WSAR NEWS Archives for 2023-05

A Fall River Restaurant Fire Displaces Roughly a Dozen Residents

An investigation is underway into the cause of a fire that damaged a Fall River restaurant yesterday afternoon. According to CBS 12 in Providence, firefighters rushed to Marisqueira Azores Restaurant on South Main Street for reports of flames and smoke escaping through the roof. The fire significantly damaged the building and displaced about a dozen residents who live in the apartments above the restaurant. Two firefighters fell down the stairs while battling the flames who both suffered injuries but don’t appear to be life-threatening. The bulk of the fire damage was contained to the restaurant’s kitchen and storage.


The American Red Cross is also assisting the displaced residents.

MA Gasoline This Week

The average gas price in Massachusetts is down 1 cent from last week ($3.44), averaging $3.43 per gallon. Today’s price is 5 cents lower than a month ago ($3.48), and $1.30 lower than May 22, 2022 ($4.73). Massachusetts’ average gas price is 11 cents lower than the national average.


The usual ebb and flow of pump prices took a break this week, with the national average for a gallon of gas stuck at $3.54, up just a penny from a week ago. A decline in demand and the low cost of oil are the main culprits.


“Despite mild weather and a less volatile economic forecast, drivers are not hitting the road and raising gasoline demand to traditional seasonal levels,” said Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Vice President of Public and Government Affairs. “It’s possible this is merely the lull before Memorial Day, but it could be a trend that lingers into summer. Stay Tuned.”


AAA Northeast’s May 22 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 1 cent higher than last week ($3.53), averaging $3.54 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 13 cents lower than a month ago ($3.67), and is $1.05 cents lower than this day last year ($4.59).

Looking For Lead Water Service in Fall River

The Fall RIver Water Department will be looking for water service lines and pipes during a Water Service Line Inventory Program, with some 5,000 of the 21,000 properties connected to the city's water system anticipated for inspection. 


The City's Service Line inventory will be updated as a result. 

Five different contractors have been hired by the city to help perform the necessary functions, as the city wants to finish replacing lead water service lines by the end of the decade. 

Celtics Force a Game Six in Miami

The Boston Celtics avoided playoff elimination Thursday Night by knocking off Miami 110-97 in the T-D Garden, forcing a Saturday Game 6 in Miami with the Heat leading the series 3-2. 


If the Celtics can win Saturday, they would force a Game Seven at the T-D Garden in an attempt to become the first NBA team to come back to win a series down after being down 0-3.


If there is a Game 7, WSAR would carry it Monday NIght starting at 8pm. 


The winner of the series faces The NBA Western Conference Champion Denver Nuggets. 

FRPD Says No Shots Fired

The FRPD is confirming that no shots were fired, and no one was hit by gunfire, in the aftrermath of a traffic mishap that happened on Fourth and Wade Streets late Wednesday Afternoon. 


A 32-year old man was taken to Saint Luke's Hosptial in New Bedford for evaluation after he claimed he had been hit by gunfire on the left side of his face. 


FRPD Detectives interviewed wittnesses in the immediate area, found no evidence of a shooting and no damage on a vehicle that had struck a parked car. 


The FRPDs Major Crimes Division continues to investigate. 

Senate passes Tikoian bill requiring driver education to include dangers of driving high

STATE HOUSE — The Senate today passed legislation introduced by Sen. David P. Tikoian (D-Dist. 22, Smithfield, Lincoln, North Providence) that would require driver education courses to include a program about the dangers of driving under the influence of marijuana.

The bill (2023-S 0667) would require an Automobile Association of America program called “Shifting Gears: The Blunt Truth About Marijuana and Driving” to be added to the curriculum for driver education once it has been approved by the Board of Education. 

“Since marijuana has been legalized, it’s important for us to acknowledge the ramifications of intoxication, the same way we do with alcohol,” said Senator Tikoian, a 23-year veteran of the State Police. “The danger of driving under the influence of cannabis is very real and very serious. It is imperative that our student drivers understand the tragic consequences that are possible while driving high.”

Driving under the influence of drugs appears to be a growing factor in impaired-driving crashes, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. The percentage of impaired weekend nighttime drivers who tested positive for the presence of marijuana rose from 8.6% in 2007 to 12.6% in 2014. While in 2013-2014, 8.3% of weekend nighttime drivers tested positive for alcohol (a BAC of more than .005) and 1.5% had a BAC of .08 or higher, 22.5% had a positive drug test.

The measure now moves to the House of Representatives, where similar legislation (2023-H 5768) has been introduced by Rep. Julie Casimiro (D-Dist. 31, North Kingstown, Exeter).

More details emerge on Patriots' reported offseason violation

The content presented appeared first on the Patriots Wire and Yahoo Sports 

Jordy McElroy
Thu, May 25, 2023, 11:02 AM EDT·1 min read

The New England Patriots being stripped of two voluntary organized team activity meetings has the NFL world running wild with speculation. Those blasted Patriots broke the rules again, right?

Yes, but it probably isn’t in the way some people are expecting, according to a report from Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio.

Per Florio, it was a meeting violation for the Patriots stemming from a special teams session. So it was nothing more than a paperwork infraction that led to the team being docked two OTA days.

Florio wrote:

According to the source, an observer from the NFL Players Association believed that one of the optional early offseason meetings was a violation, because the 15-minute meeting in question (a special-teams session) was made visible on the internal schedule. In the opinion of the NFLPA, placing the meeting on the formal schedule converted it from “optional” to “mandatory.”

ESPN’s Mike Reiss reported on Wednesday that the second day stripped from the Patriots will come sometime next week. The team is expected to open doors to the media for the first time on Wednesday, May 31.

There is no word yet on if that’s the date that’ll be impacted.

Guard to conduct flyover and cannon salute during Boston memorial rededication

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass.  — The 104th Fighter Wing, Massachusetts Air National Guard, is scheduled to conduct a flyover of the Fallen Heroes Memorial during the 8th Annual Rededication of the memorial located in the Seaport District in Boston. 


The 1st Battalion, 101st Field Artillery Regiment, Massachusetts Army National Guard, will provide cannon salutes on several occasions during the ceremony which will see an unveiling of updated glass panels with the names of the most recent Fallen Heroes by Gold Star Family members. 


WHAT: Flyover and Cannon salutes for Fallen Heroes Memorial Rededication Ceremony 
WHEN: Friday, May 26, 2023, Cannon Salute starting at 10:00 AM, Flyover at approximately 11:00 a.m.
WHERE: 85 Northern Avenue, Boston, MA 02210 

A Former FRPD Officer Facing Charges Reported to be Lying About Arrest

According to the Digital Edition of The Fall River Herald News, former Fall River police officer Michael Pessoa and fellow officers have been reported as  knowingly lying about the arrest of a city resident in February 2019, then fabricated police reports to cover up an assault by the veteran patrol officer that was injured and latter led to his false arrest. Pessoa's defense attorney, Frank Camera, stated  Pessoa was justified to “take Lafrance down” when officers encountered the "belligerent and drunken man" after receiving a complaint of an altercation with a neighbor. At least two prosecution witnesses testified with immunity in a grand jury in 2019 when Pessoa was indicted on multiple charges.


Pessoa, in the trial involving Lafrance, faces one count each for assault and battery with a dangerous weapon; civil rights violations, intimidating a witness; and a false report by a public official. 

Nails Thrown on the Street Leads to Arrest

Officers have arrested a Freetown man accused of throwing construction screws onto a busy roadway numerous times over the past few weeks. According to CBS 12 in Providence, the screws that were found scattered along South Main Street, caused numerous flat tires.

The Freetown Highway Department has “spent a great deal of time” picking up the screws

at least 100 screws were picked up from the roadway each day for the past several weeks.

