News

Harvard Street re-opens mental health facility on Blue Hill Avenue

A long-dormant building on Blue Hill Avenue has reopened as offices for five mental health clinicians to provide treatment for adults and children from city neighborhoods served by Harvard Street Neighborhood Health Center. At a ribbon-cutting Monday at 895 Blue Hill Avenue, Harvard Street Neighborhood Health Center President and Chief Executive Officer Charley Murphy said the clinicians will help to complete the medical and dental services currently provided to about 8,000 patients a year by the center.  Read more

Dorchester man seeks new trial, citing withheld evidence, police corruption

By 
Elaine A. Murphy, Special to the Reporter
Jan. 16, 2014

Sean K. Ellis: After 20 years behind bars, he seeks a new trial.Sean K. Ellis: After 20 years behind bars, he seeks a new trial.A Dorchester man serving a life sentence for a cop killing 20 years ago – a crime he says he didn’t commit – may yet have a chance for a new trial and freedom. Sean K. Ellis, arrested in 1993 at age 19, was one of two teenagers convicted of putting five bullets into the face of Boston Detective John Mulligan -- “to get his gun for a trophy,” prosecutors said. The other youth, Terry Patterson of Hyde Park, then 18, was freed from prison in 2007 after a ruling by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court discredited fingerprints that police claimed were his.  Read more

Parents try out new BPS system

By 
Dave Eisenstadter, Special to the Reporter
Jan. 16, 2014

Boston Public Schools are in the second week of school registration for the new school assignment system.  Read more

If Henriquez seat opens up, state official says she'll take a look

NOTE: A correction has been appended to this story.

As convicted state Rep. Carlos Henriquez faces pressure from the governor and mayor to resign, a state official is mulling a run for his seat.

Karen Charles, currently the chief of staff to the state Department of Telecommunications and Cable, is a Dorchester Democrat and lives on Meetinghouse Hill. She previously served as chief of staff at the MBTA. She has also worked in the late Councillor Bruce Bolling's office.

"For me, it's about serving my community," she said.  Read more

‘Oh, Yo-Yo Ma, the pipes, the pipes are calling…’

The famed cellist Yo Yo-Ma performed at the inauguration of Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh on Jan. 6 at Boston College’s Conte Forum. From left: Johnny Walsh, Mary Walsh, Mayor Walsh, Lorrie Higgins, Yo-Yo Ma, and Rev. Ray Hammond. Photo by Chris Lovett

One of the more memorable moments of Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s inauguration ceremony at Boston College’s Conte Forum on Jan. 6 occurred during a musical interlude featuring Yo-Yo Ma, the 59-year-old Chinese American cellist who lives in Cambridge. Many in the audience anticipated that Ma might seek to tickle the mayor-elect’s Irish heartstrings, given that the official program book promised a “traditional Irish melody” as part of his medley, which also included George Crumb’s Toccata and Bach’s Cello Suite No. 3.

As he took the stage, more than a few boyos in the forum were elbowing each other with wisecracks of the “Yeah, Marty’s a huge Yo-Yo Ma fan” variety. But, when Ma eased into his interpretation of the mournful ballad “Danny Boy” — the smart talk ceased and the deep breaths began.  Read more

Decision on proposed upscale wine and cheese shop for Savin Hill could come Thursday

The Boston Licensing Board could vote Thursday whether to let a shuttered Vietnamese market on Dorchester Avenue be turned into an upscale shop selling everything a young professional could need for a dinner party - from wine and gourmet cheeses to self-service olive oil and home-made peanut butter.  Read more

DeLeo, Patrick and Walsh: Henriquez should resign

By 
Matt Murphy, State House News Service
Jan. 15, 2014

Rep. Carlos Henriquez

Update (4:30 p.m.): In separate statements, Governor Deval Patrick and Mayor Martin J. Walsh have both called upon Rep. Henriquez to resign. Walsh said: "A jury has convicted Rep. Henriquez and a judge has sentenced him to serve jail time. In light of this, I would encourage Rep. Henriquez to resign, in the best interests of the constituents he represents."

