Bearded guy in pink jacket sought in connection with attempt to blow up police cruiser

Boston Police have released a photo of a guy they say may have been near where a propane tank exploded next to a police cruiser outside District C-6 this morning.

Police say the guy may have left in a dark Toyota - and are asking anybody who might have taken any photos or videos of the area between 8 and 8:30 a.m. to contact detectives at 617-343-4742 or the anonymous tip line by calling 800-494-TIPS or by texting TIP to CRIME (27463).

It takes a task force to build a heliport

MassDOT today announced a task force to figure out where to put a taxpayer-funded heliport in the Seaport.

Although state and city officials initially promised GE a place to land helicopters as part of their package for getting the company to move to Fort Point, state officials now say lots of people are just dying for a place to which they can pilot their choppers:

MassDOT’s research and outreach suggest an interest in a public helicopter landing area from medical entities, emergency services, law enforcement and private companies.

The task force holds its first meeting on Monday, Jan. 30 at 7 p.m. in the Seaport World Trade Center's ampitheater.

Members include all of South Boston's city and state elected officials (so Bill Linehan, Michael Flaherty, Linda Dorcena-Forry, Nick Collins) as well as MassDOT Secretary Stephanie Pollack, state Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash, Massport Director Tom Glynn, Boston Director of Economic Development John Barros and a rep from the BPDA.

Protesters gather in Dewey Square for march to the Common

Steve Abreu looked out his window shortly after 4 p.m., when anti-Trump protesters who gathered there began to march towards the Common.

Meanwhile, scores of state troopers traveled to the South Boston convention center this afternoon to go over plans for protecting the much larger march planned from the Common down Comm. Ave. and back to the Common.

Massachusetts state troopers at convention center

MBTA to add service for women's march tomorrow

MassDOT says the T will provide more frequent service on subway lines and more coaches on commuter lines tomorrow to get people to and from the Women's March for America, which starts from the Common at 11 a.m.

Blue Line riders, however, should allow more time than they usually would to get to the Common because that line will terminate at State for maintenance work between there and Bowdoin.

Three BU students cost Theater District restaurant its license for two days

The Boston Licensing Board yesterday ordered Genki Ya, 232 Tremont St., shut for two days because BPD detectives caught three underage BU students with rum drinks - and the realistic-looking but fake out-of-state IDs they'd used to buy them.

At a hearing Tuesday, Sgt. Det. Robert Mulvey told the board that he and his partner arrived at the sushi place shortly after midnight on Nov. 5 and immediately noticed three young-looking women sitting at the bar with drinks.

The three at first denied having any IDs at all, but under further questioning, all produced fake out-of-state driver's licenses - with their photos embedded in them. "As soon as we saw (the women), we knew they would be fake," he said of the two 18-year-olds and one 19-year-old.

Restaurant attorney Dennis Quilty said the staffer who served them was fired because he or she never ran the licenses through the scanning device the restaurant has to check for fakes - since that would have meant going from the first-floor bar up to the second floor.

"It won't happen again," Quilty said.

Immediately after the hearing on this violation, the board held another hearing on Genki Ya. Mulvey's partner, Det. Daniel MacDonald, testify how, exactly one week later, the two detectives found two underage males, one a Fisher College student, the other a Suffolk University student, sitting at a table with shots of Jameson whiskey in front of them.

However, the board ruled the restaurant didn't do anything wrong in that case, because there was no proof the two had bought or were consuming the drinks. A restaurant manager testified the two were among a party of eight, all of whom tried to buy drinks but only four of whom were allowed to purchase alcohol because they had proof they were over 21.

Guy displaying gun late at night on a deserted street in a high-crime area can be stopped by police, court rules

A gun police say they found in a man's car on a Dorchester street can be used as evidence against him in an upcoming trial, the Supreme Judicial Court ruled today.

A Superior Court judge had tossed the gun as evidence against Joshua Edwards in his pending trial on a variety of charges, including gun-related ones, because the mere fact that somebody is showing a gun in public is not illegal, even in Massachusetts - unless he has no license - and that that was simply not enough to warrant police "seizing" him while they investigated what was going on.

But the state's highest court said it wasn't just that a witness saw him pull out a gun around 1:30 a.m. on March 17, 2013 on Armandine Street, but several other issues that, when combined, warranted the way police boxed Edwards' car in and ordered him to stop and eventually arrested him on charges that include illegal possession of a firearm (second offense), illegal possession of ammunition, possession of a loaded firearm and OUI.

The court said that a 911 caller, who identified himself by name, told police he had watched Edwards get in a car, drive off, then return to Armandine, get out of the car, stand in the middle of the street while holding a gun, then get back in the car - where police found him when they arrived.

A dispatcher then ordered officers to the scene for a "priority 1" call because of the gun. When an officer pulled up behind Edwards's Acura, Edwards stepped on the brakes and the witness yelled he was about to drive away, at which point the officer boxed him in. Edwards, the ruling continues, got out and began walking away, disregarding the officer's demand to stop; another officer then spotted what he said turned out to be a loaded gun on the front seat.

The court then explained why, in total, all these factors combined to make stopping Edwards reasonable:

The judge emphasized that it is not unlawful to carry a gun in public; it is only illegal to do so without a license. The judge concluded that a report of a man holding an unholstered gun on a public sidewalk, late at night in a high crime area, was not sufficiently suspicious to warrant an investigatory stop. He therefore ordered that the evidence discovered in the vehicle be suppressed.

In this case, the stop was predicated primarily on the information contained in the police broadcast. That information was provided by a person who both identified himself and said he personally had seen the defendant with a gun at 1:30 A.M. on a deserted, residential street. He identified the defendant by name; explained that he knew the defendant; met the police officer, Lanteigne, at the address he had provided to the 911 dispatcher; and pointed out the defendant's vehicle to [the initial officer] In these circumstances, [the witness]'s basis of knowledge was established, and his report of seeing the defendant holding a firearm "could be regarded as reliable without any prior demonstration of his reliability."

Although [the witness] did not describe the firearm to the 911 dispatcher -- and, as the motion judge observed, there is nothing illegal about merely possessing an appropriately licensed gun -- there was more to the 911 call and [the witness]'s description of the defendant's behavior than mere possession of a gun. As [the witness] reported, the defendant drove away and then came back to Armandine Street; he got out of the vehicle and stood outside while holding a gun -- apparently in his open hand, because [the witness] reported seeing the weapon; the defendant returned the firearm to the vehicle before entering the vehicle himself; and he then sat alone in the vehicle with all of its lights off. These facts, coupled with the time (approximately 1:30 A.M.), the location (a deserted street in a residential area, "within a few blocks" of which there had been repeated crimes of violence, including gun violence and homicides), and the officer's belief that "trained, licensed owners of a handgun typically carry their firearm in a holster," combine to create a scenario that an experienced police officer could reasonably believe is more consistent with likely criminal activity than it is with lawful possession of a firearm. ... [T]he facts just described concerning the time of night, the location, and the defendant's conduct in driving away and returning and, more particularly, in his handling of the gun as he got out of and then reentered the Acura, were collectively significant.

Innocent, etc.