Taken into custody Tuesday was 56 year old Peter Vasconcellos, after officers found a box of screws in his vehicle identical to the ones found. Vasconcellos has been charged with operating a vehicle with a revoked license, operating a vehicle with a revoked registration and uninsured operation of a vehicle.


The incident remains under investigation.

Bears in Fall River

Fall River police are looking into multiple black bear sightings in the north end of the city. According to CBS 12 in Providence, Sunday police were urgently working to find and relocate the bear and are advising people to avoid the 5000 block of North Main Street if possible. Residents living in the area are urged to not leave any small pets unattended and bring in any dog or cat food left outside.


Anyone who sees the bear is asked to contact the Massachusetts Environmental Police.

Building Collapse in Freetown

According to CBS 12 in Providence, an abandoned building collapsed following a fire Sunday night in Freetown. The road was blocked off on both ends as crews worked to put out the fire. Freetown Fire Chief Harrie Ashley said the building was over two-hundred years old and did not have power. Crews were on the scene putting out hot spots as of 9 p.m. Sunday. 


The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Massachusetts Unemployment & Job Estimates for April 2023

BOSTON, MA – May 19, 2023 – The state’s April total unemployment rate was 3.3 percent, down 0.2 percentage points from the revised March estimate of 3.5 percent, the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced Friday.


The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) preliminary job estimates indicate Massachusetts gained 5,100 jobs in April. This follows March’s revised gain of 12,100 jobs

Massachusetts Approved to Continue P-EBT Food Benefits for School Year, Summer 2022-2023 K-12 families will receive last payments in June and July

BOSTON – Today, the Healey-Driscoll Administration announced that Massachusetts has received federal approval to continue Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) benefits covering school year 2022 – 2023 and summer 2023.


P-EBT is a federal child nutrition program created during the COVID-19 public health emergency to promote increased food security for students eligible for free or reduced-price school meals through the United States Department of Agriculture’s National School Lunch Program (NSLP) who missed school due to COVID-19. This is the last round of school year and summer P-EBT food benefits following the end of the federal public health emergency on May 11. 
P-EBT in the Commonwealth is jointly administered by the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), in collaboration with local school districts.  
“Massachusetts continues to lead in food security through initiatives that directly provide families with the funds to buy groceries that meet their nutritional and cultural needs,” said?Health and Human Services Secretary Kate Walsh. “Not only does this P-EBT plan approval promote food security for nearly 500,000 students and their families, but it also supports our local grocery stores, corner stores, farmers, and their employees.” 
“Food security is essential for the health and wellbeing of our students—and that need doesn’t end just because the school year does,” said?Education Secretary Patrick Tutwiler.?“I’m grateful that DTA and DESE are able to work with Massachusetts’ local school districts to connect families and communities to these critical food resources this summer.”  
Eligible K-12 families will receive a retroactive P-EBT payment on June 25 for COVID-19-related school absences that occurred September 2022 through May 11, 2023. Amounts depend on the number of COVID-19-related excused absences accrued in a month as reported by school districts: 
•       1-5 absences: $25 a month per student 
•       6-15 absences: $82 a month per student 
•       16+ absences: $147 a month per student 
In addition, an estimated 475,000 school-age children and their families will receive $120 per student in one Summer P-EBT payment on July 25. K-12 students are eligible for Summer P-EBT if they were eligible for NSLP either during the school year or the covered summer period. Students are eligible for NSLP if they are or were enrolled in SNAP, TANF, eligible categories of Medicaid, or if the school they attended participates in a specific program for high-need areas. Students previously ineligible for free or reduced-price meals may submit a school meal household application to reassess their potential eligibility no later than August 1 to qualify for summer P-EBT. Interested families must contact their school district to obtain an application.  

Memorial Events in Fall River

The City of Fall River’s Veterans’ Service Office in partnership with the Fall River War Veterans’ Council announces the City’s MEMORIAL WEEKEND SCHEDULE OF EVENTS


MEMORIAL PARADE will be held on Sunday, May 28th, from Kennedy Park at the corner of Bradford Avenue and South Main Street, traveling north on South Main Street to Government Center’s Official Reviewing Stand. Participants and parade attendees will then gather at Battleship Cove and Heritage Park for the FAMILY MEMORIAL FESTIVAL.


The MEMORIAL PARADE is being held on the Sunday in order to enable more citizens to participate and attend the parade, and to avoid conflict with many other Memorial Day activities that are typically held on Memorial Day, such as Family Cookouts and gatherings.


At the parade conclusion the City’s Veterans are hosting a FAMILY MEMORIAL FESTIVAL at Battleship Cove. There will be live music by the band DOUBLE SHOT, free burgers and hot dogs for the children donated by Rolling Thunder and cooked by the Veterans’ Kitchen of Fall River. There will be free pop-corn, candy, water, etc. provided for children, as well as face painting, arts and crafts and other fun activities. Battleship Cove will have its grand opening of their new Helicopter Exhibit with Vietnam War Re-enactments and the Fall River Carousel will be open with their Lincoln Park ponies. Food and Product Vendors permitted at no cost.


*CIVIL WAR REMEMBRANCE Fri. May 19, 2023 at 10:00 am Oak Grove Cemetery.
*FLAG DISTRIBUTION AT CEMETERIES starts on Sat. May 20th. Volunteers needed.


*VIETNAM MEMORIAL WALL CANDLE-LIGHT VIGIL, Sat. May 27th, Veterans’ Memorial Park, starts at 7:15 pm, and include activities and a special sunset ceremony. Families and Veterans are encouraged to attend and participate in this beautiful, heartfelt, patriotic ceremony to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice and Prisoners of War and Missing in Action.

*POLISH WAR VETERANS’ MONUMENT Sun. May 27th, at 8:00 am with a Special Veterans’ Mass at Blessed Trinity Church immediately following with a FREE full course breakfast following the Mass in the Church Hall.

*GRIFFIN MONUMENT at GRIFFIN PARK, Sun. May 28th at 10:30 am.
*SNAKE HILL at NORTH PARK, War on Terrorism Veterans KIA, on Mon. MAY 29TH, 10:00 am.
*MILLER MONUMENT, Mon. May 29th, 11:30 am 


     All MEMORIAL WEEKEND ACTIVITIES and MEMORIALS are open to the public and welcomes additional participants; Veterans, public, private institutions, safety personnel, organizations, antique vehicles and motorcycles, non-profit and social service groups, etc. 


   To join in the parade or any event sponsored by the Fall River Veterans’ Service Office call 508 324-2832 or call the Fall River War Veterans’ Council at 508 951-6847/ 

Jim Brown Dead at 87.

Fromer Cleveland Browns Running Back and a Member of The Pro Football Hall of Fame, Jim Brown, died today at the age of 87, according to CNBC. 


Brown is considered one of the greatest running backs to play professional football; he retired to persue a career in motion pictures, and spent decades working as a civil rights activist. 

Fall River Narcotics Arrest

On Wednesday, May 17, 2023 as part of an ongoing narcotics investigation, members of the Vice, Intelligence, and Gang Unit were conducting surveillance on an individual suspected of illegal narcotics sales in the City of Fall River..

The surveillance operation culminated with a traffic stop in the area of Milliken Boulevard. Once detectives made contact with the individual he was taken into custody for operating the vehicle with a suspended license.


A subsequent search of the vehicle lead to the discovery of approximately 500 grams of a white powdery substance suspected to be fentanyl, an additional 1.3 grams of suspected fentanyl, and $440 in U.S. Currency.

Edwin Miliano, 26, was charged with trafficking over 200 grams of a Class A Drug and operating a motor vehicle after suspension.

