Tag Archives: drugs

InCity Voices: Speaking out on my son’s addiction

By Robin Generelli

Thanks again for letting people speak on topics that need to be addressed.

Again, love your paper [InCity Times] … a paper about … telling the truth about things!! In my last email I said I could go on for days about all that I think is backwards….. So here it is:

Most important to me are my thoughts on addiction an enormous problem across this country and the world. I’m so tired of being told this makes money.

ok yeah to some extent it does to the doctors who do the prescribing, charging the health insurance companies for office visits that probably lasted just long enough to write the prescriptions the ones causing all the problems in the first place!?!?!?

In turn people becoming addicted… What happens next: these addicts lives are turned upside down. Life becomes unbearable, then they are referred to a psych doc who then gets his money for the visit, prescribes more drugs for anxiety… Xanax…Seroquil for sleep…the list goes on.

What a joke!!! The last thing an addict needs is more drugs.

So you’re thinking: How do you know this?

This is my life. I lived this mess. My son had surgery at age 18, was given oxycodone – the devil I call it. S

Soon addicted he went from a caring good kid with a huge heart to an addict that quick.

It’s like buying a loaf of bread at the corner store – that’s how easy it is to get this crap.

How does this happen? Went to rehab only to be prescribed more meds – huge friggin joke! Then oh it’s a psych issue, they say. Ha! My son is an addict whose life became out of control in the first place because of prescription drugs – not needing more drugs – and certainly not needing an excuse from some psych doc wanting to make excuses for his behavior.

My son was a happy, loving, caring kid who has a beautiful family, a mom and dad who give the world to all our children: hugs, kisses, care, support. Our children are the most important things to us. Other than probably being too spoiled (not a good thing) there is no excuse, except for the fact he has an addiction and needs to take reposibility for it.

I know we are not the only family dealing with this demon of addiction.

Many many families are in the same boat drifting down this river of complete insanity.

What next? you ask. No job … getting Mass Health ect… Are you kidding! Maybe they should focus more on recovery programs, a good DRUG-FREE rehab. Hey! That’s an idea!

One of the so called rehabs my son attended – a three day stay (a joke) leaving with more prescriptions(totally insane). He had all his belonging stolen – brand new clothes mind you! I have a friend who works there, and she laughed telling stories about staff stealing cigarettes, clothes, money ect from clients. TRAGIC.

Mass health pays for this?

Ask any E. R. [hospital emergency room] worker about the regulars. Yes, the regulars addicted, alcoholic, homeless (which is usually the case when addiction becomes bad enough) who are picked up by ambulance (how much is an ambulance ride?). A stay in the E. R. (thousand at least) only to do the same thing the next day. All on your pocketbook!! Mass Health – I mean ok – your pockets is really the truth.

So just a thought: have places that these people can go to for a year if needed if that’s what it takes to get well.

Teach life skills.

Help with jobs ect.

In the long run, it would be a cheaper way! Cheaper than an ambulance ride and er visit daily? Crime would go down, I’d bet my life on it.

So my son going from addict to convict – this is what usually occurs – doesn’t seem surprising. Receives tattoos and more prescriptions in jail. Are you kidding me?! Is this seem crazy to anyone but me?

Quick story. One November night I was going to visit, something I hardly do because its so hard to see my child in this situation. Just so depressing.

Again freezing cold night, of course. I had on a coat (with a hood), was told I had to put my coat in the car because of the hood. Are you kidding? I said. I probably would have been nicer but usually you get the you’re-a-scumbag attitude from the staff there. (Not all I have to add – some staff are very nice). Gee, I said that’s hilarious. My son gets better drugs in here and tattoos from neck to waist, but my hood is a threat.

The reply was that’s not supposed to happen?!?!?!? No kidding, Sherlock! But it does. How?

No response – that’s what I usually get when I confront people about this stuff. And by the way gabapentin ( not sure of the spelling). Is a jailhouse favorite jonnies the slang in jail widely prescribed in there. What a joke – ask any addict that’s been in jail. Mention jonnies and they laugh – you do get high on them. A suboxone goes for $100 a whack for one. Gee sounds like a good gig to me – crooked workers making an extra buck selling to inmates.

Just want to set things straight. Not all guards do this crap. I have friends – the most honest, upstanding guys who are guards never would dream to do such things. But dishonest crooked people exist in every part of society! My son has to pay the price for the things he’s done – ABSOLUTELY!

But make a difference – do not add to the problem.

Programs in jail should be required for every inmate – period!

editor’s note: Robin is a faithful ICT reader!

All over Green Island yesterday, on Millbury Street, Worcester police cruisers, state-ies, drug-/criminal-sniffing German Shepherds …

By Rosalie Tirella

… Oh, my! I said to myself as I drove through the hood yesterday afternoon, running my biz!! So pretty out! So sunny out! Perfect day for a man hunt! Or a huge huge heroin bust!

There they were, three cops, on foot patrol, being led by a single minded German Shepherd dog who was pulling them into all the doorways of all the establishments on Millbury Street. Then the Worcester police cruisers with lights flashing (sirens off), then the state police cruisers with their lights on (also silent) filled the scene.

This city girl said: COOL! I wanna tag along!

In my car, driving slowly, gunking up traffic, I thought: This must be big! Maybe I’m in the middle of a search for a killer or drug-lord or just plain ol’ drugs! I stupidly followed the cops who were working diligently, with their dog. And I caught their adrenaline rush!

Cops may not wanna admit this but they must love the high of the chase, the adrenaline rush! On the edge! You have to think FAST! Very Steve McQueen! Some of their coolness rubbed off on me cuz I got fearless and giddy and felt EXCITED. The officers – two men in their 30s and a woman in her 30s – showed not a smidgen of fear. They smiled as they walked the hood with their lanky dog, and when a car tooted at them (not me!) the gal copper yelled at him: NOW THAT HELPS! Then she looked at her colleagues and smiled. She was beautiful and full of  herself! I like to see fearlessness in women doing dangerous jobs! I hope she is or becomes a mom and raises FEARLESS DAUGHTERS!

The German Shepherd dog had a mind of its own and led the police officers, all crisp and buff, up Endicott Street. I followed along in my jalopy, trying to snap photos.

Then they made a right onto Ward Street, their dog straining, putting his nose into people’s yards and then, as if thinking NOPE!,  moving on to the next property.

I called out to them! You have a beautiful working dog! Here’s mine – Jett! Jett was bounding up and down in the back seat, eager to jump out and play with the working dog, who didn’t even know we were there. HE WAS WORKING THAT HARD. One of the cops, nice enough, but with a smug little smile on his face, said: Ma’am, the dog is working right now!

