Homeless Man Charged With Arson At Quincy Walmart, Roche Bros

By SCOTT JACKSON

The Walmart location in Quincy has reopened days after police said a man intentionally set a fire inside the store.

The store reopened at noon on Thursday.

Firefighters were called to the Walmart at 301 Falls Blvd. just before 6:30 p.m. on Monday, according to Capt. John Dougan of the Quincy Police Department. When they arrived, firefighters saw fire and heavy smoke coming from the building, and people running from the store.

When police arrived, Dougan said one man standing near the front door “caught the officers’ eyes” as he matched the description of the party who was believed to have started the fire. Dougan said police asked the man if he had started the fire, to which the suspect responded, “yeah, I started the fire.”

The suspect – identified as Ronald Wulfer, a 35-year-old homeless man from Quincy – was then arrested and brought to police headquarters. Dougan said officers found a Bic lighter in Wulfer’s possession, which Wulfer said he used to start the fire.

Wulfer also told officers he started a fire at a wooden fence outside the Roche Bros at 101 Falls Blvd. on Sunday evening, Dougan said.

Dougan said Wulfer was charged with two counts of arson, one count of defacing property and one count of disorderly conduct. Arraignment information was not immediately available Thursday.

Weymouth Man Charged With Robbing Quincy Bank

By SCOTT JACKSON

A Weymouth man has been charged with robbing the Quincy Credit Union on Tuesday after turning himself into police.

Capt. John Dougan of the Quincy Police Department said officers were called to the credit union’s main branch at 100 Quincy Ave. around 1 p.m. on Tuesday for a report of an unarmed robbery.

Dougan said the suspect – a white male blue sweatshirt, gray hat and a backpack – approached a teller and passed a noting demanding. The suspect was given a $20 bill and fled the bank. After leaving the bank, Dougan said the suspect removed his sweatshirt and hat and, in the process, dropped the bill.

At approximately 6:15 p.m. that evening, Dougan said Weymouth police contacted Quincy police and said a man had entered the police station and told officers he had robbed the Quincy Credit Union about five hours earlier.

The suspect, identified as Alexander Montanaro, 35, of Weymouth, was then arrested on a charge of unarmed robbery.  Arraignment information for Montanaro was not immediately available Thursday.

RIDE Paratransit Trips From Logan Airport Will Be Free Beginning Oct. 1

The MBTA announced Wednesday (Sept. 29) that paratransit RIDE trips that originate from all Logan Airport terminals and end within three-quarter miles of the MBTA’s subway system will be free beginning Friday, Oct. 1. This service complements the free transit service offered to riders on the fixed-route system from the airport.

As the MBTA continually assesses transit equity, and to bring parity for the T’s paratransit riders, the MBTA is now offering free RIDE service for trips from Logan Airport to points on the fixed-route subway system. These RIDE trips from any Logan Airport terminal will be free beginning October 1 and will remain free as long as SL1 services from Logan Airport to South Station are free. Previously, paratransit trips from Logan Airport to points along the MBTA’s subway system were charged a fare of $3.35. The RIDE provides approximately 1,000 trips from Logan Airport annually.

The RIDE Flex program, which is non-ADA, is excluded from this offering.

The RIDE paratransit service is federally mandated under the ADA and provides door-to-door, shared-ride transportation to ADA-determined eligible people who are unable to use the subway, bus, or trolley due to a temporary or permanent disability. RIDE services are available in over 50 cities and towns in the greater Boston area that are served by the MBTA’s fixed route with similar operating hours to them – generally from 5 AM to 1 AM daily and including holidays.

The SL1 bus is free from Logan Airport and picks up at every terminal with free connections to subway services at South Station.

For more information on The RIDE program, how it operates, fares, eligibility determination, and more, visit mbta.com/TheRIDE, or connect with the T on Twitter @MBTA, on Facebook /TheMBTA, or on Instagram @theMBTA.

Racial Slur Found At South West Middle School

By SCOTT JACKSON

The principal at South West Middle School in Quincy said an investigation is underway to identify whoever left hateful graffiti including a racial slur inside one of the school’s bathrooms and pledged to hold the responsible party accountable.

Derek Lakey, the school’s principal, said the graffiti was found in the bathroom on Tuesday.

“Hateful graffiti including a racial slur was found in one of our restrooms today,” Lakey wrote in an open letter.  “This graffiti is extremely offensive to the entire school community and will not be tolerated at South West Middle School.  An investigation is underway and the offensive graffiti has been removed.  Please know that those identified as involved in this misconduct will be held accountable and appropriately disciplined.

