News in Brief
Oak Bluffs police report additional car break-ins
Two car break-ins involving theft, one at Eastville Beach and another on Seaview Ave. near the Little Bridge, took place last week, according to reports from the Oak Bluffs Police.
Last Saturday, a woman parked her car at about 12:30 pm near the Little Bridge while she attended a wedding. She returned at about 6:45 pm to find the rear passenger side window of her 2001 Nissan Pathfinder smashed and her purse missing. The purse contained her Massachusetts driver's license, keys, several credit cards, $30 in cash, and a cell phone.
On Sunday, a woman reported that someone broke into her van parked at Eastville Beach sometime between 11 am and 12:15 pm and stole about $70 cash from her wallet. No credit cards were taken.
According to Oak Bluffs Police Officer Steven Pupek's report, he observed bike tire treads in the sand next to the van. The victim said she had not seen anyone on a bike when she parked her car.
However, later the woman stopped to inform Officer Pupek, who was directing traffic near the Steamship Authority wharf, that she saw an older, skinny, white male standing next to a bike, talking on a cell phone when she drove past the Eastville Beach parking lot where her van had been parked.
An Oak Bluffs police officer dressed in plain clothes was sent to the parking lot for observation, but the surveillance was unsuccessful.
The two incidents are the latest in a string of car break-ins. The Eastville Beach incident marks the fourth reported in the same area since June 27. In addition, six break-ins occurred in cars parked in Edgartown's South Beach area from June 15 through July 1, and another in a car parked on Water Street on July 2. Three of the 11 break-ins involved smashed windows.
Edgartown and Oak Bluffs police continue to investigate and encourage everyone to lock cars and avoid leaving valuables in them.
Arrest made in late night Woodland break-in
Tisbury Police made an arrest over the weekend in connection with a late-night theft of cigarettes and lottery tickets from the Woodland Variety and Grill on State Road in Tisbury on July 19.
Saturday police arrested Larry Keough, 39, of Tisbury and charged him with breaking and entering into a building at night, larceny, and destruction of property, said Tisbury Police chief John Cashin.
Chief Cashin praised the hard work of his officers and the cooperation of the community, which he said was instrumental in making an arrest.
Two teens injured
in Tisbury accident
Two teens were hospitalized Wednesday after the car they were in struck another vehicle.
Corbin Shapiro, 17, of Foxboro was driving on Edgartown Road in Vineyard Haven when a second car, operated by Darlene Pachico, 73, of Vineyard Haven, cut off Mr. Shapiro's vehicle, according to a Tisbury Police Department spokesman.
Mr. Shapiro was injured and taken to the hospital. A passenger in Mr. Shapiro's vehicle - Tyler Lewis, 16, of Foxboro - was also hospitalized, police said. No information was provided on their condition.
Ms. Pachico was charged with failing to yield at the Skiff Avenue and Edgartown Road intersection.
Early morning swordplay remodeling leads to arrest
Tisbury Police responded to a call at 1:30 am yesterday morning about loud music coming from an apartment in a building located at 30 Main Street. As police approached, they saw two men through a window apparently stumbling and dancing around the apartment.
According to Chief John Cashin, one of the men appeared to be holding something and striking the walls. When police entered they discovered significant damage to the walls and ceilings.
Police found an ornamental sword that one of the men apparently used to slash the furnishings and walls of the apartment. One sword thrust went through the plasterboard of the living room into the bathroom, dislodging an electrical outlet, said Chief Cashin.
Police arrested Reuben Brown, 29, on a charge of disturbing the peace.
Police contacted the owner of the building, Benjamin Hall, and told him that while the whole apartment was not destroyed the sheetrock would need to be replaced.
Pieces of fishing nets and other assorted debris litter Lobsterville Beach in Aquinnah. Photo by Tricia Haskell
Residents, town sponsor Lobsterville cleanup
A cleanup of Lobsterville Beach in Aquinnah, organized by a group of volunteers led by seasonal resident Tricia Haskell, will take place Saturday between 9 am and noon, rain or shine. Ms. Haskell said the goal is to remove debris washed up by storms and in some cases left by beach-goers.
Large trash bags will be provided. "Hopefully, we'll get plenty of volunteers to help," said Ms. Haskell.
The beach is a popular destination for fishermen and families. Parking will be allowed along the shoulder of the road near the intersection with Lighthouse Road.
