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Western MA News
Local news and weather for Western Massachusetts
Local news and weather for Western Massachusetts


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Elm Street in Greenfield closed due to serious crash

GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A section of Elm Street in Greenfield is expected to be closed through much of the morning, as police investigate what they are calling a serious crash.

According to Greenfield police, the accident took place on Elm Street near Hall Avenue. That is just north of the Franklin County House of Correction.

Additional information about the crash, including vehicles involved or the condition of any victims, was not immediately available from Greenfield Police.

Click here to view the map on your mobile device.
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June 16 Seminar to Tackle ACA Compliance, Rising Pharmacy Costs

EAST LONGMEADOW — HUB International New England, a global insurance-brokerage, risk-advisory, and employee-benefits firm, announced it will host a free seminar on “ACA Compliance and Why Pharmacy Costs are Rising” on Thursday, June 16 at Mario’s Café Ambiance, 60 Shaker Road, East Longmeadow.

This seminar will feature Russell Denver and Marc Criscitelli, HUB employee-benefits specialists whose backgrounds give them a keen understanding of everything compliance and ACA-related. They will review reform regulations in order to help clients better understand the guidelines businesses face.

Also presenting at the seminar is MayLisa Hazelwood, pharmacist at Blue Cross Blue Shield. Her specialties include pharmacy operations and performing coverage determinations for the commercial and Medicare markets.

“HUB International is committed to educating our clients and prospects on key trending topics that currently may impact their insurance and risk-management needs,” said Timm Marini, president of HUB International New England, formerly FieldEddy Insurance. “This seminar will provide attendees with additional knowledge on ACA compliance, allowing them to have a better understanding of how to best prepare for such guidelines and to help [make] what can sometimes be an overwhelming process easier to understand and manage.”

This event is open to the public; however, prior registration is required on a first-come, first-served basis. To register, click here, visit,
or e-mail

The post June 16 Seminar to Tackle ACA Compliance, Rising Pharmacy Costs appeared first on BusinessWest.
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AM News Headlines 6-9-16

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Did you miss 22News this morning? Check out the top stories today!

President Obama will meet with Bernie Sanders in the Oval Office this morning..

Lawsuit could block ballot question to legalize recreational marijuana in Massachusetts.

Former Chicopee Mayor due in court.


Watch 22News Live
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Springfield man on parole arrested on pot, heroin charges

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield Narcotic Detectives were watching the back parking lot of the “One Stop Package Store,” Wednesday afternoon, after receiving complaints about illegal drug activity in the City’s Pine-Point area.

According to Springfield Police Sgt. John Delaney, around 12:20 p.m., detectives were watching behind 145 Boston Road, when a Nissan Maxima and a Ford Focus pull into the parking lot and park.

Detectives then watched 2 people from the Maxima walk over to the Ford and buy bags of marijuana from Jovon Belton of 96 Sonia Street, Sgt. Delaney said. When the 2 “customers” attempted to drive away with the marijuana, back up police officers stopped their car and arrested them down the street.

Belton was also pulled over, and Sgt. Delaney said the detectives seized several packaged bags of marijuana, 11 bags of Heroin with the logo “The Money Train,” $351 in cash, and a backpack with packaging material and drug paraphernalia used in selling illegal drugs.

Belton was charged with the following:

Distribution of a Class “D” Substance With Intent to Distribute

Possession of Marijuana With Intent to Distribute

Possession of Heroin With Intent to Distribute

Parole Warrant Detainer

Sgt. Delaney said Belton was on parole and had an ankle bracelet GPS monitoring device attached to him when he was arrested Wednesday. Belton had been arrested in June of 2015 for gun violations, and was sentenced in February of 2016 and released in April.

Belton was placed on a detainer once the parole officer was notified. He will be held until arraignment Thursday in Springfield District Court.
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Armed suspect arrested in Springfield’s North End

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield Narcotic Detectives arrested a 29-year-old man, early Wednesday night, after investigating reports of a “known suspect” being in the Calhoun Park area, armed with a handgun.

According to Springfield Police Sgt. John Delaney, surveillance was set up at the park and the armed suspect, Miguel Dejesus-Cruz of Springfield, was seen getting into a car. Officers stopped the car as it was leaving the park, and arrested Dejesus-Cruz.

