News

Reporter's Notebook: Candidates sell wares, Cedar Grove folks listen

The five Democrats on the ballot for the 13th Suffolk House seat pitched their candidacies on Tuesday night at a mini-forum held during a Cedar Grove Civic Association meeting in the basement of St. Brendan’s Church. The contenders also fielded questions on upping the minimum wage from the current state minimum of $8 an hour and on whether or not they plan to consider the job of Dorchester state representative a full-time position.  Read more

Activist reaches out to male relatives of homicide victims

By 
India Smith, Special to the Reporter
Feb. 13, 2014

Milton Jones lost his stepson to a violent crime in 1993. He is leading outreach efforts to men on behalf of the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute in Fields Corner. 	Photo by India SmithMilton Jones lost his stepson to a violent crime in 1993. He is leading outreach efforts to men on behalf of the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute in Fields Corner. Photo by India Smith

Milton Jones is looking for a few good men.

As he has done many times since first volunteering at the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute six years ago, Jones is reaching out to other men who are survivors of homicide, inviting them to get together in a casual setting.

Jones does not envision a formal support group where men sit and discuss their feelings. Instead, he hopes to share a meal with one or two men, talk sports, and be open to anything else that comes up.
“Grief exposes men to a lot of risks,” said Jones, who lost his stepson to gun violence in 1993. That was more than 20 years ago, but time has only deepened his concern for men dealing with that kind of loss.  Read more

Neighbors will celebrate Bowdoin Geneva on Feb. 16

Activists and teens in the Bowdoin Geneva section of Dorchester are planning a Feb. 16 party to celebrate life in their neighborhood. The Sunday evening gathering at First Parish Church will run from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The Bowdoin Geneva Residents Association, a new group, is behind the party, along with teen activists from the CVC Unido Teen Leadership program. Party coordinators include civic activists Ed Cook, Jen Johnson, and Judy Meredith.  Read more

Mixed reaction to Walsh’s call for a gun buyback; Mayor’s move follows shooting death of nine-year-old boy

By 
Dave Eisenstadter, Special to the Reporter
Feb. 13, 2014

Boston Mayor Martin Walsh has called for the return of a city-organized gun buyback program following last Friday’s shooting death of a nine-year-old boy. The victim’s 14-year-old brother, who is alleged to have shot him in their Morton Street apartment while “handling the firearm recklessly,” has been charged with involuntary manslaughter and illegal gun possession. The names of both the boy and his teenage brother have been withheld by authorities.

Walsh, who held a press conference outside the murder scene last Friday, said the buyback idea was being discussed by police officials and clergy prior to the boy’s violent death, which marked the tenth homicide so far this year in the city. Boston last conducted a buyback program in 2006.  Read more

Auto parts dealer eyes empty space on Granite Ave.

By 
Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Feb. 12, 2014

The long-vacant Hollywood Video store at the corner of Gllivan Blvd. and Granite Ave. is shown in a file photo from 1999.

A proposal to put an auto parts store in a chronically vacant space on the corner of Granite Avenue and Gallivan Boulevard received a lukewarm response Tuesday night at a meeting of the Cedar Grove Civic Association. Representatives from O’Reilly Auto Parts laid out plans to take over the space that once housed a Hollywood Video store.  Read more

Reporter wins awards for spot news, election coverage

By 
Reporter Staff
Feb. 12, 2014

NENPANENPAThe Dorchester Reporter has won the first place award in the category of “spot news” reporting for the calendar year 2013 in a competition sponsored by the New England Newspaper and Press Association (NENPA). The citation was announced on Saturday night at NENPA’s annual Better Newspaper Competition gala at the Boston Park Plaza Hotel. The newspaper was also recognized for its coverage of last year’s state Senate special election.  Read more

Neighbors will celebrate Bowdoin Geneva on Feb. 16

By 
Staff
Feb. 12, 2014

Activists and teens in the Bowdoin Geneva section of Dorchester are planning a Feb. 16 party to celebrate life in their neighborhood. The Sunday evening gathering at First Parish Church will run from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.  Read more

High school students curate Black History artists’ exhibit

By 
Chris Harding, Special to the Reporter
Feb. 11, 2014

Black History Art Installation: Rocky Cotard, a Boston Arts Academy senior from Mattapan, curates the art exhibit, “A Story We Share: Massachusetts Artists Celebrating Black History and Culture, at the Commonwealth Museum and Massachusetts Archives on Columbia Point. The public is invited to the opening celebration on Wednesday evening at 6 p.m.  For further information call 617-727-9268.Black History Art Installation: Rocky Cotard, a Boston Arts Academy senior from Mattapan, curates the art exhibit, “A Story We Share: Massachusetts Artists Celebrating Black History and Culture, at the Commonwealth Museum and Massachusetts Archives on Columbia Point. The public is invited to the opening celebration on Wednesday evening at 6 p.m. For further information call 617-727-9268.
“So, I can be a curator even though I’m only 14?” exclaimed the high school student.

