<![CDATA[NBC Boston - Local News]]>Copyright 2017https://www.nbcboston.com/news/local http://media.nbcboston.com/designimages/clear.gif NBC Boston https://www.nbcboston.comen-usWed, 13 Dec 2017 02:33:07 -0500Wed, 13 Dec 2017 02:33:07 -0500NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Local Rapper's Music Video Tackling Race Goes Viral]]> Wed, 13 Dec 2017 00:14:25 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Worcester_Rapper_Tackles_Race_in_Viral_Video.jpg

A Massachusetts rapper is creating a buzz online with his new song tackling the subject of racism.

In just two weeks after Joyner Lucas of Worcester released "I'm Not Racist," it amassed more than 14 million views on YouTube.

The video starts with a white man in a Make America Great Again cap sitting across the table from a black man in dreadlocks. The man lip syncs the lyrics, "With all due respect, I don't have pity for you black [expletive], that's the way I feel."

Halfway through the song is a twist: the black man responds, lip syncing, "Screaming 'All Lives Matter' is a protest to my protest."

The 29-year-old rapper, who is biracial, says he can easily see both sides, and he wanted his words to be raw, confrontational and uncomfortable.

"A lack of understanding between both parties and different cultures and the way we were raised, our upbringing is ultimately what makes us who we are," he said.

Dr. Rachel Rubin, a pop culture professor at UMass Boston, says it's difficult to start a conversation about race, but music is a way get people talking.

"Culture is a conversation. It just is," she said. "People will watch it and think about it. They'll make arguments and people will like some things and not like some things."

In the nearly-seven-minute song, the two men tackle the n-word, politics and privilege. They end with a hug, which is where Dr. Rubin finds her one dissatisfaction with the song.

"I don't feel like if you're watching something about racism, you really should leave feeling with [an] 'OK, everything's all good now.'"

Joyner says the Hollywood ending may be unrealistic, but he's hopeful.

"That's just the way I see the world, and that's me trying to change the world one day at a time," he said.

<![CDATA[Cannabis Cafes Coming to Massachusetts]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 23:54:31 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Mass._Looks_to_Open_Cannabis_Cafes.jpg

Just like buying a drink at the bar, you will soon be able to buy a marijuana product at a so-called "cannabis cafe" in Massachusetts and legally consume it right there.

It's something Will Luzier with Marijuana Policy Project of Massachusetts says will be life changing for many.

"It'll be a place where folks can go who can't use cannabis at home because they use federal housing, or their landlord won't let them, or because they have kids," explained Luzier.

The state agency that regulates legalized marijuana approved a policy on Monday, allowing for such establishments.

Right now, marijuana use in public is illegal in the state, but the Cannabis Control Commission is allowed to license on-premises marijuana establishments.

"A place that might serve food, a place that might be a yoga studio, or wellness studio that offers a massage," Luzier described. "It might be a local club."

The state agency says these businesses will not be allowed to serve alcohol. And like bartenders, marijuana servers will be properly trained to identify when someone is too intoxicated. But public safety officials still have many concerns, including accidents.

"You have to make sure that the safeguards are in place to make sure you're not over-serving people, people are not walking out of there, getting into a motor vehicle, driving away and getting into car crashes and hurting other people," said Walpole Police Chief John Carmichael.

Carmichael is part of the Cannabis Control Commission.

"We need to make sure that the purpose of the law and why people voted for it will be kept in tact, and that's making sure they're safe," he said.

The commission plans to vote on a draft of regulations next week. Those regulations will need to be finalized sometime next March. Marijuana businesses will be allowed to open July 1.

Photo Credit: NBC Boston]]>
<![CDATA['Hot DAMN': Local Lawmakers React to Jones' Defeat of Moore]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 23:58:15 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-890909758.jpg

Democrat Doug Jones performed the unthinkable Tuesday, defeating a Republican endorsed by President Donald Trump in the race for a U.S. Senate seat. New England's largely Democratic delegation was quick to share its excitement on social media.

"Hot DAMN," Sen. Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire said in a tweet that had more than 3,000 retweets in just over half an hour.

Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont put out a statement, congratulating Jones and the residents of Alabama.

"This is a a victory not just for Jones and Democrats," he said. "It is a victory for justice and decency."

Moore was already a controversial figure before allegations of sexual misconduct with teenage girls were levied. While many Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, pushed for him to drop out of the race, Trump threw his full support behind him in the days leading up to the election.

"Congratulations to Doug Jones on a hard fought victory," Trump said in a tweet. "The write-in votes played a very big factor, but a win is a win."

Democratic Sen. Ed Markey of Massachusetts also congratulated the people of Alabama.

"Our democracy thanks you," he said in a tweet.

"It's a proud night for America," agreed Democratic Rep. Seth Moulton of Massachusetts.

Photo Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty
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<![CDATA[Teen Stabbed on Basketball Court Behind High School]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 23:31:24 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Lynn+Basketball+Hoop+121217.JPG

A teenager was stabbed Tuesday night behind a Massachusetts high school, according to police in Lynn.

The victim, a 16-year-old boy, was stabbed in the abdomen on the basketball court behind Lynn English High School on Goodridge Street just after 8 p.m. It was not immediately clear whether he is a student at the high school.

The teen was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital with injuries that are not believed to be life-threatening.

Anyone with information is asked to call police.

Photo Credit: NBC Boston]]>
<![CDATA[Sandy Hook Group Releases PSA Ahead of 5th Anniversary]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 21:45:32 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/%5BNECN%5D4pm_Sandy_Hook_documents_battle-Pkg-E_NECN1500kMP4_640x360_2388538158.jpg

A new PSA urges families and educators to improve their detection of warning signs that could potentially prevent another mass shooting in the U.S.

The video was released by Sandy Hook Promise, a non-profit that was co-founded by parents of two students killed in the 2012 shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. Entitled "Tomorrow's News," it depicts a news broadcaster interviewing kids, parents and police about a mass shooting that will occur tomorrow.

"I thought it was an effective video," said Dr. David Barlow, a professor of psychology and psychiatry at Boston University.

Over the years, Barlow said more and more research has been conducted on the prevalence of shootings in the U.S. and the public's response to them.

"We are programmed in a very healthy way to move beyond trauma, to get past it," Barlow explained. "The unfortunate side of that equation is it involves forgetting."

In recent years, Barlow said the number of shootings has left many feeling desensitized to the problem, which in turn means little action is taken to prevent them.

"It's extraordinarily frustrating," Barlow said. "It does not allow us to keep these things in mind sufficiently."

