FROM THE REGION.

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Orange

Man taken to hospital after standoff at home

ORANGE - State and local police remained at the scene last night of what witnesses say was a standoff that ended with a man being wheeled from a home on a stretcher.

State police spokesman David Wilson confirmed that the state police STOP and Negotiating teams assisted Orange police at the scene. He referred other questions to the Orange police. There was no one available to comment at the Orange Police Department last night.

Kathy L. Brewer, who lives near the home in the 500 block of East Main Street, said she watched the situation unfold and heard a state police negotiator saying, "Jeremy, don't do anything. Walk out slowly."

"Then he (the man inside the house) was saying, `No, Mom, no. I'm sorry,'" she said.

Mrs. Brewer said the standoff started about 3:30 p.m. and ended seven minutes before the Patriots game headed into halftime.

She said the house looks like a converted garage and the neighbors were quiet. Her husband, Michael J. Brewer Jr., said he wasn't even sure anyone was living there.

Police said the man was being taken to a Worcester hospital. His name was not immediately released.

Fitchburg

Program launch will help job-seekers

FITCHBURG - Beginning next month, a new career assistance network will begin at Fitchburg State University to help job-seekers improve their job-search skills.

The new network, started by the college and the AmeriCorps Job Ready Project, is a collaboration of Fitchburg State alumni and area professionals to help people who are underemployed or unemployed find jobs.

The network will meet beginning on Dec. 2 from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the Crocker Center for Civic Engagement, 150 Main St. After the first session, the network will hold classes every Monday from 3:30 to 5 p.m. and every Thursday from 10:30 a.m. to noon.

All Fitchburg State alumni or local professionals are invited to participate.

Region

Bank again will help in Toys for Tots drive

Commerce Bank has launched its annual Toy for Tots campaign through its 12 offices in Central Massachusetts.

The offices will collect toys this year for the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots campaign.

In 2009, Commerce Bank collected hundreds of toys and over $3,500 in cash for Toys for Tots.

Those wishing to donate may do so through Dec. 18 in collection bins at the following Commerce Bank sites: 1057 Main St., Holden; 565 Main St., Leominster; 322 Maple St., Marlboro; 91 Main St...

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