City to Hold Memorial Day Celebration

Memorial Day in Medford

The City of Medford’s annual Memorial Day celebration is taking place on Monday, May 25 at 10AM at Oak Grove Cemetery on Playstead Road. It will be the last city Memorial Day ceremony for outgoing Mayor Michael McGlynn. A schedule of events is available on the city’s website.

– InsideMedford.com

Court Date Set for Medford Man Accused of Animal Cruelty

Ryan Baker– Allison Goldsberry

A Medford man accused of animal cruelty will return to court in July, according to information released by Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan’s office.

Judge Maurice Flynn scheduled a court hearing for Ryan Baker, 31, for July 14 at a pretrial hearing on Tuesday. Baker is charged with three counts of cruelty to animals, a felony.

Medford Police say video evidence helped them nab Baker in March. According to police, Baker’s neighbor witnessed him beating his girlfriend’s pit bull, Bullet, and the neighbor handed over video that allegedly shows Baker punching, kicking, dragging, and throwing the dog on three separate occasions. Those incidents took place in December 2014 and January and March of this year, according to information released by police.

Following Baker’s arrest in March, police said Bullet was in good health except for a cut above his right eye. The dog was checked out by police and Medford’s Animal Control Officer, Patrick Hogan. Police say the dog’s owner had no idea what had been happening to Bullet. The dog was released into her custody and is said to be “well taken care of other than his exposure to [Ryan] Baker.”

Medford’s Animal Control Office and the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals have been assisting police with the case.

Rep. Donato Not Running for Mayor

I am humbled by the number of Medford residents who have urged me to run for the Office of Mayor in the upcoming election. The outpouring of encouragement and support is most gratifying. The opportunity to be Chief Executive of the City that I love and that I have been so intimately involved in for many years is a prospect that I take very seriously especially as we are about to change leadership for the first time in nearly three decades.

Experience in government, knowledge of the City, and the ability to bring varying groups together are all qualities that the Mayor will need and are all qualities that I possess. However, after careful consideration, I have concluded that I can best serve the citizens of Medford in my present position as Assistant Majority Leader in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. I hope to continue to work tirelessly in this position to benefit my constituents and I look forward to working with the new Mayor.

– Submitted by State Rep. Paul Donato

Mustang Softball Team Seeking GBL Title

– Allison Goldsberry

The Medford Mustang softball team is in contention to repeat as Greater Boston League champion following a 6-4 win over Everett on Monday.

Freshman Halle Farrell ignited the team’s offense with a three run homer in the first inning, according to Head Coach Jack Dempsey. Farrell followed up with a two run double in the third inning that gave Medford a 6-0 lead before Everett threatened a comeback.

Senior captain Brianna Napoleone, among the state’s top batters with 30 RBI’s and a .646 average, contributed four hits. Captain Bailey Flynn, also a top batter with a .595 average, contributed three hits. Senior captain Julia Kearney once again played a strong game behind the plate and lined a big double to center field, said Coach Dempsey. Senior third baseman Julia Mitrano pitched in with a single and some very nice defensive plays.

Per usual junior captain Ashley Eisnor dominated on the mound. She spun a five hitter, striking out eleven Crimson Tide batters en route to her tenth win of the season.

The Lady Mustangs now stand on top of the GBL with a 4 and 1 record. Medford is 10-4 overall and has qualified for the state tournament for the seventh straight season.

A win over Somerville on Wednesday would give Medford the GBL title outright. Medford hosts Somerville at 3:45PM at Columbus Park.

MHS Band to Host ‘A Night At The Movies’ May 23rd

MHS Band A Night at the Movies concertThe Medford High School Band, in association with the Chevalier Theater, proudly presents A Night At The Movies on Saturday, May 23 at 7pm.

The evening will feature the award winning Medford Mustang Marching Band playing your favorite music from Star Wars, Jurassic Park, Wizard of Oz, How to Train Your Dragon andFrozen.

Tickets are $15, with proceeds going to support the band. Doors open at 6:30.

If you’re staycationing this holiday weekend, keep it local with a fun evening in the square and A Night At The Movies!

– Information from Meryl Perlson. Courtesy photo.

Camuso Backs Burke for Mayor

As a City Councilor, it is imperative to look for ways to improve the quality of life in our community on a daily basis. One way to achieve this is by supporting candidates for office that have a clear vision for the City of Medford.

Stephanie Muccini Burke has that vision and I announce today that I am supporting her candidacy to become the next Mayor of the City of Medford.

Stephanie’s executive level experience and her eight terms as a Medford City Councilor, along with her unwavering commitment to this community make her the ideal person to lead this City forward in the coming years.

