City Manager Extends Fire Chief Contract Through 2022

City Manager Extends Fire Chief Contract Through 2022

Fire Chief Len Albanese had his contract renewed for another three years by City Manager Tom Ambrosino.

Albanese came to the City in 2016 from North Providence after a search committee chose several finalists, including some internal candidates. His contract was set to expire in June 2019, and Ambrosino said he is very pleased with the Chief’s work over the past two years.

“The chief and I began discussions about an extension, and we recently agreed on this new three-year term,” wrote Ambrosino. “I have been extremely satisfied with Chief Albanese’s leadership and management of the Fire Department since his arrival in 2016. I believe this extension is fully justified.”

Albanese, a resident of Charlestown, will get a pay increase of 3 percent in the first year of his contract. In the following two year, upon a review by Ambrosino, he is entitled to up to 3 percent each year as well.

The Chief will get 25 days of vacation per year, and can carry over five weeks of unused vacation time from one year to another. He may not, however, carry more than 10 week maximum of vacation time.

He also gets 15 sick days per the contract, as well as an automobile.

The new contract will begin on July 1, 2019.

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Police Briefs 10-11-2018

CHIEF KYES TO BE HONORED

The Northeast Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council (NEMLEC) Foundation will honor Chelsea Police Chief Brian Kyes for his continuous work on behalf of police departments throughout the Commonwealth.

Chief Kyes has taken the lead on immigration enforcement reform, police accreditation and police training. It was through his leadership and exhaustive work that the Commonwealth received a dedicated funding source for police training. He was instrumental in working with the Baker Administration to establish legislation creating a surcharge from car rental fees to subsidize police training.

Chief Kyes also serves on the Mass Chiefs of Police Executive Committee, the Municipal Police Training Committee, the Massachusetts Police Accreditation Commission and is the Chairman of the Massachusetts Chiefs Legislative Committee.

“Chief Kyes is a tireless advocate for police throughout Massachusetts,” NEMLEC Foundation Chairman Richard Raymond said. “We’re excited to honor him for his constant work to enhance public safety, and celebrate his accomplishments on behalf of all of the communities in the Commonwealth.”

BREAKING AND BARRICADING

On Oct. 7, at 12:15 p.m., officers were dispatched for a report of an unwanted male party that had forced himself into the residence at 13 Beacon Place and then barricaded himself into a bedroom. Officers were eventually able to arrest the subject for breaking and entering as well as malicious destruction of property.

Andres Aguilar, 36, of 13 Beacon Pl., was charged with breaking and entering in the day for a felony with a person in fear, wanton destruction of property under $1,200, and threatening to commit a crime.

EVICTED FROM UNDER THE BRIDGE

On Oct. 2, at 10:30 a.m., officers were dispatched to Carter Street under the Route 1 on-ramp, for individuals sleeping. The officers identified two individuals who were on state property inside a fenced-in area designated and posted “No Trespassing.”

Both were taken into custody.

Jose Tejada, 61, homeless, and Jose Burgos-Murillo, 61, homeless, were charged with trespassing on state property.

UNWELCOME COUSIN

On Oct. 3, at 11:12 a.m., officers were dispatched to 74 Bellingham St. for a report of a female party waving a knife at a male party. The victim told officers that he was putting his trash barrels away when he observed his female cousin banging on his door. He attempted to ask her to leave his property when he alleges she threatened him with a knife. She was placed under arrest.

Valerie Fields, 48, of 55 Cottage St., was charged with assault with a dangerous weapon and one warrant.

ROAD RAGER CAUGHT

On Oct. 5, at 11 a.m., Officers responded to the area of Everett Avenue and Spruce Street for a report of a road rage incident in which a knife was displayed. The reporting party followed the suspects’ vehicle and informed dispatch of the updated location while awaiting officers’ arrival. Officers stopped the suspect vehicle and placed an occupant under arrest.

Carmen Claudio, 48, of 295 Spruce St., was charged with assault with a dangerous weapon.Police Log

Thursday,  Sept. 20

Shreya Baskota, 31, 74 Parker St., Acton, was arrested for failure to stop for school bus, operating motor vehicle with restricted license.

Santiago Rodriguez Mendez, 18, 85 Broadway, Chelsea, was arrested on a warrant.

Friday, Sept. 21

Egdon Padilla, 43, 27 Watts St., Chelsea, was arrested on a warrant.