The town is lending support to the effort, said Jeff Burgoyne, Aquinnah town administrator. He said the highway department would provide a truck to transport the trash and debris to the transfer station.
Mr. Burgoyne praised the volunteer effort. "Tricia deserves a pat on the back," he said.
Town resident Carlos Montoya organized a similar cleanup of Philbin Beach last month. "The town welcomes and appreciates these types of local initiatives to keep our beaches clean," said Mr. Burgoyne.
MVC unveils draft
The Martha's Vineyard Commission (MVC) will host a public hearing this evening for a pre-disaster mitigation plan prepared for Dukes County by a planning team that consisted of emergency managers from Island towns and the County.
MVC staff coordinated the planning and produced the report and maps, according to a press release. The draft plan may be found on the MVC web site http://www.mvcommission.org/ by typing Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan in the search box.
The public input session begins at 7 pm at the MVC office in the Stone Building on New York Avenue in Oak Bluffs. Comments may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Public comment will be accepted through August 2.
Call the Martha's Vineyard Commission with questions 508-693-3453 ext. 19.
Wampanoag tribal housing receives federal grant
The office of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy yesterday announced the award of a $417,000 federal grant to the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah). A press release said the money would be used for "the development and maintenance of affordable housing."
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development made the grant under the Indian Housing Block Grant, enacted by Congress in 1996.
"HUD's assistance is timely and well deserved, and I commend the Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah for its impressive efforts to improve the quality of life for all of its members," said Senator Kennedy in a press release. "The federal government has a responsibility to provide adequate housing on Indian reservations, and this grant will help the tribe maintain its current facilities and pursue additional affordable housing. I look forward to continuing to work with the tribe to meet the ongoing needs of their community."
According to Jennie Greene, tribal housing administrator, the tribe receives a block grant annually. The amount varies from year to year, she said, adding that the money would be used for maintenance and wastewater plant upgrades.
Earlier this month Ms. Greene sent a letter to the Aquinnah selectmen dated July 6, that expressed an interest in a 9.6-acre town-owned lot north of tribal housing authority property. The letter referenced ongoing discussions with the Aquinnah resident homesite committee about developing the land and asked for permission to conduct an archaeological survey, a requirement for future governmet funds.
"At this time," reads the letter, "the housing authority's intention would be to build rent to purchase or construct to purchase houses that would meet the qualifications of low to moderate income tribal members."
Ms. Greene said the grant announced this week is not connected to the tribe's interest in that property.
Camille Rose, chairman of the board of selectmen, said there needs to be more discussion before any decisions are made.
West Tisbury will pay for taping of town meetings
The West Tisbury selectmen last week appropriated $5,000 for videotaping town commission meetings in the coming year.
They took the action after receiving a letter from finance committee chairman Al DeVito, who asked them to reconsider a previous decision because he believes it is a good way for citizens to learn about town issues.
Last spring the selectmen debated whether to hire more MVTV videographers to tape meetings in addition to the selectmen's meetings, but because the MVTV videographers didn't have liability insurance, they never resolved the issue.
Selectman chairman Glenn Hearn suggested last Wednesday videographers be hired as private contractors, who under town employee policy are not required to have insurance if they make less than $600 a year. All other town commissions could be taped using that system, he said, with the purpose of showing the meetings on MVTV.
Selectman Jeffrey "Skipper" Manter agreed with the decision, saying there is some liability, but the exposure to accidents is low.
The videographers would be paid on the same scale as the MVTV videographers.
principal finalists named
Superintendent of schools James Weiss announced Monday that he and the Edgartown School committee will choose either John Stevens or Richard Hamasian to be the new Edgartown School principal. The decision will be made this week.
The two candidates, chosen from a pool of five semi-finalists who were interviewed last week, met with teachers, parents, and school committee members yesterday at Edgartown School.
Mr. Stevens is now the principal of Santaluces Community High School in Lantana, Fla. The school has a population of about 2,100 students. A graduate of Martha's Vineyard Regional High School, Mr. Stevens grew up in Edgartown and spends summers in a home he owns in Edgartown.
Mr. Hamasian is the assistant principal of Casimir Pulaski Elementary School in Meriden, Conn. His school has a population of about 800 students. Superintendent Weiss who once held the same job many years ago.
The Edgartown School committee hired the New England School Development Council to conduct a nationwide search for principal candidates. Seven candidates were selected from a field of 28.