Town center this morning (submitted photo)
In case you wondered where our homeless population sleeps now that the shelter has closed for the season: In and around town center, pitching tents in conservation areas and West Cemetery or breaking and entering into someone else's abode.
Stash (sleeping bag, clothes) behind Town Hall
Of course if APD then catches you it's off to the House of Correction in Northampton. Last week in two seperate incidents police arrested four individuals who list their address as "Streets of Amherst."
Such was the case with Daniel Davenport and Melina Ann Lynch:
Click to enlarge/read
Troy Ward & Angel Rivera were arrested for more traditional B&E
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court handed down a decision today affirming the rights of a homeless individual to use the "necessities defense" for breaking and entering.
But they drew the line when the weather is fair so Davenport and Lynch would not have had much luck using it.
However, if the Homeless Shelter goes dry next season and starts turning away patrons under the influence of drugs or alcohol on a cold winter night, neighboring residents and downtown businesses may see an increase in unwanted guests.
In Eastern Hampshire District Court on Monday Judge Poehler refused the Commonwealth's request for bail on three of the four but did impose $1,000 bail on Angel Rivera. Davenport, Lynch and Ward were all released on their personal recognizance and will be back in Court next month.
And, no doubt, now back on the streets of Amherst.