Tia Tavares, 26, 466 Broadway, Chelsea, was arrested on a warrant.

Joseph Swan, 31, 101 Winnisimmet St., Chelsea, was arrested for disorderly conduct, threat to commit crime and vandalize property.

Saturday, Sept. 22

Alexander Palencia, 23, 277 Carter St., Chelsea, was arrested for disorderly conduct, assault with a dangerous weapon, malicious destruction of property, resisting arrest, assault and battery on a police officer (2 counts), malicious destruction of property (2 counts).

Komlanvi Agogo, 25, 10 Louis St., Chelsea, was arrested for larceny from building (2 counts), possessing ammunition without FID card (2 counts) and threat to commit crime (2 counts).

Sunday, Sept. 23

Alberto Garcia, 51, 303 Carter St., Chelsea, was arrested for trespassing and shoplifting.

Monday, Oct. 1

Edward Hardy, 36, 39 Boylston St., Boston, was arrested on a warrant.

Hilda Villanueva-Sanbabria, 27, 63 Eustis St., Revere, was arrested for operating motor vehicle unlicensed and Immigration detainer.

Hilton Nunez Chavez, 25, 103 Leyden St., East Boston, was arrested for operating motor vehicle unlicensed.

Tuesday, Oct. 2

Joe Tejada, 61, Homeless, Chelsea, was arrested for trespassing.

Wednesday, Oct. 3

Van Thornhill, 27, 170 Newbury St., Peabody, was arrested on a warrant.

Valerie Fields, 48, 55 Cottage St., Chelsea, was arrested on a warrant, assault with a dangerous weapon, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, threat to commit crime.

Leonides Bones, 61, 4 Fernboro St., Dorchester, was arrested on a warrant and possessing Class E drug.

Elbin Aguilar, 35, 127 Grove St., Chelsea, was arrested for ordinance violation.

Thursday, Oct. 4

Cesar Valentin, 32, 23 Eleanor St., Chelsea, was arrested on a warrant.

Lekia Lewis, 40, 90 Malden St., Everett, was arrested on a warrant.

Friday, Oct. 5

Carmen Claudio, 48, 295 Spruce St., Chelsea, was arrested for assault with a dangerous weapon.

Luis Chamizo, 48, 140 Chestnut St., Chelsea, was arrested for witness intimidation and warrants.

Justin Delloiacono, 30, 27 Page St., Revere, was arrested for shoplifting.

Sunday, Oct. 7

Andres Aguilar, 36, 13 Beacon Pl., Chelsea, was arrested for breaking and entering daytime, wanton destruction of property and threat to commit crime.

Komlanvi Agogo, 25, 10 Louis St., Chelsea, was arrested on a warrant.

Alberto Garcia, 51, 303 Carter St., Chelsea, was arrested for trespassing.

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Chelsea Fire Helped Respond to Greater Lawrence Gas Explosions

Chelsea Fire Helped Respond to Greater Lawrence Gas Explosions

In the wake of massive gas line explosions in the Greater Lawrence area last Thursday, Sept. 13, the Chelsea Fire Department jumped into action and responded to Andover High School to support first response efforts.

Chief Len Albanese said that the Tower 1 apparatus responded to an Andover Staging Area at Andover High School as part of Metro Structural task Force 13.

Greater Lawrence’s normal mutual aid capabilities were taxed to the breaking point, and so the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) began to request structural task forces from other regions, including Chelsea.

“Our Tower Ladder responded to multiple calls for odors of gas and the like in the structures,” said the Chief. “They did not respond to any structure fires. They were back here in the city by 9 p.m.”

The Chief said it was an incredible job by the state and local operations to coordinate so many responding helpers.

“This was an enormous mobilization of resources,” he said. “Lawrence, Andover, North Andover and MEMA with the help of all of the other agencies involved, including multiple law enforcement agencies did an exceptional job of meeting this most unique major fire/ emergency operation.”

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Gov Baker Proposes Reforms to Protect Public from Dangerous Individuals

Gov Baker Proposes Reforms to Protect Public from Dangerous Individuals

Gov. Charlie Baker filed legislation that will provide law enforcement and prosecutors with additional tools to prosecute people who repeatedly break the law. The reforms put forth in today’s legislation include expanding the list of offenses that can provide grounds for a dangerousness hearing and closing certain loopholes at the start and end of the criminal process that currently limit or prevent effective action to address legitimate safety concerns.