Thursday marks the fifth anniversary of the Sandy Hook shootings, in which 20 children and six adults were killed.

"'Tomorrow's News' continues the conversation about the importance of knowing the signs of someone at risk and taking action," said Mark Barden, co-founder of Sandy Hook Promise. "The work of Sandy Hook Promise focuses on preventing gun violence before it starts. 'Tomorrow's News' is a powerful reminder that everyone can prevent a tragedy when they know the signs."

Photo Credit: necn]]>
<![CDATA[Mass. School's 'Time-Out Rooms' Come Under Heavy Fire]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 19:20:36 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000011078073.JPG

A Lawrence, Massachusetts, school is examining its policy on placing children in so-called "time-out rooms" after an irate mother pulled her daughter from the school over the controversial practice. 

"It’s cinder block walls all around and cement floors," said parent Ashley Martinez. 

Martinez says last Friday her first-grade daughter was left alone in one of these rooms at Community Day Arlington Elementary school, even after she told staff it makes her daughter's PTSD and ADHD worse. 

"She ended up getting physical because she’s petrified of the room. She said, ‘Mommy, I didn’t want to go,’" said Martinez. 

After finding out, she immediately pulled her daughter from class and posted a photo online of one of the rooms. It caused outrage because of the poor conditions, including a broken chair with sharp edges, dirty floors, and empty walls. 

Martinez now says it wasn't the time-out room her daughter was pulled from Friday, but still wants the other ones improved. 

In a statement, the district says it's disputing some of the claims but would not get into specifics, since it's still under investigation. They say the time-out space is only used when a student is posing a safety threat to themselves or others. 

One or two staff always accompany students with the door open. Visits are 30 minutes or less and parents are immediately notified. 

School Committee member Pavel Payano says all timeout rooms and relevant procedures at other Lawrence public schools will be scrutinized and questioned. 

"We need to create policies that might change the direction of this school and others in the area," says Payano. 

Martinez says her daughter is back in school and hopes this never happens again. 

"I think higher ups need to step in, I don’t trust the school at all," said Martinez. 

The Department of Education says it will be following up with the school district once the investigation is over. 

<![CDATA['Layaway Angel' Couple Pays Off 35 Items at Toys 'R' Us]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 20:44:35 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000011077903.JPG

A toy store in Leominster, Massachusetts, has been touched by a "layaway angel" couple who paid off thousands of dollars' worth of items. 

It was early Saturday afternoon when a couple walked into the Toys "R" Us store. They went directly to Matt Hudlin, the store manager, and asked where the layaway orders were. 

"It was really just a heartwarming thing to see," said Hudlin. 

The couple pointed out two aisles of brown boxes and said they would pay the remainder of their individual bills. They paid for 35 orders costing around $4,000. 

The store emailed each customer telling them the bill was paid. Some called back asking if the email was an error. It wasn't.

According to Hudlin, some customers were in tears on the phone. 

Stephanie Florio had one payment left when she walked into the store Tuesday night after work. 

"They said that the 'layaway angel' paid off the last one," said Florio. "I was completely shocked." 

Since October, Florio has been making monthly payments for Christmas toys for her 6-year-old daughter, Isabella. 

"I just want to say, 'Thank you so much for doing this for me and my family,'" said Florio. 

The couple from Saturday is asking to remain anonymous. Recognition isn't their reason for giving. 

"Good to see that there are still people out there that do nice things and don't expect to get recognition for it," said Hugh Murphy of Gardner. "They do it for the sake of doing it." 

<![CDATA[Maine Plow Driver Shortage Continues for 2nd Winter]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 18:18:16 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Maine_Suffering_From_Snow_Plow_Driver_Shortage.jpg

For the second winter in a row, the Maine Department of Transportation is trying to hire snow plow drivers. The department has about 50 open positions.

"We're trying to be creative to really compete for the experienced work staff that's out there," said Maine DOT spokesperson Ted Talbot.

He the said the statewide worker shortage is the driving force behind the problem. Maine's unemployment rate is at about three percent.

The DOT has tried to offer new incentives to recruit more drivers, such as a $1,000 winter stipend, but the number of unfilled driver positions has remained about the same.

To fill in the gaps, the DOT has turned to an outside contractor called First Vehicle to supply 24 additional drivers.

"We do have enough personnel to plow the roads ... so that's not the concern," said Talbot. "It's more of an in-house concern. What kind of rotations can we put these people on, and still remain safe and everybody rested?"

Talbot said customer service levels will remain the same and drivers should not notice a difference in quality, despite the worker shortage.

Photo Credit: necn]]>
<![CDATA[Sources: Former Gov. Deval Patrick's Brother-in-Law Arrested]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 18:27:09 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Bernard+Sigh.jpg

The brother-in-law of former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick has been arrested on assault to rape charges in an incident involving a family member, law enforcement sources have told the NBC Boston Investigators. 

Bernard Sigh, 65, was arraigned Monday in Quincy District Court. 

Sources say the assault happened in Milton Saturday. 

Sigh is being held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing, sources say.

Sigh was convicted in 1993 after he pleaded guilty to spousal rape in California.

No further details were immediately available. 

Photo Credit: LinkedIn]]>
<![CDATA[Baker Meets With Puerto Rico Governor on Hurricane Aid]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 18:05:23 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000011076785.JPG

It's been months since Hurricane Maria slammed Puerto Rico, leaving destruction that the island is still trying to overcome. Massachusetts has some unique ideas to help with that recovery effort and the governor of Puerto Rico was on Beacon Hill Tuesday to hear them. 

Governor Ricardo Rosselló was in Massachusetts visiting his alma mater, MIT, where he graduated in 2001 with a degree in biomedical engineering. Rosselló was there to encourage students to help rebuild Puerto Rico.

After that, Rosselló met with Gov. Charlie Baker and Mayor Marty Walsh when word got out that the Board of Higher Education had just unanimously voted to give in-state tuition to displaced Puerto Rican students living in Massachusetts following the hurricane.

"There will be a time where we will call back upon those that have left when we will reach normalcy and we can start rebuilding, but in the meantime, giving that to the students of Puerto Rico is a great blessing," Rosselló said.

Gov. Baker says Massachusetts has already enrolled more than 1,800 students in grades K-12.

"We have been working to ensure that the schools kind of absorb those kids and make sure those kids get the education they need," he said.

But it is unclear how many Puerto Ricans will take advantage of the in-state tuition break.

Whatever the cost, Walsh says we should be doing for Puerto Rico what we would be doing for any state in a similar situation.