Ed Markey Leading Bipartisan Legislation Endorsed by FCC

From Senator Ed Markey’s Press release on his Website in regards to the “bipartisan, bicameral legislation endorsed by FCC Chairwoman and Commisioner”



Washington (May 17,2023) - Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), along with Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.), J.D. Vance (R-Ohio), and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.). members of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, and Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Representatives Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05), Tom Kean, Jr. (NJ-07), Rob Menendez (NJ-08), Bruce Westerman (AR-04), and Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (WA-03) today introduced the AM for Every Vehicle Act, bipartisan and bicameral legislation that would direct federal regulators to require automakers to maintain AM broadcast radio in their new vehicles at no additional charge. The legislation follows from the letter that Senator Markey sent to 20 of the world's leading carmakers last year requesting that they maintain access to AM broadcast radio in their vehicles. Of the 20 carmakers, eight had removed AM broadcast radio from their electric vehicles.



Specifically, the AM for Every Vehicle Act would:

• Direct the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to issue a rule that requires automakers to maintain AM broadcast radio in their vehicles without a separate or additional payment, fee, or surcharge;

• Require any automaker that sells vehicles without access to AM broadcast radio before the effective date of the NHTSA regulation to clearly disclose to consumers that the vehicle lacks access to AM broadcast radio; and

• Direct the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to study whether alternative communication systems could fully replicate the reach and effectiveness of AM broadcast radio for alerting the public to emergencies.

"For decades, free AM broadcast radio has been an essential tool in emergencies, a crucial part of our diverse media ecosystem, and an irreplaceable source for news, weather, sports, and entertainment for tens of millions of listeners" said Senator Markey. "Carmakers shouldn't tune out AM radio in new vehicles or put it behind a costly digital paywall. I am proud to introduce the AM for Every Vehicle Act to ensure that this resilient and popular communication tool does not become a relic of the past."


"Each day, millions of Americans turn to AM radio to stay up to date on life in their community, engage on the issues they care about, or to be simply entertained during rush hour," said Senator Cruz. "AM radio is a critical bulwark for democracy, providing a platform for alternative viewpoints and the ability for elected officials to share our efforts with our constituents. Congress should act swiftly to pass this bill so Americans retain access to news, music, talk, and emergency alerts on the public airwaves. I'm glad to work with Senator Markey on this bipartisan legislation to ensure carmakers do not limit Texans' access to radio in their vehicles

"I would think that if Elon Musk has enough money to buy Twitter and send rockets to space, he can afford to include AM radio in his Teslas.

Instead, Elon Musk and Tesla and other car manufacturers are putting public safety and emergency response at risk" said Representative Gottheimer. "The importance of AM radio during large-scale emergencies cannot be underestimated, and it has, without a doubt and without interruption, saved lives and kept our communities informed. When the cell phone runs out, the internet gets cut off, or the television doesn't work because of no electricity or power to your house, you can still turn on your AM radio. I'm proud to introduce the bipartisan AM for Every Vehicle Act in the House to ensure that all auto manufacturers include AM radio in their vehicles to protect public safety."

"Wisconsinites, particularly those living in our rural and farming communities, rely on AM radio in emergencies, to provide them with their high-quality local news, and to lift up the voices of local businesses, organizations, and people" said Senator Baldwin.



"Radio plays an essential role in our country. Many Arkansans rely on AM broadcast radio for breaking news and entertainment as they make their daily commutes, especially in rural areas where constituents spend a lot of time in their vehicles. In the case of severe weather, something Arkansas is no stranger to, AM radio is critical in updating the public to assure their safety, said Representative Westerman. "With this bill, we're protecting AM broadcast radio by ensuring that automakers continue providing AM radio in new vehicles, cannot impose unnecessary fees or surcharges that would prevent Americans from accessing these vital services in their vehicles, and clearly indicate if any vehicle lacks AM radio capability."

"As more and more Americans adopt electric vehicles, we must ensure that they are equipped with AM radio." said Representative Menendez.

"AM radio is - and will remain - an essential communications channel for emergency alerts and for disseminating news and other important information to residents of our district and communities across our country. I am proud to co-lead this bipartisan legislation which would ensure that EVs continue to be equipped with this basic but critical capability."

"There is a clear public safety imperative here. Having AM radio available in our cars means we always have access to emergency alerts and key warnings while we are out on the road. Updating transportation should not mean sacrificing access to what can be life-saving information" said Jessica Rosenworcel, Chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission. "We stand ready to provide any necessary support and expertise to the Department of Transportation and Government Accountability Office as they may need."

"As I mentioned in my speech to the NAFB last November, 'It]he Commission should not be shy about asking auto manufacturers to serve the public interest by continuing to serve AM radio listeners[.]' And, as I indicated in my statement earlier this year supporting former FEMA heads in their letter to the Department of Transportation regarding AM radio in vehicles, 'I believe that the FCC should make clear the vital importance of AM radio.... The public safety community and the American public rely on AM radio. Auto manufacturers now, and increasingly in the future will, rely on spectrum. Care should be taken to weigh the velocity of innovations against the stability of institutions. The Commission can, and must. play a role in striking that balance. I welcome any effort from Congress to secure the future of AM radio for the enduring benefit of the American people, and I invite my colleagues on the Commission and across the whole of government to raise their voices in support of this vital mission." said Nathan Simington, Commissioner of the FCC

The AM for Every Vehicle Act is endorsed by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) and the National Association of Farm Broadcasters.

"NAB commends Senators Markey, Cruz, Baldwin, Fischer, Luján, and Vance, and Representatives Gottheimer, Westerman, Kean, Menendez and Gluesenkamp Perez, for their leadership in advocating for AM radio listeners. This legislation ensures that the tens of millions of Americans who depend on AM radio for news, entertainment and critical safety information each month can continue to have access to this reliable communications medium. As the backbone of the Emergency Alert System, AM radio is instrumental in promptly disseminating vital information across all mediums during crises, ensuring that communities remain safe and well-informed. America's local broadcasters applaud the bill's authors and supporters for recognizing AM's critical role in our nation's public safety infrastructure," said Curtis LeGeyt, President and CEO of National Association of Broadcasters.



Taunton Girlfriend Stabs Boyfriend

A 30-year-old man was injured Thursday morning when his girlfriend allegedly stabbed him in Attleboro. According to CBS 12 in Providence, the man arrived at the Attleboro Police Station around 2:45 a.m. with multiple stab wounds saying his girlfriend stabbed him at his Oakdale Street home and then fled the scene. The man was transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and has since been released. At around 7:15 a.m, the suspect, a 24-year-old Rhode Island woman, turned herself in to police and was arrested.


Police have not released the identity of the suspect as the investigation continues.

Accident Sends 60 Year Old to Hospital with Head Trauma

 A 60-year-old woman has serious injuries after she was struck by a car in Dartmouth Saturday night. According to CBS 12 in Providence, officers responded to the scene in the area of State and Tucker roads just before 10 p.m. The woman was taken to the hospital to receive treatment for head trauma. The driver, who was an 18-year-old New Bedford man, was not injured and worked with police during the investigation.


No charges have been filed as the crash remains under investigation

15 Year Old hit by Car

 A 15-year-old boy faces serious injury after he was struck by a car in Middleboro Sunday night.  According to CBS 12 in Providence, police received multiple calls saying a person had been hit by a car in front of Hannaford’s Supermarket around 7:30 p-m. The boy was treated at the scene and then flown by a medical helicopter to Hasbro Children’s Hospital. The driver stopped at the scene and is cooperating with the police as the crash remains under investigation.

_Massachusetts Gas Prices Down 2 Cents

Westwood, MA, May 15, 2023 — The average gas price in Massachusetts is down 2 cents from last week ($3.46), averaging $3.44 per gallon. Today’s price is 5 cents higher than a month ago ($3.39), and $1.14 lower than May 15, 2022 ($4.58). Massachusetts’ average gas price is 9 cents lower than the national average.