“Recent tragedies have demonstrated the tremendous damage that can occur when our criminal justice system fails to identify and detain dangerous people charged with serious crimes,” said Governor Baker. “The alarming frequency of these events confirmed for us that we need to fix a broken law, so we worked closely with law enforcement, district attorneys and victims advocacy groups across the Commonwealth and consulted with the courts to develop this proposal to do a better job of protecting Massachusetts communities from dangerous defendants.”

The governor’s legislation strengthens the ability of judges to enforce the conditions of pre-trial release by empowering police to detain people who they observe violating court-ordered release conditions; current law does not allow this, and instead requires a court to first issue a warrant.

“Far too often, there are few consequences for defendants who violate the conditions of a court issued release,” said Lieutenant Governor KarynPolito. “This legislation will empower police officers with the tools they need to protect their communities and hold until trial defendants who pose a continuing danger to our communities.”

This legislation empowers judges to revoke a person’s release when the offender has violated a court-ordered condition, such as an order to stay away from a victim, or from a public playground. Current law requires an additional finding of dangerousness before release may be revoked.

“A person who is so dangerous that his or her release threatens the safety of a specific victim or of the community at large does not become safe to release merely because three or four months have passed since the time of their arrest,” said Secretary of Public Safety and Security Daniel Bennett. “This legislation would ensure that a person who a court determines is a danger or who violates his or her conditions of release is held until the time of trial or other disposition of the case, rather than being released after a defined period.”

“I’m very pleased with the governor’s proposed bail reform legislation,” said Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III. “This will make it more difficult for the court to release dangerous defendants.  Dangerous criminals should be held without bail until their cases are resolved. The public and law enforcement have a right to be protected from dangerous criminals. This legislation goes a long way towards doing that.  I have long advocated for changes to the bail system, and I appreciate the governor’s leadership on this very important issue.”

“It is encouraging to see that the call for action to keep dangerous and repeat criminals off the streets that began as a result of Sgt. Gannon’s murder is being taken seriously,” said Yarmouth Police Chief Frank Frederickson. “In July the Governor signed the MPTC Training Bill and now the announcement of this proposal is another significant move that will provide needed protection for our citizens from violent criminals.”

“Regardless of whether their cases can be prosecuted, survivors of sexual violence who are respected and believed throughout the process have better health and wellness outcomes,” said Katia Santiago-Taylor, advocacy and legislative affairs manager at the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center. “The first and most powerful way to do this is to ensure that survivors are informed about what is happening with their case, including timely notification when an offender is released from custody.”

The legislation expands the list of offenses which can provide grounds for a dangerousness hearing and follows the long-standing federal model in including a defendant’s history of serious criminal convictions as grounds that may warrant a dangerousness hearing. Current law requires courts to focus only on the crime charged and ignore a defendant’s criminal history when determining whether the defendant may be the subject of this sort of hearing.

Additional provisions of this legislation:

  • Improves the system for notifying victims of crimes of abuse and other dangerous crimes when a defendant is going to be released by creating clear lines of responsibility among police, prosecutors and corrections personnel to notify victims about an offender’s imminent release from custody, and create a six-hour window for authorities to inform a victim before an offender is allowed to be released.
  • Creates a new felony offense for cutting off a court-ordered GPS device.
  • Requires that the courts develop a text message service to remind defendants of upcoming court dates, reducing the chance they will forget and have a warrant issued for their arrest.
  • Allows dangerousness hearings at any point during a criminal proceeding, rather than requiring a prosecutor to either seek a hearing immediately or forfeit that ability entirely, even if circumstances later arise indicating that the defendant poses a serious risk to the community.
  • Requires that the probation department, bail commissioners and bail magistrates notify authorities who can take remedial action when a person who is on pre-trial release commits a new offense anywhere in the Commonwealth or elsewhere.
  • Creates a level playing field for appeals of district court release decisions to the superior court by allowing appeals by prosecutors, in addition to defendants, and giving more deference to determinations made in the first instance by our district court judges.
  • Creates a task force to recommend adding information to criminal records so that prosecutors and judges can make more informed recommendations and decisions about conditions of release and possible detention on grounds of dangerousness.