"The average citizen doesn’t understand, Puerto Rico is part of the United States of America," Walsh said. "It’s not a foreign government, it’s not a foreign country, it’s part of the United States of America."

Rosselló, a strong supporter of making Puerto Rico a state, took the opportunity to send a message to Congress - that the tax bill being considered would only penalize Puerto Rico by treating it like a foreign country.

"In my view, this is offensive," he said. "And it is a complete byproduct of the second class citizenship that we were exhibiting as Puerto Ricans because we don’t have this representation."

Meanwhile, the number of evacuees fleeing the island has increased in recent weeks and more families are expected to arrive in Massachusetts after the holidays. 

<![CDATA[Snowfall Totals for Tuesday's Storm Across New England]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 17:08:45 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Frank+S+Fitchburg+MA+Snow+ruler.jpg

Snowfall totals are coming in from the National Weather Service for a storm hitting New England with a wintry mix of snow and rain on Tuesday.


Androscoggin County

Auburn 3.0"

Cumberland County

South Portland 4.0"

Cumberland Center 2.9"

Gray 2.9"

Naples 2.6"

Gorham 2.3"

Portland 2.0"

Standish 1.9"

Westbrook 1.8"

Portland Jetport 0.9"

Kennebec County

Mount Vernon 2.5"

Knox County

Rockland 1.5"

Oxford County

Otisfield 2.3"

Sagadahoc County

Topsham 2.0"

Phippsburg 1.2"

York County

Hollis 4.1"

Lebanon 2.0"

South Berwick 1.8"

Alfred 1.5"

Saco 1.3"

Sanford 0.5"


Belknap County

Meredith 4.2"

Coos County

Randolph 11.0"

Grafton County

Plymouth 5.5"

Hillsborough County

Goffstown 0.4"

Merrimack County

Henniker 3.5"

Concord 3.3"

Northfield 2.0"

Rockingham County

Deerfield 2.5"

Stratham 1.3"

Greenland 0.7"


Franklin County

Conway 4.4"

Greenfield 4.0"

Leyden 3.8"

Heath 3.5"

Deerfield 3.3"

Rowe 1.7"

Hawley 1.3"

Buckland 1.3"

Ashfield 1.0"

Leverett 0.5"

Sunderland 0.4"

Hampden County

Blandford 4.0"

Chester 2.5"

Hampshire County

Cummington 4.5"

Plainfield 3.5"

Worthington 2.8"

Williamsburg 2.0"

East Windsor 1.1"

Northampton 1.0"

Plainfield 0.9"

Easthampton 0.1"

Westhampton 0.1"

Middlesex County

Pepperell 1.2"

Townsend 0.3"

Worcester County

Ashburnham 2.2"

Fitchburg 2.1"

Leominster 0.8"

Worcester 0.4"

Westminster 0.3"

Barre 0.1"


Addison County

Hancock 2.3"

South Lincoln 2.0"

Orwell 2.0"

Vergennes 1.0"

Caledonia County

Lydonville 1.5"

Danville 1.1"

Sutton 1.1"

Hardwick 1.0"

Sheffield 1.0"

Wheelock 0.8"

Chittenden County

Winooski 4.3"

South Burlington 3.3"

Jericho 1.1"

Westford 1.0"

Nashville 0.5"

Williston 0.5"

Essex Junction 0.5"

Essex County

Island Pond 1.0"

Lunenberg 0.8"

Granby 0.5"

Franklin County

Swanton 3.0"

Saint Albans 1.6"

Swanton 0.6"

Grand Isle County

Alburgh 1.0"

Lamoille County

Eden Mills 7.0"

Stowe 7.0"

Jefferson 1.2"

Hyde Park 0.9"

Orange County

Braintree Hill 8.3"

Williamstown 6.0"

Vershire 3.0"

Corinth 1.1"

Orleans County

Greensboro 3.0"

Westfield 1.8"

Derby Center 1.0"

Barton 0.2"

Rutland County

Mendon 6.0"

Pittsford 4.0"

West Rutland 3.1"

Mount Holly 3.0"

Castleton 1.8"

Washington County

Waterbury Center 7.0"

Waitsfield 2.5"

Cabot 2.0"

Northfield 2.0"

Woodbury 1.6"

Northfield 1.5"

Montpelier 1.0"

East Calais 0.5"

Plainfield 0.3"

Windsor County

Ludlow 10.8"

Springfield 9.0"

Rochester 8.0"

Woodstock 6.0"

Ludlow 5.4"

Hartland 3.8"

North Hartland Lake 2.6"

Pomfret 2.5"

Photo Credit: Frank S]]>
<![CDATA[Blast of Snowy Weather Hits Vermont Hard]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 17:10:55 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000011074229.JPG

A blast of snowy weather Tuesday tested Vermonters’ winter driving skills and patience.

Slide-offs and minor crashes were reported in many communities, including Middlesex, Colchester, and Essex—where a power pole broke when a driver lost control in the slippery conditions and hit it.

That Essex crash caused a temporary power outage to several dozen residents while Green Mountain Power made repairs to the pole.

"Drive slow—take extra time," urged Sgt. Francis Gonyaw of the Colchester Police Department. "The roads are going to be bad today; they’re going to be bad tonight. The National Weather [Service’s] forecast is talking about even into tomorrow. So just patience and slow down."

The mountains were where the most significant accumulations were expected. Skiers and riders took full advantage at Stowe Mountain Resort.

Mount Snow in West Dover boasted on Twitter of getting an inch an hour for part of the day at the resort.

And at Bolton Valley, spokesman Josh Arneson said the fresh snowfall should help spark new bookings for Vermont’s ski industry as a whole.

"This storm is extremely well-timed," Arneson said. "We love getting snow early-season and it’s going to tee us and everybody else up for a great Christmas week."

On downtown Burlington’s famous Church Street Marketplace, a busy destination for shopping and dining, maintenance staff spent the day keeping on top of the snow—ensuring holiday shoppers would have no trouble getting to the stores.

"Everyone’s in the holiday cheer," the marketplace’s Jim Daly said. "They’ve all got smiles on!"

With plow crews out working, the Vermont Agency of Transportation and other transportation officials around New England would also like to see drivers remember to not "crowd the plow" while on the roads. Instead, give those crews the room they need to do their jobs. 

Photo Credit: NBC Boston]]>
<![CDATA[Wanna Be Like Tom Brady? There's an App for That]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 16:22:29 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/tb12.jpg

He's on Facebook. He's on Instagram. And now Tom Brady has his own app.

