against the school district, the
Dighton Rehoboth Regional School Committee voted unanimously to offer the mediation pathway.


committee charged Superintendent Bill Runey with reaching out to the Boards of Selectmen for both
Rehoboth and Dighton seeking their approval to begin mediation proceedings.

School Committee Chairman, Chris Andrade, said “we want to reinforce that the district does not offer
this proposal as any sort of admission of wrongdoing, but rather as a cost saving measure to both towns in
hopes of resolving the dispute quickly and efficiently.”

In the Superintendent’s message to both towns, Runey stated, “in hindsight, it is clear that the
communication from the District to the Towns and the Towns to the District can and should be improved.

In addition, I know from talking to all of the various stakeholders that issues regarding the relationship
between the Towns and the District need to be thoughtfully addressed by all parties. I am grateful for the
progress we have made under my new administration, and I feel strongly that this could be another
important step towards DRRSD becoming unified in service to our students and staff.”

He went on to offer that, “the current perspective of litigating these issues isolates the actual decision
makers from arriving at solutions to the legitimate issues that have been addressed in the litigation and in
various School and Town forums. Thus, I have a novel proposal to present to both Boards of Selectmen
and the School Committee. Why not engage in the process of Mediation with the Attorneys present to
resolve outstanding issues between the parties? I accepted this job with many goals, but one of the most
important is to help bring people together to find solutions to problems that have developed over the
years. The We Are DR initiative has already gained significant momentum, and I am confident Mediation
would assist in accomplishing our goal of making the District one of which families are proud to be a

The School Committee is willing to enter into such a process as they voted unanimously on November 8,
2022 to pursue this path of Mediation. The Committee and Runey believe the Attorneys could use their
best energies to find solutions to the issues that have been identified in the litigation rather than using
their energies to continue to litigate. The feeling is that moving in this direction would be a strong
message to our communities that all are united in our vision of providing the best education possible.
Towns were asked to discuss the proposal and inform Runey of their decision to accept or reject
Mediation by December 12, 2022.

FR Arrest on November 4 ATV Incident

On November 4, 2022, at approximately 7:33 PM, officers from the Fall River Police Department were dispatched to area of Delcar Street and Robeson Street, following an officer’s request for assistance.


Responding units located a 17 year veteran of the police department injured on the ground in the middle of Robeson Street, suffering from serious injuries.


The officer had been dragged several hundred feet by an ATV attempting to flee, during a traffic stop. The officer was transported from the scene to Rhode Island Hospital, where he was treated and released.

After a lengthy and thorough investigation by the Major Crimes Division, the suspect in this case Jeremias Cabral, 21, of Fall River, has been positively identified as the operator of the ATV. Cabral was arrested on December 5, 2022 by Detective Francisco Reis and other members of the Major Crimes Division.

Cabral is being charged with the following offenses:
? A&B w/Dangerous Weapon, Serious Bodily Injury
? A&B on Police Officer, Serious Bodily Injury
? Negligent/Reckless Operation of Snow/Rec Vehicle - Serious Injury
? Uninsured Motor Vehicle
? Unlicensed Operation Motor Vehicle
? Unregistered Motor Vehicle
? Public Way Violation Snow/Recreational Vehicle

On Saturday, November 5, 2022, a 17-year-old juvenile was arrested in connection with this incident. A witness who was present during the incident, misidentified the juvenile as the operator of the ATV. The juvenile, while not the operator of the ATV in question, was present at the time of the incident and operating a recreational vehicle. He will be charged with operating an uninsured motor vehicle, unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, unregistered motor vehicle, public way violation snow/rec

Patriots This Week

The New England Patriots will deal with the Arizona Cardinals, as one and a half point road favorites on Monday Night Football. 


The Patirots enter the game at 6-6 and will need to win and likely get help to part of the AFC Super Bowl Tournament. 

MassDOT Advisory: New Bedford Temporary Weight and Lane Restrictions on I-195 Bridge Lifted Today, Monday, December 5 Substructure bridge repair operations will continue as weather permits

NEW BEDFORD - The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is announcing it will be lifting today the temporary weight limit and lane restrictions that have been in place on the I-195 Bridge located over Route 18 for vehicles over 23 tons since Sunday, November 23, 2022.


 Additionally, the I-195 eastbound truck detour and the I-195 westbound truck lane restriction will also be removed at this time.  The weight limit, lane restrictions and detour were temporarily put in place as a precautionary measure while substructure bridge repair work was conducted. 
Crews will continue to perform substructure repairs on the bridge for the next several weeks as weather permits.

Drivers who are traveling through the affected areas should expect delays, reduce speed, and use caution.
All scheduled work is weather dependent and/or may be impacted due to an emergency situation.
For information on traffic conditions travelers are encouraged to:
•    Dial 511 before heading out onto the roadways and select a route to hear real-time conditions.
•    Visit, a website which provides real-time traffic and incident advisory information, access to traffic cameras, and allows users to subscribe to text and email alerts for traffic conditions.
•    Follow MassDOT on Twitter @MassDOT to receive regular updates on road and traffic conditions. 
•    Download MassDOT’s GoTime mobile app and view real-time traffic conditions before setting out on the road. 

