Granite State Dog Recovery is reporting two puppies originally thought to have escaped their fenced-in yard in Pepperell on Sunday and now thought to have been stolen have been recovered.
A 4 1/2-month-old male Rottweiler named Jack (above) was recovered today in Hudson, N.H., and brought to the Kodiak Veterinary Hospital. Workers there recognized him right away as the stolen dog plastered on Facebook and called his family.
The other dog, Rosie, was recovered by Burlington Police Monday.
The 8 1/2-month-old Rottweiler mix (left) was found wandering the fifth-floor hallway of the Marriot Hotel in Burlington. When the Burlington Police picked up the dog and tweeted out the news, someone alerted Granite State Dog Recovery and she was returned to her family, which includes two small children.
One of them, Ayva Rose Parsons, 8, is a survivor of childhood leukemia.
The Marriott does not have security cameras on their side doors and it is thought that whoever dumped Rosie there brought her in via the stairwell (no cameras there, either) as security video did not pick up anything on the elevators, according to Beth Corr, a spokeswoman for Granite State.
Months after her office was criticized for its handling of a domestic violence case that ended in murder, Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan is pushing legislation that increases penalties on defendants with a history of violence and in cases where the victim is a household or family member.
Ryan testified before the Joint Committee on Public Safety Thursday in favor of a bill (H 3242) that broadens the aggravated assault and battery statute when the defendant has previously been convicted of certain crimes, including violating a restraining order. The bill, entitled “an act relative to protecting domestic violence victims from repeat offenders,” was filed by Rep. Carolyn Dykema, a Democrat from Holliston.
The legislation also increases penalties for a defendant on an assault and battery charge who violates a judge’s order not to contact the victim as a condition of release on bail. Currently, a defendant is subject to increased penalties only when the assault and battery occurs in violation of a restraining order, according to Ryan.
“Right now the legislation does not provide for violation of the court order, a stay away order, to be an aggravating factor. This bill would remedy that,” she said. “This bill would say that if you have been ordered by the court to stay away from the victim and you, in fact, violate that order, commit an assault and battery, that will be an aggravating factor. It just increases the number of aggravating factors.”
The legislation gives prosecutors more tools to recommend higher sentences, and gives judges more discretion in sentencing, without creating mandatory minimum sentences, Ryan said.
Ryan is pushing for passage of four domestic violence bills, according to a spokeswoman. “It is part and parcel of a broader review of domestic violence legislation to increase penalties and discretion in sentencing that began when the DA took office,” spokeswoman MaryBeth Long said.
Ryan testified before lawmakers in July on a handful of bills, including one to create a new crime of strangulation and strangulation with serious bodily injury. In October, the Senate passed a domestic violence bill that included the strangulation measure. The bill is awaiting action in the House.
In August, the Middlesex District Attorney’s office was criticized for how it handled the case against Jared Remy, who was in court on an assault and battery charge two days before he allegedly killed his girlfriend, Jennifer Martel, a case that has spurred a reexamination of laws intended to prevent domestic violence.
Remy was arrested for allegedly slamming his longtime girlfriend into a mirror, and the DA’s office was publicly criticized for not asking a judge to continue to hold him, based on a past history of domestic violence charges, or ordering him to stay away from Martel following his arraignment.
In the wake of Martel’s murder, House Speaker Robert DeLeo asked Attorney General Martha Coakley to partner with him in looking at the state’s restraining order laws.
Dykema, who filed the bill in January, said abusers often have a history of violence before the domestic violence incident that should raise a red flag.
The bill recognizes if the defendant has a past history of violent behavior, they would be eligible for increased penalties on the domestic violence charge, Dykema said.
Dykema told the News Service the issue hit close to home for her after a Westborough mother was murdered in a domestic violence incident several years ago. After the woman’s death, she worked with former Middlesex District Attorney Gerard Leone, and then Ryan when she took office, Dykema said.
One in four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime, Dykema said.
“The most frustrating thing I hear from the public when you read these tragedies in the paper, there is a clear history of violence. People ask themselves, and I ask myself, why weren’t we able to recognize this…to discern the clear signs. This (bill) allows us to recognize those past patterns of behavior.”
With less than a week to go before a special election, Congressional candidates Sen. Katherine Clark (D-Melrose) and Republican Frank Addivinola are set for their first televised debate.
New England Cable News announced Thursday morning that Clark and Addivinola will debate at 3 p.m. Friday and the cable channel will air the debate at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Rebroadcasts are planned for Saturday at 11:30 a.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m.
The special election to fill the seat formerly held by Sen. Edward Markey is Tuesday.
Independent James Aulenti of Wellesley and Justice Peace Security candidate James Hall of Arlington are also on the ballot.
- M. Norton/SHNS
Katherine Clark, the 50-year-old Democratic nominee for the Fifth Congressional District, is heavily favored in the Dec. 10 special election to succeed Edward J. Markey in the US House of Representatives.
Yet Clark, a state senator from Melrose, still faces one last test.
