Dominique Maria Bonessi | WYPR

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Reporter

Before working in Baltimore, Dominique was a freelance reporter with WAMU and other international outlets in Washington D.C.  In 2016, Dominique was a reporting fellow with the International Center for Journalists to go to Turkey and cover lack of mental healthcare and educational resources for Syrian children and their families.  Her stories from Turkey appeared in The Atlantic, USA Today, US News & World Report, PRI’s The World, TRT World, and NPR.  She graduated cum laude from the George Washington University with a double B.A. in Journalism & Mass Communications and Arabic Language & Culture.As an Arabic and Spanish speaking Cuban-American, Dominique loves to document people’s stories no matter what language they speak.

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Dominique Maria Bonessi

Last night the executive appointments committee of the Baltimore City Council voted unanimously to confirm Darryl De Sousa as Baltimore’s new police commissioner, but not without some tough questions from committee members and the public. His confirmation is still pending until Monday when the entire city council is set to vote on his nomination, WYPR’s City Hall Reporter, Dominique Maria Bonessi, spoke with Morning Edition Host Nathan Sterner about the hearing.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

The month-long shut down of Baltimore’s subway system came after inspections showed a need for emergency track replacements, but rail replacement might just be the tip of the iceberg.

David McClure, president of the Amalgamated Transit Union local that represents MTA workers, told Baltimore’s General Assembly delegation Friday the subway system is in need of a complete overhaul. And has been for some time.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Loch Raven High School in Baltimore County was locked down for about 45 minutes Thursday after one student told administrators another was carrying a weapon.

It turned out to be a 10th grader with a pellet gun. He was taken into custody.

But the incident, coming the day after 17 people died in a shooting at a Florida high school, had a few things running through the head of one 11th grader, who identified himself as Jackson.  

WUSA TV-9 via AP

The circumstances surrounding the apparent effort to breach a gate at the National Security Agency on Fort Meade remained cloudy Wednesday afternoon. But the FBI said it wasn’t linked to terrorism.

According to the FBI, an SUV with three males was stopped as it tried to enter the NSA campus through the Canine Gate off Maryland Route 32 around 7 a.m. Wednesday.

Two Baltimore police officers were convicted by a federal jury Monday night in a case that laid bare dysfunction within the city police department.

The room was silent as the jury foreman read the verdicts against Daniel Hersl and Marcus Taylor, the only officers of the disbanded Gun Trace Task Force to go to trial. Racketeering, guilty; racketeering conspiracy, guilty; robbery with the use of force, guilty.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Baltimore’s acting Police Commissioner Darryl De Sousa announced additional internal changes to the department Friday. The appointment of one deputy commissioner, Thomas Cassella, is being held up.

De Sousa had named Cassella to be Deputy Commissioner for the Operations Bureau, but documents were leaked to the media alleging two disciplinary complaints against him.

AMR Meter by PSNH via flickr

Officials at Baltimore City’s Department of Public Works noticed an error in their system that incorrectly sent out 566 water bills to customers earlier in the week.

Rachel Baye

 

Gov. Larry Hogan called for increasing mandatory minimum sentences for violent repeat offenders during his State of the State address last week. The bills to do that came up for a hearing Tuesday in a House of Delegates committee and ran into opposition.

At last night's meeting of the Baltimore City Council, Brandon Scott, chair of the public safety committee, put forth a resolution for the state to create a board of police commissioners and transfer over full control of the city’s police department to the city.

WYPR’s Dominique Maria Bonessi reports that this is the not the first time Scott has pushed for this legislation.


Dominique Maria Bonessi

With scathing revelations coming out of the Gun Trace Task Force trials daily, a record year of violence in 2017, and increased mistrust between the police and community, Acting Commissioner Darryl DeSousa has a lot of work on his hands. DeSousa discussed plans to change his department with state lawmakers Friday.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

My mother--or as I call her, Mami--was only 10 when she left Cuba in 1971, a dozen years after Fidel Castro came to power. She’s never been back. And this was my first trip to the island nation.

My cousin, Alejandro—whom I'd just met—and I ring the bell at Mami’s old house in Havana, Cuba. A grey-haired man—Gustavo--answers and greets us with raised eye brows. After some awkward introductions, he lets us in and we meet his wife, Yolanda.

Jamyla Krempel

Baltimore City is suing a number of drug companies and distributors as well as two Baltimore County doctors for their alleged roles in the city’s opioid crisis. The city joins more than a hundred states and cities that have already filed lawsuits against the companies. WYPR City Hall Reporter Dominique Maria Bonessi talked with Nathan Sterner about the suit.