Patriots Raiders Not Ready for Prime TIme

The NFL has confirmed  that the Week 15 New York Giants at Washington Commanders game will be played Sunday, Dec. 18, at 8:20 p.m. ET , and the New England Patriots at Las Vegas Raiders game will move to 4:05 p.m. ET.


The Patirots will play their likely final prime time game this coming Monday at State Farm Stadium in Arizona versus the Cardinals.


The coverage for the Raiders Game on WSAR will begin at 1pm on that Sunday, with a kickoff at 4:05pm EST time, with a 1:05 PST start in Vegas. 


While the Patriots are currently 6-6, the Raiders have won three in a row. 

_Massachusetts Gas Prices Down 10 Cents

Westwood, MA, December 5, 2022 — The average gas price in Massachusetts is down 10 cents from last week ($3.76), averaging $3.66 per gallon. Today’s price is 16 cents lower than a month ago ($3.82), and 25 cents higher than December 5, 2021 ($3.41). Massachusetts’ average gas price is 26 cents higher than the national average.


The recent steep plunge in domestic gas prices may be affected by the results of Sunday's meeting of OPEC+, a group of 23 oil-producing nations, including Saudi Arabia and Russia. Domestic gasoline prices have dropped 26 cents nationally in the past two weeks.


But OPEC+ decided to maintain output cuts of 2 million barrels per day, about 2% of world demand. The purpose of the move is to boost the global price of oil, which has fallen recently on fears of demand weakness, specifically in China. Regardless, the national average pump price for a gallon of gas dropped 14 cents in the past week to $3.40.


“Gas prices are dropping sharply and are only a nickel more per gallon nationally than a year ago,” said Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Vice President of Public and Government Affairs. "But with oil being the main ingredient in gasoline, OPEC+'s move could slow this decline. However, the gas price will likely soon be lower than it was a year ago."


AAA Northeast’s December 5 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 14 cents lower than last week ($3.54), averaging $3.40 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 39 cents lower than a month ago ($3.79), and 5 cents higher than this day last year ($3.35).

NBPD Stop Three Individuals Stealing Catalytic Converters

According to CBS 12 in Providence, New Bedford police have arrested three people suspected of a catalytic converter theft. On December 3, officers were called to Riverside Avenue around midnight for reports of a person looking under vehicles with a flashlight. When they arrived on the scene, officers saw three men sitting inside a vehicle in a parking lot. One of the suspects, 24 year old Luis Miguel Santiago of New Bedford, matched the description of the suspect police were given. The other two suspects were identified as 25 year old Cristian Omar Resto Alejandro, who had an active warrant for his arrest, and  22 year old Quiriam Yeileen Resto Alejandro both of New Bedford. When officers searched the vehicle, they found a reciprocating saw with a built-in flashlight stating this is a tool that can be used to remove catalytic converters from vehicles in the dark. All three suspects are charged with possession of the burglarious tool and stealing parts from a motor vehicle.

Two Men Charged with Violent Armed Robbery of Bank on Martha's Vineyard

U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts

BOSTON – Two men have been charged in federal court in Boston in connection with the Nov. 17, 2022 armed bank robbery of the Rockland Trust bank in Tisbury, Mass.


Miquel Antonio Jones, 39, of Edgartown, and Omar Odion Johnson, 32 of Canterbury, N.H., were charged with one count each of armed bank robbery. The defendants are currently in state custody on related charges and will appear in federal court in Boston at a later date. 


According to the charging documents, on the morning of Nov. 17, 2022, three masked and armed individuals forced their way into the rear door of the Rockland Trust bank in Tisbury. All three individuals were wearing dark colored clothing and matching white masks that resembled an elderly man with exaggerated facial features.


According to witnesses, each of the individuals were allegedly carrying what appeared to be semi-automatic handguns. The video surveillance also showed that one of the individuals was carrying what appeared to be a walkie-talkie. Once inside the bank, one of the individuals allegedly held a gun to the head of one of the bank employees and forced him to open the bank’s vault.


It is further alleged that the individuals entered the vault and took approximately $39,100, then bound the employees with duct tape and plastic zip ties, demanded access to one of their vehicles, and left the premises in an employee’s car.  


A short time after the robbery, law enforcement located the stolen car in a parking lot approximately 2.3 miles from the bank and determined that, minutes after the robbery, the individuals allegedly left the parking lot in another vehicle.  


According to the charging documents, following an investigation by law enforcement, Jones and Johnson were identified as suspects. It is alleged that subsequent searches by law enforcement resulted in the recovery of three $100 bills and clothing consistent with the individuals’ in Jones’ car; a black handgun from Johnson’s home; and paperwork reflecting both a money transfer to Jamaica in the approximate amount of $700 and cash deposits in the amount of $4,100 made at a bank in Connecticut in Johnson’s car. 