Following the conviction Wednesday of Rep. Carlos Henriquez on charges of assault and battery against a woman he had been dating, House Speaker Robert DeLeo urged the Dorchester Democrat to “weigh very, very heavily” the option of resigning his seat or face a House Ethics Committee investigation.  Read more

Henriquez's position at State House unclear following conviction

By 
Michael P. Norton, State House News Service
Jan. 15, 2014

House members who arrived on Beacon Hill Wednesday for their first substantive session of 2014 were distracted first by a political meeting at a nearby hotel and then by the news that one of their colleagues was led away from a Medford courtroom in handcuffs and is headed to jail.  Read more

Rep. Henriquez sentenced to jail after conviction on two assault counts

By 
Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Jan. 15, 2014

Rep. Carlos Henriquez

Rep. Carlos Henriquez was led away in handcuffs Wednesday after being found guilty by a jury in a domestic violence case stemming from an early morning rendezvous in Arlington Heights during the summer of 2012.

Henriquez, a Dorchester Democrat in his second term, was found guilty in Cambridge District Court of two counts of assault and battery, and was acquitted on an additional count of assault and battery, witness intimidation and larceny of a SIM card.  Read more

Rep's assault trial heads to jury

By 
Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Jan. 14, 2014

As testimony wrapped in the trial of Rep. Carlos Henriquez, his accuser, 25-year-old Katherine Gonzalves, reiterated her allegation that the Dorchester Democrat attacked her in the back seat of a rental car in the early hours of July 8, 2012.

“I remember being back-handed; I remember being held down; I remember being punched; I remember being held down,” Gonzalves said in her second day on the stand. She said she entered the lawmaker’s car with no keys, no purse, no money, only her cell phone.  Read more

Alleged victim describes attack, effort to reach Rep. Henriquez

By 
Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Jan. 13, 2014

After making out with him in the backseat of his rental car around 3 a.m., Katherine Gonzalves broke the news to Rep. Carlos Henriquez that she couldn't go home with him, the 25-year-old recalled on the witness stand at Henriquez's criminal trial Monday.

"His demeanor just changed," Gonzalves testified. She said, "He said, 'I drove all the way out here, into Arlington.' "  Read more

Public health officials tap DotWell's COO as medical marijuana director

By 
Michael Norton, State House News Service
Jan. 13, 2014

The former chief operating officer of a Dorchester public health program will oversee the state's medical marijuana program as its executive director.

Karen van Unen was introduced Monday by the state Department of Public Health as executive director of the program, and will play a major role in the selection of marijuana dispensary licensees.  Read more

Rep. Henriquez's attorney to seek dismissal of assault case

By 
Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Jan. 10, 2014

Rep. Carlos Henriquez is seeking a dismissal or finding of not guilty in his assault and battery criminal case after a previously undisclosed police report turned up during cross-examination in the trial Thursday.

Judge Michele Hogan met with Henriquez’s attorney and prosecutors Friday morning, saying the hearing’s purpose “is to make sure this defendant gets a fair and impartial trial.”  Read more

Rep. Henriquez trial breaks after detective offers surprise report

By 
Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Jan. 9, 2014

The trial of Rep. Carlos Henriquez took a recess Thursday afternoon after an Arlington Police detective produced a report that neither the defense nor the prosecution said they have seen and that his attorney said could jeopardize his right to a fair trial.

“It’s significant, I would say,” defense attorney Stephanie Soriano-Mills told Judge Michele Hogan after the jury was sent out of the courtroom around 2:45 p.m.  Read more

Walsh makes three more interim appointments, including Dot native Holmes as info chief

Justin Holmes

A top aide to Mayor Marty Walsh on Thursday afternoon announced three additional appointments. In an email to City Hall workers, Walsh chief of staff Daniel Koh thanked them for their patience and said he would keep them informed about new hires and promotions.