I said, I know! Then I said who I was and told them I was snapping a few photos for the website and paper.  The cops, youngish and cocky, the queenie and her kings of the hood – until some punk maybe decided to shoot at them (or me!) from a window (everyone and his/her brother seems to own a gun in Worcester!) – looked at each other and grinned. I smiled back.

Spring in the city!

Horse racing’s daily double: drugs and death

By Kathy Guillermo

It’s time for the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to step in and clean up the thoroughbred racing industry’s addiction to drugs.

As The New York Times has just reported, over a period of four months, a PETA investigator worked for well-known trainer Steve Asmussen, trainer of Curlin and Rachel Alexandra, at two of the most famous racetracks in America: Churchill Downs in Kentucky and the Saratoga Race Course in New York. PETA’s investigation exposed many serious problems but none more harmful than the routine, pervasive and improper use of prescription drugs during training, a regimen that has begun the downward spiral to the slaughterhouse for thousands of horses.

Fragile young horses—raced before their bones have fully matured and unable to handle the pounding and stress—suffer routinely from injuries, lameness, exhaustion and what is euphemistically called “soreness.” Owners don’t want to waste time waiting until foals are physically capable. They want to get the cash flow started.

PETA’s investigator saw veterinarians and stable hands, apparently on Asmussen’s orders, give horses an aggressive daily regimen of pain-masking and performance-enhancing drugs and treatments. These drugs often aren’t used for genuinely therapeutic purposes. Instead, they’re used to keep horses going when their legs and lungs are screaming, “Stop!” Horses in the racing industry are so routinely doped up that they’ve been called “chemical horses,” and their feet, bones and bodies are progressively destroyed as a result.

It’s little wonder that an average of 24 horses suffer catastrophic (fatal) breakdowns every week at racetracks across America.

One of Asmussen’s drugs of choice was thyroxine. Although it’s approved only as a prescription medication for horses with hypothyroidism, the drug was being administered to every horse in his barns, apparently without testing or evidence of any thyroid condition. This drug seems to have been recklessly administered just to speed up metabolism.

Thyroxine was also detected in the systems of several horses who had mysteriously died in the barns of another major trainer, Bob Baffert. The necropsy report on Baffert’s horses stated, “The drug, thyroxine, was so routinely prescribed in the Baffert barn that it was dispensed for one of the horses a week after he had died.”

Horses in Asmussen’s Saratoga stables were also given Lasix, which dehydrates the animals and makes them lighter and faster. Lasix is legal to use in New York for the right purpose—to prevent bleeding in the lungs—but not to shave a few seconds off a horse’s running time. This controversial drug is banned on race day in Europe.

PETA’s investigator also witnessed the drugging of horses day after day with muscle relaxants, sedatives and other potent pharmaceuticals used for treating ailments such as ulcers, lameness and inflammation—seemingly without regard for the long-term effects on the horses’ welfare.

Trainers will do just about anything to gain an advantage. Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas and Hall of Fame jockey Gary Stevens joked about jockeys who used concealed battery-powered shocking devices on horses. The prized horse Nehro, who came in second in the 2011 Kentucky Derby, was forced to race on painful, chronically damaged feet, and his hooves were in such bad shape that one of them was held together at one point with super glue. PETA’s investigator also found that many undocumented laborers were hired and forced to work long hours for little pay in difficult, dangerous jobs.

PETA has filed 10 legal complaints at both the federal and state level, and we’re working for the passage of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act of 2013, a federal bill that would put the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (the same agency that investigated Lance Armstrong) in charge of drug enforcement in horse racing. Everyone reading this can also make a difference by refusing to patronize or bet on horse races.

Ron’s urban diary: Merry Christmas, Worcester Police Officer Thomas Daly!

By Ron O’Clair

I am pleased to have spoken with you yesterday outside the “ground zero” property that I have managed for the last decade as the Building & Property Superintendent of 703-711 Main Street. I had been watching activity from the front seat of my vintage 1995 Chevrolet full size van with 56,565 original miles when you had passed by my block on your way around to end up coming down Charlton Street, where I motioned you to a stop as I was exiting my vehicle.

I thought at first glance that you were Officer Jon Kachadoorian, whom I have come to know from my route, and who is an exceptional example of Worcester’s finest. I authored him a nice letter of commendation for the assistance he provided to me when my other vehicle, the 4X4 GMC pick-up with the minute mount plow had been broken into and I caught one of the crack whores that frequent my neighborhood asleep inside what had been a locked vehicle until I caught her inside and yanked her out by her feet. The story was in one of the 4 editions of the InCity Times that I gave you to read for your enjoyment.

I was pleased that you took a couple of minutes out of your busy day to speak with me, and I truly enjoyed the experience. It is refreshing to note the recent change of attitudes displayed as regards me by the various members of the department that I have been trying to enlist as allies in my crusade to retake the streets in my area from the criminal conspiracy to traffic narcotics that has been an ongoing problem here for the entire decade of my responsibility as the building superintendent, and seven more years that I was a resident of the rooming house before that.

It was not always so, and I have the chapters to prove it.

We are all in this together, and need to work together to turn the tide for a better future for the City of Worcester, which I hope to make the first community in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to be able to succeed where so many others have failed utterly to maintain the peace, restore civility in the streets, and make the streets safe for all to use and enjoy without fear as they go on about their legal and lawful business.

It is my plan to bring the different factions that are working very hard, each in their own unique way to lead the lost sheep that despoil my neighborhood back into the fold, in a united effort to combine forces and work together towards the common goal of rehabilitation and treatment of the drug and alcohol addicted who are a continual drain on the resources of the various agencies, yet repeatedly relapse back into the same old routine after incarceration or treatment for their addictive behaviors.
The majority of these people pick up the needle or the crack pipe the very same day they are returned to the streets of our community after a period of forced withdrawal via arrest and detainment for one violation of the law or another in the long list of crimes they commit daily to support their drug habits.

The way it is now, all these factions are pulling in different directions, and it is as if we were in a round lifeboat in a sea of anarchy, with everyone pulling away from everyone else in chaos, getting the boat nowhere fast. The plain and simple truth of the matter is that the addicted take the handouts meant to help them, and find ways to use the assistance to further their addiction, rather than get clean and sober. Whatever they receive in the way of well meaning help is turned into revenue to buy more drugs.

