Archive - News Article
April 12th, 2013
WOONSOCKET â A drive around the city this week offered a discerning motorist a range of approximately eight cents on the cost of a gallon of gasoline depending upon where that driver decided to pull in.
And if the motorist had also checked gasoline prices elsewhere in the Rhode Island, that range could increase to .45 cents under a rough comparison of high to low station offerings.
WOONSOCKET â The gray stucco house where the police found the battered body of a slain prostitute this week was more than just a crime scene.
It was a proving ground for the Woonsocket Police Departmentâs relatively inexperienced detective squad, more than half of whom had never investigated a homicide before.
âThey want to show you just what kind of a police officer theyâre capable of being,â says Police Chief Tom Carey. âThey know a murder is the biggest type of investigation theyâre ever going to be involved in.â
PROVIDENCE â The man accused in the brutal killing of Donna Pike was a 43-year-old career criminal who had been released from a federal prison in West Virginia less than three months ago.
A police affidavit filed in District Court says Brian Audette confessed to killing Pike, 57, whose battered, lifeless body was found in her third-floor apartment at 79 Rathbun St. in Woonsocket Monday night.
Wearing a pair of dirty jeans and a rumpled polo shirt, Audette was formally arraigned on charges of first-degree murder before Judge Joseph Ippolito Thursday morning.
WOONSOCKET â A city man shot and killed himself Thursday moments after firefighters evacuated the manâs wife and young daughter from their apartment unit located in the sprawling Veterans Memorial public housing development in the cityâs Fairmount section.
There were initial reports that gunshots were fired at police officers and firefighters responding to the emergency call at the home, but police later confirmed that no firefighters or officers on the scene were shot at or injured.
WOONSOCKET â Police on Wednesday announced the arrest of a suspect in the murder of a woman in her 79 Rathbun St. apartment, where her body had been found on Monday, but declined to provide further details on how they broke the case.
Brian Audette, 43, of 307 Elm St., Warwick, as charged with first-degree murder in connection with the death of Donna Pike, 57.
Audette is to be arraigned on the charge today in District Court, Providence, police said.
WOONSOCKET â In the most ambitious venture of its kind since the recession, a North Smithfield businessman is proposing a $1.25 million conversion of the historic Stadium Building into 21 small condominiums.
The city, which has seen scant private investment on a downtown strip pockmarked by vacancies and blight, is giving Leszek Przybylkoâs proposal for 329 Main St. a cautious thumbs-up. But not everybodyâs clapping.
WOONSOCKET â Social service agencies in the city are bracing for a rise in demand for assistance with food, shelter and other supports as federal sequester cuts begin taking a toll on extended unemployment compensation at the end of the month.
About 1,120 city residents receive the federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits, which is about 14 percent of the total statewide, according to the state Department of Labor and Training. The average EUC check is $377 a month and will shrink by about $47.
WOONSOCKET â Police say a woman whose body was found in her home Monday night was the victim of a homicide, but they arenât saying much else.
The victim was identified as 57-year-old Donna Pike, who lived on the top floor of 79 Rathbun St., a gray, three-story stucco behind Leeâs Convenience Store.
Saying they donât want to jeopardize an ongoing investigation, the police disclosed few details about how they believe Pike was murdered, the condition of the body or where in the apartment it was found.
BLACKSTONE â A proposal to install ground-mounted photovoltaic solar panels at the former landfill on Chestnut Street will go before voters next month.
The plan is to enter into a lease agreement with a solar energy developer who will finance, operate, and maintain the facility while providing reductions in energy costs to the town.
WOONSOCKET â The School Committee has received a school administration recommended budget of $65,958,808 for 2013-2014 but whether it can break a committee impasse over that figure wonât be known until Wednesday.
The panel voted 2-2 on the recommended budget at its last meeting but was missing its Chairwoman Vimala Phongsavanh when the vote was taken.