Yesterday evening, more than 100 guests flocked to the second floor gallery of the Massachusetts Archives on Columbia Point for the opening reception of “A Story We Share: Massachusetts Artists Celebrating Black History and Culture.” While an exhibit by black artists during February is rarely front page news, what is remarkable is that this show has been curated by three Boston Arts Academy (BAA) high school students, all of whom happen to be Dorchester or Mattapan residents.  Read more

Feds seek help to ID ‘serial’ bank robber

By 
Staff
Feb. 11, 2014

Suspect in a rash of bank robberies is described as armed and dangerous.

The FBI's Violent Crimes Task Force is seekingv the public’s help to identify a “serial” bank robber who has hit four Boston-area banks in the last six weeks. The unknown robber is said to be armed and dangerous. The FBI is offering a $10,000 reward for tip’s leading to the suspect’s capture.  Read more

Primary election to fill Henriquez seat will be held on April 1

By 
M. Norton, State House News Service
Feb. 10, 2014

The House took action Monday aimed at scheduled an April 29 special election, with an April 1 primary, to fill the seat vacated last week when members expelled former Rep. Carlos Henriquez in light of his conviction on assault and battery charges.

Nomination papers are now available. The deadline to turn in the required 150 valid signatures is Feb. 24.  Read more

Barros tapped as Walsh's economic development chief

Mayor Walsh announced the appointment of John Barros during a press conference this morning. Photo courtesy Travis Watson

Former mayoral candidate John Barros began his new job this week: chief of economic development under Mayor Marty Walsh. Standing with his wife Tchintcia, Barros was introduced at the South End headquarters of Future Chefs, a nonprofit focused on urban youth.

His name had been floated for jobs in the private sector, the office of lieutenant governor, and as a candidate for the Fifth Suffolk seat left vacant after the ouster of former state Rep. Carlos Henriquez. But, Barros said on Monday, “My true passion has been my work with the city.”  Read more

Man injured in Morrissey Boulevard gas-station crash

Foam covered gas station in Dorchester

Blanket covers area where man was pinned. Photo by BFD.

The Boston Fire Department reports a man was pumping gas at the Citgo station at 741 Morrissey Blvd. around 8:15 Sunday morning when the driver of a car behind him failed to stop:  Read more

Rep. Henriquez expelled from House in 146-5 vote

By 
Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Feb. 6, 2014

Eleven members of State House’s Boston delegation voted on Thursday afternoon to expel Rep. Carlos Henriquez, a Dorchester Democrat convicted of two misdemeanor counts of assault. Two Boston lawmakers voted against the expulsion.

The move paves the way for a special election to replace Henriquez, who was first elected in 2010. Henriquez is likely to run for the seat again once he is released from jail, according to state Rep. Russell Holmes, a close friend and one of the two Boston Democrats who voted against his expulsion.  Read more

Bus drivers, allies push for fired workers to be re-hired

By 
Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Feb. 6, 2014

When school bus drivers, warring with the company that oversees the buses, went on strike in early October, in the midst of a mayoral election, they were largely on their own with little political support.

Marty Walsh and John Connolly, two candidates in the middle of a mayoral election, condemned their illegal action, widely described as a “wild cat” strike. A furious Mayor Thomas Menino demanded that they return to work as school officials scrambled to find other ways to get children to school that morning.  Read more

Saturday’s Tet in Boston celebrates Vietnamese culture, Year of the Horse

By 
Chris Harding, Special to the Reporter
Feb. 6, 2014

Tet in Boston: A traditional dance performance by Northeastern University VSA Dance Troupe was part of last year’s Tet in Boston event. Photo courtesy Hoang NguyenTet in Boston: A traditional dance performance by Northeastern University VSA Dance Troupe was part of last year’s Tet in Boston event. Photo courtesy Hoang Nguyen

Whoa! The Celestial Stallion is bringing big changes to Dorchester and the rest of the cosmos. According to Chinese astrologers, the Year of the Horse officially galloped into town last Friday. But the Dot-based cultural group Tet in Boston (TIB), while waiting until this coming Saturday, Feb. 8, to ceremoniously mark his arrival, is keeping its New Year’s resolutions to attract larger and more diverse crowds to the festivities with changes in venue, programming and outreach.  Read more

Tenean Beach needs major fixes, agency findings make clear

By 
Jordan Frias, Special to the Reporter
Feb. 6, 2014

Dorchester’s Savin Hill and Malibu beaches have seen maintenance improvements, but Tenean Beach is still in need of major upgrades, according to the preliminary findings in a report on the 14 beaches along Boston Harbor that was shared at a meeting at UMass Boston on Saturday by the Commission of Metropolitan Beaches.