Her Republican opponent, Frank J. Addivinola Jr., a businessman and lawyer with six graduate degrees and conservative views on the Affordable Care Act, guns, gay marriage, and abortion, says he is going to win.
Katherine Marlea Clark
Born: 1963 New Haven, CT
Undergraduate education: St. Lawrence University
Profession: State senator
Self-described political views: Progressive Democrat
Personal life: Married with three school-age boys
Current residence: Melrose
Grocery store of choice: Market Basket
International adventure: Studied abroad in Nagoya, Japan, in 1983
Frank John Addivinola Jr.
Born: 1960 Malden, MA
Undergraduate education: Williams College
Profession: Doctoral student, teacher, lawyer, owner test prep business
Self-described political view: Smaller government, traditional Republican
Personal life: Married
Current residence: Boston
Grocery store of choice: Market Basket
International adventure: From 2002-2006, lived in Odessa, Ukraine, and ran a tourist-focused business there
BOSTON (AP) — The new year is a few weeks away but it’s not too early to think about 2014 hunting licenses.
The Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife says 2014 hunting, sporting, fishing, and trapping licenses will be available for purchase starting on Monday.
They can be purchased at all license vendor locations, MassWildlife District offices, the West Boylston Field Headquarters, and at MassFishHunt.org.
Anyone 15 or older needs a license to hunt or for freshwater fishing.
Freshwater fishing licenses for minors ages 15 to 17 are free and can be obtained online.
The department also reminds hunters that all deer harvested during shotgun season must be checked at a check station. Online checking is not available from Dec. 2 until Dec. 14.
Regional and vocational technical high schools would be eligible for additional state funding for capital projects, under legislation filed by Sen. Kenneth Donnelly, an Arlington Democrat.
Advocates for the bill (S 228) told lawmakers on the Joint Committee on Education Thursday that regional and vocational technical high schools desperately need the state’s help to fund renovation and improvement projects because it is nearly impossible to get several different towns all to agree to take on the debt.
James Laverty, superintendent at Franklin County Technical School, said his school has done as many renovations as they can over the years without asking the towns for money.
“We will have to go to 19 towns at town meeting with our hat in our hands,” he said.
The odds are stacked against them to get all the towns to approve a large renovation project, Laverty said.
The town of Heath, in Franklin County, has only two students who attend the school out of 500 students. If 70 people in Heath show up at town meeting, and 36 vote no, “the whole project is dead in the water,” Laverty said.
Under the legislation, regional and vocational technical high schools would be eligible for additional reimbursement, which is calculated by the Massachusetts School Building Authority based on a four-part formula. A school district can receive up to 80 percent of the cost of a capital improvement project, and must pay for any remaining share of the cost.
The formula awards percentage points of reimbursement in three mandatory income-based metrics. Regional school districts often have unequal shares for each city or town when improvement costs are allocated, according to Donnelly’s office. The legislation would increase the percentage points awarded in the grant process for regional schools by 10 points, and vocational schools would receive 20 additional points. The goal is lower the costs for cities and towns, according to Donnelly’s office.
If the Legislature offers a “little more” and regional school capital projects can get closer to 80 percent reimbursement from the MSBA, “it would make it a little easier,” Laverty said.
Alice DeLuca, the Stow representative to the Minuteman Regional Vocational Technical High School in Lexington, said vocational and technical high school students are at a disadvantage compared to their counterparts at traditional high schools because their schools cannot renovate and bring in the latest technologies.
State lawmakers need to back up with money the support they voice for vocational and technical schools, she said.
“These schools provide the middle skills that everybody says they want,” DeLuca said.
“The kids who go to vocational schools do not have a nice, new renovated building and they are never going to unless something is done,” she added.
A new Twitter account purportedly set up to draft state Rep. Marc Lombardo for a Congressional run in the 6th District against U.S. Rep. John Tierney had even the potential candidate baffled on Wednesday, but the Billerica Republican would not rule out a run.
“I was very flattered to see that,” Lombardo said. “It’s certainly something that I would have to discuss with my family, and explore with people in the district to see if there was a path to victory.”
Lombardo helped accelerate the buzz on Wednesday when he retweeted the account’s first dispatch: “RT if you think @marctlombardo would make a great Congressman!”
Whoever is behind the account, which did not include identifying information, described Lombardo as a “true conservative.”
Lombardo said he had no idea who was behind the effort, though he did say that last week an anonymous letter arrived at his house also urging him to run.
“I wish I knew who it was so I could talk to them about it,” Lombardo said.
At the time Lombardo retweeted the message, the account had just two followers: a reporter at the Lowell Sun and Red Sox TV color analyst and former second baseman Jerry Remy. Andover Rep. Jim Lyons, however, soon seconded the notion that Lombardo would “make a great Congressman.”
Lombardo used to reside in U.S. Rep. Niki Tsongas’s district, but Billerica was redrawn into Tierney’s district during the redistricting process.
