WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — A smoky fire forced a local family to flee their 40 Oblong Road home on Monday.
The fire was reported at about 4 p.m. by homeowner Heather Williams. Fire Chief Craig Pedercini said it took about half hour to 45 minutes to contain the blaze, which started near a woodstove in the living room.
"We had to take some ceiling down on the second floor because the fire got up through the walls and into the ceiling and spread across," said Pedercini, who added that firefighters did what they could to minimize the damage. "We covered up as much as we could [with tarps] ... when you've got a little bit of time on your side you can do that and save as much property as you can."
Firefighters inspect the woodstove, suspected in causing the smoky fire at 40 Oblong Road on Monday.
Pedercini said the house also suffered water damage and holes had to be chopped into the roof to get at hotspots; the wall above the woodstove was "busted through." While he left any damage estimates up to the homeowners' insurance company, he thought the house was repairable.
Williams, a member of the Mount Greylock Regional School Committee, said she saw smoke was coming out of the light fixtures and the smoke alarms went off. She called 911 then left the two-story home with her two children and the family dog. Her husband, Pat Dunlavey, was not home at the time.
Pedercini said the fire is under investigation and that he couldn't rule out electrical causes, but the woodstove likely "was involved."
There were no injuries. The tanker was parked at Oblong and Torrey Woods Road — "We got a good water supply fairly quickly," said Pedercini. Clarksburg Fire Department sent an airtruck and covered the station; Pownal, Vt., firefighters were on scene with a truck. Village Ambulance also responded.
Williams said the family would stay with friends and that preparations were being made to tarp the house.
Two Arrested In Drug Raid On Williams College Campus
Staff Reports On: 04:49PM / Friday November 11, 2011
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Police arrested two individuals on drug charges after raiding a Williams College residence on Wednesday.
Angel Oritz, 19, of Bronx, N.Y., and Cristine Ihara, 21, of Gardena, Calif., were charged with possession of Class D substance (marijuana) with intent to distribute, possession of a Class B substance (Dilaudid) with the intent to distribute and drug violation in a school zone, according to police. They were released on personal recognizance pending arraignment in Northern Berkshire District Court on Wednesday.
Police said they raided Dodd House, where the two lived, on Wednesday night. Officers recovered multiple small bags containing marijuana, a bag of Dilaudid tablets and two bags filled with a "unknown powdery substances." One of those substances being blue and the other being white.
Police also say they recovered numerous pill bottles containing different prescription pills, paraphernalia items used for packaging, a scale and paraphernalia for personal use of illegal drugs.
Dodd House, on Mission Park Drive on the Williams campus, is located less than 1,000 feet from Williamstown Elementary School.
Police Warn Phone Scam Targeting Elderly
Williamstown Police Department On: 02:44PM / Tuesday October 11, 2011
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown Police Department is warning residents of a phone scam.
A fictitious organization representing itself as the "National Medical Office" is attempting to fraudulently obtain bank information from senior citizens.
The caller tells the senior the office will provide a supplemental card that, among other things, can be used to assist in lowering the cost of prescription medication. The card is being advertised over the phone as free of charge; however, the recipient is asked to provide bank account information to verify his or her identity before receiving the card.
The scam has been widely reported throughout the United States. Additionally, the Police Department is reminding residents to be vigilant when receiving unknown solicitations over the phone, the Internet or by mail. Police strongly recommend that no personal information be provided to anyone with whom you are not familiar.
If you or a family members believes you have been the victim of this scam, or have any additional questions, contact Williamstown Police at 413-458-5733 or your local police department.
Williamstown Teen Charged With OUI, Resisting Arrest
Staff Reports On: 11:36PM / Monday September 26, 2011
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — A teenager was arrested on multiple charges after an early-morning incident in which police say he tried to elude officers until his car collided with a tree.
Elijah Price, 19, of Pines Lodge Park was arrested for operating under the influence of alcohol, failing to stop for police, resisting arrest, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, speeding, marked lanes violation and operating a motor vehicle without a license.
North Adams Police said they received a report at about 1:53 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 25, of an intoxicated driver headed west on Massachusetts Avenue in a maroon Oldsmobile and contacted Williamstown officers.
Officer Michael Ziemba said estimated the vehicle was doing 55 mph in a 35 mph zone on North Hoosac Road and that it accelerated when he turned on his lights and siren. Price turned onto Henderson Road and then Cummings Avenue, where he went off the road and struck the tree.
