<![CDATA[NECN - ]]>Copyright 2018https://www.necn.com/feature/new-hampshirehttp://media.necn.com/designimages/clear.gifNECNhttps://www.necn.comen-usSat, 24 Mar 2018 19:13:31 -0400Sat, 24 Mar 2018 19:13:31 -0400NBC Owned Television Stations<![CDATA[Should Smoking Be Banned on Hampton Beach?]]>Fri, 23 Mar 2018 17:25:07 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Proposal_to_Ban_Smoking_at_Hampton_Beach.jpg

Anthony Curro loves the peace and quiet of the ocean's waves in his back yard in Hampton, New Hampshire. In August of 2017, that serenity was interrupted by the stench of cigarettes.

"Someone just showed up and put his beach chair right around us and and just started smoking," Curro said. "He probably wasn't even aware that there were kids everywhere and now here we are, breathing his smoke."

That incident propelled Curro to file a petition with the town. He got the necessary signatures needed for town selectmen to decide to make it an ordinance on town owned beaches: Plaice Cove and Sun Valley.

"I'm a reformed smoker," said Hampton resident Richard Doulette. "Thirty-five, 40 years. So my only only opinion is if they want to smoke, let them smoke in their residence."

The petition won with residents, but now the town selectmen have to vote to pass the warrant into an ordinance.

"I think if the town did take a position, it might help end some of the litter that we get from these cigarette butts," said Selectman Rick Griffin.

Selectman Russell "Rusty" Bridle was not as optimistic.

"Although well-intended, I think it's going to be very hard to enforce," said Bridle.

"In New Hampshire, in order to enforce an item passed at town meeting, there has to get a state law addressing that issue," said Town Manager Frederick Welch. "There is no state law addressing this issue, so it's kind of an advisory issue."

Welch said if the ban were passed it would be considered a civil ordinance. "It's not a criminal ordinance. Police have no authority here," he explained.

Curro said that in Rye, a smoking ban ordinance and signs were put up, making him hopeful this same thing can happen in Hampton.

Selectmen are scheduled to meet on Monday and are expected to discuss this issue and make a decision whether to make it an ordinance.

<![CDATA[UNH Researchers Charged With Misusing Federal Grant Money]]>Fri, 23 Mar 2018 15:21:09 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/181*120/t-hall-hi-res.jpg

Two University of New Hampshire researchers were charged Friday with stealing money from federal research grants, U.S. Attorney Scott Murray announced in a press release.

The indictment alleges that Hailong Zhang, 44, of Nottingham, and Jichun Zhang, 45, of Durham, used credit cards provided to them by the university - and covered by federal research grants - for personal purchases.

Hailong Zhang, a research project manager at the university, is accused of using his business card to purchase Amazon gift cards totaling more than $82,000 and using them for personal items between December 2013 and January 2018. The indictment alleges he attempted to hide this improper use of the grant money by submitting fictitious receipts to the university. His grant was provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health.

Jichun Zhang, a research assistant professor in a different department at the school, is accused of using a university-issued credit card covered by federal grant money to purchase almost $7,000 worth of personal items from various online businesses between January 2016 and December 2017. He allegedly also concealed these purchases by submitting fictitious receipts to the university. His grant was provided by the National Aeronatic and Space Administration (NASA).

The two defendants were arrested Friday and are scheduled to make their initial appearance in federal court Friday afternoon, as per the U.S. Attorney's office in New Hampshire. It's unclear if they have attorneys.

In a statement, University of New Hampshire officials said they launched an investigation after discovering irregularities in employee expense reimbursement claims during a random audit, and added both have been placed on unpaid administrative leave and have been banned from campus.

Photo Credit: Mike Ross/UNH Photography]]>
<![CDATA[NH Businesses Concerned About Downtown Crime]]>Wed, 21 Mar 2018 18:33:11 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/214*120/elm+street+businesses.jpg

Some business owners on Elm Street in downtown Manchester, New Hampshire are asking for the city's help to keep their customers and employees safe.

Mint Bistro owner Tim Baines, a newly elected Alderman in Manchester, said someone tried stealing cash from their register on Monday.

"My general manager came in for work around 1:15 in the afternoon and noticed that the bar drawer was smashed to the ground," Baines said. 

Right before this incident, this same man was said to be a block away at Republic Cafe, also on Elm Street.

“He came in our back door,” said Republic Cafe Partner Peter Macone. “He said, 'I was looking for an application,' and one of our cooks said, 'well you could have come in the front door but also why don't you walk out this way.'”

Both Macone and Baines gave surveillance footage of those incidents to the Manchester Police.

On Tuesday, Manchester Police arrested Calvin Degreenia, 32, after they say he attempted to steal from a Bob's Furniture Delivery Truck. They say they recognized him from the restaurant surveillance video.

Baines says this incident is part of a bigger problem largely surrounding the opiod drug crisis in Manchester.

“If you have these unsettling events when you're trying to walk in the door or going to your car at the end of the night, it can be bad for business,” said Baines.

Baines said crime is one of the central reasons he ran for alderman.

“I thought I would use my voice and try to fight for what we're all looking for at city hall,” Baines said.

In a statement Manchester Mayor Joyce Craig said, “I think the city can always be doing more to help businesses downtown, which is why I've been meeting with organizations and holding community office hours — so I can hear firsthand the issues our city is facing, and have real conversations about what we can do to help.”

