NEW BEDFORD — The 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks was on the minds of many on the SouthCoast this week, with remembrances planned throughout the region.
A Freetown mom even recalled what it was like to be in the delivery room during the attacks, watching so many lives lost as she brought a new life into this world.
Surely, life as we know it changed that day, and it was the kind of seminal news event in which everyone remembers where they were the moment they heard the World Trade Center towers were hit.
But news unfolds for us every day here in New Bedford, and here are the five most popular stories on our website this week.
New Bedford Public Schools explains misreporting of arrest data
On the heels of the Black Lives Matter protests last summer, the topic of School Resource Officers in the city’s schools has been hotly debated with some in the community calling for their removal. Community activists are concerned that SRO presence and involvement in student arrests is a contributing factor in the school-to-prison pipeline.
In August 2018, DESE put a policy into place for all districts and schools across the state to report school-based arrests. New Bedford — along with many other urban districts — reported zero arrests since then. Now, they say that number is 16. Superintendent Thomas Anderson sat down with the Standard-Times to offer an explanation.
‘It’s unacceptable, there’s no excuse’:New Bedford Public Schools misreports 16 arrests
Why New Bedford is overlooked as a filming location
“Don’t Look Up,” “Free Guy,” Disney’s “Godmothered,” and Marvel’s “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” are among the handful of big box office movies to be filmed around the Boston and Massachusetts area. But New Bedford seemingly hasn’t had its moment in the spotlight.
Even when productions are looking for a fishing town, New Bedford is competing with Beverly, Gloucester, Rockport, Duxbury and Cohasset, to name a few.
The Standard-Times reached out to a location manager for an explanation.
Hollywood in New Bedford:Why the city continues to be overlooked as a filming location
DA examining New Bedford cold case
Kenneth Arsenault Jr. would be 68 years old this year. He died just after midnight on Feb. 21, 1978, when a stab wound took his life at age 24.
The medical examiner ruled his death a homicide.
No arrests were ever made, and the case became an unsolved murder for the Bristol County District Attorney.
The DA is hoping someone out there knows something and will come forward with information to shed new light on the case.
Hoping for new clues:New Bedford man was stabbed to death in 1978. The DA is revisiting the cold case.
High school football is back
After a year upended by COVID, Friday Night Lights are back and local football teams are ready to strut their stuff. After talking to head coaches from all nine local teams — Apponequet, Bishop Stang, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, GNB Voc-Tech, New Bedford, Old Colony, Old Rochester and Wareham — The Standard-Times has come up with a list of the top 50 players to watch on SouthCoast football fields this season.
2021 H.S. FOOTBALL::50 players from the SouthCoast to watch this fall
Mayor questions COVID death benefits for unvaccinated employees
The City Council last month filed a petition with the mayor’s office to establish that all COVID-19 deaths among city employees are presumed to have occurred as a result of work, thereby ensuring certain death benefits for surviving family or spouses. Last week, Mayor Jon Mitchell sent the petition back to council due to multiple “flaws,” including a lack of language regarding the vaccination status of employees.
“As I am certain that the Council would agree, it would be inappropriate to extend accidental death benefits where the employee refused to take a vaccine that had been found to be nearly 100% effective in preventing death, unless the employee had a valid medical or religious reason not to take it,” Mitchell wrote in a Sept. 1 letter to the City Council.
Read the full story:New Bedford mayor says he questions COVID death benefits for unvaccinated employees
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cold case murder, school arrests, football