Additionally, according to the complaint affidavits, during a search of the Tisbury farm used by a local landscaping company which employs Jones, a glove, paper money band, zip tie and multiple rubber band – items consistent with the bank robbery – were recovered.


During the search, investigators observed an area that appeared to have had a recent fire, and found burned pieces of nylon, white metal plastic consistent with a white mask, burned walkie-talkie pieces, an antennae, batteries and pieces of metal consistent with a duffle bag zipper. Within a few feet of the burned area two semi-automatic handguns loaded with 9mm ammunition were discovered buried inches under the ground. These items, including the handguns, were consistent with items possessed by the robbers during the robbery of the Rockland Trust bank.


On Nov. 19, 2022, Jones was arrested on state charges of accessory after the fact and was later charged with armed and masked bank robbery in Edgartown District Court on Nov. 28, 2022.  He is in state custody.  On Nov. 25, 2022, a criminal complaint and warrant were issued by the Edgartown District Court charging Johnson with the Nov. 17, 2022, masked and armed robbery of the Rockland Trust bank. Johnson was located and arrested in New Haven, Conn., and is currently in state custody awaiting arraignment in the Edgartown District Court. The investigation remains active and ongoing.


The charge of armed bank robbery provides for a sentence of up to 25 years in prison, five years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal

McGriff elected unanimously to Hall on Contemporary Era ballot is reporting that Fred McGriff, who played for seven different teams, with his prime spent in Atlanta, will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in July of 2023, after securing all 16 votes of the members of the Contemporary Era Players Committee at the Winter Meetings in San Diego. 

The results revealed by the Hall were as follows:

McGriff: 16 votes, 100%
Don Mattingly, 8, 50%
Curt Schilling, 7, 43.8%
Dale Murphy, 6, 37.5%
Albert Belle, Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Rafael Palmeiro: Fewer than 4 votes

Bruins on Monday

The Boston Bruins retrun to home ice tonight at the T-D Garden, trying to extend their franchise record 14-0 mark on home ice, versus the Las Vegas Golden Knights. 


The match marks the first visit by former Bruins Coach Bruce Cassidy to Boston, after being relieved of his head coaching duties following the Bruins elimination from the playoffs last Spring. 


The Bruins are in Denver on Wednesday,. 



Celtics Sunday Win

The Boston Celtics rebounded from an overtime loss to Miami on Friday, knocking off Brooklyn 103-92, with Jayson Tatum and Jaylon Brown each earning double doubles on Sunday Night. 


The Celtics are 19-5 headling into the second half of a back to back Monday versus Toronto. 

Where Will Xander Land?

The Digital Edition of the Boston Globe is reporting that Shortstop Xander Bogarts has met with several clubs prior to the start of the Baseball WInter Meetings in San Diego, while the Red Sox may be waiting to see what the market is for the 30-year-old, who has earned a pair of World Series Rings with the Sox. 


Bogarts opted out of his current deal to test free agency; San Diego, the Chicago Cubs and Philadelphia Philles are among the organizations that have expressed an interest in Bogarts. 



Major Fire in Lincoln, RI

Firefighters battled a massive fire at a building early Friday morning. According to NBC 10 in Providence, heavy smoke and flames could be seen billowing from the building that housed a furniture business in Lincoln. Assistant Fire Chief Robert Fisher says firefighters initially entered the building and found a fire in the basement saying crews were eventually called back and units took a defensive posture against the fire. A three-alarm fire was initiated and extra crews were called in from surrounding communities.The building will have to be demolished as several floors caved in.


No injuries have been reported as investigations continue.

Energy Fair in Fall River

According to ABC 6 in Providence, With energy prices on the rise, an Energy Fair took place yesterday to help people find a plan that works for them. The event took place from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at City Hall in Fall River. Liberty representatives, utility providers, and community organizations were at the fair to assist anyone interested in learning more about cost-efficient energy plans. Attendees of the event had the option of enrolling in a program with payment plans, financial assistance, or a specialty payment program.

Recreational Marijuana Locations in Rhode Island Now Open

According to ABC 6 in Providence, the first legal sale of recreational marijuana in Rhode Island opened early this morning. RISE in Warwick, which opened to customers at 5:45 a.m. after a ribbon cutting. RISE is one of five locations starting the sale of adult-use recreational marijuana, now allowed by state law.


Locations in Providence, Portsmouth, Central Falls, and Pawtucket will also open later today.

A Busy Cyber Monday Recorded in Fall River

Latest reports show that this past Cyber Monday, was in full swing at the Amazon Fulfillment Center in Fall River recording a record-breaking year. According to ABC 6 in Providence, the warehouse is where the online orders are sent and where the first stop in the delivery process is handled. The Fall River location shipped over 80,000 packages out this past Monday. With 1,200 employees from around the area, staff says even though Cyber Monday is one day, the shipment and volume of packages going out will consistently be in large numbers through the week.