“Down here on Elm street, we’re right here in it, we are talking we're having meetings, we're getting together and we're saying what can we do,” said Macone.

Baines said right now the efforts to combat these incidents are largely led by the Elm Street business owners. He said two weeks ago business owners hosted a round table discussion attended by 100-percent local owners.

Macone said he wants to see the city step up.

“We’d love to see a lot more police walking down here,” Macone said.

“I think we need to be more proactive in our approach to make sure that people are feeling safe down here,” Baines said.

<![CDATA[Activist: Portsmouth, NH Needs Water Filters]]>Tue, 20 Mar 2018 18:09:40 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Concerns_About_Drinking_Water_in_Portsmouth_NH.jpg

When Andrea Amico found out that her seven-year-old daughter, who had attended day care at the former Pease Airforce Base, had high levels of potentially harmful chemicals in her body, she got to work.

She founded an activist group called "Testing for Pease," which is now fighting for filters in Portsmouth, New Hampshire's water system.

The chemicals found in the city's water at Pease are called polyuoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

An annual water report for Portsmouth completed in 2016 says that exposure to PFAS over certain levels may result in adverse health effects, including developmental effects to fetuses during pregnancy, low birth weight, accelerated puberty, and cancer. The chemicals can remain in the body for 7 to 9 years.

The USEPA health advisory warns of potential health problems when the chemicals are concentrated at 70 parts per trillion. The Haven well was found to have 200 parts per trillion. It was shut down in May 2014.

"My children were exposed in their very early life, and I wonder how this is going to affect them as they continue to grow and develop," Amico said.

Amico said lower levels of the PFAS were found in the remaining two wells. City Councilor Rebecca Perkins confirmed 20 parts per trillion, keeping it under the federal government's advisory level. The city's water serves Portsmouth's schools.

"There's research to show that even low levels of these chemicals can be associated with adverse health affects," said Amico.

Amico has filtered and bottled water in her home.

"I can control the water my kids are drinking at home," said Amico. "I can't necessarily control what they're drinking at school."

At Monday's Portsmouth city council meeting, Amico asked council members to install water filters in the city school's water.

"We need to identify what's really going to fix it for the long term and we need to make that infrastructure investment," Perkins said.

In the city council meeting, Brian Goetz, Deputy Director of Public Works, said that the city is currently testing filter systems.

Amico said that the mayor recommended that she take their request to the school board.

In a statement, Portsmouth Superintendent Stephen Zadravec said: "We follow the recommendations of the city's Water Division when it comes to the water coming into our schools. The link below would take you to the information on the water and all testing results. As you will see, all tests done are well below the established advisory level in the parts per trillion. At this point there is no recommendation to install filters."

However, a compromise appears on the horizon.

"Everybody's in agreement that that action that needs to happen," Perkins said. "I think we're all just trying to figure out when and what method is best."

Amico said she's hopeful, but the long term health of her family is her top priority. "I don't ever think I'm going to stop worrying about how this could impact them."

<![CDATA[Recovering Users, Trump Fans Sound Off on Death Penalty]]>Mon, 19 Mar 2018 20:25:35 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000013664491.JPG

Protesters and supporters of Donald Trump shared their thoughts on the president's plan for the opioid crisis during his visit to Manchester, New Hampshire.

Photo Credit: NBC10 Boston]]>
<![CDATA['Mack' the Harp Seal Released Back Into Ocean]]>Mon, 19 Mar 2018 11:03:19 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Mack+the+seal+released.JPG

A harp seal found dehydrated on a New Hampshire beach last month has been rehabilitated and released back into the ocean.

The gray seal named "Mack" was found Feb. 15 at Hampton Beach State Park in Hampton eating sand, according to officials with the Seacoast Science Center Marine Mammal Rescue Team.

The animal welfare organization said Mack had been alert and responsive to noise and movement but had discharge coming from both eyes.

After determining he needed rehabilitation, Mack was transported to National Marine Life Center (NMLC) in Bourne, Massachusetts for care. Further tests showed critical dehydration and radiographs showed that he had rocks in his stomach.

According to the Seacoast Science Center Marine Mammal Rescue Team, Mack quickly bounced back and began regaining his strength.

He was ready to be released back into the wild on Sunday afternoon on Hampton Beach where dozens of people sent him off with cheers.

Marine officials said Mack will likely migrate back to the Canadian Provinces and the Arctic.

<![CDATA[Maple Syrup Program in NH Teaches Kids With Special Needs]]>Fri, 16 Mar 2018 18:25:14 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Program_in_NH_Teaches_Kids_to_Make_Maple_Syrup.jpg

A one-of-a-kind program in Greenfield, New Hampshire is teaching students with severe disabilities how to make maple syrup. The program is a full-featured agricultural/vocational curriculum called the Farm School.

The Crotched Mountain Foundation School is a non-profit K-12 school for children with mental health disorders, physical disabilities, or on the autism spectrum.

The Farm School is in the middle of maple syrup season.

Colby Hoover, age 15, is a day student at Crotched Mountain. He participates in the maple syrup making process.

"Going out collecting sap, tapping trees, checking the line - that stuff I'm all for," Hoover said.

