<![CDATA[NBC Connecticut - Connecticut News]]> Copyright 2014 http://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/local http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC_Connecticut.png NBC Connecticut http://www.nbcconnecticut.com en-us Fri, 25 Jul 2014 02:53:24 -0400 Fri, 25 Jul 2014 02:53:24 -0400 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Man and Woman Charged in Assault on Child]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 22:48:38 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/lazu+spring+melendez.jpg

A South Windsor woman and her “male friend” from Newington are facing charges stemming from the physical abuse of two children, according to police.

Police said Jessica Lazu-Spring, 32, of Ivy Lane in South Windsor, “allowed the children to be [continually] exposed to an unsafe environment” when 36-year-old Santos Melenez, of Main Street in Newington, would visit the house.

According to police, Melendez held a child to the ground July 1, injuring the child’s knee. Lazu-Spring allegedly failed to stop the incident and didn’t report it to police.

Melendez is charged with second-degree reckless endangerment, breach of peace, risk of injury to a minor and unlawful restraint. Lazu-Spring is charged with falsely reporting an incident and risk of injury to a minor.

Both were arrested Tuesday and held on $80,000 bonds. They appeared in court Wednesday.

Photo Credit: South Windsor Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Newtown Man Missing for a Year]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 22:07:10 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/robert+hoagland+newtown.jpg

Police continue to search for a Newtown resident who disappeared almost a year ago without his cellphone, wallet, shoes or blood pressure medication.

Robert Hoagland was last seen mowing the lawn at his home on Glen Road around noon on July 28 of last year. Surveillance footage shows him making a purchase at the Newtown Mobil Gas Station on Church Hill Road earlier that morning.

He was supposed to pick up his wife at the airport the next day, and when he didn’t show, she reported him missing, police said.

His cars and personal belongings have all been accounted for, according to police. Authorities searched woods and trails around his home to no avail. He was entered into the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System database on Aug. 7, 2013.

Police said he withdrew $600 from the Union Savings Bank in Newtown the Thursday before he went missing. His son had legal trouble in Bridgeport and was arrested not long after Hoagland disappeared, according to police.

Reported sightings of Hoagland in Connecticut and Rhode Island turned out to be false leads. Police said he was possibly spotted at a Savers store in Brookfield on Jan. 20, but surveillance video wasn’t clear enough for authorities to determine whether it was him.

Hoagland is still missing today. He's described as a white man, balding, with brown hair and blue eyes. He stands 6 feet tall and weighs about 175 pounds, police said. He was 50 years old when he disappeared.

Anyone with information on his whereabouts is urged to call Newtown police.

Photo Credit: Newtown Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Avon Performance Honors Victims of Malaysia Flight 17]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 20:52:07 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/AP799795889401.jpg

Avon Summer Theater will be performing the broadway hit RENT this weekend at Avon High School, with a special focus on Malaysian Airlines Flight 17.

Over 100 scientists and researchers who were on their way to an International AIDS Conference in Australia were killed on the flight, which was shot down over Ukraine earlier this week.

Given the nature of RENT and its ties to HIV/AIDS, the dedication helps to honor the memory of those involved in combatting and studying this deadly disease.

“This was an idea that came from one of the parents of a cast member, and everyone – cast, crew, staff, directors – though it was a wonderful idea,” said Avon Summer Theater Director Doreen Cohn.

Directors of the show made efforts to educate students on the history of AIDS and its effect on society.

“It’s a powerful message,” said cast member Sara Walters. “Learning about [AIDS’] impact at the time the play takes place and how people felt about it has been crucial in understanding the importance of our roles and the importance of the musical, RENT."

The first performance of RENT kicks off Thursday night at 7:30 p.m. Additional performances will be held July 25 and 26, also at 7:30 p.m., and July 27 at 2 p.m.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Single-Engine Plane Crash Lands in Danbury]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 21:31:42 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/danbury+plane+crash.jpg

A single-engine plane had engine trouble and came down into a pond Thursday night about a quarter mile from Danbury Airport, according to police.

The plane crashed in an 8-foot-deep swampy area on Miry Brook Roady known as Beaver Pond, Norwalk police spokesman Lt. Paul Resnick said.