“Moving forward, we will use this incident as an opportunity to reinforce that as a school community, we stand for respect and inclusion.  At South West Middle School, we pride ourselves on providing a safe and welcoming learning environment for staff and students.  We will continue to emphasize these values at every opportunity inside and outside the classroom.”

Lakey invited anyone concerned about the incident to reach out to him or other staff members.

“If you or your student have concerns about this incident, please feel free to reach out to me at 617-984-8729 or via email at dereklakey@quincypublicschools.com,” he wrote.  “Assistant Principal Susan Foley (susanfoley@quincypublicschools.com) and Guidance Counselors Shane Abboud (shaneabboud@quincypublicschools.com) and Jill Kyranis (jillkyranis@quincypublicschools.com) are available to speak with you or your student as well.”

The graffiti at South West Middle School was discovered one day after a student with the GOALS program – which is located in a building on Hunt Street in North Quincy – was charged with bringing a handgun to school.

In an open letter published Monday, the date of the incident, Supt. Kevin Mulvey said the student admitting having the handgun with them inside the GOALS building. Before police could arrive, Mulvey said the student fled to the North Quincy MBTA station and boarded a train. The train was stopped before leaving the station, however, and the student was arrested without incident.

“This morning, a student at the GOALS program was found to be in possession of a weapon, specifically a handgun.  The student was quickly removed to an administrative area of the building and the student admitted to having a handgun on their person because of safety concerns outside of school. A GOALS administrator alerted the Quincy Police Department, Director of Safety & Security Michael Draicchio, and me,” Mulvey wrote.

“Anticipating the Quincy Police Department’s arrival, the student fled from the GOALS building to the North Quincy MBTA station and boarded a train.  The Quincy Police Department notified the MBTA Police and the train was stopped before departing the station. After a search of the train, the student was identified and arrested without incident at the North Quincy MBTA station and the handgun was confiscated by the police.”

Mulvey thanked school staff and police for their response to the incident.

“My sincerest thanks go to the staff of the GOALS program, due to their actions and the support of the Quincy Police Department and the MBTA Police Department, this very serious event ended without injury to any member of the community.  As you know, safety and security is very important to all of us here at Quincy Public Schools and I want to stress that the student did not threaten any staff members or students at any time,” he said.

“Please contact me at kevinmulvey@quincypublicschools.com or at 617-984-8701 if you have questions or concerns.”

Mayor Thomas Koch, in a statement, commended the response by school staff.

“From the initial response to the resolution, the school staff and our police officers did a truly excellent job in handling this incident and ensuring it ended the way it did,” he said.

Norfolk Republican Committee Sponsoring Nationally Known Speaker On CRT Oct. 7

The Norfolk County Republican Committee is sponsoring a public discussion led by William Jacobson on the impact of Critical Race Theory (CRT) on American education and culture. The presentation will be held Thursday, Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. at the American Legion Post 18, 155 Eastern Ave., Dedham.

Suggested donation is $20 which includes light refreshments.

Tickets may be purchased on-line at www.Facebook.com/NorfolkCountyRepublicans or at the door in cash.

CRT has burst into the public consciousness recently as several long-held tenets about historical race relations in America have been called into question, resulting in many local schools changing their history and social studies curriculum and many business and government offices changing their employment practices.

Jacobson is a clinical professor of law and director of the Securities Law Clinic at Cornell Law School. He is a 1984 graduate of Harvard Law School.

Professor Jacobson founded the Legal Insurrection website in 2008. He is now the president of the Legal Insurrection Foundation, an investigative research group that tracks developments in Critical Race Theory in education and the culture at large. He has written and spoken extensively about Critical Race Theory, campus free speech issues, and the history and tactics of the anti-Israel movement. A captivating, engaging public speaker, he is a leading voice on the far-reaching ramifications of CRT on our society.

Councillors Want Truck Ban On Furnace Brook Parkway Enforced

By SCOTT JACKSON

Quincy city councillors on Monday called upon state officials to enforce the existing commercial traffic ban on Furnace Brook Parkway.

Councillors unanimously approved a resolution – put forward by Charles Phelan Jr., Brian Palmucci and Anne Mahoney – asking the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, which owns the road, and State Police to enforce the commercial traffic ban.