Hoover is learning life skills through the process of making maple syrup from scratch.

"It's fun doing activities," Hoover said. "I'm more of a hands-on learner."

Crotched Mountain provides the kind of support that students like Colby need to discover what he loves.

"I love being a part of a team, because I'm surrounded by people that I like a lot," Hoover said. Although, he did admit there was one aspect of making maple syrup that he doesn't love: "The boiling part."

David Johnson is the Marketing Vice President. He said their main goal at the center is for students to gain their maximum independence.

Langdon Thorne, age 20, is also a student at Crotched Mountain who participates in the maple syrup-making process.

"I like that it gives me something to do, because I get bored sometimes," Thorne said.

The program allows the students to learn in ways that meet their own unique needs.

"I can brag to my parents and say 'I learned this today,'" Thorne said. "Patience and a lot of hard work."

These are skills that Langdon has learned through the maple making process. They are also life skills he can take with him long after he's left Crotched Mountain.

In 2017 the Crotched Mountain won the New Hampshire Maple Producers Association Maple Contest in the classrooms division. They won the $2000 prize last year and used the money for our new evaporator.

<![CDATA[New Hampshire Launches School Safety Task Force]]>Thu, 15 Mar 2018 18:29:53 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/New_Hampshire_Launches_School_Safety_Taskforce.jpg

New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu has created a School Safety Preparedness Task Force in response to the Parkland, Florida shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that killed 17 people.

The task force consists of a diverse group of local and state officials who have been charged with creating safety protocols for New Hampshire schools.

"We've been very fortunate here in New Hampshire,"Governor Sununu said. "We haven't had any significant incidents in recent history, but we know that very well could happen.

"Someone has to take a stand," said Tara Nicholson, a parent in Concord, New Hampshire. "We have to do it now."

On the same day that students all over the country walked out of school to protest gun violence, Governor Sununu's newly formed task force held their first meeting.

Governor Sununu has charged the task force with eight proposals to research and if possible implement ranging from increasing access to mental mental health services for youth, investment in school security to strengthening background checks.

"We talked about mental health. About kids in crisis. They talked about gun reform and what that would look like," said Governor Sununu. "Anytime you want answers they're usually not within the four walls of the State House, you gotta go out and really solicit that input from the community," Said Governor Sununu.

The Director of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Perry Plummer is the Chairperson of the task force.

"We hope to accomplish coming out with ideas that can be implemented to make our schools safer, and make our children safer," said Plummer.

An AR-15 semi automatic style weapon was used in the Florida shooting on Feb. 14.

"We're a gun crazed society, and there's time and place for every thing but we don't need AR 15's in the hands of kids," said Roger Ballou. "One has to be proactive because the firearms are out there."

Governor Sununu said the task force is New Hampshire's way of being proactive.

The Governor has said the task force will go hand and hand with the $20 million allocated to the Public School Safety Fund meant to give grants and assistance to safety and security upgrades in New Hampshire schools.

<![CDATA['So Wonderful': Baby Born at Home During Nor'easter]]>Wed, 14 Mar 2018 18:28:45 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000013529541.JPG

For a New Hampshire couple expecting their second child, Tuesday's nor'easter was the perfect storm of events.

Salem residents Chris and Lisana Alexander and their 3-year-old child were expecting to become a family of four soon, but not quite this soon -- and in this way.

"The plan was supposed to be a couple more days later actually," Chris Alexander said. "She said she was starting to feel some cramps but nothing serious."

The Alexanders said in minutes the pain went from cramps to full blown contractions.

"She went from just 'ooh ohh ooh' to 'ahhhh,'" Chris said.

That's when the soon-to-be father of two got help on the line by calling 911. The dispatcher immediately told him to check whether the baby was crowning.

"As soon as I checked, I'm like, 'Yep, this is happening now,'" Chris said.

Chris, a phlebotomist, grabbed gloves and towels after this realization.

"He knew what to do in a sense," Lisana said.

Because ready or not, their bathroom was being transformed into a delivery room, and the dispatcher guided the parents through contractions -- and the birth of their son, Logan John Alexander.

"The baby was born two minutes before the ambulance showed up," Lisana said.

Salem firefighters then helped take Lisana and Logan to Parkland Medical Center in Derry, New Hampshire, as the storm raged outside.

"Most precious moment in life," Chris said. "Not many fathers get to deliver their own baby."

"You get married, and you plan on having a family and you have all these hopes and expectations and then something like this happens and it's just -- I'm getting emotional," Lisana said. "It bonds you. I just feel like it brought us so close."

Closer after the couple says they weathered a memorable storm together.

"Overall, just that he's healthy, that's just so wonderful," Lisana said.

Photo Credit: NBC10 Boston]]>
<![CDATA[Man Facing Charges After Barricading Himself Inside NH Home]]>Tue, 13 Mar 2018 13:13:32 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/214*120/James+Pontoo+Seabrook+NH+PD.jpg

A New Hampshire man is facing charges after police say he barricaded himself in his Seabrook home Tuesday morning, which caused area residents to shelter-in-place.

James Pontoo, 53, was charged with criminal threatening and reckless conduct — both felony level offenses.

Seabrook Police responded to 33 Walton Rd. at 6:53 a.m. for a report of a man who said he was going to harm himself.

