New England in brief

Woman stabbed at hotel, hospitalized

April 15, 2009
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A woman was stabbed last night at the Boston Marriott Copley Place, police said. The call was received at 10:10, said David Estrada, police spokesman. The victim was taken to Boston Medical Center. Her condition was unknown last night. Police did not know whether the woman was a guest at the hotel, Estrada said. No other details on the attack were available late last night.

Bill protects pets in domestic abuse cases
Massachusetts lawmakers and animal rights advocates hope to pass legislation that would protect pets in domestic violence cases, making it easier for the owners to leave their alleged abusers. Representatives Peter J. Koutoujian, Democrat of Waltham, and Katherine Clark, Democrat of Melrose, spoke yesterday at an animal rights lobby about the bill they filed to allow the inclusion of pets in temporary restraining orders. Koutoujian says there have been numerous cases of abusers using pets to threaten victims, even killing the animals. Maine, New York, California, and Illinois have passed similar legislation. (AP)

Historic sites compete for $1m in grants
Massachusetts historic sites are competing to win $1 million in restoration grants. Governor Deval Patrick, Mayor Thomas M. Menino of Boston, and officials from the American Express Foundation and the National Trust for Historic Preservation announced yesterday that 25 historic sites in Massachusetts are eligible for funding through the "Partners in Preservation" program. Sites include the Old North Church and the Paul Revere House in Boston's North End neighborhood, the New England Aquarium, and Orchard House, the Concord home of "Little Women" author Louisa May Alcott. The winner will be determined by online voting, which runs through May 17. Additional grants will be awarded on June 16 to other sites after an advisory committee review process. (AP)

Street artist Fairey faces felony charges
Shepard Fairey, the street artist known for his poster depicting President Obama, will face 10 felony charges today, a Boston Municipal court judge determined yesterday. Fairey, 39, of Los Angeles, appeared in court expecting to face 10 misdemeanor complaints, but Judge Eleanor Coe Sinnott ruled that the original intent of the police and the court clerk was to issue felony complaints. Sinnott ordered Fairey to return to court today at 9 a.m. Boston police arrested Fairey on Feb. 6 while he was en route to the Institute of Contemporary Art, which was hosting an event in his honor. Police said the arrest was in connection with a street art campaign that involved posters placed on a Massachusetts Turnpike Authority building near the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue and Newbury Street, as well as a 2000 warrant from Brighton Municipal Court.

Vermonter to lead environmental group
A longtime Vermonter who served at the helm of the state's Agency of Natural Resources has been chosen to head the Conservation Law Foundation, New England's most influential environmental group. John B. Kassel, 51, originally from Middletown, N.Y., has lived in Vermont for 30 years and is a graduate of Middlebury College and Cornell Law School. Most recently he served as co-managing partner and cofounder of Shems Dunkiel Kassel & Saunders, a Burlington , Vt.- based law firm, where he counseled nonprofits and businesses on the creation and permitting of renewable energy projects. Kassel will assume his new post May 1.

Stray bullet narrowly misses boy, 5
A stray bullet nearly hit a 5-year-old boy in his bedroom Monday during an apparent gunfight outside his Bluefield Street home, police said. The boy was watching television at about 10:15 p.m. when he was struck in the back of the neck by a shard of glass from the second-floor window, said Lieutenant Jeffrey Silva of the New Bedford police. The bullet was lodged into the wall of his bedroom at his house in the South End's Blue Meadows housing development. The boy, whom police would not identify, was taken to St. Luke's Hospital as a precaution, Silva said. Police believe the gunfire was related to a shooting on Grinnell and Purchase streets that occurred at about 5:30 p.m. No arrests have been made, Silva said.