Police said he tried to flee the scene, refused to follow verbal commands and then charged the officers with clenched fists. He was Tasered because of his "combative actions."
The car suffered heavy damage and was towed by Ron's Auto Repair. Price was taken to North Adams Regional Hospital by Village Ambulance for treatment of minor injuries. Upon release, he was arrested and held at the station lockup on $500 bail.
Superior Court Briefs: September 12 - September 16
By: Staff Reports On: 02:06PM / Monday September 26, 2011
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Monday, September 12
Timothy Primm, 31, of Bristol, Conn. had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on 15 counts of breaking and entering in the nighttime, six counts of larceny over $250, 15 counts of malicious destruction of property, eight counts of larceny in a building and a single count of common and notorious thief.
Primm was released on personal recognizance. The charges stem from a series of house break-ins in Becket between September 1, 2010 and July 11.
Corey Catala, 40, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of trafficking in heroin, trafficking in cocaine and distribution of heroin.
Catala was sentenced to concurrent five year sentences on the trafficking charges and a concurrent four to five year sentence on the distribution charge at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction.
Catala sold heroin in Pittsfield on September 20, 2010 and the trafficking charges stem from the execution of a search warrant at his home.
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Tuesday, September 13
Daniel Delsonno Jr., 48, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to a single count of unarmed robbery. He was sentenced to three to six years in state prison.
Delsonno took money from a 53-year-old man in Pittsfield on November 22, 2010.
Michael Purry, 37, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute and conspiracy to violate drug laws.
Purry was sentenced to concurrent three to four year sentences at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction. The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant at the Holiday Inn in North Adams on March 2.
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Wednesday, September 14
Michael Cook, 34, of Williamstown pleaded guilty to three counts of rape of a child and one count of indecent assault and battery on a child under the age of 14.
Cook was sentenced to concurrent five to seven years in state prison. The incidents occurred in Williamstown between June 1, 2008 and September 23, 2008 and involved a boy who was 12-years-old at the time.
Five additional counts of rape of a child, three counts of intimidation of a witness, two counts of threat to commit murder and single counts of indecent assault and batter on a child under the age of 14 and assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon were dismissed by the state.
Anthony Acito, 22, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to a single count of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon causing serious bodily injury.
Acito was sentences to two to three years in state prison. He attacked a 20-year-old woman in Pittsfield on October 20, 2010.
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Thursday, September 15
Kenneth Wood Jr., 56, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to a single count of conspiracy to violate drug laws.
Wood was sentenced to 30 days at the Berkshire County House of Correction. He conspired with others to sell drugs between February 3, 2010 and February 17, 2011.
Mark Welch, 44, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to a single count of conspiracy to violate drug laws.
He was sentenced to 30 days at the Berkshire County House of Correction. Welch admitted that he conspired with others to sell drugs between October 14, 2010 and October 21, 2010.
Eric Marcel, 33, of Pittsfield was sentenced to one to two years at the Berkshire County House of Correction after pleading guilty on Sept. 8 to one count of larceny ongoing and continuing offense.
He was also placed on one-year probation after he took about $200,000 from Johnson Ford Lincoln-Mercury Nissan, Inc. while employed there between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2008.
John Cook, 38, of North Adams pleaded guilty to a single count of possession of heroin with intent to distribute.
He was sentenced to one year at the Berkshire County House of Correction and placed on one-year probation. The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant at his home on September 20, 2010. An additional count of drug violation in a school zone was dismissed by the state.
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Friday, September 16
Lemarr Talley, 28, of Pittsfield had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on a single count of trafficking in cocaine.
The charges are in connection with a motor vehicle stop in Pittsfield on Aug. 22 and Talley was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $10,000 cash or $100,000 surety bail.
Michael Swenson, 19, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of armed robbery and assault by means of a dangerous weapon.
Swenson was sentenced to two and a half to three years in state prison in connection with a theft from La Fogata Restaurant on Tyler Street on Aug. 7.
An additional count of assault by means of a dangerous weapon was dismissed by the state.
Jason Daigneault, 24, of Cheshire had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of breaking and entering in the nighttime, larceny from a building and breaking glass in a building.
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $5,000 cash or surety bail.
Daigneault allegedly broke into Aaron's Sales and Lease in Pittsfield on July 1.