The only way treatment will ever work, is that you have to get the addicted to want to change, and to better themselves with an invasive program of recovery aimed at enabling them to see that there is hope for a better future, and that they are all worthy of redemption.
It is a multifaceted enigma that has boggled the best minds in the business as to how to go about the task. I have spent the better part of my life studying the human condition, and have much knowledge acquired at great cost to me in personal sacrifice. Having over thirty years in the fellowship myself, I have seen and heard every excuse there is for why people continue to destroy themselves with alcohol and drug abuse.

I will safely estimate that over 85% of the crime that goes on daily in our City of Worcester can be laid squarely on the doorstep of drug and alcohol addiction, and the continual struggle to feed the habits of the drug addicted. There is a vast underground economy that revolves around stolen goods and services that are bartered for drugs.

There has emerged a counterculture that is so wrapped up in the throes of addiction since the introduction of crack cocaine to the mix of available drugs being sold on the streets of our fair city. I see them each and every day and night from my perch here with the birds eye view at ground zero. It does not take a rocket scientist to know what they are doing, and they have become so brazen that you can not only see them in the act, you can hear them making the deals out in the open with no fear of being apprehended.

This in not, surprisingly enough, the failure of the police that is to blame for this rampant lawlessness, though most people will point their fingers your way and try to blame it all on lackluster performance of your police duties. I have learned through my observations that the police are hampered in the performance of their duties by several factors, the least of which is officer malfeasance.

The citizens have failed the police.

The police have not failed the citizens.

At least not all of them, there are of course instances of corruption and malfeasance, it is inevitable, they are only human, under a lot of stress, and there are times that when they are caught in a lie, rather than do the honorable thing of confessing and seeking forgiveness for their transgression, they attempt to cover it up with one excuse after another. More honesty and integrity in the small percentage of officers that this statement applies too would go a long way toward reclaiming lost prestige and respect from the general public and engender better community relations as a result.

(Yes, Officer Balsavitch, this applies to you too, I am still awaiting my apology for the time you physically attacked me after I returned to the building from 18 hours of shoveling snow to need to call the police for the usual bullshit back in the days of Joanne Delaney, Lori and Randy Carr, former tenants who were, as usual drunk and causing a disturbance. You accused me of rolling my eyes your way in disrespect just prior to attacking me – I don’t forget those type of incidents – but I do forgive when asked nicely too.)

The solution will not come with adding more and more police, and building more and more jails. That approach only adds to the burden on the taxpayer who has to pay for the increased personnel and construction of more space to warehouse inmates which despite programs that are in place to curb recidivism do not seem to be having much effect on keeping the released inmate clean and sober for any length of time once they return to their old haunts, and the “friends” they are used to using with.
A true friend would encourage them to put the heroin or crack down for good, their using friends hate to see anyone succeed in recovery and when you are trying to stay straight, you get more offers for a free bag, or a free hit of crack then you ever did when you were firmly on the hook and a steady source of income for the dealers to grow rich on the illegal gains.
American citizenship demands that a citizen do their civic duty to help the police maintain order and discipline in the community in which they reside. Three short city blocks south of Federal Plaza, Main Street in Worcester turns into a ghetto of crack and heroin addicted persons perpetually engaged in the pursuit of money to finance drug habits. This is a legacy from the days of the former PIP having been located here, and the drug consuming public knowing that it is the place to go to score their drug of choice. It is a 24/7/365 day pursuit.

It would not be possible for this to have happened here without the indifference shown by a large portion of the average American citizens of Worcester having failed to understand and comply with the requirements of their civic duty.
The drug culture has spawned generations of people that have no idea of what it means to be a man, and live by the code that makes a man a man.

There is no honor to be found, or precious little at any rate.

It has become accepted practice to take everything there is to be gotten in an entitlement mentality that was designed to be temporary assistance to the truly needy, and make it a lifestyle choice. There is no shame in our society, most everyone is out to get as much as they can without putting any effort into making contributions to pay for it.

Food Stamps, SSDI, Welfare, Fuel Assistance, Section 8 housing, earned income tax credits for people that have never even held a job, but produce offspring out of wedlock that are not being supported by the father of the child, who often has several children that he is not supporting with different mothers.

None of those things would have been allowed to transpire in our America of the past.

What made America great half a century ago has all but disappeared in today’s society.

Pause @03:29 Hours.

Resume @07:27 Hours.

That is why, Officer Thomas Daly, that it was so refreshing having that two minutes of camaraderie with you as a fellow crime fighter engaged in the battle to reclaim our city streets. I may not wear a badge, but I damn sure should have a cape and a mask as I go on about the legal and lawful business that I have been engaged in these last 27 years and 85 days as of today since the day “Chewy” got his leg broken by me for his attempt to deprive me of the oxygen I need to survive, and I embarked on my quest for the answers to the questions I had as to why.

Why did he do it?

Why did the corrupt Worcester County Administration of that time cover for him, rather than charge him for attempted murder? Or at the very least charge him with assault of a prisoner in restraints?

Judge Paul V. Mullaney, (Retired) is still alive, God bless him, and he and I have since become friends despite his signing the 20 day observation order that was part of the attempt to discredit this honorable former Staff Sergeant of the United States Air Force, Reserve of the Air Force who was, and is a victim of that corruption.

He is my last and best hope for vindication seeing as how Judge William J. Luby is deceased, and Attorney Kevin Reynolds has been disbarred. It was with their assistance that I was released into my own custody the day after, (The day after!) being declared legally mentally incompetent and having had my sister Dorothy appointed my legal guardian, which was on the 14th day of the 15 days I spent at Worcester State Hospital while they tried to destroy my credibility to ensure a rosy future for “Chewy” who has been collecting full disability and benefits all this time I have been struggling to buy postage and ink for my printer to develop my skills as a writer to tell this story, and get paid for it as was my intention all along when I agreed not to sue the County if they released me immediately as they did.

The records exist, the proof is in my record of honesty and integrity, as well as the simple physics that would clearly show that the injuries inflicted on “Chewy’s” leg could not have resulted from a simple fall on water I purposely poured on the floor in my protest to that filthy holding cell that they refused to clean while I was in it.

You bet your ass they cleaned the formerly spotless hallway though, it was nice and tidy when they took “Chewy” out on a gurney while I gasped for oxygen with a crushed Larynx from his hand crushing my windpipe.

Once I was released 15 days after Chewy and I had our little lesson teaching episode, I thought that I could put the incident behind me and go on with my life as I saw fit, but the stigma of having been incarcerated in the State Hospital followed me around the rest of my days. I was never treated the same way by family, friends, associates, or even my unit members at Westover Air Force Base.