Upon arrival, an officer was able to go inside the home where he allegedly observed Pontoo holding a handgun to his head inside a bedroom, threatening to harm himself.

The officer made several attempts to de-escalate the situation but Pontoo refused to drop the handgun. While attempting to step further into the bedroom, police said Pontoo threatened the officer until he backed out of the room.

Other officers then arrived and evacuated other residents from the home.

A perimeter was set up around the home and surrounding area where residents were told to shelter in place.

The Seacoast Emergency Response Team responded to the scene and assisted with perimeter safety and negotiations with Pontoo until he finally surrendered a few hours later and was taken into custody.

Pontoo is scheduled to be arraigned in the Rockingham County Superior Court March 14. It's unclear if he has an attorney.

Photo Credit: Seabrook Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Hardware Stores Busy as People Prepare for 3rd March Storm]]>Mon, 12 Mar 2018 18:00:14 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/214*120/nashua_new_hampshire_prepares_for_third_storm.jpg

A third Nor'easter is barreling towards New England, promising to drop a foot of snow on some of the hardest hit areas by previous storms in recent weeks.

Small business hardware stores in Southeastern New Hampshire, including Nashua and Manchester, say people tend to wait to the last minute to prepare, mainly because they are used to these repeat storms.

"I'm just tired of it," said one shopper at LeBlanc True Value Hardware store in Manchester.

The weariness is one reason why people wait to prepare.

"Just like people running to grocery store for bread and milk," Belletetes Manager Mike Asel said. "Some people might call and need large quantities of salt or calcium, seeing what we have left for shovels or snow blowers."

Adele said those same people come looking for whatever's left in the heat of the storm.

After this recent string of storms, Belletetes inventory for items like generators, shovels, and snow blowers is thin.

Phil Leblanc in Manchester at Leblanc True Value Hardware said he plans to be ready for those who prepare at the last minute.

"We've got ice melters, we sell propane and flashlights," Leblanc said.

People that do think agreed said after three storms most of their preparation is minor.

"We want to put ice down in the driveway so you don't slip and fall."

Asel said this storm is just plain karma from Mother Nature.

"March is a very cruel month," Donna Bushee said. "You never know what you're going to get."

Belletetes plans to be open for normal business hours and will only close if the weather becomes too dangerous.

<![CDATA[Is President Trump Coming to NH Next Week?]]>Mon, 12 Mar 2018 16:14:01 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/trump-cabinet-mtg.jpg

Is President Donald Trump planning to visit New Hampshire next week? That's what some officials are saying.

Manchester Fire Chief Dan Goonan told the Union Leader that he spoke with Secret Service personnel, and a visit is "very likely." He said Trump is expected to visit a fire station and discuss the city's "Safe Station" program, which helps opioid addicts seek aid without the fear of facing criminal charges.

Goonan participated in the White House Opioid Summit on March 1 in Washington, D.C.

The White House press office said only that they have no information on the rumored visit right now.

Vice President Mike Pence is already confirmed to visit the state on March 22, when he is scheduled to attend a fundraiser for Republican Gov. Chris Sununu in Manchester.

Photo Credit: Evan Vucci/AP]]>
<![CDATA[Small Business Tells of Power Restoration Scam in NH]]>Sun, 11 Mar 2018 21:45:52 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/NH+Power+Scam.png

The Bedford Veterinary Medical Center is telling the public to beware of power company scammers, after they received a call from someone posing as an Eversource employee threatening to shut off their power if they didn't pay up.

Scammers know when to hit small businesses, at times when they're most vulnerable. For instance, in the aftermath of this most recent Nor'Easter to hit New Hampshire.

Doctor Sudha Komma runs a private veterinary practice with locations in Bedford and Hudson.

"We need to do surgeries," said Dr. Komma. "We get emergencies, we need power.

Dr. Komma said on Thursday she had reason to believe her electricity was in jeopardy.

"I got a call saying that they're going to disconnect our electricity in the next 20 minutes," Dr. Komma said.

The person on the other end claimed to work for Eversource.

"I didn't even look into [if we] did we even pay the bill or not, I was looking at my 20 minute time frame," said Dr. Komma.

Immediately, Dr. Komma said she started making plans to pay the $2,997.25 she was quoted.

"She told me to go to 1 South River Road in Bedford, that they have their office down there," said Dr. Komma.

That's when the Bedford Veterinary Medical Center staff looked into this issue.

"All of our bills were up to date, and then we were like, 'OK, it’s a scam,'" said Dr. Komma.

"The sense of urgency is a big red flag," said Kaitlyn Woods, Spokeswoman for Eversource New Hampshire, "we don't demand instant payments to keep your power going."

"I had to stop what I was doing and then put the clients on wait and then take care of this," Dr. Komma said.

"We have pets in the hospital," said Dr. Komma, "we need them to be comfortable."

Eversource, New Hampshire cautions customers that receive calls like this to call the company and check their status.

Eversource says, "After working for a period of time with a customer to set up a payment plan and sending notices, we do eventually reach a point where we will disconnect power if payment is not received."

To report scams to Eversource, call 800-286-2000 as well as your local police station.

<![CDATA[Power Outages Continue In New Hampshire]]>Fri, 09 Mar 2018 00:52:59 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/NH_Power_6pm.jpg

Thousands of people woke up in the dark in Southern New Hampshire. Salem, Windham and Pelham had a combined 17,000 customers without power.