I have had the pleasure of working with Stephanie on many key issues and we share the same progressive ideas and values. Stephanie’s leadership as a City Councilor on her “Small Restaurant Initiative” lowering the seating requirements for liquor licenses and establishing a beer/wine license has proven to be a positive step forward in attracting quality dining establishments to Medford.

As the Budget Director, Stephanie has delivered a strong city budget preserving core city services while at the same time looking for ways to strengthen the city’s financial state. She has done this by refinancing the cities debt to bring significant savings to the City of Medford.

For these reasons and many more, I look forward to working with Stephanie over the coming months to make her the next Mayor in the City of Medford.

Burke stated “I am humbled and honored to be endorsed by Councilor Camuso. His unwavering commitment to the vitality of the City of Medford is evident. Paul’s character and work ethic is unmatched. His approach to all he endeavors is a credit to his parents and his strong family values. That is a thread that we share and I am proud to call him my friend.”

– Submitted by City Councilor Paul Camuso

Police Drug Bust Nets 2 Arrests, Over $40K, Illegal Gun, Heroin

Medford drug bust

– Allison Goldsberry

On Friday afternoon Medford Police arrested two suspects and seized over $40,000, an illegal hand gun, and more than fifty grams of heroin. According to information released by police, Friday’s drug bust was the result of an ongoing illegal heroin distribution investigation and involved the DEA Task Force, Everett Police, and the Cambridge Police Narcotics Unit.

Medford Police already had a search warrant for the residence of one of the suspects, 45-year-old Medford resident Michael Puntonio. Before police searched his 22 Mayberry Avenue apartment, they saw Puntonio allegedly engaging in a “narcotics transaction” at Main and Wareham Streets with 46-year-old Chelsea resident Alexis Delvalle. Both men were arrested and the subsequent search of Puntonio’s apartment yielded the money, gun, ammunition, and heroin, according to police.

Puntonio is charged with Possession with intent to Distribute Class A (Heroin) subsuquent offense, Trafficking in Class A (heroin), Possession of a Firearm w/o FID Card (subsuquent offense), Unlawful Possession of Ammunition, and Conspiracy to Violate the Drug Laws. Mr. Delvalle is charged with Conspiracy to Violate Drug Laws.

Both suspects are expected to be arraigned in Somerville District Court on Monday.

Sheriff’s Office Releases Pretrial Population Study

Middlesex Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian in conjunction with members of the Massachusetts State Senate today released a National Institute of Corrections (NIC) study focused on the pretrial population at the Middlesex House of Correction & Jail.

“As Sheriff I have witnessed a steady increase in our pretrial population over the last few years, and I felt the
issue warranted a more in-depth analysis,” said Sheriff Koutoujian.

At the request of Senators Patricia Jehlen (D–Somerville) and Jamie Eldridge (D–Acton) who shared Sheriff Koutoujian’s concerns regarding the increase in population, the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office (MSO) requested technical assistance from the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) in order to conduct a trend analysis of its
pretrial population.

The study confirmed that over a six-year period (2008-2013) the average length of stay for pretrial defendants at the Middlesex Jail increased by nearly 24 percent, while the average daily population increased by 30 percent during that same period, from 593 detainees to 772.

The report also provided key recommendations to stakeholders. These include:

– Convening a criminal justice coordinating committee to implement recommendations and assess their effectiveness;

– Tracking data to measure outcomes to identify criminal justice trends; and

– Adopting a risk assessment tool to assist in determining high and low risk defendants.

“I’m grateful for Sheriff Koutoujian’s strong support for a comprehensive study of the pre-trial prison population in the Middlesex County House of Correction and Jail by the National Institute of Corrections (NIC), and his commitment to reforming the pre-trial system as it currently exists,” said Sen. Eldridge. “As the Senate Chair of the Harm Reduction and Drug Law Reform Caucus in the Legislature, I am deeply committed to passing criminal justice reform that will reduce our state’s prison population, and reduce the disparate impact that system has on low-income people, especially in communities of color. The NIC study will help move this discussion forward.”

In response to the analysis conducted by the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office and the NIC, the Massachusetts Trial Court has appointed Sheriff Koutoujian to the Probation Pretrial Services Task Force, a panel comprised of members from across the criminal justice community, focused on pretrial practice and assessment of the effectiveness of best practices. Originally formed in 2014 to examine pretrial practices across the Commonwealth, the task force has now undertaken the development of a pretrial risk assessment tool for use on a pilot basis in Middlesex County.

“Utilizing a validated risk assessment would provide objectivity, consistency, and reliability to this process, while making valid distinctions between high and low risk defendants,” according to the report.

