EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: At some point, everyone stopped paying to maintain "Stonegate Mansion." The trustees resigned. No one was left holding the bag – except the town of Great Barrington. And no one is sure what really happened with this timeshare. Not yet, anyway.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: The Berkshire Eagle obtained the final report of the Pittsfield Police Department’s force investigation team tasked with investigating the fatal shooting of Miguel Estrella on March 25. The release of the — highly redacted — final report comes more than three months after the release of the preliminary report.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: "Just plain ugly." That's how North Adams Mayor Jennifer Macksey describes parts of the concrete channels that carry the Hoosic River through her city. This distressed system of "flood chutes," which has protected North Adams since the 1950s, may get a fresh look. That's welcome news to people who want the river to be less an urban captive — and more a public gem.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: Some Berkshire public schools saw a dramatic rise in chronic absenteeism in the 2020-21 year. Educators blame the pandemic. But chronic absenteeism has been a fact of school life longer than that.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: Three years after Theory Wellness opened as the first retail cannabis outlet in Berkshire County, 24 licensed recreational-use companies in the Berkshires pull in roughly $200 million in yearly sales. One company accounts for more than a quarter of that, according to estimates The Eagle derived through public records requests.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: Shootings have jolted Pittsfield neighborhoods. Residents say that in the weeks and months since, they’ve tried to go back to life as normal, but can’t get images and sounds out of their heads.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: The court battle over Very Good Properties LLC has involved allegations of fraudulent billing, threats, defamation, side deals and stolen business opportunities.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: Twelve families in the city's Morningside neighborhood, most with school-aged children, lost their homes in fires that hit three buildings April 22. A month later, their lives remain in flux, as assistance wears thin and new apartments prove scarce.
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More than 100 Massachusetts police departments have or have promised the state to start a body camera program. The Pittsfield Police Department is playing catch-up. We look into how other departments are using the technology and answering handling the legal concerns cited by Pittsfield police.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: Friends and family say that in the last years of his life, Miguel Estrella tried to break free from troubles of his youth, including links to people with criminal records. One night in February 2020 showed how hard that can be, when Estrella tried to claim he owned the gun Adams police found in his car. Police believe he was coerced to say that.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: Investigators hired last year to probe complaints at Town Hall found the Monterey town’s administrator central to most conflicts, engaging in a misuse of power though “a pattern of conduct” that is retaliatory and manipulative — findings she strongly denies.
When Berkshire Flyer service got the green light this week, it seemed a dream of easier rail trips linking New York City with Berkshire County had been achieved. But simply getting to Berkshire County isn’t the whole story for rail travelers. We follow one family trying to get four miles in Pittsfield without a car.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: Over the past two decades, Pittsfield police officers have shot seven people. In four instances, the shootings were fatal. In all but the most recent incident, which remains under investigation, the shootings were deemed justified and the officers were cleared of wrongdoing.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: A map prepared by a federal government agency in 1936 fashioned once refined Circular Avenue on Pittsfield's West Side into a kind of bull’s eye, advising bankers where not to invest. Nearly a century later, it’s plain that decades of disinvestment rubbed this place raw.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: It wasn’t Jim Crow laws that helped lock a poverty cycle in place — those were illegal in Massachusetts. It was a map of Pittsfield. A groundbreaking report, "Redlining in Pittsfield: A Case Study," tells the story.
EAGLE INVESTIGATIONS: Since Shaker High School English teacher Meghan Marohn went missing in their neighborhood, life hasn't quite been the same.