Today’s Obituaries—April 25: Hudson

Melvin A. Hudson, 78, of Haverhill, died Saturday, April 20, at Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge. He was employed as a custodian at Boston University for more than 20 years before his retirement. Visiting hours are Monday, April 29, from 5-8 p.m., at Grondin-Carnevale Funeral Home, 129 Kenoza Ave. Haverhill. Burial is private.

Columbia Park Home Invasion Sends Two to Hospital; Police Seek Leads

Haverhill Police are asking for the public’s help in identifying armed and masked men who invaded a Columbia Park home last night and demanded money. An adult woman and a child were injured and sent to a local hospital for treatment, according to Captain Robert P. Pistone. The injuries were called “non-life-threatening.” The home invasion was reported just after 9 p.m., at 2 Columbia Park, when “multiple masked men entered an apartment at that location armed with a pistol and demanded money,” he said. Besides the woman and child injured, other children were also present. “Haverhill Police do not believe this to be a random attack; rather a targeted attack based on the investigation.

State Clears Haverhill Principal, Staff in Restraint Case; Second Agency Finds Program Faults

A Haverhill principal and four other staff, placed on paid leave after a student assault March 29, have been cleared of any wrongdoing and are expected to return to work immediately. The action by the state Department of Children and Families comes on the heels of state education department findings that this year’s changes to a special education program were made in defiance of state and federal regulations. The two developments are related in that teachers and parents have argued the changes at the center of the state report led to increased “acting out” episodes by special needs students. As of Tuesday afternoon, city officials could not say when Haverhill Alternative School Principal John DePolo and four staff members would return to their jobs. It is the second time since October that DePolo was forced off the job and then exonerated in incidents involving restraint of a student.

This Week’s Radio Drama: Voice of ‘Speedy Alka-Seltzer’ on ‘Gunsmoke’

Tonight, Saturday, April 20
Gunsmoke: “Yorky,” 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: “Too Much Money Matter,” 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Suspense: “The Chain,” 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Dimension X: “Time and Time Again,” 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Great Gildersleeve: Marjorie’s and Bronco’s Anniversary, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Our Miss Brooks: Marriage by Proxy, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Couple Next Door: Flowers from Unknown Admirer, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Gunsmoke: “Buffalo Hunter,” 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: “Real Smokey Matter,” 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.

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Two Methuen Residents Among 12 Accused of Stealing Identities and Benefits

Two Methuen residents are among 12 charged in federal court Thursday in Boston as part of a sweep targeting document and benefit fraud. Each allegedly used the identities of U.S. Citizens from Puerto Rico as their own. Ten of the 12 individuals are also “unlawfully present in the United States, and six have criminal records in the names of the victims whose identities they have stolen,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s office. Methuen residents Francisco Antonio Sanchez Bernabe, 48, and Lilian Fana Martinez, 28, Dominican nationals, are said to have presented a victim’s stolen identity to law enforcement as their own during multiple arrests. Sanchez Bernabe, 48, has been arrested/and or charged three times in Massachusetts.

24-Year-Old Man Dies in Methuen Scooter Crash Early This Morning

Update: The victim has since been identified as Christian Rosario of Lawrence. A 24-year-old Lawrence man is dead after the scooter he was riding collided with an oncoming car early this morning in Methuen. The driver of the Ice Bear scooter was taken to Lawrence General Hospital where he died. His name is not being released until notification of next of kin, according to a statement by Methuen Police Chief Joseph E. Solomon. At about 1:45 a.m., Methuen Police received a report of a crash in the area of Pelham and Spencer Streets.

House Ways and Means Budget Proposes Largest Chapter 70 Aid in a Decade

The House Ways and Means budget proposes the largest increase in Chapter 70 local school aid in a decade, according to a Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents memo. The fiscal 2020 budget funds Chapter 70 at $5.125 billion, a 4.5 percent increase over this fiscal year and $17.7 million more than Gov. Charlie Baker included in his budget, according to the memo from Tom Scott and Roger Hatch of the superintendents’ association. The State House News Service says Rep. Alyson Sullivan, a first-term Abington Republican, filed an amendment that would boost the Chapter 70 total by $100 million. House leadership’s budget includes a minimum aid increase of $30 per pupil. According to MASS, 182 of 318 operating school districts receive the minimum, with 136 receiving foundation aid in excess of that amount.

Residents Relying on Energy Assistance to Receive Extra $50 to $260 After Baker Relents

After facing criticism for withholding a significant portion of approved low-income heating aid until next year, the Baker administration has made an additional $8 million available this spring. But even that change did not satisfy advocates who continue to demand that no money be held back. The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program is administered locally by Community Action of Haverhill. Gov. Charlie Baker initially planned to release $11 million of the $30 million allocated by the legislature for low-income home energy assistance this fiscal year, saving the remainder for fiscal year 2020. On Friday, his administration indicated it now intends to make $19 million available this year.