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Four Injured, Pets Lost in Pittsfield Duplex Fire

Staff Reports
iBerkshires Staff

The home on Lincoln Street burned in the early hours.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — An early morning fire on Lincoln Street heavily damaged a duplex and injured four, including three firefighters.

One occupant of the home was taken by ambulance to Berkshire Medical Center for treatment of burns and smoke-related injuries. Two pets are also missing and another, a cat, died in the blaze.

Two firefighters suffered minor lacerations and another smoke inhalation; all three were treated at the scene.

The cause is under investigation by the Fire Investigation Unit, state fire marshal's office and the Police Detective Bureay.

City firefighters responded to the 2-alarm blaze with five engines and the ladder truck to the structure fire at about 4:13 a.m. According Deputy Chief Michael Polidoro, there was heavy fire extending to the second floor when fire units arrived on the scene.

It took 90 minutes to bring the fire under control. There is heavy fire damage in the front on both the first and second floors and smoke and heat damage to the rest of the building. The owner of the building lived on the first floor; a tenant on the second.

All of the occupants were displaced and the Red Cross was contacted to assist them.

Western Massachusetts Electric Co., Berkshire Gas and city inspectors assisted at the scene; Dalton Fire Department covered the city.

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No Injuries in Route 7 Collision at Mount Greylock School

Staff Reports
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — No one was injured in a Friday morning accident on Cold Spring Road (Route 7) at the entrance to Mount Greylock Regional School.
 
Williamstown Police responded to the accident at 7:38 on Friday, Dec. 12.
 
A vehicle exiting the parking lot did not see a vehicle driving south on Cold Spring Road, according to Police Chief Kyle Johnson.
 
Johnson said the intersection, at the top of a hill with limited visibility of Route 7 traffic in both directions, is not particularly prone to accidents.
 
"Very infrequent, even when you consider the amount of cars that go in and out of there 180 days a year," he said when asked to characterize the frequency of incidents at the site.
 
One of the cars involved in Friday's accident was towed away from the scene. The other was drivable.
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Pittsfield Domestic Disturbance Prompts Special Response Team

By Andy McKeever
iBerkshires Staff

Police closed streets around a home where a domestic disturbance was reported.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A city man was taken into custody Saturday morning after the Berkshire County Special Response Team had to be called out.

Police received two calls shortly before 10 a.m., one from a postal carrier who heard noises and screaming from a home at the corner of Myrtle Street and Stoddard Avenue and another from a family member.

"We're still trying to sort out what exactly occurred inside, but essentially an emotionally disturbed person, a mental health patient, with some medical history who was having a bad way and managed to get his hands on a black powder rifle," Police Chief Michael Wynn said.

"We're pretty sure it wasn't loaded, from the family, but we didn't know for certain so that necessitates a protocol."

The SRT team consists of representatives from local police departments — including Lanesborough, Lenox, Great Barrington, Adams, and Dalton — and the Berkshire County Sheriff's office.

They closed the streets and were able to make contact with the man, enter the house and defuse the situation.

"He was taken into custody without incident and is on his way to the hospital," Wynn said.

Wynn declined to name the man because the suspect was being treated as a medical patient, but said charges will likely be brought related to the domestic disturbance following an investigation.

The streets were to be reopened once the police equipment was removed. Police began leaving the area about an hour after arriving. 

"Everything went as smoothly as could be expected given the circumstances," Wynn said. "When operations go this way, we're very happy. These are the way they're supposed to go."

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Wheel Estates Fire Destroys Mobile Home

Staff Reports
iBerkshires Staff
There were no flames but lots of heat and smoke when firefighters arrived at a mobile home fire at about 4:30 on Friday afternoon.

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A mobile home engulfed in smoke and heat late Friday afternoon is considered a total loss, leaving its owners homeless.

Fire Director Stephen Meranti, speaking at the scene shortly after 5 p.m., said the fire appears to have begun in the kitchen/dining area of the home but the cause had not yet been determined.

The owners, an adult couple, came home to discover the fire. The Red Cross had been informed of their situation.

"We had a reported structure fire and we had smoke showing when we got here," he said.

White smoke was billowing from the older-model mobile home, situated on Alan Drive between Comanche and Cherokee drives and tucked in next to a line of large fir trees.

"There is extensive smoke and heat damage throughout the rest of the structure," Meranti said. "It doesn't take long for a mobile home to lose everything. It holds all the heat."

Three engines and North Adams Ambulance Service responded to the scene, along with the Fire & Alarm Division, National Grid and Berkshire Gas.

Firefighters were checking the roof and walls inside the building to uncover any hotspots and a fire watch was being set up. Most of the equipment was released from the scene by 5:30.
 

 
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Goshen Man's Death Related to Pittsfield Shooting

Staff Reports

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A Goshen man died as a result of a blood clot caused by a gunshot wound incurred in a Pittsfield parking lot. 

Dr. Henry Nields, the state's chief medical examiner, said 29-year-old Anthony Gamache died as a result of the blood clot that, in his opinion, was caused by a gunshot wound to the leg.  

Gamache was shot in the leg in the Big Y parking lot in Pittsfield on Tuesday, Nov. 18, allegedly over a drug deal gone bad.

He was taken to Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton to seek treatment of his injury and then transported to Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, from which he was treated and released. Gamache returned to his home in Goshen.  

He began experiencing pain Wednesday evening, Nov. 19.  Emergency medical technicians responded to his home and transported Gamache to Cooley Dickinson Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.  

Peter J. Campbell, 18, of Pittsfield, is facing several assault charges in the shooting of Gamache and District Attorney David F. Capeless said additional charges will be forthcoming when the case is presented to a Berkshire County grand jury.  

Campbell had not-guilty pleas entered on his behalf in Central Berkshire District Court, on single counts of armed assualt with intent to rob, assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, possession of a firearm without a firearm identification card and discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a building.  He is being held without the right to bail at the Berkshire County House of Correction.     
 
The investigation into the shooting is being conducted by members of the Pittsfield Police Department and state police detectives assigned to the district attorney's office.

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