Rachel Baye

Baltimore City Democrats and others gave Gov. Larry Hogan’s State of the State address mixed reviews Wednesday.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

A group of WYPR members and our program director,  Andy Bienstock, went to Cuba last week for the International Jazz Festival in Havana. And WYPR’s City Hall reporter, Dominique Maria Bonessi, tagged along in search of her Cuban roots and to try to figure out just what’s the difference between Cuban and American jazz.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

For those who missed our seven-day trip to Havana, Cuba, see what you missed here!

Dominique Maria Bonessi

America’s fresh water is getting saltier, and has been over the last 50 years. That’s according to new research from the University of Maryland.

You’ve seen those big trucks driving around dumping salt on the roads. University of Maryland scientists say that is just one of the reasons that in the continental U.S. freshwater has become 32 percent more salty, and 90 percent more acidic.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Two days after Governor Larry Hogan promised $2.5 million for repairs to Baltimore City schools’ troubled heating systems, he met with Mayor Catherine Pugh to talk about the schools and other issues.

baltimorehousing.org

The Baltimore Housing Authority is planning to have the Gilmor Homes public housing community partially demolished by 2019. Gilmor Homes is where Freddie Gray once lived. Last night, Housing Authority officials met with Gilmor Homes residents to lay out their plans. WYPR City Hall reporter Dominique Maria Bonessi talks about it with Nathan Sterner.

The monitors charged with reforming the Baltimore City Police Department have officially released a draft of their one-year monitoring plan.The plan comes after the monitors met with residents at multiple events throughout the city.

Baltimore City Public Schools

Governor Larry Hogan promised an emergency $2.5 million for repairs to Baltimore City Schools' troubled heating systems today. And he blamed the problems on mismanagement. Meanwhile, at least eight Baltimore City schools were closed today because of continuing problems with the heating systems and a water main break.

Jonna McKone

Temperatures dipping into the single digits, multiple water-main breaks already this week. And now forecasters are predicting a monster winter storm will slam the entire East Cast tonight and early tomorrow. Public works crews say they are ready for whatever comes their way.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

In December, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh launched her multi-agency initiative to reduce violence in the city. The city’s Department of Recreation and Parks responded by extending their hours and expanding their programs to keep kids off the streets.

WYPR went to Upton Boxing to check out the new programs for another installment in our series “As They Grow: Tracking changes for the next generation.”

Dominique Maria Bonessi

As Baltimore’s homicide rate reached record proportions—343 murders this year—Mayor Catherine Pugh held a candle light vigil for the victims last night at the War Memorial.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

The Federal Bureau of Investigation rejected the Baltimore Police Department’s request to take over the investigation of the shooting death of Homicide Detective Sean Suiter. Police Commissioner Kevin Davis says the department will go back to square one of the investigation.

Dominique Maria Bonessi / 1992

Baltimore residents are being hit with skyrocketing water bills and many of them are heading to the Department of Public Works’ customer service office looking for some relief.

There was 81-year-old, Mary Duckett, who walked out of the customer service office glaring at her $385 water bill for the last three month.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

University of Baltimore graduates and their families greeted U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos with mixed emotions. DeVos was the keynote speaker at UB’s winter commencement this afternoon.

Students and faculty from UB and other local schools critical of DeVos’s policies--including her stance on private schools and sexual assault on college campuses--protested outside the Lyric Theater.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Early Wednesday morning a fire broke out in a row home in the 700 block of East Cold Spring Lane in Northeast Baltimore. It killed two children, four and five, and an adult. Fire Chief Niles Ford said firefighters could not determine the cause of the fire, but said winter fires are common. He told WYPR how residents can protect their homes from those fires.

Dominique Maria Bonessi

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen came to Baltimore today to talk about immigration and Central American gangs. Sessions tied that to Baltimore’s soaring homicide rate.

Sessions spoke of increases in violent crime nationwide, in part fueled by the Central American gang, MS-13, then turned to Baltimore.

October first marked a milestone for Akai Alston. It was the first time the 25-year-old had been home for a whole year since he was 14. The rest of the time he’d been in and out of custody.

“You know me being a follower," says Alston. "Giving into peer pressure older guys manipulating me to do things."

Dominique Maria Bonessi

Governor Larry Hogan released a plan to crack down on crime in Baltimore Tuesday, criticizing Mayor Catherine Pugh’s efforts. But the mayor was not impressed.

Hogan announced more state police patrols, more probation agents serving warrants and other initiatives. Pugh responded Wednesday morning.

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