Sgt. Delaney said the detectives found a .380 caliber Taurus TCP semi-automatic handgun, with 6 rounds of ammo, from Dejesus-Cruz’s pocket. He was charged with Carrying a Loaded Firearm, and held overnight until court Thursday morning.
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Food drive held for Lorraine’s Kitchen at Porter & Chester

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Students from a Chicopee technical school held a food-raiser for Lorraine’s Soup Kitchen & Pantry on Wednesday. It was an all-day “Fill the Trailer” event held at the Porter & Chester Institute Chicopee campus.

A student in the “Medical Assisting Program” came up with the idea for the food drive after hearing reports of break-ins at the well-known food pantry. 50 to 60 students participated on Wednesday.

Porter & Chester Instructor Diane Vadnais told 22News, “It’s a student-run event. They’ve been pretty successful. The first can that went in here, and was donated to Lorraine’s Kitchen, made it a success.”

Vadnais told 22News they collected $2,000 to $3,000 worth of food, including a $1,000 worth of baby formula. She said Porter & Chester students are planning more community events later in the year.
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Holyoke schools improving under state control

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Holyoke Public Schools have been under state control for more than a year, and students are doing better.

Wednesday night marked the 22nd Annual “Rising Stars” Banquet, held at William J. Dean Technical High School in Holyoke. This year’s “Rising Stars” are 33 students honored for their commitment to academics and community service.

State-appointed receiver, Dr. Stephen Zrike, told 22News the curriculum has been expanded, and college preparedness classes have increased 5 times over the last year.

“The amount of students that have seats in our local universities at HCC, Westfield, UMass; I think that’s significant to give students an opportunity to have college classes, while they’re in high school, and graduate with credits,” said Dr. Zrike.

After years of under performance, Holyoke schools went under the state’s control in April of 2015.
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Springfield residents stop break-in suspect from getting away

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Police arrested an Agawam man, Wednesday afternoon, after he was caught by Springfield residents trying to break into a car.

According to Springfield Sgt. John Delaney, the department received a call around 1:50 p.m. of a man breaking into a car on Belmont Street. When the officers arrived, the alleged break-in suspect, 41-year-old Carlo J. Romeo, was surrounded by a large crowd of local residents.

Residents told police they saw Romeo breaking into the car and stealing tools and other items. Sgt. Delaney said the crowd was yelling at Romeo, and when the officers arrested him, they all cheered.

Romeo was charged with the following:

Breaking and Entering Motor Vehicle Daytime for a Felony

Larceny Over $250

Possession of a Class “E” Substance

Police found Ativan pills on Romeo during the arrest. Sgt. Delaney said Romeo has an extensive arrest record with Springfield Police and he’s been charged 41 times since 2006, including in 2015 when he broke into dozens of cars.

Romeo will be held until arraignment on Thursday in Springfield District Court.
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Northampton’s Downtown Dan retires after 15 years

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Main Street in downtown Northampton just got a little quieter. The man known locally as Downtown Dan, Daniel Evans played his last tune on Wednesday under the same shady tree where he started.

For the last 15 years, Downtown Dan has been a Main Street fixture for visitors who have strolled by and listed to his music, and a friend of the City’s homeless population.

Now, at the age of 63, and after his 5th heart attack, Dan said it’s time to retire and is moving to North Carolina, but he’ll always love Northampton. He said, “This is the one place in the world. Not the country, the world, where businessmen, street people, politicians, the police, rich or poor, they all speak to each other.”

Dan said he’ll be back at least twice a year to fundraise for the homeless.
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Orange Police investigating a case of animal abuse

ORANGE, Mass. (WWLP) – A cat was shot in Orange, and the owner is trying to find out who’s responsible.

Kerstin Stempel told 22News her cat “Trouble” had disappeared for more than week. When “Trouble” returned, she had a pellet gun wound to her back leg.

Stempel has a message for people who abuse animals; “Hurting an animal is not going to accomplish anything. It’s going to make both parties angrier, which will probably escalate the situation even worst.”

She reported the shooting to the Orange Police Department. Acting Police Chief Craig Lundgren said officers are investigating, but as of now, there aren’t any leads.
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