Like the actor in the movie, I had received the four white feathers and had no choice as I saw it than to attempt against all odds to prove my record of honesty and integrity was beyond reproach in order to maintain my personal sense of honor.
People without honor would never understand why I spent these last 27 years and 85 days and still counting seeking that which is mine by right, and that which I deserve, my honor. I cannot rest until my old unit members take back their feathers, and that has not happened yet.
I will keep at it, and I hope to one day get those feathers recalled.

Unless and until I finally publish my story, I don’t see it happening.

Merry Christmas 2013 Officer Daly, you have the author’s permission to make and distribute as many copies of this intellectual property of the author as you can afford too, I can’t afford to pay for the ink.

I think you know from this narrative what I would like to get for Christmas this year, those damn feathers.

End @08:06 Hours, 24 December 2013 Word count: 2,450

Worcester Police Dept. needs ShotSpotter – another crime-fighting tool for our urban tool-box!

By Sue Moynagh

This past Election Day, I had an informative conversation with a neighbor as we did standout for our respective candidates. We have a lot in common. We are both long time residents of Worcester’s Union Hill neighborhood. We attended the same church, school, shopped in local stores and walked on the same streets. We have both seen the changes in our community, the ups and downs, and we hang in there, hoping to effect changes for the better in the future. She spoke of the high crime rate on her street; drugs, violence and shootings. We both hear the gun shots, especially at night, and we are both glad of the response we are getting from the city, especially the police department. The latest “weapon” in the battle against crime could be ShotSpotter. What is ShotSpotter? What are the pros and cons? And why do I favor its use in this community?

First, I want to give an update on this war against crime. This past July, a community engagement meeting was held at Worcester Academy announcing that a special Community Policing Precinct was being formed for the Union Hill neighborhood. This is in response to the increase in violent crimes in this area, especially those involving guns. The Precinct involves the Police Operations Division, which works in conjunction with the Vice Squad and Detective Division to focus on problem situations within the community. In the first week, there were 7 coordinated drug busts and a large number of persons with outstanding warrants were apprehended. Large numbers of illegal abandoned or unregistered vehicles were also towed. The police officers are now walking throughout the streets of Union Hill, and you can see patrol cars everywhere. There is also a greater state police presence now that they have opened a division at 81 Lafayette Street along with the Attorney General’s office. What does this mean for the neighborhood safety?

In the past week, I have seen numerous state and Worcester police cruisers on Harrison, Dorchester, Madison, and Providence Streets. Cars are being stopped. When people see such an expanded police presence, there is a perception that it is safer. As one local businessman said, “People feel more secure. They are out walking, with kids, with baby strollers. There are more kids playing in the parks.” Unfortunately, there are still problems, including gunfire. More is needed to increase public safety in Union Hill and adjacent neighborhoods. This brings me to the ShotSpotter initiative.

I first heard about ShotSpotter at a CSX Neighborhood Advisory Committee that meets once a month to discuss funding proposals for three Worcester districts most impacted by the opening of the CSX railroad freight yard on Shrewsbury and Grafton Streets. The first meeting I attended was held at North High School in March. I testified that Union Hill was impacted by the CSX freight yard, and should receive mitigation money. A number of projects were proposed including the installation of 12 surveillance cameras along Providence Street and the surrounding streets. This would cost approximately $35,000 for stationary surveillance cameras. As far as I am concerned, anything that would give police added information to apprehend criminals is worth it. At the September CSX meeting, members of the Worcester Police Department gave a presentation of the ShotSpotter technology. A follow- up presentation was made in October.

ShotSpotter is a high- tech auditory system in which sensors pick up gunshots and relay this information to the police, allowing them to assess the situation and respond immediately. Sensors are activated by loud noises, but backfiring cars and fireworks are identified and filtered out. Data includes number of shots, location and, if shooters are in a vehicle, travel direction. Numbers of police needed and action required can be decided depending on information relayed to the police. Data provided by ShotSpotter would allow police to formulate long- term strategies to deal with criminal activity. Areas that are most problematic would get the most attention in terms of personnel. In some cases, ShotSpotter data can be used in courts as evidence. On at least one occasion, police were accused of instigating a shooting incident. Evidence showed that the police did not fire first. If police can get to the scene of a shooting in a much quicker time, there is better chance of making arrests and collecting more evidence.

I did some research about the system and was impressed by what it could do. In a report by Erica Goode in a New York Times News Bulletin, trials were conducted at the Charleston Navy Yard in 2006. ShotSpotter had a 99.6% “correct” rate of identifying and locating 234 gunshots at 23 locations within the test area. Other cities that use the technology claim an 80% plus success rate. ShotSpotter is rated favorably in many locations, including Washington DC, Springfield, MA, Oakland, Boston, Milwaukee and Gary, Indiana. Some of these cities claim that ShotSpotter use has reduced crime, especially gunfire by as much as 60- 80%. Overall crime rates have been reduced by a similar percentage, in a relatively short period of time.

Is ShotSpotter perfect? Of course not; there are cons. As with any new technology, there are imperfections. Sometimes police respond and there is no evidence of gunfire. In some cities, the police don’t utilize the information received correctly. Training is required for police personnel. It is also necessary to adjust SpotShotter according to each city’s unique auditory or acoustic “fingerprint.” An area with hills and large numbers of wooden buildings would reflect sound waves differently than one with flat terrain and with a large number of skyscrapers. Positions are determined by triangulating input from more than one sensor.

Some people fear the “big brother” aspect of this technology. Would private conversations be overheard? How much of this evidence should be allowed in courts before someone’s civil rights are jeopardized? Sensors are supposed to be placed at high levels and are activated by loud noises, not conversation. Surveillance cameras are not required, but recommended to be used with ShotSpotter. People feel uncomfortable with cameras in their neighborhood. I do. I also feel like I am willing to put up with this uneasiness if it means criminals can be identified and removed from my neighborhood, increasing overall safety. I also see these measures as temporary.

Another concern comes from those who have invested financially in the neighborhoods. If you own property or businesses in the community you want people to come in- to live, shop, dine and work here. There is fear that no one will want to come into a neighborhood that needs cameras and sensors. I would argue that the crime itself would dissuade people from moving into a neighborhood. If people feel safe, they will come and live, shop and work. Bad reputations are made by the crimes themselves, not responding technology.

Another fear is that ShotSpotter and cameras will drive crime into adjacent neighborhoods. Guess what? It is already there! There are no physical barriers separating the neighborhoods. People who commit crimes may live in one section of the city and be apprehended for crimes committed in another section of the city or even in another town. Many of the trouble-makers in Union Hill came from other parts of the city. In time, if not arrested, they will move elsewhere. Let’s work together to deal with problems, not close our eyes and point fingers.