The national average for a gallon of gas drifted lower by four cents since last week to $3.53. The lackluster movement can be attributed to higher demand for gasoline but a lower cost for oil canceling each other out. 


“Increasing demand for gasoline would usually drive pump prices higher,” said Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Vice President of Public and Government Affairs, "but the cost for oil has remained low lately, so drivers should benefit from stable pump prices as Memorial Day draws near."   


AAA Northeast’s May 15 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be the same as last week, averaging $3.53 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 13 cents lower than a month ago ($3.66), and is 94 cents lower than this day last year ($4.47).

Healey-Driscoll Administration Submits Comment In Support of Biden-Harris Administration's Proposed Title IX Changes

Title IX Changes Align with Existing Massachusetts Laws Protecting Equal Athletic Opportunities for All Students Regardless of Gender Identity 

Boston – Today the Healey-Driscoll administration submitted formal public comment in support of the Biden-Harris Administration’s proposed Title IX changes that would in part protect equal athletic opportunities for all public school students regardless of their gender identity. The proposed regulation changes align with existing Massachusetts laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity in public schools and in school-based athletics.  

“For decades, Title IX has opened doors for girls and women – including myself – to participate in athletics through high school, college, and professionally. I wouldn’t be where I am today without Title IX, and I know the same goes for so many incredible women leaders across the country,” said Governor Maura Healey. “But there is still so much work to be done to ensure equitable access to athletics for students of all gender identities. That’s why I strongly support the Biden-Harris Administration’s proposed Title IX changes that would bring federal regulations closer to existing Massachusetts laws that protect all students’ ability to participate in school athletics regardless of their gender identity.” 

“As former athletes ourselves, Governor Healey and I are proud that Massachusetts laws have prohibited discrimination on the basis of gender identity in public schools and school athletics for more than a decade,” said Lieutenant Governor Kim Driscoll. “It’s great to see the Biden-Harris Administration move the country closer to the comprehensive protections we have in the Bay State.” 
“It is incumbent on schools and school administrators to create a culture in which transgender and gender nonconforming students feel safe, supported, and fully included, particularly in athletics,” said Secretary of Education Patrick Tutwiler. “I appreciate the Biden-Harris administrations’ proposed enhancement to the Title IX regulations and am proud that these changes will support the good work already underway in Massachusetts.”  

Since 2012, Massachusetts has prohibited discrimination on the basis of gender identity in public schools and in school-based athletics. These important laws have helped ensure that transgender students in Massachusetts can thrive in a safe and supportive school environment and reflect our state’s strong commitment to promoting the academic growth of all students.  

The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Educations provides guidance for Massachusetts Public Schools to ensure they are creating safe and supportive school environments for all their students, in line with these laws.  

The U.S. Department of Education allowed public comment on the proposed Title IX regulation changes for a window of 30 days. Today is the final day a comment can be submitted. 

Bill would prohibit incarceration of children under 14 in Rhode Island

STATE HOUSE – Saying the state must do better to serve the social and emotional needs of children, Rep. Rebecca Kislak and Sen. Bridget Valverde are sponsoring legislation to prohibit the incarceration of children younger than 14 at the state training school.

“Children who are getting involved with law enforcement at a very early age need help, not incarceration. In most cases, they are in this situation because they have not received critical social, emotional and perhaps educational supports that they probably should have benefited from years earlier. Their interaction with Family Court should be a catalyst to get them that help,” said Representative Kislak (D-Dist. 4, Providence). “If the training school is actually the best placement Rhode Island has to offer for a child in need of services, then we are failing our kids.” 

Said Senator Valverde (D-Dist. 35, North Kingstown, East Greenwich, South Kingstown), “Incarceration of children who aren’t even high school age is harmful to them, and it is not going to serve to put them on a better path. Currently, we are sending them to the training school because we don’t have other programs in place to serve them in an appropriate way. What we’re saying with this bill is that we need to establish those programs, and right away. This dangerous practice is simply unacceptable, and we need to provide kids more appropriate services.”

The legislation (2023-H 5359, 2023-S 0344), which is scheduled for a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee tomorrow after the Senate session, would prohibit Family Court from detaining or committing any juvenile under the age of 14 years to the training school for any offense, with exceptions for murder, first-degree sexual assault or an attempt to commit either. 

The bill was heard by the House Judiciary Committee in March, and has been supported by Rhode Island Kids Count, the Rhode Island chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, The Rhode Island Council of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the Rhode Island Medical Society and the American Civil Liberties Union of Rhode Island.

“Children in early adolescence possess neither the cognitive capacity nor the psychosocial maturity to engage meaningfully with the justice system. At this young age, contact with the justice system has been shown to disrupt healthy social development, exacerbate mental and physical health problems, and paradoxically increase the likelihood of long-term incarceration into adulthood. That is why numerous national professional organizations including the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics, in addition to the Rhode Island Council of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, have taken a public stance supporting bills that limit incarceration of children under the age of 14,” said Dr. Jessica Soto, a child and adolescent psychiatrist with an interest in juvenile justice.
In Rhode Island, there is no minimum age at which a child can be criminally prosecuted and sent to the training school.

In 2021, there were nine 13-year-olds and a 12-year-old sent to the training school, according to testimony provided by Rhode Island Kids Count when the bill was heard last year. Concern for their safety in a high school-age population is part of the concern.

Equity is another. 

“Children whose families have the means to get them interventions earlier are far less likely to have interaction with law enforcement. Those who do are also more likely to have legal services that help prevent them from being sent to the training school. The children whose families have fewer means are the ones who are landing there, and they are going to have fewer supports to help them with the trauma they experience,” said Senator Valverde.

Said Representative Kislak, “There are service providers with the experience to serve the small number of children who would be affected by this bill. Developing and funding programs with them would be far more effective from a rehabilitation standpoint, less costly to our state and certainly more developmentally appropriate for the children involved. National and international standards call for the limit we are seeking, which will better serve children who need intervention.”

Celtics Return to the NBAs Eastern Conference Finals

After a dismal performance in Game 6, Jayson Tautm supplied the Celtics with 51 points Sunday in The T-D Garden and helped to eliminate Philadelphia in a Game 7 in the Eastern Conference Semi Final Series.


Tatum's performance set an NBA Record for points in a Game 7.


The Celtics will meet the Miami Heat starting with Game One on Wednesday...WSAR will carry Game Three on Sunday May 21 following Red Sox Baseball. 

Fall River Homicide

Massachusetts State Police detectives, Fall River Police and Homicide Unit prosecutors are actively investigating a homicide, which occurred in the City of Fall River late last night into this morning.

On Saturday night at around 10:44, Fall River Police responded to multiple 911 calls for reports of shots fired in the area of 275 County Street in Fall River.

Upon arrival on scene, first responders located a male victim, later identified as Diamonte Odom, 23, of Fall River, laying on a sidewalk suffering from a gunshot wound.  

The victim was rushed to Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, where he was pronounced deceased this morning at 2:40 am.

No suspects are in custody at this time and the investigation is extremely active as of this moment.  No further information or facts of the case can be disseminated publicly at this time. 

Taunton Man Sentenced After Stabbing in 2021

A Norton man who was convicted of stabbing his father to death and then stabbing his stepmother in 2021 is set to be sentenced. According to ABC 6 in Providence, police say the double stabbing happened on the morning of February 7 in Taunton when officers arrived, two people were found stabbed, including 60-year-old Jorge Bergantim and were taken to the hospital to be treated for serious injuries where Jorge later died from his injuries. 


Gary Bergantim, who’s now 38 years old, was sentenced in Fall River Superior Court this morning.

