FBI warns of offensive ‘Zoom-bombing’
Interlopers have invaded online classrooms for Massachusetts schools with offensive displays at least twice in recent days, the FBI’s Boston office said Monday, as increased use of teleconferencing software opens a new door for threats, hate speech, and other disturbing behavior. As a growing number of schools and businesses shift to video teleconferencing amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Federal Bureau of Investigation encourages people to use precautions built into the popular Zoom teleconferencing software. In one "Zoom-bombing incident, a high school teacher was interrupted by someone who “yelled a profanity and then shouted the teacher’s home address in the middle of instruction,” according to the FBI. In another, an unidentified person appeared on camera in a Zoom classroom and displayed tattoos that featured swastikas.
Medical pot dispensaries can offer curbside pickup
Massachusetts medical marijuana dispensaries will temporarily be allowed to offer curbside or at-the-door pickup to patients and caregivers in an effort to curb the spread of coronavirus. Through the program, which went into effect on Saturday, dispensaries are allowed to take preorders and make sales using electronic payment methods over the phone. When the customer arrives at the dispensary, an employee can either bring the purchased items directly to the customers’ car in the store’s parking lot or hand the items to the customer at the front door. Customers looking to pay in cash will need to go inside the dispensary. For curbside pickup that involves a vehicle, anyone in the car has to either be age 21 or older, or be registered as a medical marijuana patient or caregiver with the state.
Arguments Tuesday on inmate release request
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court will hear oral arguments Tuesday in an action brought by the state criminal defense bar seeking the release of vulnerable inmates and pretrial detainees amid the coronavirus pandemic. The SJC is slated to hear arguments at 10 a.m. from petitioners including the state public defender agency, the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and the ACLU Foundation of Massachusetts. The defense bar has the strong support of Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins. Attorney General Maura Healey’s office said in court papers that any guidance from the SJC regarding release “should focus on those pretrial detainees accused of nonviolent offenses,” while “dangerous and violent” people should “remain incarcerated.”
Man arrested in Back Bay box cutter attack
A 25-year-old Boston man was arrested Sunday night on charges of slashing another person in the neck with a box cutter in the Back Bay, according to police. In a statement, Boston police identified the suspect as Gary Dumas II. It wasn’t known if he had hired a lawyer. Police said the violence unfolded around 6:45 p.m., when they were alerted to a person stabbed in the area of Mass. Ave. and Newbury Street. Responding officers spotted Dumas and two other men, later identified as the victim and another who was allegedly threatened, engaged in a verbal altercation at the scene, the statement said.
Senators protest Mashpee Wampanoag reservation decision
Massachusetts’ two senators decried the federal government’s disestablishment of Mashpee Wampanoag land Sunday, a decision they said would “re-open a shameful and painful chapter of American history," Senators Elizabeth Warren and Edward Markey said in a joint statement Sunday. The tribe is still federally recognized, as it has been since 2007. But the move announced Friday would mean it will lose its reservation status, and that 321 acres of land across Cape Cod and Taunton are no longer being held in trust by the U.S. government. Holding the land in trust gave the Mashpee Wampanoag more control over taxing and developing the land, as well as legal jurisdiction. It also would have paved the way for the tribe to build a casino in Taunton, a plan that has spurred years of legal disputes.