TB12, the fitness and wellness organization co-founded by Brady, announced Tuesday that it has launched the "TB12 Method" mobile app. The app "offers a roadmap to the TB12 Method and lifestyle," helping users to build positive daily habits that lead to "greater health, well-being and vitality in their lives."

It's basically a digital extension of Brady's book, "The TB12 Method," which focuses on the importance of hydration, nutrition, rest, muscle pliability and fitness to help protect the body against injury and allow for greater performance.

"This app is the next step in making the TB12 Method available to everyone, everywhere," Brady said in a statement.

The app is now available in the Apple app store. You can get a 1-week free trial, but a premium subscription is $19.99 a month or $199.99 a year. It's coming soon to Android devices.

Of course, Brady and his TB12 team might not have chosen the best day to launch the app, as it came on the heels of one of his worst performances in a 27-20 loss to the Miami Dolphins on Monday Night Football. Brady was sacked twice and intercepted twice in a game that had some Patriots fans wondering if their quarterback might be playing hurt.

Photo Credit: TB12 Method Mobile App]]>
<![CDATA[Code 9: Cop Suicide]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 23:41:37 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/217*120/Suicide+1212.jpg

More police officers are dying by suicide in this country than in the line of duty. They are the ones who see the most traumatic of events every day, put up the yellow tape and protect us. But while they are protecting us, who is protecting them?

In 2016, 138 officers died by suicide across the country.

One of them was a long time sheriff’s deputy. Widow Heidi Harper wants to spread the word on a crisis that could impact every officer in the country, so she shared the 12 minute 911 call she made in October 2016.

"I need a deputy to come to my house. My husband has committed suicide," she told the dispatcher.

Harper had just returned home from EMT training. It was a Thursday night, Oct. 20, 2016, and her four children were sleeping upstairs.

The 911 call is emotional, which is why she shared it. She wanted people to comprehend the anguish of walking into what she did.

"He’s sitting in the garage. I can’t touch him. I’m so sorry. I can’t go in there. Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God. He doesn’t have a pulse," she told the dispatcher.

The dispatcher asked his name.

"His name is Jesse," she replied softer.


Jesse Peterson was a husband and a father. His widow talked one on one with NBC Boston Investigator Karen Hensel less than a year after his death where she explains, "He ended his life in our garage while our four children slept inside the house."

He was a sheriff's deputy for 17 years. Harper says,

"At the service, there were a lot of deputies that went up to my children and would get down on their knees and tell my kids, 'I know your daddy’s gone, but you still have a dad in all of us here at the sheriff’s office,'" Harper said. "After the casket was closed, they were gone."

In one year, there was not one phone call nor one letter to her or her children.

"It’s their own uncomfortableness they know very well it could be them. By the grace of God, their doorsteps haven’t been darkened by this, this hell. They don’t know what to say," she said.


Heidi Harper is not alone. She was among five widows who shared their stories at a national conference on cop suicide in Sturbridge, Massachusetts. Janice McCarthy’s husband Paul was a Massachusetts state trooper who committed suicide after years on the job.

"I’m here because I’m angry. I’m really angry. I’m angry the policies and the lack of policies that were in place when Paul died. I’m angry about the day they handed me his wallet and his badge in a ripped paper bag," McCarthy said.

Suicide is not considered a line of duty death, leaving most of the families left behind cut off immediately from pensions, death benefits, life and health insurance. Each of the five widows went down the line detailing what happened to them.

McCarthy said Massachusetts State Police "immediately cut off my health insurance."

"I lost my health insurance with four-month-old twins," April Scherzer said.

Harper lost her health insurance with four children within 10 days.


The solution is coming in the power of one person who is efforting change.

Karen Solomon is the wife of a current Worcester police officer and the co-founder of Blue H.E.L.P.

"After hearing one story from a widow, I just decided we need to do something," she said. "Somebody said here my partner had a heart attack and that was caused by the job. Well, that’s a line of duty death right? So why isn’t the trauma to your mind?"

Her non-profit tracks officer suicides. Ninety-three have committed suicide nationwide so far this year, with eight of them in Massachusetts.

However, the Blue H.E.L.P. website is filled with picture-less profiles. No names or faces, just the date of death.

Solomon only posts the pictures or other details if the families agree. However, the stigma of suicide haunts families and the lost loved one.

"It’s the stigma, the shame they feel is attached to it. It’s the fact they’ve been shunned by their friends, family the departments because of suicide," Solomon said.

Police officers spend their careers putting up the yellow tape, shielding us from what they see, but decades of what they see, eventually can become the price they pay.

"Recently an officer reached out for help and needed some psychological help. His department fired him. There’s another officer on that department right now who is also suicidal, we’ve been getting him help and he won’t tell his department because he doesn’t want to lose his job," Solomon said.

While they are protecting us, who is protecting them?

One officer in the audience of the conference told the group he tried twice to commit suicide.

"I now imagine my wife sitting where you are," he told the panel of five widows.

There is a police officer suicide just over every two days in this country. Their names are not added to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington D.C. because they are not deemed line-of-duty deaths.


As old-school cops and chiefs retire, so does the attitude that mental health and PTSD from years on the job are not real.

The culture is changing, and Massachusetts is taking the lead. Mass COP, the union representing 4,300 police officers in Massachusetts, has the first-in-the-nation statewide peer support program, where police officers can take a confidential, anonymous self-check quiz and then get help from a peer support officer.

Click here to take the self-check quiz.

<![CDATA[Woman Allegedly Assaulted Son on Flight From Boston]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 15:05:33 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/TLMD-jet-blue-areolinea-st1.jpg

A federal complaint accuses a Colorado woman of assaulting her son during a flight from Boston to Salt Lake City.

The complaint filed in U.S. District Court against Cherice Dawn Klipfel states a passenger on the Sunday JetBlue Airways flight witnessed the mother striking, slapping, kicking and shoving her 8-year-old son.

Records show Klipfel appeared in court Monday on a misdemeanor assault count. She did not enter a plea.

The complaint states two other passengers saw Klipfel ``tightly cover'' her son's face and ``shake him aggressively'' while the boy cried.

The 46-year-old resident of Lakewood, Colorado, is being held at the Davis County jail. Her attorney did not immediately return a call seeking comment on the case.

<![CDATA[Man Loses Hand in Illegal Fireworks Accident]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 17:45:31 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/214*120/Quincy+Incendary+Device.jpg

A Massachusetts, man lost a hand in an accident involving what are believed to be illegal commercial-grade fireworks on Tuesday.

Emergency crews responded to the scene of a home on Smith Street in Quincy around 2:40 p.m.

The victim, who has not been identified, was taken to a local hospital. The man's cousin said he lost a hand in the accident.