Heavy, wet snow took down scores of trees snapped in half, brought power lines with them.

"You could watch the trees just swaying," said Jack Cooper.

Cooper spent Thursday digging his family out of the snow that poured on his neighborhood and bright trees down with it.

"Last night we heard some cracking, so we just looked out the window and we saw this tree just draped over the car there," Cooper said.

That was the picture all over Salem.

"Five more have come down and another came down on the line further down the street," said Suzanne Liddell.

"We've been through a lot of storms," said Joe Quinn. "Never nothing like this though."

Quinn woke up to downed trees everywhere including in top of his wife's car. "Totally covered. We had to get a chain saw to cut it out," he said.

Joe and his family are without power as most of his neighborhood.

People most prepared for this weather have a generator that gives them heat. A bridge until the power comes back on.

The clean up efforts have proved tough.

"This is the highest number of outages we've seen," said John Shore, Communication Director for Liberty Utilities. "We see a lot of individual incidents of these branches and it's just really causing a big mess today."

The power company is working around the clock to get power restored.

Most people wonder when power will be restored.

"We are expecting this to be a multi-day event," Shore said.

<![CDATA[I-95 in NH Reopens After Downed Wires Force Closure]]>Thu, 08 Mar 2018 17:12:13 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/wires.png

Interstate 95 was closed in both directions near Portsmouth, New Hampshire, after a power line fell across the highway around 8 a.m. Thursday.

The highway closed at exit 3 after a broken utility pole resulted in downed wires, according to the New Hampshire Department of Transportation.

It appears that the weight of the snow caused the pole to snap, however thei incident is still under investigation. 

NHDOT said I-95 was reopened around 10:30 a.m.

There were no injuries in the incident.

Motorists were urged to seek alternate routes if possible. Traffic was diverted via routes 101, 33, 1 and the Spaulding Turnpike. 

Click here for our traffic map.

Many smaller roads across New England are also impassable due to downed trees and power lines. In Massachusetts alone, roads are closed in Acton, Amesbury, Concord, Haverhill, Norfolk and Wareham.

Speeds on the Massachusetts Turnpike had been reduced to 40 mph but all speed restrictions have now been lifted.

Photo Credit: Daniel Summers]]>
<![CDATA[School Fires Teacher Under Investigation for Sex Misconduct]]>Thu, 08 Mar 2018 00:22:35 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/David+Pook.jpg

A New Hampshire school has fired a teacher who was arrested late last month for alleged sexual misconduct while he was employed by a different school.

Thursday, Derryfield School in Manchester announced it had fired 47-year-old David Pook, who faces two counts of witness tampering and two counts of conspiracy to commit perjury.

The New Hampshire Attorney General's office says Pook's arrest came as a result of a 2017 report concerning sexual assaults by teachers on their students at St. Paul's School.

That investigation has followed inappropriate behavior such as student sexual conquest rituals like the "senior salute," a practice which led to the arrest and conviction of Owen Labrie in 2015.

Authorities said Pook taught at the Concord prep school for eight years but left under "questionable circumstances" in 2008.

Pook was employed at the Derryfield School in Manchester since 2009.

"At the time that David Pook was hired at Derryfield, as is our protocol, references were carefully checked and background checks were done," that school said in a statement. "However, references are only as good as the veracity of the source. St. Paul's School Rector, Michael Hirschfeld, issued a statement today saying, 'The school leadership [at St. Paul's School] at the time should never have given Mr. Pook a recommendation and the fact that it did not inform Derryfield of Mr. Pook's boundary issues was a failure for which we apologize.'"

According to the AG, the investigation focused on Pook's relationship with a female student at St. Paul's School while he was a teacher there.

As part of the investigation, that former student and Pook were called before a grand jury. Based on testimony and other evidence, authorities were able to bring charges against Pook.

He is scheduled to be arraigned on the charges in the Merrimack County Superior Court on March 15.

Photo Credit: New Hampshire Attorney General's Office]]>
<![CDATA['It's New England': NH Residents Take Snow in Stride]]>Wed, 07 Mar 2018 22:27:51 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/2nd_March_Nor_easter_Hits_NH.jpg

New Hampshire is predicted to get up to a foot of snow in the latest nor'easter Wednesday into Thursday morning.

"It's New England," said Darren Johnson of Pembroke. "It's what we do."

The consensus among people in Manchester was that New Englanders stay prepared for snow on any given day.

"It's 70 degrees one day," said Jared Breault. "A foot of snow the next. That's how we roll."

"I have gasoline in my generators," said Johnson.

"I hunker down until it's over with," said Joanne Ouimette.

The storm is expected to expected to pass Thursday morning.

Lisa Leary has a 30-minute drive from Massachusetts to New Hampshire.

"I brought an extra set of clothes in case I had to stay over," she said.

Hope Wooten was in Manchester from Vermont for a conference. Wooten said the snow was more than she bargained for.

"The eight-to-12 inches is a little intimidating," Wooten said.

For many residents, the snow was far less intimidating.

"We have to work and things go on, right?" said Leary.

"When it's over with, you go out and snow blow your way out of there," said Ouimette.

One man said he's already looking past the snow to the spring.

"It's new England, I'm just waiting for opening day," he said.

