Vandals hit homes and cars in the area with eggs during the earlier part of this month. On Tuesday morning, June 4, residents of Patterson and Benjamin roads, respectively, reported that their cars had been pelted with eggs. Another call came in from a Patterson Road resident that afternoon, reporting that the house as well as a vehicle parked there had been egged. The caller said it happened sometime over the past few nights.
Reported Burglary Likely Communication
A Horse Pond Road homeowner called police on Tuesday to report a suspected break-in and theft of a lawnmower from the garage. When relatives went to her home to pick up a riding lawnmower, the garage door was open and the mower was gone, the woman said.
Neighbors said they saw two men on the property earlier, removing the mower. Asked about it, the men reportedly said they were "from the bank" but did not give their names.
The reporting party later called back to inform the police that her husband had given permission to a company called Core Logic to enter the property, and she gave a name. The police report doesn't state exactly what happened, but it seems there was no crime.
School Street Parking
School Street is one way, but only during school hours. That arrangement occasionally causes confusion for some motorists, but rarely for those who use it regularly to drop off and/or pick up their kids at the Lura A. White Elementary School and certainly it should be familiar to neighborhood residents.
The one-way restriction is from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays when school is in session, with vehicular traffic limited to entering from Lancaster Road only. During off hours, travel is both ways, entering and exiting from both Lancaster and Harvard roads.
Parking is another issue
Responding to a call Tuesday afternoon, police noted several vehicles parked incorrectly on School Street that according to the caller had been parked that way overnight. Apparently, the vehicles were in violation of the rule.
According to Police Chief J. Gregory Massak, vehicles parked on the street must be parked facing in the direction of travel, with rear reflectors visible to oncoming cars.
The wrong way-parking concept isn't complicated, he said. "It's common sense."
But the rule could pose problems on a street whose travel direction switches from one-way to two and back again. The caller stated that her father, who has lived in town for 30 years, has received "numerous tickets" for parking with his vehicle's left wheel toward the curb versus the other way around. But apparently the caller felt the parking rule was unfairly applied, since other vehicles parked the same way were not ticketed.
The chief said the School Street complaint was investigated and that folks who feel they've been incorrectly ticketed always have the right to appeal.
Parking tickets for "wrong direction parking" carry a $15 fee. Others in that fee category include parking on a sidewalk or crosswalk or more than 12 inches from the curb, blocking a driveway or private way, parking in posted "No Parking" areas or in excess of a 2-hour limit and violation of an all-night parking ban.
Parking tickets issued for interfering with free flow of traffic or snow removal or parking within 20 feet of an intersection carry a $25 fine. A $50 fine can be imposed for parking in a handicapped zone or fire lane or within 10 feet of a fire hydrant or blocking a wheel-chair ramp.
Just before midnight on Tuesday, a resident reported a man who had come to the door before came back earlier that evening; raising suspicions about what he might be up to. He was described as a young man about six feet tall, 180-200 pounds with a black backpack, wearing shorts and a rugby shirt and driving a dark SUV.
But it turns out that the man's business is legitimate, if his methods are a bit too assertive.
Ayer police told Shirley police that a man matching that description - Jesse Peterson, of Littleton - was marketing magazines subscriptions in the area, door-to-door and that he drove a dark SUV with South Dakota license plates.
Mr. Peterson has a permit to solicit door to door, Chief Massak said, but it's limited to "certain hours." In addition, he was told not to pester people by making repeat visits to the same house or showing up at inappropriate times, such as the dinner hour or at night.
If solicitors don't abide by the rules, permits can be rescinded.
Motor Vehicle Accident
Only one motor vehicle accident was reported in town during the one-week period from June 3 to June 10. It was a relatively minor, two-vehicle collision that occurred on Friday, June 7 at 12:31 p.m. in front of the train station on Front Street.
According to the accident report, Vehicle #1, operated by a Lunenburg resident, was crossing the railroad tracks at the Ayer Road intersection when it struck Vehicle #2, traveling West on Ayer Road. The driver of the second vehicle was from Hubbardston.
Damage was minor and both vehicles were able to drive away safely. Nobody was injured and no citations were issued.