1 arrested over Massachusetts cherry tree controversy

Massachusetts News

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) — A cherry tree controversy in Northampton escalated Thursday and ended with at least one person being taken into police custody. Neighbors on the street have been trying to stop the city from cutting down seven cherry trees.

The city began taking down the trees as part of a major road repair project on Thursday. NEWS10’s sister station in Springfield was there Thursday morning when police escorted at least one person from Warfield Place in handcuffs.

In an online meeting, DPW Donna LaScaleia said the road there is in need of major repairs. Fixing the road also means fixing the sidewalks to make sure they’re in line with the Americans with Disabilities Act. LaScaleia said they made the decision that the trees would need to come down because they are coming to the end of their life.

One neighbor said he isn’t ready to give up the fight. “We are really feeling hurt,” Oliver Kellhammer said. “We are feeling not heard by the mayor and this is an act of violence against the neighborhood. It’s a violation of the sustainable Northampton plan which is all about more trees. This is just to get move pavement.”

Northampton Police have not yet shared what charges the arrested neighbor could face.

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