“The Trial Court looks forward to collaborating with the Middlesex Sheriff and other stakeholders on the development and implementation of a pretrial risk assessment pilot program in Middlesex County,” said Trial Court Chief Justice Paula Carey.

“This report shows a troubling increase in the pretrial population and average length of stay,” said Sen. Jehlen. “The Sheriff and the Trial Court are great partners and the risk assessment pilot program is an important first step, but it is time for the legislature to pass a comprehensive pretrial reform package.”

“I applaud Sheriff Koutoujian and my Senate colleagues for requesting the NIC study. I have had serious concerns about the growth of the population at the Billerica Jail, and I appreciate that we now have the data to show how quickly it has been growing,” said Sen. Donnelly, who represents Billerica. “I look forward to bringing this issue before the legislature and working with the Sheriff and the Trial Court to implement meaningful reforms that ensure our pretrial process is fair and efficient.”

“With so much attention being focused on the issue of criminal justice reform, my hope is that these findings and recommendations can help guide policy discussions moving forward,” said Sheriff Koutoujian. “While the analysis was specific to Middlesex County, much of what we learned is applicable statewide. I look forward to working with the members of the Judiciary, the Legislature and my law enforcement colleagues to implement key reforms to make the system stronger and more equitable.”

The complete NIC study can be found on the Media Room page of the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office website (www.middlesexsheriff.org).

– Submitted by Sheriff Koutoujian’s office

Warren Ramirez, 80

Warren RamirezMr. W. Warren Ramirez, a lifelong resident of Medford and loving partner of Kathleen A. Beebee, passed away at his home on Thursday, May 14, 2015. He was 80 years old.

Born in Medford, Massachusetts, on February 9, 1935, he was the beloved son of the late Joseph E. and Mildred G. (Gould) Ramirez. Warren was a 1952 graduate of Medford High School and of North Eastern University, class of 1957. Mr. Ramirez was a Vice President of Brookline Bank and had also been employed by Arlington 5 for many years. Warren was an active life long member of the Grace Episcopal Church in Medford and was a member of the Vestry, a Eucharistic Minister and had served on many committees at the Church. He was also a trustee of donations for the Episcopal Diocese of Eastern Massachusetts. Warren was active in the City of Medford and was a member of the Medford Rotary, a member of the Medford Lions, a charter member of the Human Rights Commission and a member of the Blue Ribbon Commission to name a few. He also sang in the St. Joseph Choir. He will be dearly missed.

Besides his loving partner, Kathleen, he is survived by his devoted brother Edwin A. and his wife Genevieve Ramirez of West Yarmouth, sister-in-law; Lois Ramirez of Santa Clara, California, nieces and nephews; Kenneth Ramirez, Karen Goldenburger, JoAnne Verzi, Steven W. Ramirez, Lisa Giacchetto, Susan William, Robert Ramirez, Susan Ramirez and Steven Ramirez, great-nieces and great-nephews; Robbie, Cassie, Reese, Austin, Brent, Chad, Laura, Paul, Kelly, Julia R., Kayla, Stephanie and Jonathan and many cousins. He was also the brother of the late William B. Ramirez.

His Funeral Mass will be celebrated in the Grace Episcopal Church, 160 High Street, Medford on Monday, May 18, 2015, at 10 AM. Relatives and friends are most welcome to attend. Visiting hours will be held in the Grace Episcopal Church on Sunday, May 17, 2015, from 4 to 8 PM. Interment will be held in the Oak Grove Cemetery in Medford. In lieu of flowers, donations in Warren’s memory may be made to the Shriners Hospital, 51 Blossom Street, Boston, MA 02114 or to the Angel Memorial Hospital, 350 South Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02130 or to the charity of your choice. For additional information, please visit, www.magliozzifuneralhome.com.

– Information and photo from Beales Geake Magliozzi Funeral Home

‘Baseball Before the Red Sox’ at Library May 19

Boston base ballDid you know Boston dominated the baseball scene in the 1870’s?

Have you heard of Hall of Famers Mike “King” Kelly, Harry Wright, or John Clarkson?

Well, come learn about the game of base ball (two words in the 19th century) in Boston prior to the beloved Boston Red Sox from baseball historian and vintage base ball player Brian Sheehy.

Sheehy’s talk, “Baseball in Boston Before the Red Sox” is taking place on Tuesday, May 19 at 7 PM at the Medford Public Library. Sheehy is a member of the Essex Baseball Club, a vintage team that travels the Northeast, playing & promoting vintage base ball.

The event is presented by the Friends of the Medford Public Library and is part of Medford’s Community Read, which is featuring books about baseball.

More details are available on www.medfordlibrary.org.

– Information and photo from Medford Public Library