Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Pawtucket 04-07-2021

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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PAWTUCKET EDITION | VALLEY BREEZE | APRIL 7-13, 2021 PAWTUCKET 13 That said, "one crime in our neighborhoods is one too many crimes," said Goncalves, "and the Pawtucket Police Department con- tinues to work alongside all of our community partners to minimize the risk of crimes and increase the safety of our diverse community." In keeping with a trend seen elsewhere, murder cases were up, from one in 2019 and zero the year before to four in 2020, and kidnap- pings increased from eight in 2019 to 12 in 2020. Weapon law viola- tions nearly doubled from year to year, with 57 in 2019 and 111 in 2020. But rape cases were down from 50 in 2019 to 40 in 2020, and force- ful sodomy crimes decreased from seven two years ago to one in 2020. Fondling cases were down, from 24 to 19. Documented aggravated assaults were up, from 190 to 208, but simple assaults saw a significant decrease in 2020, from 823 in 2019 to 614 last year. Simple assaults have shown declines in many communities due to fewer people patronizing bars during the pan- demic. Drug/narcotics violations were down slightly, from 165 two years ago to 156 last year. Those are down sharply from 10 years ago, when there were 358 in 2010. Assault/intimidation incidents were up last year, from 28 to 54, and extortion/blackmail was up one, from four to five. Total arson cases remained the same, with 13 each year. Burglary/breaking and enter- ing cases saw a sharp drop-off last year, from 322 in 2019 to 219 in 2020, or nearly 32 percent overall. Those trends elsewhere have been attributed in part to more people spending more time at home in the pandemic. A number of larceny categories saw decreases in total numbers including: pocket-picking, from four incidents to one incident; shoplift- ing, from 135 to 126; and larceny from a building, 212 to 135. But larceny of affixed motor vehi- cle parts/accessories shot up, from 278 in 2019 to 304 last year. Larceny from a motor vehicle remained about the same, from 270 cases to 272 cases, and "all other" larcenies were down, from 256 in 2019 to 239 last year. Motor vehicle thefts were up 18 percent, from 181 to 220. More people being at home also seems to have an effect on the cat- egory of vandalism, where there were 629 cases in 2019 and 598 cases last year, or a drop of 5 per- cent. The category of fraud/false pre- tenses went from 154 in 2019 to 184 last year, while credit card fraud went from 88 cases to 85 cases. Impersonation cases went from one to two, wire fraud went from one to two, and identity theft cases increased slightly, from 73 cases to 77 cases. Counterfeiting/forgery cases were down sharply, from 75 in 2019 to 40 last year, according to the statistics provided by the depart- ment. Embezzlement cases stayed about even, from eight to seven, as did stolen property offenses, from 105 in 2019 to 103 last year. Non-force statutory and incest sex offenses were down from five to four year-over-year, while por- nography/obscene material charges increased from eight to 11 cases. Prostitution cases across three cat- egories were down from seven in 2019 to one in 2020. Human sex trafficking cases were down from five in 2019 to zero in 2020, and animal cruelty cases decreased from two to one. There were no gambling viola- tions in either year. Goncalves said the department has placed a high emphasis on the Neighborhood Response Unit and community policing over the past several years "to truly connect with our neighborhoods," she said. The PPD recently hired bilingual lifelong resident Kassandra Florez to serve as its constituent liaison, where she is connecting with the community to help the department best serve and protect residents. Florez has engaged the community through a third-party police survey, with results released by May, and hosted community meetings to pro- vide information to constituents. "We hope to continue to build on our partnership with our community going forward in order to continue making a stronger Pawtucket," said the chief. The Valley Breeze is committed to keep- ing quality news stories like this one free to our readers. You can be a huge part of this local journalism success story by mak- ing a one-time or monthly contribution to what we do every week at valleybreeze. com/support. Thank you as always for reading. CRIME From Page One event once it's safe to do so. "The Old Slater Mill Association has been an incredible steward of the property for 100 years, and we will continue their fine tradition of preserving the site and educating the public in Pawtucket," he said. "Our hope … is that our national reputa- tion as the keepers of America's his- tory and story will bring even more visitors to the site in person and virtually to appreciate the national and international significance of the birthplace of the American Industrial Revolution." In addition to acquiring Slater Mill, the NPS also accepted a con- servation and preservation easement on the 86 acres of the Blackstone River State Park in Lincoln from the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, which will bring segments of the Blackstone Bikeway, a contiguous section of the historic Blackstone Canal, and the Captain Wilbur Kelly House Museum of Transportation into the National Historical Park's boundary, according to Breitkreutz. While RIDEM still owns the park, the easement allows NPS to help interpret, preserve, and protect the site and will bring more national recognition to the critical role in the early American Industrial Revolution played by Ashton village in Cumberland and the Captain Wilbur Kelly mills in Lincoln, he said. Additionally, according to the NPS press release, four local historic dis- tricts have been established in four unique mill villages in the Blackstone River Valley including the Ashton Historic District in Cumberland, the Slatersville Historic District in North Smithfield, the Whitinsville Historic District in Northbridge, Mass., and the Hopedale Historic District in Hopedale, Mass. SLATER From Page 5 he took scraps of wood home to his apartment and began carving them into carousel animals. Looff assembled his wooden horses and animals onto a circular platform and created his first merry-go-round. In 1876, he installed his ride at Lucy Vandeveer's Bathing Pavilion, which became Coney Island's first carousel and first amusement ride. When the city of New York took his property under eminent domain to build a city park, Looff moved his family to Crescent Park in Riverside, R.I. In 1886, the Crescent Park amusement park was established in Riverside and Looff was com- missioned to build a large carousel near the pier where the steamboats docked. In 1895, Looff replaced the Crescent Park carousel with a larger and more elaborate one, and he built his new workshop nearby. He died in 1918, eight years after the Funland carousel was moved from New York and installed in Pawtucket. The renovation project has restored integrity and beauty to this important landmark, ensuring its enjoyment for many years to come, states a release. "We are glad to bring attention to this wonderful treasure in our city and couldn't be more pleased that it is getting much-deserved care, sponsored and championed by the Friends of the Looff Carousel." The Friends of the LOOFF CAROUSEL in Pawtucket won a $1,000 award from the Preservation Society of Pawtucket for their work restoring the carousel at Slater Park. AWARD From Page 9 do you know? You're holding 1 newspaper, but we fill 5 every week! They're all at valleybreeze.com In your time of need, The Valley Breeze will print your loved one's full obituary for a small charge. The paper also places the obituary on our web site, valleybreeze.com, as soon as it is provided to us by your family's funeral director. Notification to friends and neighbors is also made weekdays on WOON-AM radio announcements. Should you desire our services, kindly inform your funeral director. The full charge is $99, or $138 for lengthy obituaries, in the edition of your choice. You may place the obituary in any of our other editions for $55 each. Thank you. OBITUARIES answers

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