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Pittsfield Police Respond to 3 Rollovers in Less Than 24 Hours

Staff Reports
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — There have been three rollovers in the city in less than 24 hours.
 
Police say the first rollover accident in the vicinity of 77 Second St. "appears to involve two vehicles, one parked and one being operated by a 29-year-old male from Pittsfield."
 
That was reported just before 11 p.m. on Tuesday night. Police said there does not appear to have been any serious injuries, that the accident is still under investigation, and "information is limited at this point."
 
An hour later, a second rollover occurred in the area of West Street and Eleanor Road. 
 
"The operator of this vehicle fled the scene of the accident and was not located. The accident is still under investigation," police wrote in an email. 
 
In both incidents, vehicles were towed from the scene.
 
"The two accidents one hour apart tied up numerous Pittsfield Fire Department and Pittsfield Police Department units for the better part of two hours," police said.
 
On Wednesday morning, first responders again were called for a rollover motor vehicle accident. Police posted on Facebook shortly after 9 a.m. a two-car crash, leaving one vehicle on its roof, at the intersection of Bartlett Avenue and Taconic Street. 
 
"Officers arrived within moments of the call and assisted with several patients until EMS arrived. Thankfully no serious injuries were reported. Remember to stop at all stop signs," police wrote on Facebook.


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Pittsfield Police Apprehend Shooting Suspect Who Forced BMC Lockdown

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Police apprehended a man suspected in a possible shooting incident around noontime Saturday that led to a brief lockdown of Berkshire Medical Center.

Dylan Ducharme, 20, of Pittsfield is being charged with several criminal counts, including discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a dwelling.

According Sgt. John Soules, patrol officers responded to the report of shots fired at about 11:43 a.m. in the Hull Avenue area, about two blocks from BMC.

They were told that the suspect had fled on foot toward Berkshire Medical Center; other witnesses told police he was seen entering the Medical Arts Complex on the hospital campus.

As a result, BMC was briefly placed on lockdown status while officers searched the building. While the lockdown was in progress and the building was being searched, police received additional information that the suspect may be in a vehicle in the area of Second Street. Officers assisted by state police responded to that location, located the suspect and vehicle, initiated a motor vehicle stop and placed Ducharme under arrest without incident.

Ducharme is charged with three counts of assault by means of a dangerous weapon, discharging the firearm, unlawful possession of a firearm, and assault and battery.

Evidence recovered from the scene confirmed a shooting had taken place, according to police. Pittsfield Police were assisted by members of the state police, Berkshire County sheriff's office, and the Berkshire County Special Response Team.

The incident is currently under investigation. Anyone with any additional information is asked to contact the Detective Bureau at 413-448-9705.

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Superior Court Briefs: May 3 - May 11

Staff Reports
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Tuesday, May 3.
 
Joseph Wiggins Jr., 39, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of ammunition without a firearm identification card and armed career felon.
 
He was ordered to serve four to five years at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction on the armed career felony change and given concurrent two-year sentences at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the other charge. His sentence will begin on June 2, 2016.
 
The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant on his home in Pittsfield on May 8, 2015.
 
James Swift, 55, of Pittsfield had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of assault and battery on a disabled person, and caretaker abuse on a disabled person.
 
He was released on personal recognizance. Swift is accused of assaulting a student while he worked at Eagleton School on January 1, 2016.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Wednesday, May 4.
 
Brian Baras, 29, of Canaan, Conn. had a not guilty plea entered on his behalf on a single count of possession of heroin with intent to distribute - his second offense. 
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $5,000 bail. The charge stems from an incident in Sheffield on March 8, 2015.
 
Michael Nash, 28, of Pittsfield had a not guilty plea entered on his behalf on a single count of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $2,500 bail. The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant at his home on March 25, 2016.
 
Nathan Tatro, 42, of North Adams had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on two counts of intimidation of a witness.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $15,000 bail. Tatro is accused of intimidating two people in a pending criminal matter between February 22, 2016 and April 17, 2016 in North Adams.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Thursday, May 5.
 
Max Bohgan, 25, of Pittsfield had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, and conspiracy to violate drug laws.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $10,000 bail. The charges stem from an incident in Pittsfield on March 10, 2016.
 
Caleb Sherman, 23, of Adams had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, strangulation or suffocation, assault and battery, threat to commit a crime, and malicious destruction of personal property.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $5,000 bail. Sherman is accused of assaulting a 21-year-old man in Adams on March 11, 2016.
 