The pilot was not hurt and was standing on the plane when emergency officials arrived, according to Danbury Assistant Fire Chief Bernie Meehan. He was rescued by boat and left the scene on his own.

Police called the incident a "controlled crash" and said engine problems forced the pilot to land prematurely.

It's not clear where the plane originated or where the pilot went after his rescue.

The pond has been cordoned off, and the plane will be dragged out in the morning, authorities said. Police and fire officials have left the scene for the night.

The Federal Aviation Administration lists the plane as an experimental aircraft registered to Wally Johnson of Dalhart, Texas.

Photo Credit: Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton]]>
<![CDATA[Who's Really Selling You Those Tickets?]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 23:15:35 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Concert-Ticket-generic.jpg

It will soon be easier to figure out who you're buying tickets from online. A new million-dollar settlement will require resale companies to make it clear that you're buying from them and not the actual venue.

Today's announcement relates to a 2012 Department of Consumer Protection report to the Connecticut General Assembly regarding customer confusion between ticket resale Web sites and the box offices for sports and entertainment venues.

The Attorney General's office joined a complaint filed by the Federal Trade Commission against South Windsor-based TicketNetwork and two other companies.

The ticket resale market is a $15-billion business and TicketNetwork is a leading marketplace that matches buyers and sellers from around the world. The complaint calls out the companies for misleading consumers in violation of the Unfair Trade Practices Act, by making it appear that they are buying tickets from official venues.

Attorney General George Jepsen says the consent order issued in the case is meant to put an end to any deceptive practices and to change the way the companies do business going forward.

“There's truth and transparency on websites where they have to represent they are a resale site not an official site. They cannot use the word 'official' or mimic other websites and they have to make it clear and very explicit that may be charging higher than the actual price," says the Attorney General.

As part of the settlement, defendants neither admit nor deny any of the allegations in the complaint.

The NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters reached out to TicketNetwork today for reaction to the consent order and the company sent us a statement that reads in part:

“We worked closely with the FTC and the DCP to develop disclosures and advertising practices for our Private Label clients, to ensure better information is provided to ticket-buying customers. We [also] developed a plan to monitor our clients to ensure adherence to the newly established disclosures and advertising standards."

A TicketNetwork spokesman says that the with settlement behind them, the company intends to continue to grow its business in Connecticut.

In the meantime, the state will put the $1.4 million from this settlement into a consumer protection fund to be used for enforcement, education and complaint resolution.

<![CDATA[Questions Swirl Surrounding Migrant Children]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 18:53:28 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/5ppimmidgrantstill072414tara00000000.jpg

How many, how much and for how long? That's the short version of the questions swirling as state and lawmakers discuss the possibility of more immigrant children coming to Connecticut.

According to Gov. Dannel Malloy, 325 undocumented immigrant children are already here staying with relatives.

“We want to be supportive of the national efforts and we are. We don’t believe in warehousing children and we don’t,” said Malloy.

Before more children can come, State Sen. Robert Kane says we need more answers, which is why he sent a letter to the governor.

“I want to know, and our constituents want to know the conversation his administration is having with federal officials and state agencies and how they are reacting to this issue,” said Kane.

One of Kane’s pressing questions is cost. The governor says these placements have “all been federal,” but that they will need to “watch and see if there are costs to the state so we can recover those costs.”

Kane is also calling on Connecticut’s federal delegation, the president and Congress to devise a national policy.

“This administration is saying we haven’t come up with an answer so here Connecticut you can help us,” Kane said.

Malloy says conversations are taking place with the federal government regarding the obligations here at home.

He's also talking with the mayors of Norwalk and Stamford, which hold the highest concentration of the state’s Central American population.

On Friday, the mayors of Norwalk and Stamford will take part in a phone call with the mayors of the state’s other major cities and towns. Reports indicate that the mayors of Bridgeport, New Haven and Hartford will also be on the line.

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra released the following statement today:

“The city of Hartford is currently assessing its resources similar to the other big cities in the state. If results show we have the capacity, I have let the governor know we stand ready to assist.”

<![CDATA[145 Jobs Cut by Closure of Paper Mill in Sprague]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 18:51:09 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/217*120/sprague_mill_still.jpg

The largest property taxpayer in Sprague and one of the community's largest employers, Fusion Paperboard, has told authorities its mill will close in September.