Shots Fired in New Bedford

Police are investigating after a man was shot in New Bedford Wednesday night. According to CBS 12 in Providence, officers responded to Ashley Street around 8:30 p.m. following reports of a gunshot victim. The victim was transported to the hospital with injuries that don’t appear to be life-threatening.


It Is unclear if police have anyone in custody at this time as investigations continue.

U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism Announces Extension of Partnership with Red Sox

U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS - The U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) Department of Tourism proudly announces a multi-year extension of the partnership with the Boston Red Sox, the nine-time World Series Championship team.


"From flight patterns to partnership, for the past two years, the USVI Department of Tourism has made immense progress in linking the important Greater New England market and the territory," said Joseph Boschulte, USVI Commissioner of Tourism. "We are excited about the growth of our partnership with the Red Sox team and look forward to continued connectivity between our two regions."


To celebrate the extension, Commissioner Boschulte was joined by USVI Governor Albert Bryan, Jr. in Boston, who threw out the ceremonial first pitch during the second game of the Red Sox -Blue Jays series at Fenway Park.


"We're proud to extend and deepen our partnership with the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism," said Red Sox EVP Troup Parkinson. "Our collaboration has gone well beyond baseball, expanding to college ice hockey and football events at Fenway Park. We look forward to finding more ways to partner in the years ahead."


Following a successful first year of campaigns, including branded sponsorship placement with the Red Sox, at the Frozen Fenway collegiate hockey competition and for the Wasabi Fenway Bowl, the first NCAA Division I Football Bowl Series, the extended partnership allows the USVI to expand the reach of its marketing campaigns, visitor promotions, and economic opportunities.


"We want to encourage visitors to escape the stresses of the cold winters to fall Naturally in Rhythm and Catch a Vibe Like No Other with our pristine beaches, local cuisine, historic landmarks, and National Parks," explains Commissioner Boschulte.


To learn more about the USVI visit,

Bristol Community College announces Commencement Ceremony, Class of 2023 Valedictorian, Salutatorian and prestigious award recipients

Bristol Community College will celebrate its 56th Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 20, 2023, beginning at 11 a.m., under the college’s solar canopies at the Bristol Fall River Campus, 777 Elsbree Street.

At the upcoming in-person ceremony, Bristol will award approximately 882 degrees and certificates including degrees in Associate in Science, Associate in Arts and Associate in Applied Science. Certificates of achievement will also be awarded. Academic achievement with cum laude, magna cum laude and summa cum laude designations, will additionally be recognized. Graduates from all Bristol Community College locations will attend, including the Attleboro Campus, Fall River Campus, New Bedford Campus and Taunton Center.

For updates about Bristol’s 2023 Commencement Ceremony, please visit

The college would like to take this opportunity to announce our prestigious award recipients including the Class of 2023 Valedictorian, Salutatorian, Distinguished Citizen Award and Honorary Degree. 

This year’s Valedictorian is Stanley Dzengelewski, of New Bedford, Mass., Associate in Arts in Liberal Arts (Humanities) and the Salutatorian is Victoria Robidoux, of Providence, R.I., Associate in Arts in Liberal Arts (History Transfer). 

Like many students, Stanley Dzengelewski, of New Bedford, has had many unique experiences prior to enrolling at the college. The 37-year-old husband and father of two girls held roles as a chef at a James Beard Foundation-nominated restaurant, and as a musician with a touring rock band, before pursuing an education and career that would enable him more time with his family. 

While studying at Bristol, Stanley maintained a 4.0 GPA, served as a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and was the recipient of the Stanley Koppelman Scholarship, in addition to balancing family responsibilities and formerly working full-time as a butcher. He credits the college’s faculty and advisors for their encouragement and engagement throughout his journey at Bristol. 

“Having my hard work and sacrifice recognized is a reminder that many of the most difficult things in life are also the most rewarding,” said Stanley Dzengelewski, 2023 Valedictorian, Bristol Community College. 

Stanley is currently using the knowledge he gained at Bristol in his new role as a Field Researcher for the University of Michigans’s Institute for Social Research, and plans to continue his education at a 4-year institution, with a focus on history and sociology. 

Victoria Robidoux, of Providence, discovered her true passion for museum conservation and anthropology while studying at Bristol.  

She credits the college’s supportive faculty and advisors for her success, as well as Bristol’s flexible online course schedule, that enabled her to take classes while gaining professional experience working at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) Museum.   

In addition to excelling academically, Victoria participated in the college’s Commonwealth Honors Program and Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. She also engaged with her college community by founding the “Mortals Club,” a student organization providing education and space for inclusive conversations about death and dying. 

“I have been so supported by the faculty of Bristol and their kindness has pushed me to greater educational aspirations. I discovered my love of writing and I discovered that I am confident,” said Victoria Robidoux, 2023 Salutatorian, Bristol Community College. 

Victoria plans to continue her education at a four-year institution to earn her bachelor's degree in anthropology. 

The college is proud to announce the following prestigious award recipients to be honored at Bristol Community College’s 2023 Commencement Ceremony:  


The Distinguished Citizen Award is presented annually to an outstanding local citizen whose character and achievements have enriched the life of the community, or to an individual who has made distinguished contributions in the fields of health, education, business, industry, labor, government or the arts.  

This year, the 2023 Distinguished Citizen Award was presented to Jason M. Rua 

Jason M. Rua is President & CEO of Rua-Dumont-Audet Insurance, a full-service insurance agency with offices in Fall River, New Bedford and Taunton. 

Jason earned his bachelor’s degree in management from Bridgewater State University and is a licensed Insurance Broker for various states, including the New England region. He holds many certifications and licensures, including a Surplus Lines Brokers License, a Licensed Insurance Advisors license, Certified Insurance Counselor designation, completion of the examination for Commonwealth of Massachusetts Licensed Insurance Advisors and the Accredited Advisor in Insurance designation program from the Insurance Institute of America. 

As a dedicated community leader, Jason serves on several boards and community organizations which include Southcoast Health, People Incorporated, Bristol Workforce Investment, Community Foundation of Southeastern Massachusetts, Bristol Community College Capital Campaign and Mechanics Cooperative Bank. He has also served as Chair of the SouthCoast Insurance Agents Association and the Somerset Insurance Underwriters Association. 

He has been honored with the Long-Term Volunteer Award, from the Greater Fall River United Way; the Brayton Community Service Award from the Fall River Area Chamber of Commerce; the Salvation Army Community Service Award; the Irwin & Joan Jacobs Community Leadership Award and the Roger Valcourt Outstanding Citizen of the Year from the Fall River Area Chamber of Commerce. 


The Massachusetts Department of Higher Education has granted Bristol Community College the right to award honorary associate degrees in humane letters. The college awards these degrees to individuals who illustrate, through a career of intellect and service, the best of Bristol Community College’s vision – to change the world, learner by learner. 

This year’s 2023 honorary degree recipient is Pete Souza 

Pete Souza, a native of South Dartmouth, Mass., is a best-selling author, speaker, freelance photographer and Professor Emeritus of Visual Communication at Ohio University. 
Throughout the Obama administration, Souza was the Chief Official White House Photographer and the Director of the White House photo office. His best-selling books include Obama: An Intimate Portrait, Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents and The West Wing and Beyond: What I Saw Inside the Presidency. He is also the subject of the documentary film The Way I See It, directed by Dawn Porter. 

He started his career working for two newspapers in Kansas and has worked as a Staff Photographer for the Chicago Sun-Times; Official Photographer for President Reagan; a Freelancer for National Geographic and an Assistant Professor of Photojournalism at Ohio University, before becoming Chief Official White House Photographer for President Obama in 2009. 


