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Pittsfield Police Seek Information on Sunday Night Shootings

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Police are seeking information on two shootings that took place shortly after 9 p.m. on Sunday. 
 
Both incidents caused ShotSpotter activations.
 
The first occurred in the parking lot of the Berkshire Peak apartment complex at 341 West St. and the second occurred minutes later near the intersection of Columbus Avenue and South John Street.
 
Police say shell casings were discovered at both locations and early indications are that the incidents are related. At this time it is believed that at least two individuals were shooting at one another at each location. No injuries have been reported.
 
Anyone who wishes to provide information regarding this case is asked to contact the detective bureau at 413-448-9705 or Detective Bertelli-Hunt at 413-448-9700, Ext. 532. Information can also be provided anonymously via the Detective Bureau Tip Line at 413-
448-9706, or by texting PITTIP and your message to TIP411 (847411).
     

Pittsfield Woman Dies After Structure Fire

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A city woman died Monday night at Berkshire Medical Center after a fire in her home, according to a statement from the district attorney's office.
 
Pittsfield Fire Department responded to the structure fire on Chickering Street shortly after 10 p.m. Firefighters located Frances Lysonski, 74, on the second floor after what they described as an extensive search. Emergency medical services transported her to BMC, where she later died at approximately 11:20 p.m.
 
A city firefighter sustained non-life-threatening injuries after falling from a ladder while trying to locate the woman. EMS transported him to Berkshire Medical Center, where he was treated and released.
 
The fire began on the first floor and extended to the second. Firefighters extinguished the blaze in approximately 45 minutes.
 
"All crews worked diligently, in high heat conditions, to bring the fire under control in approximately 45 minutes," wrote Deputy Chief Ron Clement. "The first and second floor of the home sustained smoke, fire and water damage."
 
The Pittsfield Fire Department, the Office of the State Fire Marshal, and the Pittsfield Police Department's investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing. The focus of the investigation is on an accidental cause.
     

Silver Lake Fatality Identified as Pittsfield Man

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity of the deceased man emergency personnel recovered from Silver Lake as Stephen Dus, 55, of Pittsfield.
 
The Pittsfield Police Department is investigating the circumstances surrounding the death and anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to call 413-448-9700.
 
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Original post 9:04 a.m., June 23, 2020: PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The body of a swimmer was recovered late Monday night from Silver Lake after a nearly six-hour search that involved numerous local and state agencies.
 
Police and firefighters initially responded to Silver Lake for a water rescue at about 2:45 p.m. Two young fishermen who had been fishing off an area near where Silver Lake Boulevard meets Fourth Street had heard a swimmer in distress. The swimmer was described as an older man in his 50s or 60s.
 
The swimmer had just gone past the youths when he disappeared around the corner from their fishing spot. They then heard the swimmer yelling for help, they told first responders. They ran around the immediate area but couldn't find the swimmer and called 911.
 
The initial response consisted of Engine 3 (with Rescue 2 and Marine 1), Engine 6, Engine 5, Truck 2, and Car 2. Pittsfield Fire immediately put three rescue swimmers and watercraft Marine 1 (consisting of three more rescuers) in the water at the vicinity where the boys heard the calls for help. 
 
The incident was expanded with the following agencies responding and assisting throughout the duration:
  • Pittsfield Police Department
  • Action Ambulance
  • Berkshire County sheriff’s department and its dive team
  • Stockbridge Fire Department
  • Lanesborough Fire Department
  • Hinsdale Fire Department
  • State Department of Fire Services
  • State Environmental Police
  • State Police Dive Team
The Pittsfield Fire Department thanked all these agencies for their response and assistance throughout this incident as well as Berkshire Eagle photographer Ben Garver and off-duty firefighter Gabe Prendergast for use of their drones in aiding the search efforts.
 
Ultimately the search and rescue mission shifted to a recovery operation. The swimmer was discovered
deceased and removed from the water around 9. The incident was turned over to Pittsfield Police Department. 
     

Pittsfield Jogger Struck by SUV, Taken to Baystate

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A jogger was taken to Baystate Medical Center in Springfield on Thursday after been struck by a sport utility vehicle. 
 
Police say Lawrence Towne, 58, of Pittsfield was running south on Valentine Road when he was struck by a northbound Honda CRV operated by Kayla Karlson, also of Pittsfield. 
 
Karlson was not injured but police say Towne was taken first to Berkshire Medical Center and then to Baystate because of the serious nature of the injuries he sustained. 
 
The incident occurred at about 11:51 a.m. on Thursday in the 800 block of Valentine Road. Police, fire and County Ambulance responded to the scene. 
 
The accident remains under investigation by the Traffic Unit. Anyone who witnessed the accident or the actions of the Honda prior to the accident is asked to contact Officer David Hallas at 1-448-9700, Ext. 560. 
     

Pittsfield Police Make Arrest in Friday Shooting

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A city man was arrested Friday afternoon after a shooting just after noontime that wounded him and another man. 
 
Dane Kessler, 27, was arrested shortly after police responded to a Shot Spotter activation in the area of Francis Avenue and discovered evidence of a shooting along and recovered a loaded firearm.
 
Witnesses in the area had also contacted police. Police say preliminary investigation showed that at least two parties were most likely firing at one another. 
 
While processing the scene, investigating officers said they learned that a 26-year-old Pittsfield man had arrived at Berkshire Medical Center with gunshot wounds. Officers then located Kessler and placed him under arrest for his involvement in the shooting. At that time, Kessler indicated that he had been shot in the leg, and officers transported him to BMC for treatment. 
 
The wounds to Kessler and the other man are not believed to be life threatening.
 
Kessler is charged with carrying a firearm without a license, discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a dwelling, and assault with a dangerous weapon (firearm). 
 
The investigation is ongoing and police are asking that anyone who wishes to provide information contact Detective Bassett at 413-448-9700 x529. Information can also be provided anonymously via the Detective Bureau Tip Line at 413-448-9706, or by texting PITTIP and your message to TIP411 (847411).
     
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