One argument states that statistics do not bear out the need for high- tech tools. Few gunshots are reported, and other cities are even worse than Worcester in terms of violent crime. True. One reason brought out at the ShotSpotter presentation for low gunshot reports is that few people call the police when they hear gunshots. I know I don’t. It is very difficult to determine where the sounds are coming from unless the shots are very close by. Some people feel that they may be mistaken. Could it be fireworks? Others are just plain afraid of retaliation. So statistics about gunfire don’t tell the whole story. As for other cities being worse than Worcester in terms of violent crimes, I am sure there are. As far as I’m concerned, one gun fired or one crime committed is one too many.

At a recent meeting, I was accused of being an alarmist, for basing my endorsement of ShotSpotter and surveillance cameras on fear rather than on information. This comment was based on the testimonies given by myself and another resident at the CSX Advisory Committee meeting on October 12. Neither one of us are alarmists. Are we afraid? Certainly. But we are both intelligent, well- educated women that are able to make sound decisions, based on facts, not on hysterical, knee- jerk reaction. There are still guns being fired and other crimes being committed in this section of the city and we want the police to have whatever tools they need to respond quickly and effectively to problems that arise.

In closing, I want to make reference to a book I am reading, “The Quest,” by Richard and Mary-Alice Jafolla. It is a book about making improvements in an individual’s spiritual life, but I think it relates just as well with the health of a community. One section deals with the use of denials and affirmations. It states that if you change a baby’s diaper, you don’t put a clean diaper over an old one. You clean up the mess first! That’s what is needed now. We have to allow the police to do their work and get rid of all the CRAP in this neighborhood…in this city before improvements will take hold. I endorse ShotSpotter because it will enable the police to do an even better job of cleaning up my community, safely, efficiently, and effectively.

 

 

 

A sobering experience in Worcester’s innercity

By Ron O’Clair

Morris “Moe” Bergman, Worcester City Councilor at-Large-elect, made a campaign promise: To increase the eviction laws to help property owners speedily evict troublesome tenants who are involved in illegal or detrimental activities as indicated by the following statement that comes right off of his campaign mailer to voters. Here it is, and I quote: “Moe Bergman wants to expand existing nuisance eviction laws to help residents, police and property owners to quickly and permanently remove from neighborhoods individuals committing gun/gang/drug related crimes.”

A recent experience that I had with a couple that I shall refer to as “Fred & Wilma” along with numerous other incidents over the years that I have been the building and property superintendent of 703 – 711 Main Street makes that pledge stand out as particularly pertinent to the rooming house I manage as part of the property that I am the responsible party for.

When a vacancy occurs in the rooming house, it is part of my duties as the building superintendent to prepare the room for rental, accept applications from potential tenants, and interview those tenants to see if they will be an asset or a detriment to the tenants that are already housed within the building. It has been my experience over the years that drugs and alcohol usage and abuse are the primary factors that destroy the peace, serenity, and safety of the building.

With that in mind, the owner, Julio Romero and I publicly posted our intention to make the rooming house a clean & sober living environment at the height of the insanity some years back. I had several tenants at that time involved in illicit activities that made living here almost intolerable, and even though we went through the legal process of eviction of these longstanding tenants, they refused to leave causing us further anguish and expense with unpaid rents accumulating to unrealistic amounts.

This was due to the fact that if a tenant that has established a tenancy, (which takes longer than a week by the way) loses the case in Housing Court for non-payment and is ordered by the Housing Court to leave by a certain date and fails to do so, the owner has no legal recourse other than to have the Sheriffs Constables carry out the eviction by force, with a moving company being paid to store the deadbeats possessions for three months at the landlords expense.

This process is very expensive and the landlord not only loses the back rent, they are on the hook for a considerable sum of money to carry out the eviction. When he went through that in 2003 with a tenant who owed a lot of money and was running a drug store out of the rear parking lot window, it cost Julio $2,500.00 more to remove the tenant and even though the rooms are furnished when rented, the moving company took all the furnishings along with the belongings against my objection.

So Julio had the further expense of replacing the furniture.

When Senor Romero took possession of the building from Paul M. Berger in March of 2003, 7 out of the 11 rooms on one side of the rooming house had tenants that were involved in illegal drug sales activity and the place was known as a place to score the drug of choice the buyers were looking for.

There was an all night stream of deadbeats, hookers, crack heads, junkies and thieves parading in and out of the building, using the bathroom facilities reserved for tenant use only to take showers and shoot up in, making it impossible for those that paid rent to use their own bathrooms, or be secure in their possessions due to the frequency of break-ins to the individual rooms while they were out.

In addition to those who were doing and selling drugs, we had others who were severe alcoholics and would cause all sorts of problems while intoxicated beyond belief to the point of being a danger to the other tenants by attempting to cook in an inebriated condition and causing fires when they failed to attend to the task properly.

There were numerous knock down, dragged out fights caused by the drunks becoming violent or mouthy under the influence. They also endangered themselves by falling down the stairs in a drunken stupor, requiring emergency medical services to have to come take them to the hospital. The police were called frequently as a result, taking them away from more important matters.

Julio was beside himself, ruing the day he ever got involved with purchasing the building, and watched as the investment of his life savings was threatened to be taken from him by the City of Worcester like 5 Sycamore Street had been shortly before. In fact many years later, Barbara Haller, former District 4 City Councilor admitted to me that the process had begun, and this building was the next one that the City planned to take in an effort to combat lawlessness in this neighborhood that is adjacent to the then location of the PIP shelter.

Between March and June of 2003, Julio had appointed the statutorily required live in manager 5 different times trying to find someone up to the task of wresting control of the building back from those hell bent on destroying it, and maintaining their lucrative drug sales activities unhampered by interference by the good residents who began fleeing in terror due to all the commotion going on 24/7/365. At the time I had been a tenant since 03 July 1996 and watched as Berger began losing control of the building from that time up to the time he sold it in 2003.

When Berger owned it, the activity went on only at night when Paul closed Berger Army & Navy and went home to Framingham each night. After he sold, the place operated on a 24 hour basis unimpeded by any attempt Julio made to stop the illegal activity. I started to write about what was going on, and sent some of the stories to the Telegram & Gazette, as well as to the then rather newly created InCity Times that Rosalie Tirella started up in protest to the established papers of that time.

I owe Rosalie a great debt of gratitude for letting me sow my oats as a writer through her publication of my early attempts as a journalist and aspiring writer of book length manuscripts. I have grown under her tutelage over the years, and have written some hard hitting stories that brought me some recognition as a writer. Rosalie and I have always been advocates for the less fortunate, and for the ethical treatment of people and animals.