The legislation also closes loopholes at the start and end of the criminal process that currently limit or prevent effective action to address legitimate safety concerns. It extends the requirement that police take the fingerprints of people arrested for felonies to all people arrested, regardless of the charge, to ensure that decisions about release can be made with knowledge of a person’s true identity and full criminal history. It also allows, for the first time, bail commissioners and bail magistrates to consider dangerousness in deciding whether to release an arrestee from a police station when court is out of session.

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Council Seeks Further Study of Two-Way Broadway

Council Seeks Further Study of Two-Way Broadway

Facing many critics from the public that showed up to speak against two-way Broadway, the City Council on Monday decided to defer any vote and, instead, hold a Committee on Conference to review the matter.

In August, the Traffic Commission voted 5-1 to approve the two-way plan, as well as a spate of many other non-controversial changes to Fay Square, Chelsea Square, Bellingham Square and City Hall Avenue.

Council President Damali Vidot called for the committee, and the Council approved the move. She said they had until Oct. 6 to hold the meeting and to have a vote of the full Council. The City Council must approve all actions of the Traffic Commission, but if they do not do so by Oct. 6, the Commission’s approval will become law.

Many on the Council have not made their opinions known yet, but some have, and ultimately the fate of two-way Broadway will fall on the votes of 11 members of the Council.

Council President Vidot has been critical of the idea, and has particularly disagreed with the planning process that has unfolded over the past two years. In the past, she has been against the change.

Councillor Leo Robinson, however, said this week he is in favor of two-way Broadway.

“I’m a two-way Broadway guy,” he said.

Councillor Joe Perlatonda has also spoke in favor of the plan, and said the one-way plan is dangerous because it calls for cars to park outside of the protected bike lane. He said that would leave those exiting their cars in a dangerous position with oncoming traffic and with oncoming bicyclists.

Meanwhile, Councillor Bob Bishop said he doesn’t buy the idea of two-way Broadway. To this point, he said he isn’t convinced it’s a good change.

City Manager Tom Ambrosino and Chief Brian Kyes are some of the biggest advocates, and though they don’t have a vote, they have strongly called for the change for months.

Resident Sharleen McLain, however, was one of several residents who said the plan is flawed and has been forced upon the public.

“From the very first it was clear the City Manager and the planners have been pretty bent on getting two-way Broadway,” she said. “They’ve been pretty manipulative in moving forward on this two-way plan. None of these meetings have allowed for meaningful input. It wasn’t until the July Traffic Commission meeting that members of the public were able to speak directly to the plans.”

Said Barbara Richard, “I think two-way Broadway is spot-on dead wrong. Businesses will go under. I also think it hasn’t been a good enough outreach to the community.”

Ambrosino said he is in favor of the two-way plan, but he implored the Council to consider the plan is much more than just the two-way Broadway situation. He said there are many, many more non-controversial changes in the package that people do want universally.

“Much of what is before you is non-controversial,” he said. “Whether it’s Fay Square, Bellingham Square or City Hall Avenue, these provisions have no opposition to the changes.”

The Council will meet next on Monday, Sept. 24, and the Conference Committee will likely take place next week.

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Chelsea Unveils John Bruttaniti Memorial Bridge in Ceremony

Chelsea Unveils John Bruttaniti Memorial Bridge in Ceremony

The City of Chelsea dedicated the Washington Avenue bridge at Heard Street in memory of Chelsea Police officer

The Bruttaniti family, standing beneath the John P. Bruttaniti Memorial Bridge sign that is displayed at the structure on Washington Avenue. From left, are Nicole Correa, Karen Bruttaniti, Gemeisha James, Karen Bruttaniti, Festus Odigie, and Gus Correa.

John Bruttaniti during an unveiling ceremony on Wednesday, Aug. 29.

Councillor-at-Large Leo Robinson served as master of ceremonies for the program during which City Manager Tom Ambrosino and Council President Damali Vidot and other dignitaries paid tribute to Mr. Bruttaniti, who died in an accident on May 12, 2016 at the age of 41.

Vidot said she personally understood the importance of having a mentor like Mr. Bruttaniti during one’s years of personal development. Other speakers at the ceremony echoed the belief that a bridge dedication was the perfect way to honor a man who was “a bridge” from Chelsea’s dedicated public servants in the Police Department to the city’s youth.