Paul Polito, 61, who lives on Parkman Street in Fields Corner, remembers swimming in the water at Savin Hill and Malibu Beach when he was a kid and the water quality was “horrible.”  Read more

Henderson School moving to K-12 model with 'upper campus' and 1,000 students

By 
Jordan Frias, Reporter Correspondent and Bill Forry, Editor
Feb. 6, 2014

The former Woodrow Wilson school on Croftland Avenue, now Dorchester Academy. 	Photo courtesy Dorchester AtheneumThe former Woodrow Wilson school on Croftland Avenue, now Dorchester Academy. Photo courtesy Dorchester Atheneum

A plan approved by the Boston School Committee in December will dramatically increase the number of available seats at Dorchester Avenue’s coveted William Henderson Inclusion School beginning this fall.

A key aspect of the plan will be the gradual relocation over the next five years of the school’s upper grades – along with students from the Harbor Pilot Middle School – to the former Woodrow Wilson campus on Croftland Avenue off Gallivan Boulevard near Codman Hill.  Read more

SPRINT ON TO FILL WALSH SEAT: Strong field is reaching out to voters

By 
Reporter Staff
Feb. 6, 2014

Signs of a competitive campaignSigns of a competitive campaign

They’re standing outside MBTA stations, shaking hands in frigid temperatures. They’re hitting civic association meetings, coffee shops, and their neighbors’ doors. And they have another three and a half weeks to go until voters hit the polls, again, in another Dorchester-centered special election.

Marty Walsh’s ascension to the mayor’s office has set off a small stampede for his seat. Five Democrats are on the ballot, joined by a write-in candidate, and with no Republicans running, whoever wins the March 4 primary will almost certainly coast in the April 1 general election.  Read more

Pedestrian struck and killed in Fields Corner

The Boston Police Department is looking for the driver of a car that hit a man on Dorchester Avenue by the Red Line station around 8 p.m. Tuesday, then kept on driving.

The victim was taken to Boston Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

Anyone with information can contact detectives at 617-343-4470 or the anonymous tip line by calling 800-494-TIPS or texting TIP to CRIME (27463)

State officials tell workers to stay home today

By 
Michael Norton, State House News Service
Feb. 5, 2014

Update: The snow emergency and parking ban in the City of Boston will be lifted at 5 p.m.

Gov. Deval Patrick early Wednesday morning directed all non-essential executive branch employees not to report to work on Wednesday due to the arriving snowstorm and poor weather conditions.  Read more

Committee votes to expel Rep. Henriquez, full House vote set for Thursday

By 
Matt Murphy, State House News Service
Feb. 5, 2014

The House is set to vote Thursday on whether to remove Dorchester Rep. Carlos Henriquez from office after the House Ethics Committee unanimously recommended his expulsion from the Legislature following his conviction last month on two charges of assault and battery.

The last time a House member was expelled was 98 years ago and the extraordinary step of expelling Henriquez, if approved, would mark just the third expulsion since 1906.  Read more

No school Wednesday, snow emergency starts at 11 p.m. Tuesday

For the second time in two weeks, Mayor Martin J. Walsh has ordered a snow emergency in the city of Boston. This one will commence at 11 p.m. on Tuesday (Feb. 4) and there will be no school in the city's public schools on Wednesday as a winter storm chugs towards the region with accumulations estimated in the 6 to 12 inch range.  Read more

Rep. Henriquez due back at State House on Tuesday

By 
Colleen Quinn, State House News Service
Feb. 4, 2014

House Speaker Robert DeLeo said Tuesday he does not know if Rep. Carlos Henriquez will leave his jail cell Thursday to address his House colleagues should they initiate proceedings to reprimand, censure or expel him from the Legislature.

Meanwhile, a Henriquez aide told the News Service that Henriquez is scheduled to visit the State House at 2 p.m. Tuesday to appear before the House Ethics Committee. Henriquez has already twice appeared before that panel, helmed by Lowell Democrat Rep. David Nangle, both times arriving at the State House in handcuffs.  Read more

House sets table for vote on Rep. Henriquez

By 
Matt Murphy, State House News Service
Feb. 3, 2014

The Massachusetts House on Monday set the ground rules for a potential vote to discipline incarcerated Rep. Carlos Henriquez, approving a procedural order that includes an allowance for Henriquez to address his colleagues before they pass judgement.

Henriquez has refused to resign as he appeals his Jan. 15 conviction on assault and battery charges.  Read more

Task force outlines steps to reduce gun violence

By 
Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Feb. 3, 2014

All private firearms sales should be completed through a licensed dealer, live-fire training should be required for those seeking a license, and the state should comply in a limited capacity with the National Instant Background Check System, according to the long-awaited recommendations of a team of experts advising House Speaker Robert DeLeo on gun policy.  Read more