Police said they believe the incident involved an M-80, which is illegal in Massachusetts.

Investigators are waiting on a search warrant so they can remove other fireworks from inside the home.

Photo Credit: Quincy Police]]>
<![CDATA[Man Exposes Himself to Dunkin' Donuts Employee in Drive-Thru]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 15:46:34 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Dover+Dunkin+Expose+Suspect.JPG

Police in Dover, New Hampshire, are asking for the public’s help with identifying a man who exposed himself to a Dunkin’ Donuts employee while in a drive-thru.

The incident happened Saturday shortly after 5 p.m. at the Dunkin’ Donuts at 165 Portland Ave.

The suspect, who had "scruffy" facial hair, was driving what police think was a gold Mercury Marquis.

No other description of the suspect was given.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 603-742-4646 or anonymously at the Dover Crimeline at 603-749-6000 or online.

Photo Credit: Dover Police]]>
<![CDATA[Baker: I Don't Want Roy Moore to Win Alabama Senate Race]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 12:50:37 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-649305564.jpg

Massachusetts' Republican governor reportedly is backing the Democrat in Alabama's closely watched U.S. Senate race as voters head to the polls on Tuesday.

State House News Service reports Gov. Charlie Baker said he supported Doug Jones against Republican candidate Roy Moore, who has been fighting sexual misconduct allegations involving teen girls while he was an adult.

"I certainly don't want to see Roy Moore win," Baker said. "That means, obviously, that I would be supporting the alternative." 

Allegations against Moore surfaced in early November when the Washington Post reported five women's accounts; four more women have since made similar allegations against him.

The Republican National Committee has since resumed its support of Moore and President Donald Trump has endorsed him.

However, Baker said he would not stop participating in a fundraising effort that ultimately sends contributions to the RNC, according to State House News Service.

"If I thought raising money for the Mass. Republican party had anything to do with Roy Moore's campaign, I would not do it, OK?" Baker reportedly said Monday. "I said from the beginning that I didn't think he was fit for office."

Polls close at 8 p.m. local time in Alabama on Tuesday.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Body Found Inside Burned Car in Worcester Cemetery]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 23:56:15 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/197*120/worcester+cemetery.jpg

Worcester, Massachusetts, police are investigating after a body was found inside a burned car parked in a cemetery Tuesday morning.

Officials responded to Hope Cemetery around 8:30 a.m. and found a sedan engulfed in flames, according to city officials. The body was found inside the vehicle after the fire was extinguished.

Crews set up a tent up over the vehicle, which appeared to have significant burns to the trunk area. Investigators spent a great deal of time taking photos around the trunk.

It is not known at this time whether the body found inside is a man or woman. Officials have not identified the body.

John Dirsa, whose son is buried at the cemetery, said the incident isn't something someone would expect at a cemetery.

"Today, with the way the forensics are and stuff, I can't imagine whoever did this will get away with it," he said.

Police say they know who owns the car involved in the crime.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 508-799-8651 or send an anonymous tip to 274637.

<![CDATA[Wintry Mix Creating Slick Conditions]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 23:48:59 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/214*120/morning+wx+blog+121217.jpg

While far Southern and Eastern New England avoided any wintry impact with enough mild air moving in from the ocean for raindrops, interior communities have seen a delivery of snow and some mixed freezing rain, creating slick conditions.

Slowly but surely, the mild air will push inland, changing snow to rain through the Route 495 corridor and eventually all the way through Northern Worcester County by early afternoon Tuesday.

Farther north, it will take even longer for cold air to give way, and this will mean higher snowfall totals with snow falling heavily at times throughout the day and into the evening.

The Boston area, squarely in the milder air, sees scattered rain showers and temperatures climbing through the 40s, while the South Coast will reach the 50s by day’s end.

The wind shifts after midnight, and that’ll mean a flow of colder air for New England, dropping temperatures to around 30 for most, resulting in a freeze of roads in Central and Western New England (roads will already be snow-covered north).

A shot of cold winter air will hold temperatures in the 20s Wednesday, with wind chills in the teens.

Even as the wind subsides a bit Thursday and Friday, the cold air will hold on.

At this point it appears the air will be sufficiently dry to keep the storm track to our south for one storm Thursday and another Friday night, though we’ll keep an eye on the South Coast and especially the Islands of Massachusetts.

Early next week, another storm comes calling with the air not quite as cold and dry. This should mean another storm with a rain/snow line we’ll be watching in our exclusive Early Warning Weather 10-day forecast.

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<![CDATA[Sam Adams Becomes Official Red Sox Beer Sponsor]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 11:23:26 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/180*120/20171207_BW_SamAdams_07.JPG

New England's largest craft brewer has struck a deal with the Boston Red Sox.

Samuel Adams announced a multi-year partnership with the team making it "The Official Beer of the Boston Red Sox" on Tuesday.

The Boston-based brewery is the first American craft brewery to enter into such a partnership with a Major League Baseball team.

As a result of the deal, crowds will get to enjoy new beers alongside fan favorites like Boston Lager and Summer Ale.

There will also be new signs at Fenway, and the right field roof deck will now be known as the "Sam Deck," and a bar near the third base stands will be renamed "Sammy's On Third."

"We got our start right here in Boston, and for the past three decades we've worked our butts off to stay independent and brew great beer," Jim Koch, Samuel Adams founder and brewer, said in a statement. "As the official beer of the Red Sox, we get to celebrate our New England roots with millions of other fans as soon as the season kicks off."

The partnership will last for eight years, according to a Samuel Adams spokesperson.

"Both the Red Sox and Sam Adams are rooted in Boston tradition and history, and Jim Koch and the entire team are as passionate about beer as we are about baseball,” Red Sox president and CEO Sam Kennedy said in a statement. "We are excited for this long-term partnership, and look forward to working collaboratively to represent Boston through our two brands."

Photo Credit: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox]]>
<![CDATA[NBC Boston Weather Team's Projections for Tuesday Storm]]> Mon, 11 Dec 2017 20:39:21 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/page1.jpg1.png ]]> <![CDATA[Former Patriots Player Named in Sexual Harassment Lawsuit]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 08:26:23 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/heath2.jpg
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Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[No Bail for Woman Accused of Stabbing Roommate]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 16:35:37 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/216*120/Jaimie+Ornstein.jpg

A Massachusetts woman is being held without bail after she allegedly stabbed her roommate at least twice inside an East Arlington condo.

Jaimie Ornstein was arraigned in court on Tuesday on assault and battery charges.

