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State & Region Briefs


Thursday, December 06, 2018
Turkey hunter who shot other hunter in back sentenced

SOUTH HADLEY — A turkey hunter who shot another hunter in the back after mistaking his decoy for a real turkey has been sentenced to six months’ probation.

The shooting occurred in South Hadley in May, and sent the victim to the hospital with 20 shotgun pellets in his back.

The victim’s injuries were not life-threatening.

Environmental police did not release the names of either hunter.

The hunter who discharged the shotgun was charged with personal injury with a hunting weapon, failure to report a hunting injury and hunting without a shotgun safety sticker. He also lost all hunting privileges for five years.

Fire officials: Arsonist tried to torch mayor’s car

BROCKTON — Police are searching for an arsonist who tried to torch a mayor’s city-owned SUV.

State fire officials say someone set fire to the vehicle at Brockton Mayor Bill Carpenter’s rental home in the city Friday night.

The Department of Fire Services says the fire in the 2015 Ford Explorer had self-extinguished and caused minor damage before it was discovered Saturday.

Carpenter was on a trip to Cape Verde at the time of the fire and returned on Wednesday.

He says he needs to find out more about what happened before commenting on the fire.

The State Fire Marshal says they are offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information that helps solve the case.

Gulf of Maine is having 3rd warmest year on record

PORTLAND, Maine — The Gulf of Maine is in the midst of its third-warmest year on record in a development that could further harm marine life.

The gulf is warming faster than most of the world’s oceans in a well-documented phenomenon. The Portland Press Herald now reports surface temperatures in 2018 are running nearly 3 degrees Fahrenheit above normal.

Gulf of Maine Research Institute chief scientific officer Andrew Pershing says that level of warming was exceeded only in 2012 and 2016 during the 37 years satellite records have been collected.

The warming of the gulf could further imperil North Atlantic right whales, which are down to only about 440 individuals. It’s also bad news for puffin colonies.

Boy, 12, slashed by knife at middle school

WOBURN — Authorities say a student at a Woburn middle school received superficial wounds when he was slashed with a knife wielded by another student.

The mayor, police chief and school superintendent in Woburn said in a joint statement that staff at the John F. Kennedy Middle School heard of a fight involving two students just before 8 a.m. Thursday.

The school resource officer quickly took an 11-year-old boy into custody and seized what was reported to be a “short knife.”

The 12-year-old injured student was treated at the scene before being taken to the hospital.

Authorities said the fight was an isolated incident and “not a random act.”

The school was in shelter-in-place mode briefly but has since returned to a normal schedule.

Drug company Actelion to pay $360M in kickback probe

BOSTON — A pharmaceutical company has agreed to pay $360 million to resolve allegations that it used a charitable foundation to pay kickbacks to Medicare patients.

The U.S. attorney’s office in Boston announced the settlement Thursday with Actelion Pharmaceuticals US Inc., which was acquired last year by health care giant Johnson & Johnson.

Federal prosecutors say South San Francisco-based Actelion illegally used a purportedly independent charity to cover the co-payments of thousands of Medicare patients taking its pulmonary arterial high blood pressure drugs.

Prosecutors say that helped the company convince patients to buy its drugs when the prices it set would have otherwise prevented them from doing so.

Actelion spokeswoman Caroline Pavis says in a statement that the company is committed to complying with all laws and regulations.

From Associated Press