Paul Tuthill

Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston.  He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester.  Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011.  Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.

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The man charged with an armed assault that put the entire UMass Amherst campus into a lockdown is being held without bail.

19 year old William McKeown of Framingham and another suspect gained access to a residence hall Thursday night where a student was assaulted, possibly with a handgun. No shots were fired.

The incident prompted a shelter-in-place order for the campus which lasted two hours.

UMass Amherst Police Chief Tyrone Parham said investigators are trying to determine how the two non-students got inside the dorm.

Massachusetts Congressman Richard Neal and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh are participating in a public forum on the 100th anniversary of Ireland’s Easter Rising, considered the birth of Irish independence. 

The two prominent Irish Americans will speak at Boston College this evening at 6 p.m.

The civilian board that investigates complaints against the police in Springfield, Massachusetts has not issued a public report about its work in almost two years. The mayor’s office says there is no target date for releasing the overdue reports that are supposed to come out annually.

MGM Springfield

The city council in Springfield, Massachusetts is expected to vote Monday on the final design plans for the MGM casino.

The council has held five public hearings on the plans for the $950 million casino development. Councilors have voted to attach conditions to the project to address the concerns raised by some abutters about traffic, parking and pedestrian access.

The council Monday will weigh MGM’s controversial request to eliminate a 25-story hotel that had been part of the original design.

Lucelia Ribeiro/Flickr

Massachusetts education officials say there are 34,000 children on wait lists to get into charter schools. 

The size of the wait list has been an issue in the campaign to lift the cap on charter schools. Governor Charlie Baker who has prominently promoted a ballot campaign to expand access to charter schools has said it is a “ disgrace” that so many children are on waiting lists.

Michelle Hernandez said she is frustrated that her son is on a waiting list for a chance to get into a charter school in Springfield.


With less than two weeks before Massachusetts holds its presidential primaries, Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are ramping up their campaigns for what is shaping up to be a highly competitive contest.


A University of Massachusetts Amherst student was assaulted in a residence hall Thursday night by two men, at least one of whom was armed with a handgun. The assault resulted in what is believed to be the first campus-wide lockdown in the history of the UMass flagship campus. No shots were fired during the incident.

Marc Nozell / Flickr

With less than two weeks before the Massachusetts’ presidential primaries, Hillary Clinton’s campaign will open six new field offices in the state this weekend – three located in western Massachusetts.

The new offices that will open in Springfield, Holyoke, and Pittsfield underscore the importance the Clinton campaign places in western Massachusetts, according to Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse.

He said after the offices open, volunteers will get on the phones, hold campaign signs on street corners, and go door-to-door through neighborhoods to promote Clinton’s campaign.

The new president of Westfield State University has a plan for his first 100 days in office. Ramon Torrecilha became the 20th president of the 176-year-old school three weeks ago.

He came to western Massachusetts from California State University Dominguez Hills, where he held several senior administrative positions and was on the faculty.  

WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Torrecilha.

The mayor’s office in Springfield, Massachusetts says there is no target date for releasing overdue public reports by the city’s civilian police review panel. 

Springfield City Council President Mike Fenton said it is “unacceptable” that the Community Police Hearing Board has not issued a public report on its activities in almost two years.  

The mayor’s office blames a paperwork backlog in the city’s law department. Fenton says that’s a poor excuse.