According to the email, which was obtained by the Reporter, Justin Holmes, a Dorchester native, is the interim chief information officer. Holmes, who served as chief of staff to Maureen Feeney when she was the City Council president, was director of constituent engagement under Mayor Thomas Menino.  Read more

Eyes turn to seat Walsh left behind

As Marty Walsh settles into the concrete confines of City Hall, the Dorchester-based House seat that he resigned from last Friday is attracting the attention of several attorneys and activists.  Read more

Reporter's Notebook: A busy time for the new guy, filling all the important seats

Mayor Walsh rolled out cabinet level appointments on Tuesday. Photo: State House News Service

Joyce Linehan, the owner of a public relations business based out of her home in Lower Mills, was adamant in the days after the mayoral election: After spending most of 2013 on the campaign trail with Marty Walsh, working on policy matters and playing the part of close confidant, she wasn’t going to work at City Hall.

On Tuesday, she was inside the Eagle Room, off of the mayoral suite, standing next to five other hires and behind the man she helped elect. “I know what I said,” she stated in a blog post later in the day, explaining that she was taking the job of chief of policy.  Read more

Meeting on ‘Lucky Strike’ site next week

A proposal to build 22 units at the site of a former Fields Corner bowling alley will get a public airing next Wednesday, Jan. 15. The Boston Redevelopment Authority, which is reviewing the project, is holding the meeting, scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m. at Kit Clark Senior Services at 1500 Dorchester Ave.  Read more

Another Walsh from Savin Hill honored by BC High

Robert Walsh, president of the RF Walsh Co and Vice chairman of the BC High Board of Trustees, has received the prestigious Paul J. Hunter ‘53 Man for Others award. Every year Boston College High honors one man for his outstanding service to the school and to others. The award was presented at The Hall of Fame dinner at the Hunter-Fahey Commons on November 26.  Read more

College Hype completes expansion in Adams Corner

College Hype, an Adams Corner-based company which manufactures and provides quality custom apparel and school uniforms for schools, media outlets and corporate organizations, through both screen printing and embroidery processes, has recently completed a major expansion of its facility at 540 Gallivan Blvd.

The build-out increases the company’s Embroidery Division by 3,000 square feet; the additional space will house the new, 6-head embroidery machine that has been added to the equipment that College Hype uses to manufacture the shirts, jackets and other apparel.  Read more

Managers pleased so far with Boston’s latest tunnel project

By 
Matt Murphy, State House News Service
Jan. 9, 2014

Just yards inside the mouth of the Callahan Tunnel, workers are toiling around the clock, blasting away with high-pressured water guns at the five inches of concrete that separate the surface of the harbor tunnel from the steel beams that support the roadway.

It’s the eleventh day of construction on the 53-year-old tunnel, and already highway officials are optimistic that contractors will finish ahead of schedule, which calls for the tunnel connecting downtown Boston to Logan Airport to reopen mid-March.  Read more

Linehan will head City Council; 8-5 vote seen to define new lines

The City Council elected South Boston’s Bill Linehan as its president on Monday afternoon in an 8-to-5 vote that roiled progressive activists who supported a last-minute bid by Ayanna Pressley, a councillor at-large who lives in Dorchester. The vote potentially exposed new fault lines in the 13-member Council, which welcomed three new members and one familiar face to its ranks that same day.  Read more

Judge directs witnesses against using term 'kidnap' in Rep. Henriquez's trial

By 
Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Jan. 8, 2014

Witnesses in the case against Rep. Carlos Henriquez, a Boston Democrat, will be directed not to use the term "kidnap" and when the alleged victim takes the stand she will be asked not to use the term "hostage," Judge Michele Hogan ruled ahead of the trial Wednesday.

Middlesex Assistant District Attorney Clarence Brown said the prosecution dropped a kidnapping charge because to press such a felony against Henriquez would have required a grand jury indictment.  Read more

Boston meet-ups help local women ‘go natural’

By 
Vanessa Lewis, Special to the Reporter
Jan. 8, 2014

A recent meet-up of the Boston Natural Hair group at UMass Boston.

The African proverb “It takes a village to raise a child” has many applications in the city of Boston.

A group of local women are taking the collective approach to navigating a particularly tricky element of their lives: natural hair care. For many women of color, transitioning from chemically treated to natural tresses comes with a steep learning curve— one that can be a stressful, time-consuming and endeavor.  Read more