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January 20th, 2014

Volunteer painters spruce up the halls of Goff Middle School

January 20, 2014

PAWTUCKET — It was a colorful way to spend Martin Luther King Day. While students and most of the staff enjoyed the Monday off, about 170 AmeriCorps volunteers descended upon Goff Middle School to paint the hallways in cheery citrus yellows and greens.

January 19th

Best Buddies bring together student mentor, special needs youths

January 19, 2014

When Rhode Islanders begin helping out the Meeting Street School with its annual telethon on WPRI Channel 12 Jan. 25, they will be funding, in part, programs for the school’s students that build relationships with students at other schools and the community at large.

One of those programs, Best Buddies, gained the limelight for last year’s fundraiser, as it brought in over $809,000 in nonoperational support for Meeting Street, a sum the school hopes to top this year, according to Meeting Street spokeswoman Amanda Mullen.

For full story, see Monday's Times and Monday's Call, page A1.

January 17th

Moreau returning to RI for court date

January 18, 2014

CENTRAL FALLS — Former Central Falls Mayor Charles Moreau, imprisoned in Maryland on a corruption charge, is being brought back to Rhode Island by a federal judge, reportedly so his case can be reviewed anew.

U.S. District Court Judge John McConnell confirmed that he signed a court order on Tuesday calling for prison officials to transport Moreau to a Providence courtroom on Jan. 29 for a status conference. He said he could not provide any additional comment beyond that.

Full story on Page 1 of Saturday's Times.

Tolman graduate from Senegal loses years-long battle with cancer

January 18, 2014

PAWTUCKET— Four years ago, a brave young man from Senegal, battling cancer that had taken a leg and was threatening his lungs, walked across the Tolman High School stage during a special graduation ceremony held just for him.

Sadly, that young man, named Mouhamadou Sylla, passed away on Jan. 6 after continuing to display amazing courage and infectious positivity despite his worsening medical condition.

For full story, see Page 1 of Saturday's Times.

January 16th

Twin River CEO banking on ‘convenience gaming’

January 16, 2014

LINCOLN – Despite impending competition from both resort-style casinos and slot parlors in Massachusetts, Twin River will remain a “convenience gaming” facility for the foreseeable future, John Taylor, chairman of Twin River Worldwide Holdings, told a business audience Thursday.

The newly-installed table games like blackjack and roulette “are showing a lot of strength,” Taylor said at a breakfast meeting of the Northern Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce at Twin River, but he acknowledged that “the slots business is softening a bit.”

For full story, see Page 1 of Friday's Times.

High school grad rates on rise

January 16, 2014

PAWTUCKET — Although the official data hasn’t been released yet from the state, Schools Superintendent Deborah Cylke says the graduation rates at both Shea and Tolman high schools have improved dramatically under the state-imposed “transformation” plan.

January 15th

Just in: Man shot on Broadway

January 15, 2014

PAWTUCKET — Pawtucket Police are investigating the shooting of a young man who was injured while walking on Broadway at around 3:45 p.m. on Wednesday.

Detective Capt. John Seebeck said the man had been walking near 300 Broadway when he sustained a gunshot wound to the buttock. He said the injury appeared to be non-life-threatening, and he was transported to Rhode Island Hospital.

Seebeck declined to provide the victim's name or other details in the case, citing the ongoing investigation.

For full story, see Thursday's print edition of The Times.

In case you missed it: City problems bite pols with bigger ambitions

January 15, 2014

Editor's note: This "Politics as Usual" column was published in the Jan. 13, 2014 edition of The Times.

Anyone who thinks handicapping political races is easy should check last week’s newspapers.
Two Republicans with aspirations for higher office — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who has his eye on becoming president of the United States, and Cranston Mayor Allan Fung, running to become governor of the Biggest Little State in the Union – are getting jammed up by their day jobs in their quest to climb the greasy pole of political ambition.

January 14th

Hodgson challenges Kilmartin for AG

January 15, 2014

PROVIDENCE – State Sen. Dawson Hodgson began his bid for the attorney general’s office Tuesday by taking the offensive, attacking incumbent Peter Kilmartin for his role in the 38 Studios debacle, the Deepwater Wind energy project, pension reform litigation, and the early release from prison of Woonsocket thrill killer Alfred Brissette.

Hodgson also outlined what he called “an aggressive and timely legislative agenda” for what will be his last year in the Senate, including everything from mandatory prison sentences for possessing illegal firearms to an aerial drone privacy policy.

Cylke to step down as Pawtucket school superintendent

January 15, 2014

PAWTUCKET — Just after delivering positive news about improved graduation rates, Schools Superintendent Deborah Cylke shook up a routine School Committee meeting Tuesday night with a bombshell announcement: that she planned to retire as of June 30.

