State & Region Briefs

Thursday, February 15, 2018
Police start new training after racial profiling complaint

WALPOLE — Walpole’s police department is implementing anti-bias training because of a racial profiling complaint filed by a black man who was pulled over and frisked on his way to his mother’s house.

The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice said Thursday that the Walpole Police Department has agreed to introduce new training in response to the complaint filed by John-Paul Wahnon.

Wahnon says he was followed by police after leaving a shopping center in 2016. He was pulled over, was frisked and had his car searched.

Walpole Police Chief John Carmichael apologized to Wahnon in a statement and said the issues raised by his complaint will make Walpole “a better police department.”

The Lawyers’ Committee says the town will also pay unspecific damages to Wahnon.

Bail revoked for man suspected of hiding partygoer’s body

WORCESTER — A man charged with hiding the body of an acquaintance who fatally overdosed at a party has been jailed for failing court-ordered drug tests.

A judge revoked 32-year-old Xavier Broughton’s bail on Wednesday for violating the terms of his release. Broughton tested positive for cocaine but denies using the drug.

Police found the body of Justin Ramos under cardboard boxes and paper bags on a porch at Broughton’s Worcester home Jan. on 29. He had been missing since Jan. 7.

Investigators say Broughton initially claimed that Ramos had left his house the morning after the party, but later acknowledged hiding his body in a panic.

Broughton has pleaded not guilty to charges of disinterment of a human body and misleading police.

Hockey coach accused of sexually assaulting more boys

MARBLEHEAD — A youth hockey coach charged with sexually abusing a 9-year-old boy is facing new allegations involving seven other young boys.

Christopher Prew, of Marblehead, pleaded not guilty to rape and sexual assault charges involving three children Wednesday. He was held without bail. Authorities say they are investigating allegations from five other boys.

He was arrested last week after the first allegation was brought to police by the mother of a 9-year-old boy.

Prew’s lawyer says his client was intimately involved with that child’s mother and lived in a condo that she owned.

The other allegations involve boys ranging in age from 6 to 11.

The 31-year-old Prew’s attorney suggested there are inconsistencies in the boys’ accounts.

Prew was not affiliated with the local youth hockey organization, but gave private lessons.

Minor earthquake strikes New England

EAST KINGSTON, N.H. — A minor earthquake has shaken New England.

The U.S. Geological Survey says the magnitude 2.7 quake centered on East Kingston, N.H., struck at about 9:30 a.m. Thursday at a depth of 6.3 kilometers.

John Ebel, a senior research scientist at Boston College’s Weston Observatory, says people near the epicenter would probably have heard a loud boom, while people farther away would hear a rumbling and some ground shaking, maybe window rattling.

But, he says, “it was way below the threshold for damage.”

The earthquake was felt in northeast Massachusetts and Ebel says probably in southwestern Maine as well.

He says earthquakes of around magnitude 3.0 are “not an uncommon occurrence” in New England.

Coast Guard rescues 4 from sinking boat after call for help

BOSTON — The U.S. Coast Guard says it has rescued four people from a sinking boat about 18 miles off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts.

Officials say the captain of the Sea Star called for help around 6:20 p.m. Wednesday, saying the boat was taking on water and the crew was wearing immersion suits.

A helicopter arrived, and the aircrew determined the boat could not be saved. The fishermen were ordered into the water, and a rescue swimmer helped airlift the crew to safety.

The fishermen were brought to Cape Cod, where officials say they appear to be in good health.

Scott Backholm, command duty officer at Sector Southeastern New England, says the suits helped protect the crew from the cold water.

From Associated Press