Home About Archives RSS Feed

Body of Missing Pittsfield Man Recovered

Berkshire News Network

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Pittsfield Police say they recovered the body of an elderly man who they believe is 61-year-old Francis Rocca, an Alzheimer’s patient who left his Francis Avenue home on July 13.

Police said the body was discovered early Thursday afternoon with the help of a specially trained corpse-sniffing dog in a heavily wooded area off Turner Avenue near the west branch of the Housatonic River.

Police were waiting for an official ID on the body but based on clothing and jewelry found on the body, investigators believe the dead man is Rocca. An autopsy is scheduled for Friday at the state medical examiner's office in Holyoke. Police say the death does not appear suspicious and indicated Rocca had been dead for some time.

Rocca, a carpenter and a veteran, has been suffering from Alzheimer's for two years. He reportedly spit out his medication on the night he left his home. Police were also hoping to come upon Robert DeFreest with the help of the dog. DeFreest, a homeless man, hasn't been seen since June 2009.

Write a comment - 0 Comments       Tags: body, missing      

Adams Crash Sends One to Hospital

Staff Reports

ADAMS, Mass. — A two-vehicle accident on Columbia Street stalled traffic and caused minor injuries Wednesday afternoon. 

Bill Spinney of Berkshire County Stoves said the crash "sounded like it was in my parking lot." The crash occurred just south of his store in front of Chick's Lunch and Gem Electric. He called 911 and, after noting the passengers and drivers had all exited the vehicles on their own, snapped a picture that showed one of the sport-utility vehicles flipped on its roof.

Police, fire and ambulance responded to the scene and police report one person, who had been in the flipped vehicle, was transported to the hospital.

Update: The flipped vehicle was being driven by Evan Sadlowski, 25, of East Road. He was cityed for speeding, driving to endanger and a seat-belt violation.

Police say Sadlowski was speeding southbound on Columbia Street when he lost control, struck the parked sport utility vehicle, flipped and slid into the parked red pickup truck. His 2005 Subaru was totaled and the SUV received heavy damage to its driver's side. The truck had $1,000 in damages. Sadlowski was the only injured and he was taken to Berkshire Medical Center with minor injuries.

Write a comment - 0 Comments       Tags: motor vehicle, accident, injuries      

Becket Motorcycle Accident Kills One

Staff Reports

BECKET, Mass. — A 59-year-old Swiss woman was killed in a motorcycle accident Monday afternoon in Becket.

Lorenza Bernasconi-Galli was operating a 2007 Honda BTM, three-wheeled motorcycle west on the Massachusetts Turnpike when she drifted into the breakdown lane and struck the guard rail, according to state police from the Westfield barracks.

The trike and rider continued west for 188 feet before the rider was ejected. Bernasconi-Galli was fatally injured in the crash and pronounced dead at the scene.

The accident occurred at about 3:27 p.m. at mile marker 16.8 in Becket. Two other bikers were traveling with the victim but were unhurt.

The far right travel lane and breakdown lane were closed for approximately three hours during the investigation. No traffic delays were reported.

The facts and circumstances of the crash remain under investigation by Troop E with the assistance of troopers assigned to the Crash Analysis and Reconstruction Section and the Crime Scene Services Section. Troopers were assisted at the scene by the Department of Transportation Highway Division.

 

Write a comment - 0 Comments       Tags: motorcycle, fatal, accident      

Ex-Pine Cobble Head Faces Child-Porn Charges

Staff Reports
David B. Harris

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A city man and former headmaster of Pine Cobble School in Williamstown was arraigned Monday morning in Northern Berkshire District Court on child pornography charges. 

David B. Harris, 66, of Marion Avenue, pleaded not guilty to possession of child pornography and dissemination of child pornography. Bail was set at $2,500 and Harris was released. The case was continued to Aug. 25 for a bindover hearing. More charges are expected to be filed.

Harris left Pine Cobble in 2000 and was hired as head of school for the Cambridge Montessori School, a private school for children from preschool to ninth grade

According to the district attorney's office, the charges resulted from a two-month investigation that culminated in the execution of a search warrant on Sunday at his home.