Arlington police say it happened around 3:30 a.m. Tuesday at Arizona Terrace, a condo complex just off of Mystic Valley Parkway.

The victim, identified only as a man in his 30s, was found down the street by police, and allegedly told responding officers that his roommate has stabbed him several times.

"He had fled the scene attempting to get medical attention himself," Arlington Police Lt. Rick Pedrini said. "He sustained a rather large gash to his right bicep, and he was stabbed in the left hand, as well."

The victim was taken to a local hospital with injuries and is expected to survive.

According to prosecutors, officers found a trail of blood leading to the condo. Ornstein allegedly answered the door and was seen wiping blood off the floor with a paper towel.

Ornstein allegedly told police the victim went into her bedroom to retrieve a candle. Police said she told officers she felt threatened by this and swung a kitchen knife at him. She allegedly told police he went into her bedroom on different occasions and said her space was being violated, though she’s never called to report on it.

Officers found the knife in the bedroom with some blood on it. Ornstein allegedly told police it was the knife she used against her roommate.

Ornstein will appear in court Friday for a dangerousness hearing.

Photo Credit: NBC Boston]]>
<![CDATA[School Asks FBI to Help Investigate Series of Racist Notes]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 12:38:00 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Racist_Incidents_Under_Investigation_at_Framingham.jpg

A Massachusetts university has asked the FBI to help investigate a series of racist notes left on campus.

The most recent message was found Friday by Framingham State University freshman Carlos Barbosa Jr.

The 18-year-old says the note was slipped under his door around midnight, and that it's the second racist note he's found this year.

FSU's president had a strong message for the culprit in his latest email to the campus community saying in part, "You do not share our community's values. You do not belong at FSU."

"I'm not worried with catching the person," said Barbosa Jr. "I'm more worried about addressing the issue and why the person felt they were enabled."

Since October, several messages with racial slurs targeting black students have been found on campus. The FBI is now analyzing the handwriting to see if they are connected.

Barbosa Jr. and other students say it's about time the school takes action. 

"It seemed like the school was being pretty passive about it so I'm glad the FBI is now involved," said sophomore Marie Phanord.

"Everybody is just kind of sick of it," Rendly Desair said.

"It's sad obviously," said student Zachary Dumay. "Just means campus isn't a safe place for everybody."

"It's crazy that racism still exists," Aidan Estrella said. "And the fact that it's happening in our own living space"

Barbosa Jr. says he wants change and his immediate focus is trying to start a deeper dialogue between school leaders and students on how to end racism on campus.

"We've been seeing a lot of people protesting trying to make everything right and hopefully it can be in the future soon," he said.

The school's president has asked the entire university to come together Wednesday afternoon for a healing service.

To improve safety, the school is adding additional security cameras on campus, including at student residences.

Anti-bias training for staff and police is scheduled for next week.

<![CDATA[Storm Bringing Wintry Mix of Rain, Snow]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 09:14:39 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/214*120/tuesday+wx+blog.jpg

Precipitation on Tuesday will break out from west to east.

Snow will start during the morning commute first in Western Massachusetts, the hills of Northwest Connecticut, and in Vermont.

Over the course of the commute it will spread into parts of Central Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Western Maine.

Near the coast rain will fall, with perhaps just a few wet flakes here or there. It will be a slower than normal morning commute for many along and outside of I-495.

The rain/snow line will slowly creep north during the day.

Accumulations will mainly be on the order of a dusting to two inches for the hills of Northwest Connecticut, parts of Central Massachusetts, far Southern New Hampshire and along the immediate Maine coast.

Even though snow won’t be all that impressive in these areas, pockets of freezing rain will ensure slick conditions prior to the change to plain rain.

Totals will ramp up in far Western New England and in Northern New England. Many in those spots will see more like three to six inches, with six to 12 inches in the highest mountains.

The storm winds down late Tuesday, and very cold air rushes in on Wednesday with a few more snow showers and squalls.

The cold air, keeping highs only in the 20s and 30s, stays locked in place through Friday.

Another system will try to graze us with some rain or snow late Friday into Saturday.

This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Dolphins Snap Patriots' Win Streak]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 08:21:22 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/181*120/GettyImages-890643082.jpg

By and large, it was a Monday night to forget for the Patriots as their eight-game winning streak came to a halt at the hands of the Miami Dolphins, 27-20.

Like so many other trips to South Florida over the years, for whatever reason, a superior Patriots team (10-3) succumbed to an inferior Dolphins team (6-7). For every incredible accolade Tom Brady has racked up in his career, his head-scratching record against the Dolphins in Miami (7-9 after Monday night) ranks right up there in eye-opening numbers.

It warrants mentioning New England was down four key starters, including Rob Gronkowski, who was serving his one-game suspension for a late hit in last week’s game against Buffalo. Without Gronk available, the Patriots’ offense had one of its worst showings in recent memory on a number of levels.

Brady failed to complete a pass in the first quarter for just the fourth time in his career, a period which included the first of his two interceptions to Xavien Howard on the night. Brady has now been intercepted in three consecutive games for the first time since 2015.

Even when the offense began to find some semblance of footing in the second quarter, Gronk’s absence continued to loom large. The focal point of New England’s passing attack, who draws so much attention from opposing defense, the Dolphins were able to focus in on the Patriots’ wide receivers’ corps with much success without Gronk to worry about.

New England’s lone lead of the game came at 7-6, after a Rex Burkhead 3-yard touchdown run with 6:18 left in the second quarter. Miami went on top for good on a Jarvis Landry 5-yard touchdown catch on its very next series, a possession highlighted by Kenyan Drake’s 47-yard catch in a mismatch with Elandon Roberts.

Not until there was 10:10 remaining in the third quarter did a New England wide receiver catch a pass, when Danny Amendola finally broke free on a second-and-14 play. Even with Amendola’s grab, the Patriots were at -1 yards for the third quarter until the final minute of the period.

Amendola finished as the team’s leading receiver with six catches for 76 yards, while Chris Hogan had just one catch for 1 yard in his return from a shoulder injury. Brandin Cooks didn’t have a catch until the 2-minute warning of the fourth quarter, narrowly avoiding his first game as a Patriot without a reception.

Dwayne Allen, starting in place on Gronkowski, matched his season high with two catches but for only 10 yards total.

In all, Brady completed 24 of his 43 passes for 233 yards and a 59.5 passer rating. That number was by far the lowest of the season and out of Brady’s 250 career regular season starts comes in at No. 232.

Starting right tackle Marcus Cannon missed his fifth consecutive game with an ankle injury, his absence seemingly catching up with the offensive line as a whole. Brady was sacked only twice but hit five times, and hurried what felt like many, many more.

