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Pittsfield Police Seek Help in Finding Missing Man

Staff Reports

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Pittsfield Police are requesting aid in finding a missing local man, James R. Purcell.

The 30-year-old Purcell was last seen on or about Nov. 14.

He is described as a black male, with brown eyes, standing 5-foot-10 and weighing 165 pounds.

He may be operating his gray 2008 Toyota Rav 4 with Massachusetts registration 828-EN8.

Purcell attended Taconic High School and Berkshire Community College; his Facebook page lists his place of employment as Best Buy.

Anyone with information as to Purcell's whereabouts is asked to contact the Pittsfield Police Department's Detective Bureau at 413-448-9705.

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Pittsfield's Overnight Parking Ban Now In Effect

Staff Reports
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The overnight parking ban is now in effect.
Residents and visitors are prohibited from parking on any city street, sidewalk or tree line between the hours of 11 p.m. to 7 a.m.
The fine is $25 and vehicles may be towed at the owner's expense if it obstructs public safety. 
If a snow emergency is declared, like last week's storm, any vehicle will be towed if they obstruct snow plowing. During a snow emergency, the city opens the three-hour parking areas at the Summer Street and McKay Street parking garages.
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Pittsfield Crash Backs Up Traffic On South Street

Staff Reports

A utility pole fell on a minivan Monday morning.

Updated from original story at 11:49 a.m.; complete rewrite throughout; update to relate the minivan was was the second vehicle.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The driver of a vehicle that caused a three-car pileup and sheared off a utility pole on South Street on Monday morning was allegedly high on heroin.

According to a Fire Department report, the driver told police, "he was under the influence of heroin, having 'shot up' while driving."

Police arrested the driver and took him away in handcuffs after the northbound vehicle apparently veered into the pole, which then fell on a minivan immediately behind it. A third car following was also involved.

Crofut Street to Gamell Street was closed while the pole was being replaced. Traffic was rerouted to Holmes Road for much of the morning.

According to a Fire Department report, two engines and a ladder truck were dispatched to 460 South St., near the Lipton Mart, at 8:55 a.m.

The driver of the second vehicle was removed by firefighters and taken to Berkshire Medical Center with minor injuries. The vehicle sustained significant damage. The report by Deputy Chief Steven Peaslee stated that a Western Massachusetts Electric Co. representative informed him that "a matter of inches kept the driver from being electrocuted." The main power lines carry 13,000 volts.

The third driver remained in that vehicle until rescued by firefighters.


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Pittsfield Police Seize 63 lbs. of Marijuana, Cash, Stolen Gun

Staff Reports
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Police patrolmen seized 63 lbs. of marijuana Tuesday.
The officers were following up on an investigation when they discovered the drugs, cash and a stolen gun. With assistance from the Detective and Narcotics Bureau, Police seized 63 lbs. of marijuana, a stolen handgun and about $40,000 in cash.
Police estimate the marijuana was worth $150,000.
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Superior Court Briefs: Nov. 17 - Nov. 19.

Staff Reports
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Monday, November 17.
Lois Aubin, 45, of Stamford, Vt. was found guilty of single counts of larceny over $250 and misleading a police officer or other person.
She was ordered to serve concurrent two to four years at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction. Aubin took approximately $7,000 from Corner Market in North Adams on August 17, 2013 and was not truthful with investigations when telling them what happened.
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Tuesday, November 18.
Ernest Harvin, 38, of Williamstown pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute, two counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, and single counts of receiving stolen property over $250, illegal possession of a large capacity weapon or feeding device, illegal possession of a firearm, possession of a sawed off shotgun, illegal possession of a loaded firearm, possession of ammunition without a firearm identification card, improper storage of a firearm, failure to stop for a police officer and operating a motor vehicle without an inspection sticker.
He was ordered to serve four to five years in state prison on the possession of heroin with intent to distribute charges. He was given 10 to 12 years to be served on and after the first on the possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony charges. Charges of possession of ammunition without a firearm identification card, failure to stop for a police officer and operating a motor vehicle without an inspection sticker were placed on file. He was given concurrent time on the remaining charges.
In total, Harvin will serve 14 to 17 years. The charges stem from a motor vehicle stop in Williamstown on September 5, 2013. A single count of unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle was dismissed by the state.
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Wednesday, November 19.
Nathaniel Greene, 58, of Lee pleaded guilty to single counts of operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, his fifth offense, and operating a motor vehicle with a revoked license.
He was ordered to be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction on $5,000 bail pending sentencing on Wednesday, Nov. 26. The charges stem from an incident in Lee on June 20.
Christopher Harrington, 35, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to single counts of possession of heroin with intent to distribute and conspiracy to violate drug laws.
He was ordered to serve 2 1/2 years at the Berkshire County House of Correction on the possession of heroin charge. He was given three months at the House of Correction on the other charge.
The charges stem from the execution of a search warrant at his home on March 26, 2014.
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News Headlines
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Berkshire Community College Announces Five New Hires
New England Veterans Affairs Reconnect With Berkshires
Pittsfield ZBA Allows Backyard Beekeeping Operation
Adams Officials Hear From Residents on Planned Transfer Station
Cultural Pittsfield This Week: June 23-29
Social Media Attacks Take Toll on Mount Greylock Public Servant
Community, Massachusetts House Bids Farewell to Rep. Cariddi

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Emergency: 911
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