Photo Credit: NBC10 Boston]]>
<![CDATA[Baby Seal Rescued Alongside Highway in NH]]>Wed, 07 Mar 2018 16:30:31 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/214*120/Saco+the+seal+web.jpg

A baby seal who had lost its way was rescued Monday morning from the side of Route 286 in Seabrook, New Hampshire.

Just before 7 a.m., Seabrook police reported the stranded sea pup and called nearby Seacoast Science Center Marine Mammal Rescue for help.

"That, of course, was an emergency situation for us," said mammal rescue manager Ashley Stokes. "That road gets very busy for us in the morning."

The animal welfare organization responded to the scene, taking the seal, which appears to be about 2 months old, to the National Marine Life Center for rehabilitation.

Stokes described the seal as "an animal that had not quite grasped life on its own yet," saying it was newly separated from its mother.

The seal was in bad condition, described in a Facebook post by SSC Marine Mammal Rescue as thin, lethargic and showing signs of internal bleeding.

The organization described the seal's prognosis as "extremely guarded and unknown," but noted that the seal is at least out of harm's way just before Wednesday's predicted storm.

On Wednesday the Seacoast Science Center said over twitter that the seal, named Saco, was in much better condition.

"this condition is still guarded," wrote the organization, "but he already looks better than he did 48 hours ago."

"He was brought to us dehydrated and lethargic," animal care assistant Wendy Wyman said. "We gave him IV fluids and we start them out with pedialyte."

As soon as the seal is eating normally, marine officials say he'll be released back into the wild.

The organization said it will continue to post updates on the animal's progress.

Photo Credit: @SeacoastSciCtr]]>
<![CDATA[First Responders Call for System Upgrades in Salem, NH]]>Mon, 05 Mar 2018 19:53:17 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/BOST_000000013283290.JPG

First responders in Salem, New Hampshire say they’re in desperate need of an upgraded communication system.

Both fire and police departments say the radio system has failed at least once during recent emergency calls.

In February, Salem police officers' radios failed during a drug raid that was aimed at combatting the opioid trade.

“We were running an operation down by the state line," said Salem Police Captain Joel Dolan. "Being [stationed] both inside and outside the building, our officers couldn't communicate with each other. It led to an officer safety issue.”

Salem Police say that with their current radios, their job becomes more dangerous.

“It’s very scary,” Dolan said. “It is not a want by us. It's definitely become a need.”

Salem Police are joined by the Salem Fire Department and the Department of Public Works, who are also calling for upgrades to their communication systems.

“If we’re inside of a building and we're using this radio, it's only six watts, as compared to the mobile radios in the fire trucks that are 100 watts,” said Salem Fire Chief Paul Parisi. "The hand held radios don’t reach far.

“We have a lot of dead areas up at North Salem and a lot of dead areas down in South Salem,” Dolan said.

“It’s scary for the first responders and for the people they're trying to help,” said Patrick Vetere, a Salem Resident. “During 9/11, one of the problems police had was that their radios didn't work under extreme conditions, so it certainly sounds like a good thing to support.”

The first responders are asking for $1.6 million over the next three years to pay for the upgraded system.

“There’s no cost to the taxpayer, because it's coming out of our savings account and there's no interest,” Parisi said.

"I believe the fire department and the police department should have all the equipment they need,” said Joseph Arcadipane, another Salem resident.

“Help us keep our firefighters and police officers and municipal service workers safe,” Parisi said.

Residents will be able to vote on funding the new system on Election Day, which is March 13.

<![CDATA[NH Sex Assault Survivor Wants to 'Reclaim' Her Name]]>Mon, 05 Mar 2018 13:00:43 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Chessy+Prout.jpg

A former student who was sexually assaulted at a New Hampshire prep school by a fellow classmate says she is sharing her experience in a memoir to "reclaim" her own name.

Chessy Prout appeared Monday morning on the "Today" show to talk about her book, "I Have the Right To: A High School Survivor's Story of Sexual Assault, Justice and Hope," which is due out Tuesday.

The 19-year-old told host Hoda Kotb that she "wasn't given the luxury of staying quiet. My name was blasted on the internet. There were hate sites written about me. So I decided to kind of reclaim my name, reclaim my story, because it is difficult for a survivor to come forward like this."

Prout was a 15-year-old freshman at St. Paul's School in Concord, New Hampshire, when she was assaulted by classmate Owen Labrie in 2014 in a game of "sexual conquest."

Labrie was found guilty of misdemeanor sexual assault and child endangerment. He was acquitted on three counts of felony sexual assault.

Photo Credit: Today]]>
<![CDATA[Sex Assault Suspect Arrested After Lengthy Investigation]]>Mon, 05 Mar 2018 10:11:52 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/214*120/NH+Sex+Offender+Mug+Shot.PNG

A registered sex offender is facing charges in New Hampshire in connection with two sexual assaults that allegedly happened more than three years ago.

Nashua police, along with Lebanon police and the U.S. Marshall Service, arrested 55-year-old Edward Goodwin of Lebanon on Friday.

Police began investigating Goodwin in 2014 after a juvenile victim under the age of 13 reported that she was inappropriately touched by the suspect at his home in Nashua.

In 2015, as the investigation continued, another juvenile victim came forward and said that Goodwin sexually assaulted him as well.