As an alcoholic in recovery myself with 30 plus years in the A.A program, I try to help those that have a problem with alcohol and drugs get the treatment they need to combat the insidiousness of addiction and start the long road to recovery.

That is why when a case manager from the Homeless Outreach and Advocacy Program (HOAP) run out of the Community Healthlink building located at 162 Chandler Street came to me on the 16th of October with two of the worst of the former PIP shelter clients whom I had had numerous problems with over the years trespassing on the private property I manage here, I consented to give them a trial period  based upon verbal assurances from all concerned that they had stopped drinking and that no problems would ensue if I allowed them to take up residence.

I was very skeptical, but the laws do not allow me to discriminate when accepting applications for housing and the rent was guaranteed by the Community Healthlink, Inc. Beneficiary Account program which acts as a payee for people receiving Social Security Disability Income payments, who are not responsible enough to be trusted with their own money, and need to have a payee ensure that it is spent on needed things rather than have it all go to drugs or alcohol.

Julio has three tenants currently who owe a combined total of over $6000.00 in back rent of whom he has taken two to Housing Court already and won eviction, with the third scheduled to go to Housing Court on the 31st of October.   Along with the fact that my own nephew Anthony who is an I.V. drug user stole nearly $1,800 from his uncle Ron that was collected rents due the landlord, for the second time since I tried to help him into recovery from drug abuse.

The first time was when I allowed Anthony to move into the building intending to try and help him into recovery on his promise to help me out around the place with renovations in return for the rent, and he was responsible for the theft of other tenants possessions as well as money that I had collected from rents, to the tune of over $2000.00 that time.

The problem was, at the time I had three other suspects that were living here, but could not be sure that it was my own flesh and blood who had committed the thefts. Anthony swore up and down that he would never do that to his uncle Ron, and I halfway believed him. Julio graciously did not fire me and accepted the loss as a cost of doing business in these times here in Worcester where drug and alcohol usage and abuse causes many such thefts throughout the city to support drug habits.

My GMC pick-up was broken into for the second time just recently and the thieves made off with the brand new muffler I had in the backseat that I got from the guy who owns Meineke Muffler on Park Ave for pulling his truck out of a snow bank last winter during one of the many blizzards we had. Along with the muffler went anything else of value that I had in there. And I found a crack whore sleeping on my front seat that I had pulled out by her feet rather than have the police come and fail to arrest her for trespassing and breaking and entering a motor vehicle. In all my calls over the years, only a handful of arrests were made signaling to the criminals that the illegal behaviors could be continued without fear of arrest. A few arrests would have stopped all the unnecessary criminal activity we have had to put up with over the years that I have been here.

Those are the reasons that I reluctantly consented to give “Fred & Wilma” a chance to prove to me that they had changed their M.O. and could be relied upon to honor their verbal agreement not to drink, and to not cause the other tenants any grief. But, having grown wiser over the years of managing the rooming house I protected myself and Julio by not allowing them to establish a tenancy during the trial period. No money was taken during the period they were here, nor any rent receipt given.

When events that transpired during the first of the week by week arrangement that we all had agreed upon proved the unsuitability of “Fred & Wilma” I terminated the arrangement, returned the uncashed check and the few items that were left in the room, and thought that was the end of it.

Donna Domiziano of the Mustard Seed on Piedmont Street here in the city, who advocates for the needy and truly cares about the less fortunate who patronize the free food program also known as the Catholic Worker House, tried to convince me to give “Wilma” a chance to remain all by herself without “Fred” who I had caught causing a disturbance at 9:30 Sunday morning the 20th of October. But I learned that “Wilma” had not only snuck “Fred” back in against the agreement that I had made when Donna showed up at my door to plead the case of letting “Wilma” stay overnight on the 22nd so she could remove her possessions the next day, she had also allowed a visitor against my “No Visitor” policy.

Mark, one of the volunteer’s at the Mustard Seed admitted to me that he had been watching television with “Fred & Wilma” on the television that Donna loaned to them with rabbit ears that he had loaned to the couple. That was before he assaulted me physically after Donna had asked him to help me unload the van of “Fred & Wilma’s” possessions. During the discussions that preceded unloading the van, tempers flared and lots of shouting and verbal abuse was heaped my way by several of the habitué’s of the Mustard Seed who vociferously objected to me not allowing “Fred & Wilma” to stay.

It was while unloading Donnas’ television that I was assaulted my Mark, nearly causing me to drop the television on the ground which would have smashed it to pieces I am sure. I can understand and empathize with those that advocate placement of homeless drug addicts and alcoholics due to concerns of them freezing to death as the weather turns colder, but I can’t allow them to destroy what peace and serenity or safety and security I have managed to achieve here at Romero’s.

At one point I had suggested to Donna that if she was so concerned about them sleeping outside, she should let them sleep inside where the people eat. She did not like that idea.

The supervisor of the case manager that had agreed to the temporary trial period who refused to give me his name upon my request when I returned the draft for the $750.00, threatened me with all sorts of legal actions if I did not reconsider and allow “Fred & Wilma” to return. I don’t think he will be successful seeing as how I never allowed the couple to establish a tenancy.

I can understand that they are staunch advocates for their clients and are trying to place the most difficult cases in housing before the winter weather comes, and a solution must be found to house these people somewhere, but I can’t jeopardize my other tenants with those that can’t follow the rules that are in place that regulate acceptable behavior in the rooming house.

There is apparently a need for a heated space that can be used in the fashion that the old PIP shelter had been where the homeless can crash out on the floor overnight in the sub-zero temperatures that will come with the winter ahead of us. Some of the clients of HOAP are clearly unsuited to live among other people in a rooming house environment.

If anyone has any idea’s to solve this issue, District 4 Councilor Sarai Rivera would be a good person to contact to implement them. The new version of the PIP seems to lack the capacity that the old PIP did.

The “nursing” home

By Rosalie Tirella

“I think she was sick before she got here,” the nurse at the rehab/nursing home (Holy Trinity on Barber Ave.) told me.

I had just left my mom’s room and walked to the nurse’s station at the end of the corridor to voice my concerns to the gaggle of nurses in charge of the care of a couple of dozen “patients” stricken with mild to moderate demetia – including my mom who is also there for “rehab” after a fall in her studio apartment. I am alarmed because I have never seen my mom so ill, so stuck in illness, a tube carrying oxygen to her lungs stuck up her nose, her arm bruised from the poking of IV needles. There she is, in her half of her “new” room (nice roommate) sitting alone in her wheelchair, her head bent forward, snoozing quietly.