Several of Mr. Bruttaniti’s colleagues in the Police Department and the Fire Department attended the ceremony. (Mr. Bruttaniti worked for three years in the CFD before joining the Police Department in 2008). The Fire and Police Color Guards added an impressive touch to the program. Mr. Bruttaniti’s fellow veterans in the U.S. Army, who served with him in Iraq, were also in attendance for the tribute.

Police Chief Brian Kyes praised Mr. Bruttaniti’s outstanding record as a police officer and read the police report that Mr. Bruttaniti wrote after saving a toddler from choking by dislodging a penny stuck in her throat and resuscitating her. For his heroic actions in that June, 2015 incident, Mr. Bruttaniti received the Chelsea Police Life Saving Award.

Mr. Bruttaniti’s instantaneous response to the situation and his training in the emergency medical field caused some to say that he was placed as “an angel” in that situation to save a baby’s life.

Mr. Bruttaniti’s sister, Karen, delivered touching remarks on behalf of the family.

“John lived with a real zest for life,” said Karen Bruttaniti. “He loved riding his motorcycle and truly enjoying his life. John was a man of deep character. He never judged, never held a grudge, and always believed in forgiving others, no matter what.”

Karen recalled the warm and inspiring correspondences she received while her brother was serving in Iraq. “The letters always ended, saying, ‘Sister, I love my family.”

“I still read his letters and my eyes still fill with tears,” she said.

Karen added thoughtfully, “But let me be clear. John was dedicated to his entire family, and he counted all of you, the people of Chelsea, as family. Serving for and with the people of Chelsea, John loved being a firefighter, police officer, investigator, mentor, volunteering anywhere and in an any way to help his Chelsea family. That was our brother.”

Karen said her brother would have been humbled by having a bridge named in his honor.

“I know he would hope that his memory would serve as an example of community and service to one another in love,” she said.

The souvenir program included photos of Mr. Bruttaniti with Chief Brian Kyes, Capt. David Batchelor, and Sgt. David Flibotte in their CPD uniforms at an awards ceremony in Boston, and of Mr. Bruttaniti with youths he had mentored in the Chelsea REACH Program, and it aptly concluded with the following memorial tribute to the beloved police officer: “John will forever be remembered for his kindness, bravery, and service to our country and to the City of Chelsea.”

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Traffic Commission Approves Two-Way Broadway, Other Changes Downtown

Traffic Commission Approves Two-Way Broadway, Other Changes Downtown

The Chelsea Traffic Commission voted 4-1 on Tuesday night to recommend that the Broadway business corridor be changed from a one-way, to a two-way street – the culmination of more than a year of planning.

Carolyn Vega was the lone vote on the Commission against the two-way plan. She wasn’t opposed to the overall plan, but desired to recommend a six-month trial period.

The remaining Commissioners preferred to simply recommend the two-way plan.

The plan will now go to the City Council for a final vote at the Sept. 10 meeting, though it could be put off until the Sept. 24 meeting.

Many people were for it and many were against the plan, but in the end City Manager Tom Ambrosino said that if it didn’t work out, it would easily be able to be changed back to a one-way.

Business owner Rick Gordon said he would prefer a one-way configuration because it would be more inviting for businesses.

Fire Chief Leonard Albanese said he believed in the two-way configuration and thought it would lead to a much safer pedestrian and driving experience. He also said he believed it would enhance the Fire Department’s operations.

Councillor Roy Avellaneda said he didn’t see the need for a two-way and didn’t believe it would be safer. He asked for data to show whether or not people are being hit by cars.

Resident Bruck Black said it would be a shame to study the issue for two years with an award-winning consultant team, and then not make the changes they recommend.

Consultant Kevin Dandrade, of TEC, said they believed Chelsea could successfully make the change.

The Traffic Commission also recommended sweeping circulation changes to Fay Square, Chelsea Square, Bellingham Square and the City Hall front area – where Broadway will also become a two-way street.

The changes also include new smart traffic lights which will be at all Broadway intersections and will work via Wi-Fi to help control and time the traffic lights in real time.

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Chelsea Police Receive State Grant to Increase Impaired Driving Patrols

Chelsea Police Receive State Grant to Increase Impaired Driving Patrols

The Chelsea Police Department will increase impaired driving patrols on local roads with grant funds from the Highway Safety Division of the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS).  Chelsea Police will join local departments across the state as well as the Massachusetts State Police in the national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Overenforcement mobilization and public information campaign.