Some 145 employees have received 60 days' notice that they'll be losing their jobs. Just three months ago they agreed on a new contract, which was set to last six years.

According to a press release from the company, the paper mill has manufactured recycled boxboard since the 1960s.

"They knew that this was gonna happen six months to a year ago," said Rich Harrelle, local leader for the United Steelworkers. "So that's my problem. The other thing is, I have a hard time digesting the fact we're going to lose 140 jobs in the community."

Harrelle said the mill has a 17-day backlog of orders for its pizza boxes and bakery boxes made of paperboard, all from recycled paper. He's afraid the company is going to dismantle its paper machine and ship it out of state, making it unlikely that a new company would take over.

In a statement, Fusion Paperboard blamed "increasingly difficult market conditions" for the mill's closure.

"Despite recent efforts, the operation can no longer be sustained. We will make every effort to fulfill existing orders and help customers as they transition to alternate suppliers," the statement continues. "Fusion will coordinate with state and private agencies to assist employment transition of its 140 employees."

State and local authorities expect the company to repay a $3-million loan issued last year. They also pledge to help employees find work.

<![CDATA[Students Flex Creative Muscles at Engineering Camp]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 18:06:29 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/UNHPRINTERS00000000.jpg

A robotic truck was just one of the creations students put together at a two-week engineering camp at the University of New Haven.

Two dozen high school students are participating in the summer program, which teaches students design principles and how all projects can be improved.

“This idea of co-create, design, build and operate, that we learn from failure. Things need to be changed and innovated. Not everything works in the first hand,” said Maria-Isabel Carnasciali, an assistant professor at UNH.

The students learned not everything goes as planned.

“We're trying to make a ground vehicle that can automatically go over different types of terrain, drop off a flag, and um, pick up different types of rings, all automatically,” said Keith Cestaro from Old Saybrook.

The students do that by constructing the wheels for the robot on a 3D printer. Other groups are constructing helicopter blades with the printer, and some are redesigning wind turbine blades.

“We had to come up with everything by ourselves, and design everything. It was a lot of trial and error,” said Andrew Cappola from Wallingford.

Their designs are in competition with other groups' designs and which designs work best.

“Want to make it stand out from all the other competitors,” said Rob Hao from Rocky Hill.

The students are also hoping that this experience will help them stand out if they focus on engineering in college and as a career.

<![CDATA[Motorcycle Crash Leaves Bridgeport Man in Critical Condition]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 17:47:07 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/ambulance-shutterstock_14588642.jpg

A 54-year-old Bridgeport man is in critical condition after his motorcycle collided with a box truck early Thursday afternoon, police said.

According to police, Keith Ward was riding a motorcycle northbound on Seaview Avenue when he collided with the back of a box truck near the intersection of Stratford Avenue. The crash happened around 12:30 p.m.

Investigators believe the motorcycle ward was riding had been stolen. He's in critical condition at Bridgeport Hospital.

No charges have been filed.

The accident remains under investigation.

<![CDATA[Possible Transformer Explosion in Waterford]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 20:41:06 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/waterford+transformer+scene.jpg

Nearly 1,700 homes lost power in Waterford after a possible transformer explosion brought down wires in the area of Route 1/Boston Post Road and Fog Plain Road, according to Connecticut Light & Power and Waterford police.

The police department posted on its Facebook page Thursday afternoon that the intersection was closed while emergency workers responded to the area.

Power was restored and the intersection had reopened by about 9:30 p.m., according to police.


Photo Credit: Waterford Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[7th Grader Dies After Being Struck by Truck in Suffield]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 23:14:35 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/suffield+child+struck.jpg

A seventh-grade boy has died after he was struck by a box truck while riding his bicycle near Suffield Midlde School on Thursday afternoon, according to Suffield Supt. Karen Baldwin.

Baldwin sent a letter to parents breaking the news. She identified the boy as seventh-grade student Francis Anthony Alamo, and said he was riding his bike with two friends on Mountain Road at the time of the accident.

Police said the crash happened around 4 p.m. at the intersection of Mountain Road and Canborne Way, right across from the school. Anthony was a student there.

