Gang member sentenced in fatal shooting of girl, 12

A 22-year-old Providence man has been sentenced to two life terms plus 50 years after pleading guilty to fatally shooting a 12-year-old girl outside a graduation party.

Branden Castro pleaded guilty to murder and other charges on Friday in Superior Court in Providence. He also admitted to shooting three women who were standing outside the June 2013 party with sixth-grader Aynis Vargas.

Authorities say Castro and four others were retaliating against a rival gang and the victims were innocent bystanders.

The attorney general’s office says three other men have pleaded guilty, and another is charged.

Aynis’ father said in a statement read by a prosecutor that the family was satisfied that the men responsible were being prosecuted.


Firefighters deliver baby on sidewalk, saving her life

Firefighters leaped into action when a cab driver knocked early Friday and said his passenger was having a baby.

The Quincy firefighters not only delivered the baby girl on the sidewalk at 1:30 a.m. , they saved her life.

Fire Lt. Shawn Darcy said when he and his colleagues reached the cab, the baby had been partially delivered.

They completed the delivery but found that the baby wasn’t breathing. They cleared her airways and she started to cry.


High court denies appeal for joint custody of dog

The Vermont Supreme Court has ruled in a custody case involving an 11-year-old dog.

The court on Friday agreed with a lower court assigning ownership of the German wirehaired pointer to the husband.

The court said the only issue in the divorce was which spouse should receive Belle.

The husband is a veterinarian who takes the dog to work, while the wife spends time walking the dog in the woods.

The wife appealed, saying the court erred by not considering giving the dog to both spouses in a joint arrangement.

The Supreme Court said the lower court was right in ruling that a visitation or shared custody order for animals can’t be enforced.


Police: Paper carriers put rabbit heads in mailboxes

Westfield police say they know who is responsible for putting severed rabbit heads in three mailboxes in town.

Sgt. Steve Dickinson said thanks to the public, investigators identified a 26-year-old Chicopee man and a 24-year-old Springfield man who deliver newspapers as the culprits.

Their names were not immediately made public, but he said they will be charged.

Dickinson said the men found five dead wild rabbits while on their route last week, cut off the heads, and put them in the mailboxes on Easter Sunday as what they described as a joke.

— From news service reports