This year’s campaign will urge drivers drinking alcohol or using marijuana and other drugs to plan ahead and designate a sober driver, use a ride-share service or take public transportation.

“Impaired drivers create a dangerous situation for everyone around them, threatening the destruction of lives and entire families,” said Chief Brian A. Kyes. “This grant will help increase our efforts during the busy summer travel season to keep our roads free of impaired drivers and avoid the tragedy they wreak.”

“Getting behind the wheel after drinking alcohol, using marijuana or both is one of the most dangerous things drivers can do,” said Jeff Larason, Director of the Highway Safety Division. “A little planning can save your life or someone else’s.  Regret or remorse won’t bring someone back.”

Massachusetts Data:

Marijuana or marijuana-type drugs were the most prevalent types of drugs found in people killed in crashes from 2011 to 2016.

From 2015 to 2016, alcohol-impaired driving fatalities increased 9 percent (109 to 119).

From 2011-2015, 82 percent of impaired drivers in fatal crashes were men.

From 2011-2015, 45 percent of all alcohol-related driver fatalities were ages 21 to 34.

National Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:

Approximately one-third of all traffic crash fatalities in the United States involve drunk drivers. On average, more than 10,000 people have died each year (2012- 2016) in drunk-driving crashes. To put it in perspective, that’s equal to about 20 jumbo jets crashing, with no survivors.

In 2016, almost one in five children (14 and younger) killed in traffic crashes were killed in drunk-driving crashes. Fifty-four percent of the time, it was the child’s own driver who was drunk.

Drugs were present in 43 percent of the fatally-injured drivers with a known test result in 2015, more frequently than alcohol was present.

NHTSA’s 2013–2014 roadside survey found drugs in 22 percent of all drivers both on weekend nights and on weekdays.

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)—the chemical responsible for most of marijuana’s psychological effects—slows reaction times, impairs cognitive performance, and makes it more difficult for drivers to keep a steady position in their lane.

Mixing alcohol and marijuana may dramatically produce effects greater than either drug on its own.

To view the Highway Safety Division’s (HSD) “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” TV spots, or for more information about the HSD’s public information campaign, go to www.mass.gov/DriveSober

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Police Youth Academy Gets a Jump in Its First Year

Police Youth Academy Gets a Jump in Its First Year

As a drill instructor punished young Chelsea men with squats, knee bends, jump tucks and a variety of sit up exercises – the young people didn’t give up, but rather seemed to beg for more.

It’s been a pattern that’s repeated itself daily for the last seven weeks as the first-ever Chelsea Youth Police Academy unfolded this summer with 18 young people sticking out what is an off-shoot of the summer youth employment initiative. More than 20 applied for the academy through the Chelsea Collaborative, and officers selected 20 recruits. Two left the program, but 18 have stuck it out.

For the past seven weeks, Officers Keith Sweeney, Dave Batchelor Jr., Joe Cordes and Sammy Mojica have ushered the 18 Chelsea young people through hard physical training, and a classroom regimen of police training – as well as a few field trips.

Every Thursday morning, the Carter Park Crossfit Gym – owned by Firefighters Wayne Ulwick and Blady Sanchez – have donated their space for a morning workout with their instructor Jorge Monzor.

“We start every day off with physical training and Carter Park did donate one day a week to us, which has been great,” said Officer Keith Sweeney. “This is the first year and the overall goal is to build relationships with the youth in Chelsea. All three of us are assigned to community services and are stationed in the Chelsea Schools, so we know a lot of the kids already. We have a lot of good programs, but this is by far the best one.”

Said Batchelor, “We’ve had other kids come up to us after hearing about what we’re doing, and they want to know if the program is open and if they can join.”

Officer Cordes said it’s a program that promotes structure, and he said often young people in Chelsea crave that structure. That’s why, he believes, they have flocked to a program that challenges them physically and teaches military drills and police tactics.

“I think a lot of young people lack structure and when I went to the military, I didn’t think I wanted structure, but I miss it now,” he said. “High school kids want structure and love the camaraderie and brotherhood that has come with this academy.”

All said that Chief Brian Kyes and City Manager Tom Ambrosino are fully behind the program, and are promoting it wherever they go.

Sweeney said he is happy to see that a partnership with Carter Park grew out of the Academy and he hopes that will continue in the school year.