Goodwin had left the Nashua area during the time of these investigations. He was found and placed under arrest at his home in Lebanon.

He faces one charge of aggravated felonious sexual assault and one charge of felonious sexual assault.

He was held on $100,000 cash bail pending his arraignment on Friday. It is not clear whether he has an attorney.

<![CDATA[Nor'easter Floods New Hampshire's Seacoast]]>Fri, 02 Mar 2018 21:47:55 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Flooding_Along_NH_Coast_During_Nor_easter.jpg

Friday's nor'easter brought powerful winds, heavy rains and flooding to Hampton Beach in New Hampshire.

The messy mix of weather still saw some thrill-seekers come out and bear the conditions.

"This is pretty wild," Judy Dulmaine of Worcester, Massachusetts, said. "I like it!"

"It's exciting," added Amanda Spinney. "It took us a lot to get here."

People say they were excited, but still caught off guard.

At times, rain was blowing sideways on Hampton Beach, making it hard and dangerous to get to the shore.

"Trees were falling down," said Bobby Desmond. "Lot of limbs. Lot of debris on the road."

For some people, the wild ocean waves and heavy rains were the perfect weather to go exploring.

"I'm going to get sand dollars," said Donna Pacek of Worcester. "You will see me in this wind."

Some drivers continued through the flooded streets, confident that the worst weather had passed.

"It's not bad," said Jack Murphy.

Another high tide is expected around midnight, which is expected to bring heavier flooding.

"It's very important that citizens are prepared, stay informed and follow the instructions provided by public safety officials," Perry Plummer, director of New Hampshire Homeland Security and Emergency Management, said in a statement. "We're expecting the storm to be somewhat problematic through three tide cycles on Friday and Saturday, each potentially causing coastal flooding. Be prepared. Know your evacuation route, be ready to leave quickly, stay informed and listen to your local safety officials."

Go to ReadyNH.gov to sign up for emergency alerts to receive location-specific emergency information and weather warnings in New Hampshire.

<![CDATA[Alleged Drunk Driver Plows Into New Hampshire Home]]>Thu, 01 Mar 2018 18:46:14 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Northfield+NH+drunk+driver.png

Police say an apparent drunk driver drove into a home on Peverly Road in Northfield, New Hampshire on Wednesday night around 9 p.m.

Police say they received a call of someone driving erratically. When police arrived at the scene, Tonia Dukette had driven her car into the living room where the homeowner Brenda-lee Lockwood was sitting.

Dukette was given sobriety tests that police say she failed. Dukette was charged with a driving while intoxicated (DWI).

Lockwood was taken to the hospital with minor cuts and bruises.

"I didn't have time to react," Lockwood said. "I just didn't know what happened. I was just sitting there watching TV when all of the sudden I heard like a bang. Then, the next thing I know I was covered with stuff."

According to Northfield Police Detective Brian Beach, "She just clearly drove from the road into the woman's drive way and launched herself off a snow bank into the house."

Police said Dukette many have been out celebrating her birthday.

"I'm sorry but you know there's designated drivers in the world," said Lockwood. "You don't have to drive. You do kind of get ticked when your house is destroyed for stupidity."

Lockwood said, after she calmed down, she became thankful.

"A couple of my really nice neighbors came over and I think that's when the scared hit me," Lockwood said. "That's when I realized, I was lucky."

For now, Lockwood is staying with her sister temporarily.

"Stuff can be replaced, but there's only one of me and you know...I'm lucky," Lockwood said. "I was being watched out for by somebody."

Lockwood said her next step us to talk to the insurance company to assess the damages done to her home.

Photo Credit: Northfield police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Good Samaritans Run Into Fiery Crash, Save 2 People]]>Wed, 28 Feb 2018 20:14:40 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Good_Samartitans_Run_Into_Fiery_Crash_Saving_3_People.jpg

Two people were rescued from a three-car pile up on Salem Road in Windham, New Hampshire when several Good Samaritans ran into the fiery crash. One of those was an off-duty firefighter who was at the right place at the right time.

<![CDATA[Customers Split on New Gun Policy at Dick's Sporting Goods]]>Wed, 28 Feb 2018 19:10:53 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Dick_s_Sporting_Goods_Makes_Changes_to_Gun_Policy.jpg

Dick's Sporting Goods announced major changes Wednesday in response to the deadly shooting in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 people dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Edward Stack, CEO of the largest sporting goods store in the country, released a statement on the company's to make the following website, with these changes:

  • "We will no longer sell assault-style rifles, also referred to as modern sporting rifles. We had already removed them from all DICK'S stores after the Sandy Hook massacre, but we will now remove them from sale at all 35 Field & Stream stores."
  • "We will no longer sell firearms to anyone under 21 years of age."
  • "We will no longer sell high capacity magazines."
  • "We never have and never will sell bump stocks that allow semi-automatic weapons to fire more rapidly."
"Our thoughts and prayers are with all of the victims and their loved ones," Stack said. "But thoughts and prayers are not enough. We believe it's time to do something about it."

"You have to start somewhere," said Dick's shopper Renee Carey. "Maybe this is that tipping point."

Stack learned that Nicholas Cruz, the Douglas High School shooter didn't buy the gun he used in the shooting from Dick's, but he did buy a shotgun from their store in November 2017.