When I visit my mom (almost every day), she seems awefully sleepy. Today, when I first entered her room, she was asleep again – totally alone, her head hanging forward again – how uncomfortable! How I missed her old pale pink wingback chair that she parked her little butt in for years as she watched cable news, catholic mass and the Red Sox. You are always in a wheel chair! I told her last time I visited. She said: It’s so comfortable, it doesn’t even feel like I am in a wheel chair.

I did some inspecting and, yes, there was lots of foam, a pillow behind her back, etc. “She’s languishing!” I screamed inside my head. I told myself: This is what people told me would happen if I stuck my mom in a nursing home.

There would be no recovery – only the slow (or speedy) descent into … death.

Where is her comfy wing back chair?!

“Ma,” do you want me to buy you a cute little easy chair for the window?” I ask her one time.

“No, no. I like this.”

“She’s always bounced back,” I tell the nursing home nurse, trying not to show my alarm. I should know! I was her primary care giver for more than four years. Every time she fell in her studio apartment, I sprang into action and rescued her! Saved my mom from the jaws of death. I was always PRESENT, following the ambulance that took her to Memorial Hospital, confering with the doctors/interns (kids) there, being nice to a passel of nurses and social workers, being nasty, threatening with a column when people seemed unresponsive – whatever it took to make my mother well again! I was the miracle lady! And my mom – 85 – always returned home! To her cat, her rosaries, her prayers, her little kitchen and coffee maker.

I don’t want to piss these nurses off, get off to a bad start with them, I tell myself. This could be a permanent thing. They take care of my mother. Her life is in their hands. I want to make them love her one one hundredth as much as I do!

Maybe then, my mom can get well! Well, enough to enjoy a few fruitful, comfortable years at this nursing home, where friends and family can visit and she can be safe. She gets three hot, square meals a day. She has all kinds of nice people taking her blood pressure, taking her temperature, combing her hair, putting her to bed. A time to be nurtured, even spoiled .. like a little baby. My old mother has come full circle.

I am now resigned to the fact that she can never return home. I have the heartbreaking task of closing up her apartment.

I smile at the nurse sitting at the nurse’s station, a lady in her sixties who does seem kind and does seem to like and care about my mom. I tell “Mary” that my mom has had pneumonia before and that several days of intravenous antibiotics usually knoocks out the infection in her lung.

“But we had to give her [oral anibiotics]… so that they would work on the infection on her leg,” Mary explained to me, looking a tad annoyed that me – a mere lay person – has the temerity to stick her nose where it doesn’t belong – in the MEDICAL PROFESSION.

Quiet please! MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS AT WORK! Mary told me she also gave her 50 milligrams of tresedone at night, to calm her down. And mymom gets some during the day. “She gets too busy,” Mary tells me. I am a little worried. My mom has never been sedated like this, and it seems nurse Mary has called the shots. The doctor of this nursing home hasn’t examined my mom. It looks like he rubberstamps what nurse Mary prescribes.

At one nursing home I worked at as an activities assistant decades ago, some nurses there were incredible – most were pretty average. There was even a dud or two – take the head nurse of the dementia unit there. She was always so solicitous of patients when their families were visiting, and then when they left, she would make fun of the patients … or sometimes take her shoes off and paint her toenails!

I can’t help it. My mom, old people have gotten under my skin. Even though I didn’t live with my mom, I took care of her – got her on the Meals on Wheels/lunch bag program, got her home health aides, personal care attendants. I was there every few days checking on her, making shopping lists, bringing in cleaning supplies or toiletries, keeping tabs on everything – the entire freakin’ operation. That’s what it became at the end – a freakin’, time-sucking operation. Exhausting!! – loving my mom! But she had loved me all these years, I told myself, and now foggy-brained and incapable of keeping up her own place, she needed her eldest daughter to swoop in an SAVE THE DAY. She has always expected it – and I have never disappointed her.

I won’t fail ya now, Ma! I tell myself as I watch her … letting go.

So, I want to tell Mary the nurse, I know a little bit about keeping my mom happy and healthy. For you to tell me “she came in sick” is BULL SHIT. Utter buck-passing. I am no fool. I tell her I want a doctor to check my mom and that i will make a special appointment with a gerontologist – a doc who specializes in old people! – to make sure she is on the right meds. Mary frowns. She says he may not even be allowed on the premises, since he is not the doctor in charge at the nursing home – Holy Trinity. I am taken aback. I tell her: I want my mom seen by this excellent gerontologist. “Mary” says he has to be cleared – to make sure he has the right credentials. I want to say: You mean like you, bitch? A nurse PLAYING doctor for my mom and all the other demential patients here? (most of whom look drugged out, as they have their chairs parked around “Mary’s” nurses station – quiet, drugged up little babies. No problem at all caring for such quiet, subdued seniors.

I want to rush into my mom’s room, grab my mom in her wheel chair and roll her out of this place – forever!

But my hands are tied. What can I do? I cannot unhook my little mother from her metal, ugly oxygen tank. I cannot drive her to the hospital and demand the docs “make things happen.” Been there – done that – four times! And Ma can’t go home because THE STATE of MASSACHUSETTS HAS CUT HER SERVICES/MEALS thanks to Elder Services of Worcester, whose nurses/social workers tell me she will be much better cared for at a nursing home. … this nursing home, Holy Trinity, where I can see her looking bloated, drugged up, attached to tubes, arms black and blue …. .

And yet Mom is quietly happy. She tells me the people at the home are so nice, everyone is so gentle with her, they take such good care of her, the food is excellent, they always bring her her coffee. She likes her roommate, too. And she he seems … happy. It’s as if the attention and all the nursing staff and activities staff coming and going is llike a tonic to her. A people person her whole life, my mother now, through her anxiety and tiredness, stresses she doesn’t want to go back to Illyrian Gardens, a place now filled with tight ass staff, a senior citizens complex now run by people who don’t even like senior citizens. I always knew this. My mom did, too, but she repressed her true feeling because she so loved living in her little studio apartment.

Now she calls a spade a spade. She says: “I wasn’t happy there [Illyrian Gardens] – the people … ” and she makes a face. “They [director and staff] were snobs!”

She used the word “snob,” but what my mom meant was that: the staff at Illyrian Garden never cared about her, never stopped by her apartment to say hello or wish her well. No smiles, no pats on the shoulders. Definitely no hugs.

Here at this new place, a nurse told me: “You mother is so nice – we all love her.”

She seemed sincere. I chose to believe her.

Still, the medical care seems substandard.