“It has been my privilege and pleasure to serve you,” Cylke told the members of the School Committee at the first regular meeting of the new year. She also pledged that they would have “110 percent of my effort” between now and when she leaves at the end of the school year.

For full story, see Page 1 of Wednesday's Times.

THIS JUST IN: Dumpster diving leads to bust

January 14, 2014

LINCOLN – A Pawtucket man and a Providence man face larceny charges after they allegedly went Dumpster diving for scrap metal at a local scrap metal company, according to police.
Shawn Sawyer, 46, of Knowles Street, Pawtucket, and Tony Curtis Rowland, 49, of Washington Street, Providence, were taken into custody on charges of attempted larceny under $1,500 following an investigation of a Jan. 5 incident, according to police. Read the full story in Tuesday's edition of The Times.

January 13th

Fung opens up on fatal 1989 crash

January 13, 2014

CRANSTON — Calling it “a painful experience in my life,” a somber and emotional Allan Fung called a press conference on Monday to give reporters his account of the 1989 car accident that killed a Pawtucket man who was changing his tire on Route 95.

Fung, the mayor of Cranston and a Republican candidate for governor, said he was 18 at the time of the crash and coming home from college at the University of New Haven in Connecticut, where he was a freshman.

For full story, see Page 1 of today's Times.

An arrest, and an adoption

January 13, 2014

PAWTUCKET — Monday was a big day for the brown and white puppy found abandoned in a dumpster last month.Police announced they had made an arrest in the case, and Animal Control sent word that he had been adopted.

The plight of the now three-month-old Jack Russell terrier mix drew attention and outrage after Animal Control officers found the young canine locked inside a dirty pet carrier that had been thrown into a dumpster at 95 Harrison St. on Dec. 19. A female passer-by called police after hearing a dog crying from inside the trash-filled container.

THIS JUST IN: Arrest made in canine caper

January 13, 2014

PAWTUCKET -- It appears that an arrest has been made in the puppy dumping case, according to a police source.
On Dec. 19, a puppy, locked inside a filthy pet carrier, was found inside a Dumpster near the intersection of Harrison Street and West Avenue.
Animal Control Director John Holmes said the puppy was found at around 7:35 a.m. by some passersby who heard the animal crying and called police. Since the discovery and rescue of the puppy, offers to adopt him have poured into the Pawtucket shelter. Read Donna Kenny Kirwan's complete story in Tuesday's newspaper.

January 12th

Pawtucket Arts District proves a powerful promotional tool

January 13, 2014

PAWTUCKET — It’s been over 15 years since city officials decided to color outside the lines and create a geographic area known as an “Arts District.”

While legislation that went into effect on Jan. 1 allowing a sales tax exemption on artwork makes the entire state essentially an arts district, many current city officials, business owners and artists agree that the designated zone was a smart move back in 1999 and continues to frame Pawtucket positively.

For full article, see Page 1 of today's Times.

January 10th

Legislators seeking animal abuser registry

January 11, 2014

WOONSOCKET — Since 1996, the Sex Offender Registration and Community Notification Act has made child molesters, rapists and other sexual predators responsible for telling the police where they live so the information can be passed along to the public.

Now, a group of lawmakers from the East Bay section of the state proposes to make those convicted of animal cruelty abide by the same set of community notification rules.

Full story appears on Page 1 of Saturday's Times.

East Providence firefighters rescue deer from bay

January 10, 2014

EAST PROVIDENCE — Local firefighters rescued a deer that fell through ice in Narragansett Bay about 150 yards off Bullocks Point Friday afternoon.

Firefighters were called to the scene shortly after 2:30 p.m. for a report of a person falling through the ice. Rescue crews found the deer struggling in the water, attached it to a sled and hauled it back to the shore near 145 Terrace Ave., which overlooks the bay.

January 9th

HealthSourceRI a success story, executive director tells lawmakers

January 9, 2014

PROVIDENCE — Bringing lawmakers up to date on HealthSource RI, executive director Christine Ferguson said the state’s Obamacare portal “is one of just three or four states that launched successfully, on time, on October 1, our computer system did not crash, we have a call center up and running.

“We did that in four months,” she boasted, “a very fast time frame. We are recognized as one of the tops in the country, we are second in the country as far as exceeding the targets that were set for enrollment.”

Full story appears on Page 1 on Friday's Times.

BREAKING NEWS: DePina enters not guilty plea to murder

January 9, 2014

PROVIDENCE—In the company of an interpreter, Jorge DePina of Pawtucket pleaded not guilty in Superior Court on Thursday to murdering his 10-year-old daughter, Aleida.

January 8th

Council delays again on bar decision

January 9, 2014

PAWTUCKET — In a situation that has become as muddled as the mint in a Mojito, the City Council’s Board of License Commissioners once again delayed a decision on the transfer of a liquor license to the new owner of a Mineral Spring Avenue bar.

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