“When these guys opened, they called us and wanted to get high school kids in here,” he said. “When we started the Academy, we thought it was a perfect opportunity. I’m happy for these kids. I grew up in Chelsea and there was nothing like this for us when we were growing up.”

Co-owner Wayne Ulwick said the mission of the gym is to give back to the community as much as it is to operate as a business.

“Before we even opened up, that was the goal was to get these kids here,” he said. “We do this because it’s close to our hearts and not for the money.”

In addition, Sweeney said the recruits have had to learn to be on time, bring their lunch, have two uniforms ready and do their homework for the class portion.

“They never missed a beat,” he said with a smile.

Cutline –

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Instructor Jorge Monzor gives orders to the Chelsea Youth Police Academy recruits last Thursday, Aug. 9, at the Carter Park Crossfit. The first-ever youth academy has found great success over seven weeks this summer, with 18 recruits sticking it out for a tough summer of physical training and police-based instruction. By all accounts, the young people have thoroughly enjoyed it – as have the officers.

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Academy recruit Oliver Romero sweats it out on Thursday.

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Push-ups have become second nature to Academy recruits like Robert Rossetti, shown here last Thursday during a rigorous training session at Carter Park Crossfit. The Crossfit donated the gym one morning per week for seven weeks to the Academy.

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Frankie Suarez shows the strain as he does endless amounts of squat thrusts.

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The Trucks Stop Here:Chelsea Food Truck Festival Scheduled for Aug 14-16

The Trucks Stop Here:Chelsea Food Truck Festival Scheduled for Aug 14-16

What better way to introduce the new ordinance allowing food trucks in the city than with a Chelsea Food Truck

City Solicitor Cheryl Watson Fisher (left) and City Hall summer
intern Katherine Cabral invite Chelsea residents to attend the first-ever Chelsea Food Truck Festival Aug. 14-16 at the Williams School parking lot.

Festival?

That’s the path that City Solicitor Cheryl Watson Fisher and City Hall summer intern Katherine Cabral are taking with the city’s first food truck festival that will be held on Aug. 14-16 (Tuesday through Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.) at the Williams Middle School parking lot at the corner of Arlington and Fifth Streets.

Watson Fisher, head of the Law Department for the city and a graduate of one of the nation’s finest law schools (Boston College), is the chief organizer, while Cabral, a CHS graduate and student at Bates College, is in charge of marketing for the organizing team.

Watson Fisher, who also supervises licenses in Chelsea, drafted the food-truck ordinance, which took one year to develop and gain approval.

“We’re trying with this festival to show that there is a customer base and market for food trucks in Chelsea,” said Watson Fisher. “We also want to get the food trucks here as an event for employees of City Hall. The Williams School is a good location for City Hall employees and other people who also work in the city during the day.”

Several employees from city departments, including licensing, law, DPW, inspectional services, schools, city manager’s office, will be in attendance and interact with the community at the festival.

Representatives from the National Institute of Justice will be conducting a survey at the festival. The Hubcats, which promotes the well-being of cats, will have an information table. The Archery, Limebikes, and Carter Park Crossfit are among the local businesses participating in the festival. There will be music and a possible appearance of the Chelsea Police “Copsicle” truck.

Attendees will have a wide of variety foods available for purchase, according to Watson Fisher.

“We’ll have a Chilean food truck, a Vietnamese food truck, a gluten-free, vegan truck, an American barbecue truck, as well as tacos, sausages, hot dogs, and hamburgers, and desserts,” said Watson Fisher.

Cabral said the festival will help determine which type of food trucks might be popular if the trucks were stationed here on a daily basis.

“We’re bringing in a big variety of food trucks to see what the people want going forward and whether the food truck operators are interested in collaborating with Chelsea,” said Cabral.

Though Watson Fisher is ready to review applications for food truck licenses and to potentially grant them, there are no food trucks currently operating in the city.

“We have allowed food trucks at certain events,” said Watson Fisher. “But at this point there are no food trucks operating in the city.”

Cabral believes the festival will ignite an interest in food trucks wanting to set up shop in the city.

“We really do want this event to be a springboard for food trucks to come to Chelsea and to expose our dayworkers to see this an opportunity to try new things, so we’re super excited to hold such a multi-faceted event in our city,” said Cabral.

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