Tyler Sherman, 23, of Cheshire had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf on single counts of assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon, strangulation or suffocation, assault and battery, and malicious destruction of personal property.
 
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $5,000 bail. Sherman is accused of assaulting a 21-year-old man in Adams on March 11, 2016.
 
James Yeaman, 61, of Lee had a not guilty plea entered on his behalf on a single count of misleading a police officer or other person.
 
He was released on personal recognizance. Yeaman is accused of giving a false statement to court officials on June 26, 2013 while employed at Eagleton School.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Monday, May 9.
 
Glendaliz Rios, 33, of North Adams had not guilty pleas entered on her behalf on single counts of conspiracy to violate drug laws to wit: possession of heroin with intent to distribute, and being present where heroin is kept.
 
She was released on one-year probation. The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant on her home on April 13, 2015.  A single count of inducing or abetting a minor to distribute controlled substances was dismissed by the state.
 
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Wednesday, May 11.
 
Heather Shurtleff, 39, of Adams was found guilty by a jury of a single count of reckless endangerment of a child.
 
She was ordered to be held without bail until sentencing on Monday, May 16, 2016. The charge stems from an incident in Adams involving a girl who is now 18 years old between February 6, 2011 and May, 20, 2014. Shurtleff was found not guilty on a single count of intimidation of a witness.
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Adams Police Warn of Car Break-ins

ADAMS, Mass. — The Adams Police Department is currently investigating several car break-ins. These have occurred over the past several days during the evening or early morning hours.

The breaks have involved mostly unlocked vehicles. If you have any information regarding these breaks please contact police at 413-743-1212.

Here are some safety tips to help prevent car break-ins:

  • Always lock your car doors.
  • Keep the windows and sunroofs closed when the vehicle is not in use.
  • Do not leave the vehicle running and unlocked. Even a locked and running vehicle presents the opportunity for theft.
  • Do not leave anything of value in plain sight.
  • Do not leave packages or store purchases inside the car. Lock them in the trunk or cover them in the cargo area of your SUV.
  • Park your vehicle in a well-lit or open area.
  • Report any suspicious activity when and where it is occurring. Do not wait until the next day to report it.

There are no "fool proof" ways of totally preventing car break-ins, said Police Chief Richard Tarsa Jr. However, if you take the extra steps it limits the opportunity of it happening to you.

 

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Great Barrington Police Officer Killed in Friday Morning Crash

STOCKBRIDGE, Mass. — An off-duty Great Barrington police officer died early Friday morning after his pickup truck hit a tree on Prospect Hill Road in Stockbridge.

Stockbridge Police Chief Darrell Fennelly said 25-year-old Ryan A. Storti of Muddy Brook Circle was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash, which was reported shortly after 2 a.m. According to a statement from the Great Barrington Police Department, Storti was alone and on his way home when he lost control of his truck and struck a tree on the side of the road.

The investigation is being conducted by members of the Stockbridge Police Department with assistance from the Massachusetts State Police Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section.

"Officer Storti was a wonderful young man and police officer," Great Barrington Police Chief William Walsh said in a statement. "He was everything we wanted in a police officer and was part of our future. We're all struggling right now as we also try to support Ryan's family. Please keep them all in your thoughts."

Storti, a 2008 graduate of Monument Mountain Regional High School, had been a reserve officer in Great Barrington until being appointed to a permanent position in 2015. He graduated from Berkshire Community College and from the Western Massachusetts Police Academy in Springfield.

"Officer Storti was a rising star for our police department. I am devastated to learn of his sudden death," Town Manager Jennifer Tabakin said in a statement. "This is a tragedy and an enormous loss for the Police, our Town and the entire community. Our hearts go out to Ryan's family and all who loved him and worked with him every day in public service. He will forever be in our thoughts and prayers."

Funeral arrangements are pending.

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News Headlines
Holiday Hours: Labor Day
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Cheshire Reservoir Cleanup to Resume
Pittsfield Promotes Seven Fire, Police Officers
North Adams Public Works Buildings in Bad Shape
Williamstown Elementary Challenged Again on Preschool Question
State Rep Candidates Battle It Out In Pittsfield Gazette Debate
North Adams Council Balks on Property Purchase
State Senate Candidate Canning-Wilson Opens Headquarters
Adams Prudential Committee Says No Issues With Water

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