He earned his Bachelor of Science in public communication from Boston University and his master's degree in journalism and mass communication from Kansas State University. Pete has lectured at Carnegie Hall, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the Smithsonian Museum of American History, Harvard University, Facebook and internationally. 
Souza has had solo exhibits at numerous galleries and has been honored with several awards including the prestigious Pictures of the Year annual competition, the National Press Photographers Association's Best of Photojournalism and the White House News Photographers Association's yearly contest. In 2021, he was inducted into the International Photography Hall of Fame. 


The Last Lecture is a faculty honor created by the Bristol Community College Student Senate. The award honors one exemplary faculty member who has affected students’ education and their lives in significant ways.  

Robyn Worthington, M.A, Department Chair of History, Government and Economics at Bristol Community College, has been selected by students to deliver the Last Lecture at Bristol’s 2023 Commencement Ceremony.  

Joyce Adler Fernandes, M.Ed., Professor of Communication at Bristol Community College, has been honored to serve as the Grand Marshal at Bristol’s 2023 Commencement Ceremony. Continuing Bristol's tradition of awarding this honor to one of the college's longest-serving faculty or staff members, Professor Fernandes will lead this year’s graduates to the commencement stage. 

Why some in new poll still want Trump in 2024 even if he's criminally charged

Donald Trump, a twice-impeached former president facing multiple criminal investigations and charges in one -- as he denies wrongdoing and says he is being politically persecuted -- has solidified a very early lead in the 2024 Republican primary polls.

The support for his comeback bid appears to be driven, in part, by voters who say they would cast a ballot for him even if he faces additional criminal charges.

In an ABC News/Washington Post poll released over the weekend, 51% of the 1,006 adults surveyed listed Trump as their preferred 2024 Republican nominee, compared with 25% for his nearest opponent, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. And, when incorporating which way undecided adults would lean, 49% said they would back Trump in a general election against President Joe Biden, with 42% of respondents supporting Biden.

Trump's backers include those who think he broke the law, with 18% of respondents who said Trump should face criminal charges in investigations of his efforts to overturn the 2020 election results also saying they would be inclined to vote for him.

To be sure, polls in recent cycles have been wrong, including in the 2022 midterms, when surveys predicted a red wave fueled by economic anxiety only for Democrats to have a strong cycle, holding the Senate and narrowing losses in the House. And Democrats insist that Biden remains in a strong position with so much time before the 2024 race, pointing both to last year's results and a string of legislative accomplishments passed with little margin for error in his first two years in office.

Still, national surveys like the most recent one conducted by ABC News do capture attitudes among voters, even when they seem contradictory. The survey was taken before a jury found Trump liable in a case brought by E. Jean Carroll alleging he raped her and later defamed her by denying he assaulted her.

Follow up interviews with several of the poll respondents indicated there remains seemingly inexorable support from Trump from a slice of the GOP, despite his scandals and defeats. And even among those not wed to the idea of supporting Trump in a primary, they said their financial worries are encouraging them to overlook his legal peril and support him in a hypothetical rematch against Biden.

Rebecca, a 19-year-old college student who declined to give her last name, told ABC News that she had worries over "everything about [Trump] getting rid of certain files, and then the allegations of him and women," referencing Trump's possession of classified documents after leaving office and accusations of sexual misconduct, which he denies.

Still, Rebecca would vote for Trump even if charged, she said, "because he might be a bad person, but he is a good president."

When pressed on if she had any concerns about having a criminal as commander in chief, if Trump were to be convicted, Rebecca said she would consider who was running against him. Yet when asked who could run against him who would make her reconsider her vote, she answered, "To be honest, I'm not quite sure."

That sentiment played out in seven conversations with people who responded to the ABC News/Washington Post poll who said criminal charges wouldn't in themselves be deal-breakers in deciding who to vote for next year.

Sherry, a 56-year-old who said she is living on disability assistance, accused Trump of trying to "bribe the officials when they was trying to change over the election process." Still, she said other politicians are also "crooks and criminals" and that she could not bring herself to vote for Biden in a 2024 general election.

"There's nobody left. At least he had the jobs and everything going, you just had to weed out a lot of his comments and stuff," she said of Trump.

"Since Biden's been in office, I've been struggling bad. I've had to have help from my little brother, my kids, and I don't like that," Sherry said. "I didn't have to have all that help when Trump was in office. Since Biden's been in office, every month it's like, am I going to make it? If my house wasn't paid for, I wouldn't make it."

Those comments reflect the larger results from the poll, in which American adults said by a 54-36% margin that Trump did a better job handling the economy when he was president than Biden has done in his term so far -- even as Biden and his defenders are quick to point to the country's rebound from the onset of COVID-19, including low unemployment, despite persistently high inflation.

Other respondents had related gripes with Biden's foreign policy, such as the use of international aide, while praising Trump's rhetoric on limiting entanglements abroad.

Alice Castaneda, a 58-year-old living in Texas, said in the initial poll that she identifies as very liberal -- and hadn't voted for a Republican before Trump -- but "always wanted Trump" and suggested "[Biden's] doing more for other countries. And for us, we're poor here in Texas."

Conversations with the respondents suggested such economic worries also helped Trump gin up support among groups where Republicans typically get swamped.

Twenty-seven percent of Black respondents in the ABC News poll said they would vote for Trump, which would mark a jump from the 12% support he won in 2020. And 43% of Hispanic people say they'd definitely or probably support Trump or lean that way, which would be a rise from the 32% support he won three years ago.

Black and Hispanic respondents who later spoke to ABC News said it would be hard for Trump to relate to voters of color but rebuked the idea from Trump's critics that his past comments on immigrants and lawmakers of color were racist.

"What he says about some being criminals and x, y and z, it sounds a little harsh. And me, coming from a Hispanic background, I find it harsh," said 32-year-old Philadelphia resident Kayla Gonzalez. "But I find that he's doing the correct thing. I think they should try to come here legally."

"The man's been a millionaire all his life, he's used to a certain standard. So, it's kind of hard to understand what a person that's on the bottom is going through when you're always on the top," added Tommy Miller, a Black truck driver from Georgia who lamented the past rise in gas prices. "I like the man ... because he did a lot of good things."

Senate Ways and Means FY24 Budget Provides Access to In-State Tuition for Undocumented High Schoolers

(BOSTON — 05/09/23) The Senate Committee on Ways and Means will include a provision in its Fiscal Year 2024 budget, released Tuesday, to make higher education opportunities more accessible for Massachusetts high school students. Under this policy change, all Massachusetts students — regardless of immigration status — will qualify for in-state tuition rates at Massachusetts public colleges or universities if they have attended a Massachusetts high school for at least three years and graduated or obtained their GED here. This bill would unlock access to state financial aid for these students as well.  
“Granting in-state tuition to our immigrant students—the children who play on sports teams in our communities and who want nothing more than to provide a solid financial future for their families and work towards the American dream—is a step I’m proud to take in this budget,” stated Senate President Karen E. Spilka (D-Ashland). “It’s both good policy and smart policy: it will provide a tangible benefit for students who may not otherwise attend college, and it will increase the state’s competitiveness by nurturing, harnessing and growing the talent we have right here at home. At a time when the need for skilled workers has never been greater, it’s time to help these students get on a path to academic and economic success.” 
“The time has come to start providing our bright and motivated young students, who struggle to rise above cycles of generational poverty, with the same educational opportunities as their fellow residents. This provision welcomes students regardless of their race, national origin, and citizenship to qualify for in-state tuition rates at public institutions of higher education. Said Senate Ways and Means Chair Michael J. Rodrigues (D-Westport), “This critical measure is another step we have consciously made to strengthen and reinvigorate the workforce pipeline.”    
"There is no logical reason to prevent motivated and talented young students from our higher education system, especially when many students who attend college in Massachusetts choose to stay here upon graduating,” said Senator Crighton (D-Lynn), “This common-sense legislation will prevent Massachusetts residents from being forced to pay out-of-state tuition rates for public higher education.” 
At a time of declining higher education enrollment and workforce challenges across the Commonwealth, this legislation would remove an outdated barrier to opportunity for Massachusetts residents.   
"Over the last several years, our community colleges have served an increasingly large number of high school students through Early College. Yet time and time again, those same students learn after graduation that the cost to attend college is out of reach financially due to their immigration status," said Laura Douglas, President of Bristol Community College. "This budget makes an unprecedented investment in our undocumented students and will make a tremendous impact not only on our students, but on the Commonwealth's workforce as well." 