The North Adams Transcript reported Monday that state police said they found a laptop with links to pornographic sites featuring young boys, and 10 USB drives, at least one of which contained more than 40 videos that appear to be pornographic. 

In a letter posted on the Cambridge school's website, Webster O'Brien, president of the board of trustees, said Harris has been immediately suspended without pay and that the school will commence a search for an interim head of school for the coming year. (The letter can be found here, too.)

While we can honestly state that we have had no reason to suspect this behavior, and we respect individuals' privacy, these charges leave us no option but to immediately suspend David without pay until the Board of Trustees has enough information to make a final decision.

O'Brien said trustees are "fully confident that these issues reside in David's home in North Adams" and have not affected the Cambridge school.

Harris spent his weekends in North Adams and weekdays living in Cambridge.

He has more than 40 years of experience in education and is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. He was headmaster of Pine Cobble from 1989 to 2000; Nicholas M. Edgerton, who replaced him, left earlier this spring. Harris has been headmaster at two other private schools, Upland Country Day School in Kennett Square, Pa., and Eagle Hill School in Lloyd Harbor, N.Y., according to his biography listed on the Cambridge school site. He has sat on numerous educational boards and is a trustee of the Kildonan School in Amenia, N.Y.

Harris founded a consulting firm in 2004 to aid in the placement of gifted or underachieving students to schools that fit their needs but the site, www.schoolsolve.net, does not appear to have fully launched and the domain is for sale. A bio for the site lists Harris at that time as a corporator for Northern Berkshire Health Systems and a member of the North Adams Regional Hospital Ethics Committee; he is no longer listed as a corporator at NBH.

(Update, July 21: Northern Berkshire Healthcare tells us that Harris was a lay member of the Ethics Committee from 1997 to 2002. He is not a corporator and has no current links to the hospital.)

The investigation was conducted by state police detectives assigned to the Berkshire district attorney's office, with assistance from the Massachusetts and New York Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces, state police detectives assigned to the Middlesex district attorney's office and investigators assigned to the New York State attorney general's office.

From the Editor: Because of the sensitive nature of these allegations, we'll be scrutinizing any comments posted here. Any attempts at incitement to violence, smutty remarks and distasteful comments will be removed immediately. Keep it clean, people.

Write a comment - 19 Comments       Tags: pornography, children, Northern Berkshire      

Woman Pleads Guilty in Fatal Accident

Staff Reports

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — An East Longmeadow woman was sentenced on Monday afternoon in Berkshire Superior Court to prison for her role in a drunken-driving accident two years ago that killed a Becket man.

Catherine A. Rivet, 30, of Parker Street, pleaded guilty to single countes of motor vehicle homicide while under the influence of alcohol and operating to endanger, failure to stay in marked lanes, speeding and possession of marijuana.

Thomas A. Sacchetti Jr., 42, of Prince John Drive, was a passenger in Rivet's 1997 Ford Contour in the early morning hours of Oct. 11, 2008. She was driving at a high rate of speed along Route 20 near the Chester line when she lost control and flipped her car. Sacchetti was pronounced dead at the scene.

Judge John A. Agostini ordered Rivet to serve three to five years in the Massachusetts Correctional Institute at Framingham on the motor vehicle homicide charge, to be served concurrently with six months in House of Correction on the possession charge. She was found responsble for the two traffic charges.

The investigation was conducted by members of the Becket Police Department and accident reconstruction specialists assigned to the Massachusetts State Police.  

Write a comment - 2 Comments       Tags: accident, vehicle, fatal, sacchetti      
Page 239 of 256... 234  235  236  237  238  239  240  241  242  243  244 ... 256  

Support Local News

We show up at hurricanes, budget meetings, high school games, accidents, fires and community events. We show up at celebrations and tragedies and everything in between. We show up so our readers can learn about pivotal events that affect their communities and their lives.

How important is local news to you? You can support independent, unbiased journalism and help iBerkshires grow for as a little as the cost of a cup of coffee a week.

