hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

News

March 21, 2013

Let's give gangs a hefty boot!

A recent headline in The Eagle-Tribune made me wince with anger.

“City gets $98K grant to fight gangs.”

A more preferred item would have been seeing our recreation department, library or high school music program benefit from such an allotment of money.

Not such an unfathomable sum being appropriated to fight crime in my city. It also posed some questions:

Are things really that bad in Haverhill that we need $98,000 from the state for such an inane cause? Can’t the police handle it? Can’t neighborhood watch groups accelerate their vigil? Can’t our city’s youth find something a bit more appropriate to pursue than travelling around in gangs and tearing our haven apart?

The story goes on to quote patrolmen who admitted violent crime and gang activity were on the upswing. There’s an apparent lack of numbers and resources to adequately respond to the increase in gang activity and violent crime.

Mercy!

Hoodlums are rampaging through neighborhoods, wielding baseball bats and causing bodily harm to others like something out of the pages of “West Side Story.” Five adults and three teenagers were arrested in one incident.

It crushes me to see innocent students being tormented by bullies. Mob scenes in our schools and neighborhoods are the devil’s advocate.

The newspaper story includes a quote from Mayor Jim Fiorentini, who readily admits that “gang members move in and out of our city all the time.”

No doubt, they will have already covered their tracks and caused bodily harm, pillaging the neighborhoods and defacing property. The state money is being awarded to communities like Haverhill with high levels of youth violence and gang problems.

Where do these gangs originate? Are they home-grown products or outsiders? Is the problem so rampant that you need such an amount of money to control it? I wonder, will that even be enough?

Text Only | Photo Reprints
News
  • 140808_HG_HAND_CUTTING

    Attending a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Marjorie Goudreault walkway are, from left, Elizabeth Delgado, special assistant to Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera; John Dimitry, former NECC president, and his wife, Audrey; Steven Buturlia of Pelham; Kelsy Buturlia of Pelham; Barbara Goudreault of Haverhill; Christopher Goudreault of Haverhill; Mary Goudreault of Tewksbury; Bill Moynihan of Haverhill, chair of NECC's Board of Trustees; Julie Reynolds of Middleton, N.H.; Patrick Goudreault of Haverhill; Matthew Goudreault of Haverhill; Lynn Morton of Tucson, AZ; Ann Corey of Atkinson; and NECC President Lane Glenn.

    'She was passionate about what she believed' Posted 6 days ago 2 Photos
  • The city wants you Posted 6 days ago
  • 140811_HG_CRU_HOSPITALS

    Joseph Roach is the new CEO and President for Holy Family Hospital in Methuen and Holy Family Hospital at Merrimack Valley in Haverhill. He is standing in front of the hospital located in Haverhill. CARL RUSSO/Staff photo

    No, you're not in Methuen Posted 6 days ago 1 Photo
  • The Lamp Post Posted 6 days ago
  • 140725_HG_ASW_BEST MANICURE 2

    AMY SWEENEY/Staff photoRoyal Nails and Spa offers the best manicure, according to a vote by readers of the Gazette.

    More than just a mani-pedi Posted 6 days ago 2 Photos
  • 140717_HG_MSC_BURGER_3

    MARY SCHWALM/Staff photo The Lasting Room burger with hand-cut fries is a favorite of customers.

    Lasting Room burgers make for lasting impressions Posted 6 days ago 3 Photos
  • SCHOOL SUPPLIES3 [Duplicate]

    AP Photo/Yoobi Yoobi Pretzel Erasers make going back to school fun.

    Sharpening up for class Posted 6 days ago 8 Photos
  • FILE_HAVBEST_4

    Staff file photo Buffalo boneless ribeye steak is offered at Haverhill Beef Company on Merrimack Street. Here, owner Peter Carbone holds a tray of freshly cut pieces.

    Get far more than beef at Haverhill Beef Posted 6 days ago 3 Photos
  • HAVBEST_PBI_HEAVNLY

    PAUL BILODEAU/Staff photo Elaine Saragas serves coffee at Heav'nly Donuts.

    Best coffee brewing at Heav'nly Donuts Posted 6 days ago 1 Photo
  • HAVBEST_PBI_PENTUCKET

    PAUL BILODEAU/Staff photo Pentucket Bank President Scott Cote, left, and financial adviser Kevin McKinnon talk in the main lobby of the bank's Merrimack Street branch.

    Pentucket Bank is tops Posted 6 days ago 1 Photo

Photos of the Week
Stocks