Brockton Man Arrested for Passport Fraud

U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Massachusetts
Fugitive wanted for murder and other crimes in Cabo Verde

BOSTON – A Brockton man has been arrested in connection for allegedly lying that his United States passport had been lost in order to secure a replacement to enter the country, when actually it had been confiscated by prosecuting courts in Cabo Verde following his arrest for murder. 


Johnny Barros Brandao, 40, was charged with one count of passport fraud. Following an initial appearance yesterday before U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Paul G. Levenson, Brandao was detained pending a hearing set for May 12, 2023. 


According to the charging documents, on March 27, 2014, in Cabo Verde, Brandao shot an individual in the head using a .45 caliber revolver, took one million and five hundred thousand Cape Verdean Escudo and then dumped the victim’s body on the side of a road. It is further alleged that on July 26, 2021, Brandao shot and killed another individual using a 9mm caliber firearm and threw the victim’s body over a cliff.


Brandao was arrested in Cabo Verde on these charges. On Dec. 12, 2022, after a period of pretrial detention, Brandao was released subject to supervision. The Cabo Verde court also ordered that Brandao not depart Cabo Verde – confiscating his Cabo Verdean national ID card as well as his United States and Cabo Verde passports. 


According to the charging documents, on Dec. 28, 2022, Brandao applied for a replacement United States passport at the U.S. Embassy in Dakar, Senegal. In the section of the form that directs the applicant to explain how his prior passport was lost or stolen, it is alleged that Brandao reported he had lost his passport while out to dinner on Dec. 25, 2022.


The charge of passport fraud provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $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.

FBI in New Bedford

According to CBS 12 in Providence, FBI agents searched a New Bedford business Monday afternoon and removed items as they were conducting a “court-authorized search” at Botanica La Madama on Acushnet Avenue as a spokesperson stated “It’s part of an ongoing federal investigation so we’re going to decline further comment,” 


Botanica La Madama describes itself as a store that sells “all kinds of spiritual items.”

A Reward Following a Possible Arson Investigation

According to CBS 12 in Providence, investigators are offering up to a $5,000 reward for information on the fire that tore through the former Hawthorne Country Club on Sunday afternoon. Firefighters rushed to Tucker Road for reports of heavy flames and smoke pouring from the building. Dartmouth District Fire Chief Eric Turcotte stated it took firefighters a couple of hours to knock down the flames but luckily No one was injured. The building, which has been deemed as a total loss, has been vacant for a couple of years.


The fire is now being investigated as arson. 

Councilor Lebeau Makes A Deal With Bristol Prosecutors

The Defense Attorney for Current Fall River City Council Member Pam Lebeau says an agreement with Bristol County Prosecutors is ''fair'', after it was disclosed on Thursday during a hearing in the Fall RIver Justice Center. 


Attorney Frank Camera was able to get one felony count dismissed, while three will be gone piror to the end of December if Lebeau avoids a former Westport-based lover and his wife, after admitting in court that she sent text messages and made phone calls using a special smart phone app that hid her actual cell phone number.  


Lebeau could have risked both her Council Seat and her Real Estate License if she had gone to trial on the felony counts. 


WSAR texted Lebeau seeking comment. 

Fall River Man Arrested in New Bedford

The New Bedford Police Department said they seized a loaded gun and narcotics from a suspect out on bail. According to CBS 12 in Providence, 20 year old Hayden Andrade,  of Fall River faces charges of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, a variety of motor-vehicle charges, carrying a loaded firearm without license while committing a felony as well as trafficking in excess of 18 grams. Officers stated they located Andrade driving erratically in the area of Cottage Street and attempted to stop him when he led police on a chase through a west-end neighborhood, as Andrade disregarded traffic signs and signals. The chase ended when Andrade struck another vehicle. The driver of the other vehicle was taken to an area hospital for minor injuries. Police identified Andrade and took him into custody, locating 24 grams of cocaine, a loaded 9 mm handgun and $480 in cash.


Police said Andrade is being held at the house of corrections without bail.

Six Displaced in NB After Fire Caused by Lithium Batteries

According to NBC 10 in Providence, six residents have been displaced by a fire that was reportedly caused by lithium-ion batteries in New Bedford. Firefighters rushed to Hathaway Boulevard yesterday morning for reports of smoke coming from a townhouse.The fire broke out inside the basement of the townhouse and was quickly extinguished. Firefighters took extra precautions after discovering several lithium-ion batteries connected to a charger.


No one was injured and the cause has been titled as accidental.

Zack Kelly undergoes successful surgery

May 2, 2023

BOSTON, MA—Boston Red Sox right-handed pitcher Zack Kelly today underwent a successful ulnar nerve transposition revision in his right elbow. The procedure was performed by Dr. Jeffrey Dugas at The Andrews Institute in Birmingham, Alabama.

Mike Vrabel voted by fans into Patriots Hall of Fame

The New England Patriots announced today that former linebacker Mike Vrabel has been voted into the Patriots Hall of Fame by the fans as the 34th inductee.
May 03, 2023 at 04:41 PM

New England Patriots


FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The New England Patriots announced today that former linebacker Mike Vrabel has been voted into the Patriots Hall of Fame by the fans as the 34th inductee. Vrabel joins Troy Brown (2012), Tedy Bruschi (2013), Kevin Faulk (2016), Ty Law (2014), Matt Light (2018), Willie McGinest (2015) and Richard Seymour (2022) as the eighth player to enter the Patriots Hall of Fame as a three-time Super Bowl Champion with the team.


Vrabel will join former assistant coach Dante Scarnecchia, who was named as a contributor to the Patriots Hall of Fame by Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft when the nomination committee held their annual meeting last month, as the 2023 Patriots Hall of Fame honorees. The date and time for the 2023 Patriots Hall of Fame induction ceremony will be announced at a later date.

Robert Kraft Has A Very Special Announcement

"It's my pleasure to announce Mike Vrabel as this year's selection to the Patriots Hall of Fame," said Kraft. "Mike's leadership and versatility were principal to one of the most successful eras in franchise history, propelling the Patriots to three Super Bowl titles in four years and establishing multiple NFL records for consecutive-game win streaks. Many Patriots players have made contributions in all three phases of the game, but none more significantly than Mike.


He was an eight-year starter on defense who also regularly contributed on special teams and is the only player in NFL history to score touchdowns on his first 10 career receptions, including touchdowns in back-to-back Super Bowl victories. He was respected for his football intellect and was destined to become a head coach in this league. I look forward to welcoming him back to New England, where his induction will preserve his legacy as one of the greatest players in franchise history."


Vrabel is a three-time Super Bowl champion and is recognized as one of the most versatile linebackers and best free agent signings in team history. He joined the team before the 2001 season, following a four-year career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, where he was used primarily on special teams and as a reserve linebacker. During his eight-year tenure in New England, Vrabel played a major role in the Patriots dynastic run that included three Super Bowl championships in four years (2001, 2003 and 2004). He exemplified positional versatility during his Patriots tenure by starting at both inside and outside linebacker, regularly lining up on offense in short-yardage and goal-line situations, and continually making valuable contributions on various special teams units.



