On one of the year’s busiest travel days ahead of Christmas and New Year’s, Berkshires motorists today are encountering a mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain. The Berkshire Eagle reports that according to AccuWeather, while a blockbuster storm is not expected, enough snow and ice will occur to create a real mess for early holiday travelers. The American Automobile Association has estimated that a record 107 million people will travel nationwide by car, bus, train and plane from tomorrow through January 1st. The National Weather Service in Albany has posted a hazardous weather advisory for the first full day of the winter season, warning of slippery roads and difficult travel, especially north of the Massachusetts Turnpike. The advisory will extend until 10 a.m. tomorrow and calls for several inches of snow along with sleet and freezing rain.

 

BSO Cuts Ties With World-Renowned Conductor Charles Dutoit

Three opera singers and a classical musician say that world-renowned conductor Charles Dutoit sexually assaulted them – physically restraining them, forcing his body against theirs, sometimes thrusting his tongue into their mouths and, in one of the cases, sticking one of their hands down his pants. The Berkshire Eagle reports that in separate interviews with The Associated Press, the accusers provided detailed accounts of incidents they say occurred in the darkness of the backstage area. The women are accusing the 81-year-old artistic director and principal conductor of London’s Royal Philharmonic Orchestra of sexual misconduct on the sidelines of rehearsals and performances in five cities — Chicago, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Philadelphia and Saratoga Springs, N.Y. After the accusations were made, the Boston Symphony Orchestra said yesterday that Dutoit would no longer appear as a guest conductor. Dutoit has been a regular fixture at Tanglewood for decades.

 

Couple Facing Trial After Williamstown Hit-And-Run

A Williamstown couple will face trial next month on charges they misled police after a hit-and-run crash that left a woman in a coma. The Berkshire Eagle reports that 73 year old Sally Gould is accused leaving the scene after allegedly striking Cheryl LeClaire, who was walking her dog on North Hoosac Road on the evening of February 9th of last year. A passing motorist found the 54 year old LeClaire unresponsive in the road. LeClaire remains in a coma. Sally Gould and her husband, 70 year old John Gould, denied being involved in the accident.  However, they were arraigned in June after being indicted by a Berkshire County grand jury. Both are facing charges of misleading a police officer and conspiracy to mislead a police officer. A charge of conspiracy to defraud the insurance company has been dropped.