I have to leave now. I walk back to my mom’s room. “Ma,” I say to her, “I have to go.” I grab her hand off the utility table where she has a plastic cup filled with coffee waiting for her (I will bring her her super duper official huge Red Sox mug tomorrow!). My mom’s little bed side table is covered with the prayer books and photos and perfume bottle I brought for her from her apartment. I notice how warm her hand is. A fever perhaps from the infection in her lung (pneumonia) and in her leg (the bruise from her fall is not healing fast enough). I cannot believe her hand has gotten so gray, so veiny, so bony. Still, I love the warmth I am getting from her. I am loosely holding my mother’s hand in mine. I want to hold it forever.

60 Providence St. – gangs, drugs, violence, guns (for YEARS!)

 By “Jane Doe”

Recently, there has been quite a bit of publicity about the gang activity and increasing violence centered around 60 Providence Street. Newspaper articles claim that police have been responding to complaints for the past two years. While it is true that crime has increased during this time, complaints have actually been made about that building for over ten years.

        I remember attending the opening meeting of the Providence Street Neighborhood Watch in winter of 2001 and hearing neighbors voice concerns about that property and some of the buildings in that area. People noticed that young men were meeting in front of 60 Providence Street selling drugs. Most of these men did not live in the building, but came from neighboring streets. Steve Patton from Worcester Common Ground was invited to one of the meetings to discuss solutions to the problem. One idea was to put up security cameras in hallways and entranceways. Things quieted down a bit but did not disappear entirely.

        A few years later, we noticed that PSP (Providence Street Posse) was being spray painted on some of the buildings, vacant and occupied, around the Harrison Street and Providence Street corner. Neighbors brought this to the Worcester Police gang unit’s attention at the crime watch meeting. We were told that this was not a recognized gang, but a bunch of young kids who were trying to play at being gang members. There was nothing to worry about.

         Over the past few years things have been getting worse. Gunshots are frequent. You can see drug dealers standing on the corners or walking up and down the streets. There have been drive-by shootings, fights and attempted robberies. The Providence Street Posse, gang member wannabes, are now moving into other parts of the city as full- fledged gang members. Now that this violence has moved into downtown Worcester, city officials are sitting up and taking notice.

         Many people feel that their complaints to police were ignored, but I don’t think this is true. Laws protecting the rights of the offenders often limit what police can do. Often police make arrests, just to have these criminals released back into the neighborhoods. Police cannot make arrests solely based on complaints. They usually have to catch drug dealers in the act. It takes time to build up a case to put these people away. In the meantime, this section of the city continues to get worse as gangs get more powerful and rival gangs move into the area. It is disheartening to hear people from other neighborhoods talk about your home as being in a “war zone.”

         Unfortunately, many of us feel like we are caught in a vicious cycle. As decent people get sick of the situation, they move out to safer communities. Those of us who cannot move live in fear of what will happen next. As decent people move out, more of the troublemakers move in. Violence escalates.

          I have no solutions. I wish laws were stricter, making it easier to arrest these criminals, put them away, and keep them away. I wish we could walk and drive through this neighborhood without fear of becoming victims. I especially wish landlords could be more careful about who moves into their buildings and be more aggressive in evicting troublemakers. In the meantime, many of us wish we could just get out. Too bad. This was once a nice middle class neighborhood, where people knew each other and looked out for one another. There was almost no crime. I wish we could go back to the way it was!

Meet your neighbors! Gerard “Jerry” Michaud

By Ron O’Clair
 
 
Gerard “Jerry” Michaud was the caretaker of the Notre Dame Des Canadiens Church located at Salem Square for many years, and has lived in my building (700 Main St. – across the street from the former PIP shelter) for a long time, as he says 8 years. He has been unable to get a good night’s rest for so long, he has taken to wearing ear plugs in his sleep.  
 
Jerry lives in the room overlooking “the action and hearing the commotion, 24/7/365 since the WPD has failed to address repeated pleas to halt the anti-social lawless behavior keeping poor “Jerry” awake, I thought I would interview him first. My questions are often long and probing deeply into the ground zero atmosphere of rampant lawlessness, this author’s battle to take the streets back, and the indifference heretofore experienced by a certain segment of the veteran officers of Chief Gary Gemme’s troops who acted knowingly, or inadvertently to help the crime wave prosper by lax enforcement of the little laws such as littering and jaywalking.  
 The answers are all the opinions of the respondents, in their own words.
 
The interview:
Q:  What brought you to the area of my concern, the 700 block of Main Street?
A:  Upon leaving my last address I had to find a p lace closer to my work.
Q:  Did you have reservations about moving into a rooming house located in one of the highest crime areas of the city of Worcester?
A: At the time I didn’t know much about the area, or its going ons.
Q:  Was I influential in your decision to move into the building?
A: Yes, you were, it seemed to be a good and safe place to live, and also a close place for my A.A. meetings held next door at Unity Hall on the 4th floor of the SMOC building that used to house the P.I.P. shelter.
Q:  So, my clean and sober living requirement appealed to you?
A: Yes, it did.
Q:  You’ve noticed quite a lot of criminal trespass, disturbance of the peace, assaultive behaviors, littering & loitering of our sidewalks in the past haven’t you?
A: Yes, in 8 ? years I’ve been here, crime and drug activities seemed to have risen.
Q:  Do you feel safe walking around the neighborhood – in the daylight? In the nighttime? How safe do you feel outside overall?
A: In the daylight I feel safe, but at night, I’ve been leery and very cautious, as I was once accosted near the Registry of Motor Vehicles on Main Street, at night.
Q: With all the security measures I have in place, and my own ability to handle what happens, as it happens, do you feel safe inside the building?
A: I feel safe in the building, since security measures have been implemented, this includes screening of all incoming tenants, and the “No visitor’s policy”
Q: As your building superintendent, have I done everything possible to provide you with a safe, secure, and comfortable place to reside? And do you feel safe with the “super” being on site 24/7/365?
A: Yes, you have since you involved the police with constant security watch.
Q: What do you think of my “shock and awe” campaign put into effect since the 30th day of July, and the resultant drop in the amount of criminal activity not being allowed by me to continue unabated? By my own efforts to not be intimidated by criminal minded citizens who have come to believe that this area is “their” turf, and they have every right to disturb the peace every night, deal drugs from the corners of Charlton & Wellington Streets, and generally think they are above the law?
A: Your campaign has had an impact on safety around here, especially in drug dealing – however, there is still prostituting going on daily. Your methods; with cooperation with police, has had a great change of scenery at 707 Main Street and the area of Charlton and Wellington streets.