As a Patriot, he caught eight regular season passes and two more in the playoffs. All 10 of his receptions were for touchdowns, including receptions in back-to-back Super Bowl wins over the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl XXXVIII and Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl XXXIX. He earned Pro Bowl and first-team Associated Press All-Pro honors following the 2007 season, the year the Patriots became the first team in NFL history to win 18 consecutive games in one season. During his Patriots career, Vrabel helped propel the Patriots to multiple NFL and franchise-record win streaks, including 21 consecutive wins (2003-04), 21 consecutive regular season wins (2006-08), 21 consecutive wins at home (2002-05) and 10 straight playoff victories (2001-05). During the 2006 season, he played a major role when the defense set a then-franchise record by allowing just 14.8 points per game.

The New England Patriots held their annual nomination committee meeting on Thursday, April 6, to discuss, deliberate and vote for this year's candidates for induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame. The finalists for 2023 were Logan Mankins, Bill Parcells and Vrabel.


Beginning in 2007, the Patriots started a new tradition, inducting one player or head coach into the team's Hall of Fame each year. The process for induction involves a panel of media, alumni and staff who collectively nominate the players or head coaches most deserving of induction. After the nominations are made, the committee votes and the top three tallies become that year's finalists. The Patriots then give fans the opportunity to vote online to select each year's hall of fame inductee. The Patriots are the only team in the NFL that allows their fans to make the final selection for enshrinement into the franchise's highest honor.


About The Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies


The Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies is the crown jewel of Patriot Place and one of the only sports and education experiences of its kind. Through a dazzling array of interactive multimedia exhibits and historical artifacts, the Patriots Hall of Fame presented by Raytheon Technologies showcases the tradition of the New England Patriots, explores the history of football in New England and promotes math and science education for the thousands of schoolchildren who visit each year. It is also home to the Patriots' six Lombardi Trophies. For more information, please visit

Houston Antwine (2015)
Bruce Armstrong (2001)
Drew Bledsoe (2011)
Troy Brown (2012)
Tedy Bruschi (2013)
Nick Buoniconti (1992)
Gino Cappelletti (1992)
Raymond Clayborn (2017)
Ben Coates (2008)
Sam Cunningham (2010)
Bob Dee (1993)
Kevin Faulk (2016)
Leon Gray (2019)
Steve Grogan (1995)
John Hannah (1991)
Rodney Harrison (2019)
Mike Haynes (1994)
Jim Lee Hunt (1993)
Ty Law (2014)
Matt Light (2018)
Willie McGinest (2015)
Stanley Morgan (2007)
Jon Morris (2011)
Jim Nance (2009)
Steve Nelson (1993)
Vito "Babe" Parilli (1993)
Richard Seymour (2020)
Andre Tippett (1999)
Vince Wilfork (2022)
Mike Vrabel (2023)

William H. "Billy" Sullivan, Jr. (2009)
Gil Santos (2013)
Tracy Sormanti (2021)
Dante Scarnecchia (2023)

Healey-Driscoll Administration Awards $1.75 Million for New Immigrant Assistance Services Program

Partnership with MIRA Coalition will help up to 800 newly arrived immigrants in Massachusetts
BOSTON – The Healey-Driscoll Administration has awarded $1.75 million to form the Immigrant Assistance Services (IAS), a new program designed to assist newly arrived immigrants in Massachusetts so they can access services that address their immediate needs


. IAS will be a collaborative program between the Office of Refugees and Immigrants (ORI) and the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) and will be administered by the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition (MIRA). 


Funding for IAS will support up to 800 individuals and families who are currently living in DHCD homeless shelter placements. Once fully operationalized, this centralized intake and triage process will help immigrants access services such as immediate advice and referrals, targeted and more comprehensive case management, legal services, and other support for which they may be eligible.


ORI and DHCD will coordinate and manage the statewide delivery of these services, including arranging regular on-site health visits and clinics for immigrants in shelter. MIRA will work with resettlement agencies to conduct the case management.

Loose Horses on Route 88

A Massachusetts state trooper Monday morning was seen helping wrangle two horses after they got loose on Route 88. According to CBS 12 in Providence, the incident happened just before 8 a.m. and the owner of the horses was already on scene when troopers arrived, stating the horses had somehow escaped from their stable.


Trooper Alex Boswell from the Dartmouth barracks was able to get a rope onto one horse while the owner wrangled the other, safely leading both home.

MA Student Killed in South Carolina Hit and Run

According to CBS 12 in Providence, a college student from Massachusetts died over the weekend after a possible hit-and-run in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The 21 year old Jackson Yelleof was a junior at Elon University. The crash happened Saturday night while Yelle was on a trip with his teammates. Police said he was struck while crossing the Highway 17 Bypass.


The university plans to hold a vigil for Yelle Monday evening and counselors have been made available to grieving students.

Fixing The Fall River Trash Carts

(FALL RIVER, MA- May 1, 2023)- The City of Fall River Department of Community Maintenance has
begun its first ever cart maintenance program to repair carts in the city in need of servicing. The program

is intended to lengthen the usable life of disposal carts and improve sanitary conditions in the city, as
components such as wheels, covers and lift bars become worn over time.

All carts belonging to your property should be placed curbside every collection day between May
1, 2023 and June 30, 2023 between the hours of 7:00am and 5:00pm, including trash, recycling and
yard waste carts. Over the duration of the program, DCM employees will inspect carts in each
neighborhood of the city to identify any damage. Any necessary repairs or replacements will be made on
the spot, with no inconvenience to the resident.

If you have a cart that needs attention or you have any questions please contact us at 508-324-
2585 or 508-324-3584 at the DCM office.

_Massachusetts Gas Prices Up 1 Cent

Westwood, MA, May 1, 2023 — The average gas price in Massachusetts is up 1 cent from last week ($3.48), averaging $3.49 per gallon. Today’s price is 22 cents higher than a month ago ($3.27), and 71 cents lower than May 1, 2022 ($4.20). Massachusetts’ average gas price is 12 cents lower than the national average.


A lower oil price is causing pump prices to stabilize or fall, with the national average for a gallon of regular gasoline dropping a nickel since last week to hit $3.61. 


“The local and national averages might be at or near the peak price for now,” said Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Vice President of Public and Government Affairs. "As long as the oil cost keeps wobbling around the low to mid $70s per barrel, drivers will benefit when they fuel up."


AAA Northeast’s May 1 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be 5 cents lower than last week ($3.66), averaging $3.61 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 11 cents higher than a month ago ($3.50), and is 57 cents lower than this day last year ($4.18).

Liberty and the Gas Mains This Week

Ferreira Corporation continues to work the following neighborhoods.

1.    Judson Street – Rodman St. to York St. – gas main Installation
2.    Rodman Street  – Heading west towards South Main St – gas main installation

The Fall River Contenders as of May First 2023

Paul E. Coogan
C. Samuel Sutter
Michael J. Vandal
Jordan James Silvia
Gabriel Amaral
City Council
Linda M. Pereira
Paul B. Hart
David B. Sullivan
Bradford (Brad) L. Kilby
Bob Pearson
Jordan James Silvia
Gabriel Amaral
Andrew J. Raposo
Gloria Saddler
Joseph Salvador
Ricky T. Tith
Matthew B. Springer
Michelle M. Dionne
Paulo J. Amaral
Joshua Teixeira
School Committee
Collin R. Dias
Shelli-Ann Pereira
Charles M. Chase, Jr.
Sara O. Rodrigues
Warren R. Alves
Bobby Bailey
Michelle Mimi Larrivee
Rene Georgia Brown
Thomas Khoury