The trickle-down effect of Gronkowski’s absence was felt all the way down to the running game as well for the Patriots. After rushing for over 190 yards in back-to-back weeks as a team, New England mustered just 25 yards on the ground.

Defensively, the Patriots were without key starters in Kyle Van Noy and Trey Flowers, each player out with injuries. Drake in particular was problematic all night long, racking up 193 yards from scrimmage.

To fully sum up how difficult a night it was for New England, the team failed to convert a third down for the first time in the Brady-Belichick era – and first time overall since 1991.

The Patriots got all the way down to the Miami 1-yard line inside the 2-minute warning in the fourth quarter, primed to really turn the heat up on the Dolphins. A pair of penalties moved New England back to the 15, where it ultimately had to settle for a Stephen Gostkowski field goal.

Gostkowski’s ensuing onside kick failed to seal the deal on the end of the Patriots’ winning streak.

Through it all, the Patriots still control their own destiny for the No. 1 overall seed in the AFC playoffs. With a win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday (4:25 p.m., CBS), New England will move into a tie with Pittsburgh for the best record in the conference and hold the tie-breaker with a head-to-head win.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Town Says Cape Cod Woman to Blame for Ongoing Rat Problem]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 09:19:08 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Town_Files_Complaint_of_Growing_Rat_Population.jpg

Cellphone video recorded in late May by a neighbor shows rats running around a Cape Cod backyard, but the rodent issue has continued into the winter.

The health director in Yarmouth, Massachusetts, is calling it the most difficult case he has ever dealt with.

"Now that [the rats] found a source of food and water, they've stayed right there," said Bruce Murphy, Yarmouth's health director.

Murphy says Judith Adelchi on Nauset Lane is to blame.

"She's feeding them on her property," he said.

"I personally have never seen rats," Adelchi contested.

According to Murphy, his department launched an investigation after receiving complaints from neighbors in the summer.

"I would never feed a rat purposefully," said Adelchi. "I would never do that. Who would do that?"

Murphy said he has been on the property several times and has seen numerous rats. He accuses Adelchi of trying to bait the rats with bird food.

"She said they were her friends," said Murphy. "She was lonely. She wanted to feed them as a source of her friendship to the animals."

The home is owned by Mark Pallantino, who is also related to Adelchi. According to court documents, he hired an exterminator, but the rats keep coming back.

Murphy sent a cease and desist letter to the home instructing Adelchi to stop feeding the rats, but the problem has continued.

That has forced the town to file a criminal complaint against Pallantino. He is facing three charges, including having unsanitary conditions and failure to exterminate rodents.

Pallantino is due in court on Jan. 3.

<![CDATA[Maine-Based Wreaths Across America Begins Yearly Journey]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 04:08:34 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000011047189.JPG

A moving tribute to American veterans is traveling from Maine to Arlington National Cemetery. 

For the 26th year, Wreaths Across America is bringing Maine-made Christmas wreaths to Washington D.C. Volunteers will place the gifts of gratitude at soldiers' graves. 

"They are the heroes, they're the protectors and the freedom fighters," said Wreaths Across America Executive Director Karen Worcester. "We need to be the freedom caretakers." 

The wreaths are made in Harrington, Maine, by the Worcester Wreath Company. In 1992, the company had a surplus of wreaths, and founder Morrill Worcester decided to bring them to Arlington National Cemetery. 

Since then, the Wreaths Across America convoy has become a national tradition. Several tractor trailers carrying hundreds of thousands of wreaths receive police escorts from state to state, stopping in communities to honor veterans. 

On Monday, the caravan stopped in Scarborough, Kennebunk, and Kittery, Maine. On their way to honor the fallen, they paid tribute to living veterans like 100-year-old Sgt. Malcolm Foss. 

The Kittery native received recognition at two ceremonies, then got to ride in the lead car of the caravan. 

"I never expected this," Sgt. Foss said. 

He served in WWII in a secret radio intelligence company intercepting Japanese communication while hiding in a hole in a volcano in Hawaii. 

"I think it means a lot that people remember our veterans," he said. 

The caravan stopped in New Hampshire and Massachusetts Monday. There are stops planned in Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland, before laying the wreaths at Arlington Saturday. 

Photo Credit: NBC Boston]]>
<![CDATA[Your Guide to First Night Boston 2018]]> Mon, 11 Dec 2017 17:48:20 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/fireworks49.jpg

First Night Boston is a huge celebration with ice sculptures, fireworks, a parade, music and much more.

The events are perfect for those of all ages, and begin at noon on Dec. 31. Starting at 6 p.m., First Night Boston will be broadcast live on necn, NBCBoston.com and necn.com.

First Night First Day 2018 is free and open to all. Entertainment and special attractions will be focused in Copley Square and Back Bay, highlighting local artists and musical performances spanning different cultures, ice sculptures, and a procession featuring giant puppets, drum lines and other exciting participants. For the first time this year, there will also be a First Night Boston Scavenger Hunt!

You can find the full events schedule here.

The People's Procession will be held at 6 p.m., followed by family-friendly fireworks at 7 p.m. over the Boston Common.

Before midnight, there will be a "Copley Countdown" with live music followed by a pyrotechnics show to ring in the New Year. There will also be a midnight fireworks display over Boston Harbor, with viewing in the North End and the Seaport.

In addition, there will be First Day events for families and children in Copley Square on Jan. 1 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Road closures: Dartmouth Street will be closed from St. James to Boylston from Dec. 31 through Jan. 1. Trinity Place and Blagden Street will be closed on the 31st and 1st. Boylston Street will be closed from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on the 31st along the parade route from Dartmouth Street to the Boston Common. There will be no parking on Bolyston Street between Dartmouth and Clarendon on the 31st and 1st.

Public transportation: Copley Square can be reached by taking the MBTA subway or commuter rail. The following stops are all within a 20-minute walk from Copley Square:

• Green Line: Copley Square Station

• Orange Line: Back Bay Station

• Red Line: Park Street Station

To plan your trip, visit www.mbta.com.

Parking: Paid parking is available in the following area garages:

• 200 Clarendon St. Garage

• Back Bay Garage

• Copley Place Garage

• Prudential Center Garage

• Dartmouth Street Garage

• Impark at 131 Dartmouth St.

For questions, email info@firstnightboston.org.

Photo Credit: Conventures]]>
<![CDATA[PD: Death of Manchester, NH Toddler Considered Suspicious]]> Mon, 11 Dec 2017 23:23:18 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/208*120/Manchester+121117.JPG

Authorities in Manchester, New Hampshire, say the death of a toddler in an apartment Monday morning is being considered suspicious.