He was struck by a box truck, which remained at the scene, and taken to the hospital for treatment of serious injuries. He later died, according to Baldwin.

"Anthony was a bright, creative young man who brought positive energy to every class and activity that he participated in," Baldwin wrote.

She said grief counselors will be available from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Suffield Middle School tomorrow and a counseling schedule for next week will be released on the school Web site tomorrow afternoon.

Police and fire crews blocked off the area and remained on the scene for hours.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[22-Year-Old Murders Mother in Orange: Police]]> Fri, 25 Jul 2014 02:28:41 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/orange+homicide+mug.jpg

A 22-year-old man in Orange, Connecticut, accused of murdering his own mother at their home Thursday afternoon has been arrested, police say.

Police say Timothy Granata killed his mother, Claudia Granata, 58, around 2 p.m. Thursday in their home on Wild Rose Drive. Police said family members called 911 to report the murder.

Emergency responders found Claudia Granata's body inside the house, and she was pronounced dead at the scene, police said. The state medical examiner will perform an autopsy to determine the cause of death.

Timothy Granata was found near the home and was unarmed, police said. He was taken into custody and is being held overnight at police headquarters.

According to police, Timothy Granata lived at the home with his mother, father and two siblings.

The Yale School of Medicine Web site and other online records, including his LinkedIn page, list Attilio Granata, Timothy's father, as a professor who has spent 30 years teaching at the university and practicing medicine at hospitals along the shoreline.

A New York Times story published in 1984 to announce the marriage of Attilio and Claudia Granata says both husband and wife graduated from the Yale School of Medicine. The couple married at Yale.

Timothy Granata charged with murder and is due in court tomorrow morning. His bond was set at $2 million.

Orange police and the State Police Central District Major Crime Squad are investigating. It's the first homicide in Orange since 1992.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com/Orange Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Hammonasset Voyeurism Victim Speaks Out]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 18:24:36 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/hammonasset+voyeurism.JPG

“I was scared and I was nervous,” said Kim Smith of East Hartford, who fought tears Thursday morning, describing publicly for the first time the terror she endured one day at Hammonasset State Park in July 2011, when she discovered that two park workers were spying on her and her 3- and 6-year-old daughters while the three showered in a park bath house.

She explained that at first she noticed movement of light and shadow through the hole around one of the stall fixtures.

“I leaned in forward to try, to see what it was, and then I saw an outline of a face, and I saw eyes and facial hair, looking at me,” she said Thursday, speaking at her lawyer’s office in Hartford. The peeping toms, it turned out, two men who worked at the Park, watching through holes from the plumbing space opposite the shower wall.

Smith said she’d decided now was the time to speak because of how the DEEP responded to the discovery July 5 of this year, of a camera disguised as a towel hook, also inside a Hammonasset bath house.

“A spokesperson for the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection called this an isolated incident,” she said, adding later that the most recent incident was by no means isolated. Smith also pointed out, alluding to a signed statement from one of her offenders to police, “In fact, one of the men who watched me in the shower claimed that workers knew where to go to watch women shower”.

That written statement came from Kenneth Sabo of Guilford, who was 27 at the time. Sabo wrote that a former park worker had told him “that if you go behind the shower/bathroom stalls you could look through holes near the piping and see naked women sometimes”.

Because of ongoing legal proceedings – Smith is currently seeking permission from the state Claims Commissioner to sue the state – the DEEP declined to speak on-camera about Smith’s case or comments. However, in a recent deposition, William Mattioli, who managed Hammonasset State Park in 2011, acknowledge that in addition to other concerns, park staff is sometimes augmented by people performing community service for breaking the law.

Smith claimed that “many of them work to clean the bathrooms and have access to maintenance keys to all the bath houses”.

The DEEP’s written response statement is as follows:

"Connecticut’s state parks system attracts more than eight million visitors a year to 107 locations that contain dozens of bath house and hundreds of restrooms.

"Our staff works hard every day to protect the safety, well-being and privacy of visitors to our parks and all those who make use of facilities there. We take this issue very seriously.

"The unfortunate incident of July 2011 at Hammonasset Beach State Park resulted in a timely and thorough investigation and the dismissal and arrest of two seasonal park employees. We also took steps to inspect all of our bathhouses and make repairs needed to prevent any further incidents of this type.