News Headlines
Biz Briefs: Williams College Study Says Kripalu Center Generates $64 Million in Economic Activity for Berkshires
Berkshires Beat: Adaptive Water Program to Hold Clinic at Camp Russell
New Doctor Joins Community Health Programs
Area Wrestlers Post Strong Showings at Bay State Games
Area Youngsters Earn Pistol Medals at Bay State Games
Lee Community Tennis Still Has Openings for Youth Camps
Yard Work by Dan Rolls Up 99 Points in Giorgi League Win
Elementary School Science Camp Held at Williams College
Adams Board of Health May Enhance Signage at Transfer Station
DiGenarro's Late Heroics Lift Bay State Girls Basketball Team to Gold Medal

Police Logs

Pittsfield Police

North Adams

Crimewatch Links

North Adams CrimeWatch

Stamford/Clarksburg CrimeWatch

Pittsfield CrimeWatch

Emergency: 911
Adams 413-743-1212
Clarksburg 413-663-7795
Cheshire 413-743-1501
Dalton 413-684-0300
Great Barrington 413-528-0306
Lanesborough 413-443-4107
Lee 413-243-2100
Lenox 413-637-2346
North Adams 413-664-4944
Pittsfield 413-448-9700
Richmond 413-698-3315
Stockbridge 413-298-4179
Williamstown 413-458-5733
West Stockbridge 413-232-7938
State Police  
Cheshire Barracks
413-743-
4700
Lee Barracks 413-243-0600
Shaftsbury, Vt., Barracks 802-442-3263

 



Categories:
Adams (68)
Alford (0)
Becket (6)
Cheshire (20)
Clarksburg (39)
Dalton (5)
Egremont (2)
Florida (7)
Great Barrington (24)
Hancock (5)
Hinsdale (4)
Lanesborough (26)
Lee (14)
Lenox (11)
Monterey (0)
Mount Washington (0)
New Ashford (5)
New Marlborough (1)
North Adams (209)
Otis (2)
Peru (2)
Pittsfield (248)
Pownal (13)
Readsboro (14)
Richmond (7)
Sandisfield (5)
Savoy (5)
Sheffield (2)
Stamford (30)
State (1)
Stockbridge (5)
Tyringham (1)
Washington (1)
West Stockbridge (1)
Williamstown (73)
Windsor (3)
Archives:
July 2018 (5)
June 2018 (11)
May 2018 (10)
April 2018 (9)
March 2018 (10)
February 2018 (9)
January 2018 (18)
December 2017 (11)
November 2017 (12)
October 2017 (5)
Tags:
Stabbing Heroin Firearms Police Investigation Accident Armed Robbery Robbery Assaults Search Break-ins Vehicle Larceny Injuries Mvi Motor Vehicle Accident Fatal Homicide Murder Fire Missing Persons Drugs Assault Fraud Rape Buglaries Motor Vehicle Veremko Pedestrians Hit & Run Crime Watch Police Drug Charges Shooting Cocaine Structure Fire
Popular Entries:
Great Barrington Crashes Leave Two Dead
North Adams Woman Killed in Route 2 Crash
Man Killed by Bull in Clarksburg
North Adams Man Crashes SUV Into Home
Clarksburg Selectman Responds
Clarksburg Talks Burglary
North Adams Man Arraigned on Child Porn Charges
Fatal Accident Closes Route 8 in Adams
Kincaid Pleads Guilty to Aggravated Rape
Drug Ring King Sentenced to Cedar Junction
Recent Entries:
Superior Court Briefs: July 9 - July 12
Vermont Motorcyclist Injured in Pittsfield Collision
Pittsfield Man Accused of Attempting To Pull Gun On Police
Superior Court Briefs: July 2 - July 5
Pittsfield Police Officer Involved In Early Morning Collision
Three Charged in Murder of Pittsfield's Asiyanna Jones
Superior Court Briefs: June 27 - June 29
Pittsfield Businessman Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Greylock Credit Union
Williamstown Accident Takes Down Utility Pole
Man Rescued After Getting Stuck in Lanesborough Cave