Phelan said smartphone apps like Waze are directing drivers of commercial vehicles to cut through Furnace Brook Parkway and abutting neighborhood roads, even though commercial trucks are prohibited from using the parkway.

“What I have had problems with is huge tractor-trailers coming down Furnace Brook Parkway…taking turns off of Waze and going into neighborhoods. It let up a little during the pandemic but now it is starting to kick back up and there are huge delivery trucks that the street was never meant for,” Phelan said.

“These tractor-trailers will come down side streets, get caught in the middle of the street, and you have a disaster.”

Phelan suggested copies of the resolution should be sent to State Police and members of Quincy’s delegation on Beacon Hill to emphasize the importance of enforcing the commercial traffic ban.

“These roadways were never meant for this kind of heavy traffic on them,” Phelan said. “There are going to be a lot of cars – that is inevitable – but that is what is supposed to on them.”

Councillor Noel DiBona said he has heard from residents concerned about trucks on Furnace Brook Parkway and nearby roads over the past six years.

“You’re talking about going down the side streets – they are also going down do-not-enters and one-way systems sometimes. We have to prevent that from happening and I am happy that this is going forward,” DiBona said.

“I’m happy to see this come about and hopefully we can get this resolved as we move forward.”

Ward 6 Councillor William Harris delivery trucks should not be taking Furnace Brook Parkway and neighborhood streets.

“They are supposed to be going right onto the highway, not cutting through Furnace Brook Parkway, not going through our neighborhoods. It’s not right,” Harris said.

“This is a quality of life issue and that is what we are here to protect.”

School Committee Candidates Night In Squantum Oct. 6

The Squantum Community Association will host a candidates night on Wednesday, Oct. 6 for residents to meet the candidates for the upcoming Quincy School Committee election. The event will be held at 7 p.m. at the First Church of Squantum, 164 Bellevue Rd., Squantum.

After opening statements by the candidates, residents will be invited to pose questions. Questions may also be sent in advance to SCASquantumEvents@gmail.com.

For more information, contact SCASquantumEvents@gmail.com or 617-851-1673. This event is free and open to the public.

The Squantum Community Association provides programming that fosters conversation and community with a focus on topics of interest to the Squantum and Quincy communities, highlighting local talent and history. To subscribe to event notifications email SCASquantumEvents@gmail.com. Get the scoop at SquantumScoop.com.

QHS Senior Football Players, Cheerleaders Honored At Senior Night

Quincy High School’s senior varsity football players and senior cheerleaders were honored on Senior Night before the Presidents’ game against Oliver Ames Sept. 17. The players and cheerleaders were introduced and escorted to mid-field by family and friends prior to kick-off at Quincy’s home opener at Veterans’ Memorial Stadium.

There are 13 players and 11 cheerleaders who were introduced. Photos of the introductions appear below. Quincy Sun photos by Robert Bosworth.

 

 

Council Candidates To Tackle Climate Issues Oct. 7

By Quincy Climate Action Network

City council candidates will answer questions about local climate and environmental issues in an online forum on Thursday, Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. Quincy Climate Action Network is hosting the event on Zoom, Facebook, and Youtube, with questions submitted by other local organizations as well.

All but one of the city council candidates are expected to attend, including at-large candidates William Burke, Noel DiBona, Nina Liang, and Anne Mahoney; Ward 1 candidates David McCarthy and Joseph Murphy; Ward 2 candidates Anthony Andronico and Steven Perdios; Ward 3’s Ian Cain; Ward 4’s Brian Palmucci; and Ward 5 candidates Stephen Christo and Charles Phelan.

The event will feature questions from QCAN as well as Quincycles, Quincy For Transformative Change, Quincy Making Waves, and Quincy Tree Alliance. As in previous QCAN political forums, candidates will receive most questions ahead of time so they have time to research their answers.

“This year’s extreme weather events have really driven home how urgent the climate crisis is,” says QCAN board member Julie Mallozzi. “There is so much we can do locally to help prevent the worst from happening, so it’s important that we hear from our city council candidates about what they will do to help mitigate Quincy’s climate impact and prepare us for a sustainable future.”

To tune in on Oct. 7 at 7 p.m., visit bit.ly/qcan2021 or QCAN’s Facebook or YouTube pages. After the event, you can watch the entire recording as well as video clips at quincycan.org, or the whole event at QATV.org.

The election will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 2 and will feature not only candidates for all city council seats but also a competitive race for three school committee seats (visit quincycan.org for school committee candidates’ responses to climate questions).