UMass to bring more students on campus
The University of Massachusetts Amherst plans to bring more students back to campus for the spring semester in conjunction with a more robust coronavirus testing program, school officials said Friday. First-year and transfer students will be given the option to live on campus, as will students who depend on the university for housing and dining, including international students, those taking mandatory in-person courses, and varsity athletes, the state’s flagship university said in a statement. They represent about 60 percent of the typical on-campus population, Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy said in the statement. Students who don’t want to live on campus will be able to continue with remote learning, he said. Among other measures meant to control the spread of the virus, the school will introduce twice-weekly asymptomatic virus testing in the spring. UMass has conducted more than 100,000 tests since August for a positivity rate of 0.15 percent, schools officials said. Just one on-campus resident has tested positive this fall. (AP)
Mass. man admits to crashing truck into clinic
A Massachusetts man has admitted he intentionally crashed a stolen truck into a Planned Parenthood clinic in New Jersey, injuring two patients and a staff member. Marckles Alcius, 34, of Lowell, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to aggravated assault, causing or risking widespread injury or damage, and being in possession of the stolen truck, which was used as a weapon. Prosecutors alleged Alcius was trying to destroy the clinic when he crashed the stolen bakery truck into the waiting room on Feb. 14, 2018. Alcius admitted he targeted the clinic and was willing to die, prosecutors said. Three women, including two patients who were at the clinic for routine medical care, were injured. One of the women was pregnant. Alcius had been charged with terrorism and faced up to 30 years in prison if convicted. The charge will be dismissed under terms of a plea agreement. He’ll face a 10-year prison sentence when he appears before a judge in January. (AP)
Two more arrests in teen slaying
A teenager was indicted and two new arrests were made in connection with the July murder of 17-year-old Christian Vines in Stoughton, according to Norfolk District Attorney Michael W. Morrissey’s office. On Thursday, a Norfolk County grand jury indicted Jaylen Wallace, 17, of Stoughton for the fatal shooting of Vines and indicted Alyssa Joyette, 19, of Brockton, and Tyleke Curry, 22, also of Stoughton on charges of being an accessory after the fact of that murder. Indictment warrants were issued Thursday for Joyette and Curry and they were taken into custody Friday by Stoughton and State Police. Neither had been charged previously in the case, Morrissey’s office said. Joyette and Curry were due to be arraigned in Norfolk Superior Court Friday, Morrissey said. Vines was found shot behind the wheel of a Honda sedan that was parked near an apartment complex in Stoughton on July 21. The incident remains under investigation “with additional indictments anticipated,” Morrissey’s office said.
Police investigate Trump sign on power line
A Trump sign was hung off a live power line across a Wilmington street early Friday, and Wilmington police want to know: whodunnit? “We are looking to speak with the individual who decided to hang a sign across Main Street early this morning by tying it around live electrical wires,” the department said on Twitter Friday. Police wrote that the sign was too heavy for the wiring and the sign drooped into traffic on Main Street below it. The person who installed it, police noted, took an unwise personal risk when they attached the sign to a live power line. “Not only did they run the risk of electrocution, but the low hanging sign caused a hazard to passing motorists,” police wrote. Now, Wilmington police wrote, they want to know who the culprit is. A police dispatcher said there was no further information available Friday evening.
Motorcyclist killed in crash
A 57-year-old man died after his motorcycle collided with a pickup truck on Main Road Thursday afternoon, State Police said. David Foster, of Huntington, was driving a 1987 Harley-Davidson eastbound on Main Road when a 77-year-old Northampton man driving a 2010 Toyota Tacoma in the westbound lane turned into his path and collided with the motorcycle at 3:25 p.m., State Police said in a press release issued Friday. Foster was taken to Baystate Hospital with serious injuries, State Police said. He later died. The cause of the crash is under investigation, State Police said.