State & Region Briefs

Thursday, February 22, 2018
Trolley driver paid man $2K to attack him on job

BOSTON — Authorities say a trolley driver paid a man $2,000 to attack him while wearing a Halloween mask so the driver could fraudulently collect workers’ compensation and disability insurance.

A Suffolk County grand jury on Wednesday indicted Thomas Lucey on charges of insurance fraud, workers’ compensation fraud, misleading a police investigation and perjury.

Prosecutors say the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority driver reported the man pulled him out of a trolley shortly after midnight on Oct. 30, 2016, and punched him repeatedly. The attacker wore a mask and carried a plastic pumpkin.

Authorities say they lifted fingerprints from the pumpkin left behind at the scene to find the man and that he said Lucey paid him for the phony attack.

An attorney for Lucey couldn’t immediately be reached Thursday.

Liquor store owner pleads not guilty in fatal hit-and-run

NORTH ADAMS — The owner of a liquor store charged with backing into and killing an 85-year-old woman with his Jeep and then driving from the scene is out on bail.

The Berkshire Eagle reports that 61-year-old David Sookey, of Adams, was released on $25,000 bail Wednesday after not guilty pleas to charges including leaving the scene of a fatal accident were entered on his behalf.

Police say surveillance from a nearby apartment complex captured the incident.

Authorities say Sookey, who co-owns Oasis Liquor Store in Adams with his brother, struck Theresa Marby as he backed out of the store parking lot and then ran over her. Police say Sookey then deleted messages on his phone and got his vehicle washed.

Sookey told police he thought he hit a pothole. His lawyer refused comment.

Police: Man wanted for murder found hiding in closet

HOLBROOK — Police have found a Boston man wanted on a murder charge hiding in the closet of a home.

Ralph Brown, 43, was taken into custody Wednesday in Holbrooke. Brown was arrested on murder and gun possession warrants in connection with the killing of 21-year-old Shaquille Browder.

Thirty-one-year-old Kyle Williams, of Boston, also faces charges in the fatal shooting. Williams was arrested last week after a standoff with police at a Walpole apartment complex.

Williams was profiled by The Boston Globe as someone who had been involved with gun violence but turned his life around by pursuing a college education.

Prosecutors say Williams and Brown followed Browder and shot the victim while he was standing at an intersection.

Arraignment information for Brown was not available.

Snowy owl found injured in Boston highway tunnel dies

BOSTON — A snowy owl found injured in an unusual place in Boston has died.

State Environmental Police rescued the owl Wednesday night from inside the Thomas P. “Tip” O’Neill Jr. Tunnel, a main artery in the Big Dig subterranean highway system. Police said on Twitter the black and white owl had been struck by a vehicle.

The owl was taken to the Tufts Wildlife Clinic for treatment.

Clinic assistant director Maureen Murray says it died a few hours later.

Murray tells The Boston Globe the owl “was not appropriately responsive to its environment” and had an open wound on its foot.

The clinic will try to determine possible underlying causes for the owl’s death.

The large owls are not unusual in Massachusetts in the winter.

Man who gave heroin to teen who died is sentenced

SPRINGFIELD — A man who provided the heroin that led to a teenage girl’s fatal overdose has been sentenced to 3 ½ years in prison.

A state judge in Springfield imposed the punishment Thursday on 24-year-old Seth Lombard-Hawthorne of Westfield.

He pleaded guilty last month to involuntary manslaughter and drug crimes in connection with the February 2016 overdose death of 16-year-old Lillian Anderson, a junior at Westfield High School.

Authorities said the two met while working at the same fast-food restaurant and Lombard-Hawthorne gave Anderson 10 bags of heroin. Officials say he did not sell her the drugs.

Lombard-Hawthorne’s lawyer said her client self-medicated himself with drugs and alcohol and has struggled with mental health problems since he was 7.

Prosecutors sought a seven-year prison sentence.

From Associated Press