New England Public Media Wants to Hear From Listeners

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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Museum is the next stop on the New England Public Media summer listening tour. 
The in-person event will take place on Tuesday, Aug. 2, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. 
The events are free and open to the public; food and refreshments will be provided along with a door prize raffle at each location. Attendees are asked to register here.
The listening tour kicked off on July 20 in Northampton and has so far been in Greenfield, Westfield and Springfield. and will conclude on Aug. 3 in Hartford, Conn. 
NEPM staff will be on hand to hear from listeners and use their feedback to inform programming and public outreach. 
"Our mission as public media is to meet the public where they are and provide content that meets their needs and serves the larger community," said Matt Abramovitz, president of NEPM. "We hope that residents take advantage of these events to tell us what they want to see and hear on NEPM over the next few years."
The tour came out of a series of focus groups conducted earlier this summer and participants will be asked to make out a survey. The project is being conducted in partnership with MassINC Polling Group, a public opinion research firm with offices in Boston and Northampton.
New England Public Media is a community-supported, independent non-profit organization based in Springfield.

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Pascual-Polanco Brothers Sentenced to Life for 2019 Homicide

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Chiry Omar Pascual-Polanco and Carlos Pascual-Polanco on Thursday were given life sentences without possibility for parole for the murder of 18-year-old Jaden Salois in 2019.

The brothers lured Salois, of Dalton, outside a Pittsfield home for a false drug deal and shot him in the back in the early morning hours on Jan. 20, 2019. Prosecutors say the killing was over allegations of stolen marijuana. 
During the sentencing at Berkshire Superior Court, several of Salios' family members gave impact statements that detailed his kind disposition and hopes for the future. They said it was unfair for him to be robbed of it.

"A piece of me is gone that will never be replaced," his mother Megan Bernardini wrote.

"Over the past 3 1/2 years, me and my family have experienced endless sleepless nights and have had never-ending thoughts of why this happened to Jaden and why this happened to us," his cousin Brianna Crucitti said. "We still don't know why it happened to him or why it happened to us."

Family members of Chiry Omar, 26, and Carlos, 22, called the verdict is an injustice, arguing that there was not sufficient provable evidence and that the brothers are innocent.  

They did not speak at the sentencing but offered statements to iBerkshires afterward.

Sister Marisela Pascual knew that she and her brothers had "no fighting chance" for their lives in this community and said it is clear that they didn’t commit the crime.

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