Former Senate Minority Leader Richard Tisei of Wakefield ran against Tierney in 2012.
A visitor to the State House press gallery popped his head in Wednesday and surfaced the Lombardo for Congress Twitter talk, calling it the “hilarity of the day.”
Targeted almost daily by national Republicans, U.S. Rep. John Tierney raised $251,216 in the third quarter of 2013 as he gears up for a re-election contest in a little less than a year, but was outpaced by his Democratic challenger Seth Moulton of Salem.
Moulton raised $355,548 from July through August, and had $301,735 in cash on hand, according to his campaign. Tierney’s quarterly report filed with the Federal Elections Commission showed the Salem Democrat raising a quarter of a million dollars, and finishing the third quarter with $561,155 in cash on hand.
Moulton, an Iraq war veteran and vice chairman on the board of directors of Eastern Healthcare Partners, launched his primary challenge to Tierney earlier this year after the incumbent staved off a strong Republican challenge from former state Sen. Richard Tisei in 2012 following a controversy over his wife’s involvement in her brother’s illegal offshore gambling operations.
Tierney will be running for a 10th term representing the 6th Congressional district in 2014. - M. Murphy/SHNS
BOSTON (AP) — Voters in Massachusetts’ 5th Congressional District primaries took the first step Tuesday toward filling the U.S. House seat that became vacant when Edward Markey moved to the Senate.
Seven Democrats and three Republicans vied for their respective party nominations, and the state’s top elections official predicted a strong voter turnout in the district, with as many as 120,000 Democrats and 20,000 Republicans casting ballots in the primary elections.
The district stretches from Winthrop and Revere along the coast to communities north and west of Boston including Waltham, Framingham and Medford.
The Democratic candidates include Belmont state Sen. William Brownsberger, Melrose state Sen. Katherine Clark, Middlesex Sheriff Peter Koutoujian, former Lexington school committeeman Martin Long, Stoneham resident Paul John Maisano, Ashland state Sen. Karen Spilka and Medford state Rep. Carl Sciortino.
The three Republicans are Boston attorney Frank Addivinola; Michael Stopa, a Harvard scientist from Holliston; and Tom Tierney, a veteran from Framingham.
The election was playing out amid voter frustration over the federal government’s partial shutdown. The Democrats in the race have blamed the impasse on House Republicans who they say are using the shutdown to try to force a delay or changes in the federal health care law. The GOP candidates say blame should also be pinned on the unwillingness of supporters of the law to negotiate.
Massachusetts Secretary of State William Galvin said the focus on Congress, although largely negative, could still have the effect of drumming up interest in the special primary election.
He also cited the large amount of money spent on advertising in what is a relatively small district geographically.
‘‘You have multiple candidates working a more concentrated area,’’ Galvin said Monday. ‘‘I think that’s going to stimulate a bigger turnout,’’ he said.
Koutoujian held the fundraising edge among the candidates, with more than $690,000 left in cash in his account at the end of September. Clark was next with about $393,000 in her account, including $250,000 of her own money.
Many voters in the district have never known a congressman other than Markey, who served 37 years in the House before winning a special election in June to fill the U.S. Senate seat formerly held by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.
Poll were to close at 8 p.m. Tuesday. The winners will compete in a special election Dec. 10.
In the latest chapter among seven rivals battling for endorsements and attention, Democratic congressional candidate Peter Koutoujian today picked up the backing of House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo.
Koutoujian, the Middlesex sheriff and a former state lawmaker, faces six rivals in the Oct. 15 Democratic primary. Many of the other Democrats have won other endorsements as well.
"I know how important it is for a district to have a strong dedicated and intelligent representative always willing to do what is in the best interest of his or her constituents,” DeLeo said in a statement released by Koutoujian's campaign. “Peter will be that person for the Fifth Congressional District. Peter has proven to be a leader on issues important to the fifth district , including issues relating to working families, health care, women's rights, seniors and protection against gun violence. This is why I am proud to endorse my friend Peter Koutoujian for Congress."
The Democratic candidates appeared at a forum Tuesday night, as each seeks to stand out in the crowded field.
“You have a hard choice. We all sound the same,” said State Senator Karen Spilka of Ashland, noting the Democratic candidates’ uniform support for abortion rights, increased federal gun control measures, and other touchstone liberal agenda items.
Other candidates have also picked up endorsements over the course of the campaign.
EMILY’s List, a well-funded national group that supports women who back abortion rights, is backing Sen. Katherine Clark.
State Rep. Carl Sciortino won the backing of some liberal Congressmen, and Spilka and Koutoujian gained the support of a number of organized labor groups and local elected officials.
DeLeo and Koutoujian plan to campaign this morning in Winthrop, the campaign said.
“From standing strong together against gun violence at the start of my days in the State House to making sure every hospital in Massachusetts provided emergency contraception to women who needed it, Speaker DeLeo has seen firsthand the issues that I care about, and the values at my core,” said Koutoujian. “I am proud to have his support.”