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Lanesborough Police Warn Of Home Breaks

By Andy McKeever
iBerkshires Staff
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Police are investigating a series of home break ins that occurred on Thursday and Friday.
Police Chief Timothy Sorrell said on Monday there were five successful break ins and one attempt. The thieves are entering through windows during the work day and stealing cash and coins.
"We had an attempt on Wednesday, a successful one on Thursday, and on Friday is when they hit us," Sorrell said. "They are cutting screens and getting in."
Wednesday's attempted break in on Summer Street at 9 a.m.was thwarted by an alarm system. On Thursday, a home on Scott Road was broken into and then four homes on North Main Street were broken into on Friday. All of the break ins occurred during the work day, with Friday's happening in the afternoon.
"It was in the 500-600 block of North Main," the chief said. "These homes are right on the main road."
On Friday, Police issued a reverse 911 call and a Facebook post warning residents of the break-ins. On Saturday, Pittsfield Police issued a similar call to residents there.
Sorrell said it appears that the break ins in both municipalities could be related. He says the crooks are passing up on valuable items, such as jewelry, in search of cash, even spare change.
On Monday, Cheshire Police also posted warning of several car break ins, though it isn't clear if that is related to the ones in Pittsfield and Lanesborough.
Sorrell warns residents to lock their doors and - despite the heat - close up the windows low to the ground.
"If they can reach it, they are lifting screens and getting in," Sorrell said.
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Pittsfield Man Accused of Setting New York Thurway Shed On Fire

Staff Reports
LARCHMONT, N.Y. — A Pittsfield, Mass. man was arrested on Wednesday for allegedly setting a New York State Thruway salt shed on fire.
Richard Cass, 54, is being charged with 4th degree arson, according to New York State Police. Cass, an electrician with the Thruway, is accused of starting the fire in the salt shed, which triggered a "multi-alarm" response from area fire departments.
Many pieces of equipment was also damaged by the blaze Tuesday night.
Cass is scheduled to appear in the Town of Mamaroneck Court on Aug. 31.
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Police Seize $32K Worth of Heroin From North Adams Home

Staff Reports
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Police seized an estimated $32,000 worth of heroin from a Union Street home on Tuesday.
Authorities arrested Christopher Therrien and charged him with trafficking in heroin following the raid at 440 Union Street. 
The Berkshire County Drug Task Force, state police, and the Berkshire Community Action Team executed the search warrant at 7:11 p.m. on Tuesday. In the search 98 grams of heroin was seized with an estimated street value of $32,000. Police also found $1,622 in cash. 
The warrant was based on an investigation of narcotics distribution from the home. 
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Adams Fire Department Douses Grease Blaze

By Jack Guerino
iBerkshires Staff
Firefighters at the scene of a fire at a single-family off Grove Street.

ADAMS, Mass. — The Adams Fire Department quickly knocked down a grease fire on Grove Avenue on Tuesday afternoon.

Assistant Fire Chief John Pansecchi said the fire started out on the first-floor kitchen when the resident was cooking french fries and hurt his hand.

He said the homeowner was able to contain the fire with a garden hose until Adams Fire rolled in.

"They took a hose to the window and sprayed it down quickly before we got here," Pansecchi said. "It was still burning when we got in there but they were able knock it down and keep it in check."

The fire, reported about 1:40 p.m., initially was reported over the scanner as a two-alarm blaze. North Adams was asked to send a ladder truck to the scene, and Savoy and Cheshire fire departments were called in. North Adams Ambulance Service was requested to send the rehab vehicle.

"It was just in case," Pansecchi said. "We didn't know if it was going up the walls and into the attic and we didn't know if we would need a ladder."

Adams Police and Adams Ambulance were also at the scene. There were no injuries except for a firefighter who needed aid after working the scene in the 90-degree temperatures.

North Adams Ambulance handed out water and provided aid to the firefighters.

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Motorist Crashes Fence at North Adams Ambulance

By Jack Guerino
iBerkshires Staff

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A Williamstown woman is being charged with negligent driving after crashing into the fence outside the North Adams Ambulance Service on River Street.

According to the police log, Gail Massari, 50, was eastbound in a 2001 Pontiac Grand Am when it crossed the middle line and slammed into the decorative fence and flagpole at the edge of the service's parking lot at the corner of River and Harris streets shortly after noon on Saturday.

The pole was bent over and at least two sections of the fence are crumpled. Police and fire responded to the incident but no one was injured. Another vehicle, a 2009 Toyota Camry, was also damaged.

Amalio Jusino, assistant manager of the ambulance service, said the woman was driving down Massachusetts Avenue when she crossed lanes and crashed into the fencing, causing damage.

"She stated she was petting her dog and was not able to navigate the corner and struck our flag pole and fence and damaged one vehicle," Jusino said.

The Pontiac was towed by Cariddi Auto. Massari was summonsed with charges of negligent operation of a motor vehicle and a marked lanes violation.

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