Officers responded to Howe Street around 11:30 a.m. for a report of an unconscious boy. The 2-year-old was taken to Elliot Hospital, where he was pronounced dead a short time later.

"He was adorable," said Eric Landry, who lives downstairs. "He was an absolute adorable little child. Very, very outgoing, very, very bright."

The New Hampshire Attorney General's Office calls his death suspicious.

"If it's a suspicious death, I would assume something bad is going on," said neighbor Dawn-Louise Lanctot.

Investigators say they're looking into the circumstances surrounding the child's death.

"In hindsight, we should keep a closer eye on what goes on around our neighborhoods," said neighbor Alex Lavoie. "But I guess you never think this could happen so close to you."

By nightfall, investigators were still going door to door asking people questions about what they had seen or heard.

An autopsy will take place tomorrow to determine how the child died.

Photo Credit: Jeffrey Hastings/Frame of Mind Photography]]>
<![CDATA[Bullying Concerns: Signs Parents Should Know]]> Tue, 12 Dec 2017 00:01:32 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000011046126.JPG

More than 35 million people have watched as Keaton Jones of Tennessee describes in painful detail how kids pick on him for being different in a heartbreaking, viral video has sparked a national conversation.

"Why do they bully?" asked a tearful Jones on video.

"It’s important for us to realize it’s not a normal part of growing up and that kids shouldn’t have to suffer this way," said Dr. Peter Raffalli, founder and director of the Bullying and Cyberbullying Prevention and Advocacy Collaborative at Children’s Hospital in Boston.

Dr. Raffalli says they work with parents at the Bullying Clinic on ways to effectively start a conversation with their children about bullying to try to find out if they’ve been a victim of it.

"Break the ice by just talking about how your school is," said Dr. Raffalli. "Is it a friendly place? Do kids tend to get along well? Do you see other kids picking on other kids and then is anybody picking on you?"

Dr. Raffalli says it helps to speak in plain language without using the term "bullying," which has negative connotations.

He says behavior changes are also a good indicator.

"Like their sleep pattern or their grades go down or all of a sudden, a kid who used to like to go to school now is trying to come up with reasons not to go to school," he said.

Dr. Raffalli says bringing awareness to bullying like Jones did is certainly key to helping stop it.

"I don’t know if he realizes how wonderful what he did really is," he said.

Dr. Raffalli says often your child’s classroom teacher is a great resource in determining whether your child is the victim of bullying or even the aggressor. And then you can take steps from there to try to deal with it. 

<![CDATA[Elderly Man Airlifted After Car Fire at High School]]> Mon, 11 Dec 2017 16:49:37 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/Salem+MA+2+121017.JPG

An elderly man was airlifted Monday after police say his lit cigarette caused a car fire in Salem, Massachusetts.

Fire officials confirmed around 4 p.m. that crews had responded to a car fire at Salem High School on Wilson Street.

Police say the man, who uses oxygen, suffered burns after lighting a cigarette.

The victim was taken to a Boston-area hospital by medical helicopter, according to police.

No further information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: NBC Boston]]>
<![CDATA[Mass. Couple Defends Pole-Mounted Solar Array]]> Mon, 11 Dec 2017 18:54:29 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000011049888.JPG

A man and woman in Massachusetts are defending their free-standing pole-mounted solar array from neighbors who can’t stand the sight of it. 

Beverly residents Lola and Richard Eanes say the solar array, which sits near the center of their long driveway, has cut hundreds of dollars off their electric bills.

"For instance, in the first six months of last year we had no bill no electric bill," said Lola Eanes.

Some of their neighbors hired an attorney to prevent a building permit for the array from being awarded about a year ago, but were unsuccessful. 

Now that it's up, not everyone is happy with it.

"It's definitely affecting property values," said Beverly resident Mary Downing. "No one wants to look at that."

There are no laws on the books in Beverly about ground-mounted solar panels, but the city is currently working on a proposal that would limit where solar arrays can be built in residential neighborhoods. 

Lola Eanes says it's completely within her power to keep the solar array exactly where it is.

"I could see if it's blocking someone ocean or lake view but it's not blocking anybody's view," she said.

Neighbors who have complained say they are looking into other ways to fight it.

<![CDATA[Man Who Hosted Pats Jersey Burning Protest Appealing Fine]]> Mon, 11 Dec 2017 13:02:53 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/213*120/shane2.jpg

A Massachusetts man who hosted a New England Patriots jersey burning protest in his yard earlier this year said he's appealing the fine he was issued by the town and will take it to the U.S. Supreme Court if necessary.

"If I pay it, it says I did something wrong," said Mark Shane of Swansea, Massachusetts.

Shane hosted the event in late September following the game against the Houston Texans where some Patriots players knelt during the National Anthem. He called the actions of the 20 or so Patriots who knelt "embarrassing."

He was initially issued a $400 fine by the Swansea fire chief for violating open burning regulations. That fine was later knocked down to $100.

Shane appealed, but his appeal was denied. His lawyer said he's planning to file a second appeal as soon as possible.

More than 75 people took part in Shane's jersey burning, even though they were warned against it by the town. Shane created signs for the event and set up his yard with lights, seats and a fire pit. 

"I think it was a great success," Shane said at the time. "I think people were united. I think people love our country, and I think it sends a great message to the NFL that any divisive-type actions will not be tolerated."

The player kneeling protest came after President Donald Trump's polarizing comments in regards to NFL players protesting the anthem. Among the Patriots who took a knee were Devin McCourty, Trey Flowers, Brandin Cooks, Brandon Bolden, James White and Malcolm Butler. Other players stood but linked arms in a show of unity.

Photo Credit: NBC Boston]]>
<![CDATA[Trio of Totem Pole Thieves on the Loose in NH]]> Mon, 11 Dec 2017 18:10:43 -0500 https://media.nbcboston.com/images/212*120/totem+blue+12111.jpg

Police are on the lookout for a trio of totem pole thieves in Windham, New Hampshire.

Approximately three weeks ago a 14-foot tall hand-carved totem pole and a 12-foot tall hand carved Native American statue were stolen from a property on Gardner Rd., according to Windham police.

The items were loaded onto a black framed open trailer which was towed by a newer full-sized dark colored pick-up truck.

Police say two men, one in his late 20's and another in his 40's, and a woman with blonde hair were involved in the theft.

Anyone with information about this crime is asked to contact the Windham Police Department at 603-434-5577 (attention Officer Moore) or via email at police@windhampd.com.