"It's too loose," said Dick's shopper Richard Caravella. "It's too easy. Raise the age, I'm for it."

Shoppers at Dick's in Concord, New Hampshire, were divided.

"You're probably more responsible, more thoughtful at [21] than you might be at 18," said Carey.

"In my opinion, you can't completely blame it on weapons," said Matthew Viger. "I think the wrong kid got a hold of the weapons."

Stack is also calling on lawmakers to step up, by asking them to pass the following regulations:

  • Ban assault-style firearms
  • Raise the minimum age to purchase firearms to 21
  • Ban high capacity magazines and bump stocks
  • Require universal background checks that include relevant mental health information and previous interactions with the law
  • Ensure a complete universal database of those banned from buying firearms
  • Close the private sale and gun show loophole that waives the necessity of background checks

"He's taking a risk," Carey said. "He's taking a business risk, but I think it's admirable."

Shoppers opposed to the changes said they'll still give Dick's business.

"Everyone has their own policies," Viger said. "I'm not going to stop buying cleats, because they're not going to sell somebody a rifle or whatever it is under the age of 21."

Read the entire statement here.

Photo Credit: NBC10 Boston]]>
<![CDATA[Ex-Teacher Charged Amid Ongoing Sex Misconduct Investigation]]>Wed, 28 Feb 2018 19:06:17 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/180*120/stpauls.jpg

A former teacher at a New Hampshire prep school has been arrested amid an ongoing investigation into sexual misconduct at the school, according to the attorney general's office and state police.

David Pook, 47, of Warner, is facing two counts of witness tampering and two counts of conspiracy to commit perjury.

The AG said Pook's arrest came as the result of a 2017 report concerning sexual assaults by St. Paul’s teachers on their students, among other inappropriate behavior, including student sexual conquest rituals such as the "senior salute," a practice which led to the arrest and conviction of Owen Labrie in 2015.

Authorities said Pook taught at the Concord prep school for eight years but left under "questionable circumstances" in 2008. He has been employed at the Derryfield School in Manchester since 2009.

According to the AG, the investigation focused on Pook’s relationship with a female student at St. Paul’s School while he was a teacher there.

As part of the investigation, that former student and Pook were called before a grand jury. Based on testimony and other evidence, authorities were able to bring charges against Pook.

He is scheduled to be arraigned on the charges in the Merrimack County Superior Court on March 15.

Officials at Derryfield School said they immediately suspended Pook, and that it will cooperate with the investigation.

St. Paul officials also released a statement on Wednesday.

"The school leadership at the time should never have given Mr. Pook a recommendation and the fact that it did not inform Derryfield of Mr. Pook's boundary issues was a failure for which we apologize," Michael Hirschfeld, the current rector of St. Paul's School, said.

Photo Credit: NBC News]]>
<![CDATA[3-Alarm Fire Destroys New Hampshire Auto Shop]]>Sat, 24 Feb 2018 19:40:54 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/Greenland+Fire.jpg

An investigation is underway into what caused a massive three-alarm fire that destroyed an auto body shop in Greenland, New Hampshire on Saturday.

No injuries were reported as a result of the fire, which happened at Carter's European Auto on Portsmouth Avenue.

Police said that the damage to the building and the machinery inside was extensive and called the property "a total loss," as a result of the fire.

Police told NBC10 Boston that multiple vehicles were destroyed in the blaze.

Police are saying that some animals may have died in the building, but are not sure what kind or how many at this time.

Greenland police confirmed that they responded to the scene of the fire around 10 a.m.

First responders said that the blaze was through the roof when they arrived. Police reported multiple explosions of unknown origin at the auto shop; however, investigators said they believe the explosions were caused by propane or oxygen tanks within the facility.

By 5:30 p.m., crews were still trying to clean up fuel inside of the building and expect to be there through the evening covering hot spots.

The cause of the fire is not known at this time, and the incident remains under investigation.

Photo Credit: Lynchpin Design Company, Hampton NH]]>
<![CDATA[Man Suffers Multiple Injuries in Fall While Ice Climbing]]>Sat, 24 Feb 2018 15:12:57 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/ambulance_generic2shotTele.jpg

A New Hampshire man suffered multiple injuries Friday afternoon after falling while ice climbing on Mt. Willard in Crawford Notch.

The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department was notified by 911 just before 2:30 p.m. that the climber had fallen approximately 20 feet and was suspended on a rope.

The climber, identified as Tom Boydston, 64, of Center Conway, suffered multiple injuries in the fall.

Authorities said Boydston's climbing partners, along with other climbers in the area, were able to lower him to a safe area until rescue arrived. The rescue was delayed due to the difficult terrain and high winds, sleet, rain and darkness.

New Hampshire Fish and Game Conservation Officers, Bartlett Fire Rescue services, Twin Mountain Fire Rescue services and Mountain Rescue Service worked together to locate, stabilize and transport Boydston to Memorial Hospital in North Conway where his exact condition remains unclear.

No further details are available at this time.

<![CDATA[High School Students Spend Vacation Learning Technology]]>Fri, 23 Feb 2018 20:53:42 -0400https://media.necn.com/images/213*120/High_School_Students_Spend_Vacation_Learning_Technology.jpg

High school students in Massachusetts participating in the Red Hat program spent their vacations learning about science and technology.