"The only other known case in recent memory where the privacy of park visitors may have been compromised involved the placement of a camera disguised as a coat hook earlier this summer in a bath house, also at Hammonasset. That case is under active investigation by law enforcement authorities.

"Once again, we responded immediately to a report of this camera, inspected the bath house and found and removed the camera. We also quickly took steps at Hammonasset to alert park visitors to the situation.

"In the wake of that incident our park staff has been instructed to inspect bathrooms and bath houses regularly and thoroughly and to be on the lookout for items that may have been placed inside that could contain a camera.

"We have also circulated to them information and photos of the types of small video cameras now readily available for purchase. Our park staff is also working to determine if there are any additional steps we can take to address the emerging and challenging issue of preventing electronic snooping at our parks. We certainly welcome all ideas and suggestions that could help accomplish that."

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Mansfield Superintendent on Administrative Leave]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 16:39:40 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/school_generic.jpg

The superintendent of public schools in Mansfield has been placed on administrative leave while the Board of Education investigates his "travel practices and reimbursement," according to a letter to parents from Board of Education Chair Randy Walikonis.

Walikonis said Supt. Frank Baruzzi's contract allows him to travel out of the district for work, but his amount of travel has been called into question.

"We are duty bound as a Board to follow up to make sure that the purpose and amount of travel was appropriate," Walikonis said Thursday.

Baruzzi will remain on administrative leave throughout the investigation. Rachel Leclerc, director of Special Education and Support Services, will serve as acting superintendent, according to Walikonis.

"We will wait for the results of the investigation, but nothing new has come to light," Walikonis said.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/Flickr]]>
<![CDATA[Official Asks for New London Superintendent to Withdraw]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 20:30:40 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/72214nlsuperj00000000.jpg

School officials have asked for the newly selected superintendent of schools in New London to withdraw from the position after reviewing his educational qualifications.

Terrence Carter had been selected after a nationwide search and the New London Board of Education planned to sign off on a contract on Monday night, but the meeting was postponed until Thursday “to allow board members to discuss in executive session any concerns and the accusations against Mr. Carter,” said district spokesperson Julianne Hanckel.

This comes days after reports surfaced that Carter has repeatedly referred to himself as being a doctor for years, even though he’s not scheduled to receive his Ph.D. until next month.

The state oversees the troubled school system through a special master, Steven Adamowski.

An hour and a half before the Thursday night meeting was set to begin, Adamowski, asked for Carter's withdrawal on behalf of the state Department of Education, school officials said.

"At the request of the Commissioner, the Special Master is participating in ongoing conversations with the local board regarding this evolving situation and potential next steps,” Kelly Donnelly, Director of Communications and Community Partnerships for the state State Department of Education, said in a statement.

Carter declined to comment before the Board of Education meeting Thursday. Board members said at the meeting that they will not decide on whether to remove Carter until after the investigation is complete.

Earlier this week, Hanckel said board members would be holding an executive session to question Carter about his educational background by conference call.

After learning about the allegations, residents expressed concern over how the city, its search firm and the state did not catch the problem.

<![CDATA[South Windsor Man Chases Girlfriend With Hatchet: Police]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 16:02:32 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/timothy+mccarthy+mug.jpg

A 40-year-old South Windsor man was arrested twice in three days after allegedly chasing his girlfriend with a hatchet, then breaching a protective order by sending her text messages, according to police.

Officers arrested Timothy McCarthy, of Dart Hill Road in South Windsor, early Tuesday morning. Police said McCarthy had gotten into a dispute with his girlfriend, then chased her with a hatchet and ran into the woods nearby.

A state police K-9 team searched the area and found him more than an hour later, police said. He was arrested and charged with criminal violation of a protective order, breach of peace, threatening and interfering with an officer.

After his court appearance Tuesday, McCarthy allegedly sent text messages to his girlfriend in violation of the protective order. He was re-arrested and released on a $25,000 bond.

McCarthy was due back in court today.

Online court records show he has been previously charged with disorderly conduct, driving under the influence and violation of probation, among other offenses.

Photo Credit: South Windsor Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[DOT Worker Impersonates Public Official: Cops]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 16:42:21 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/brian+mercure+dot.jpg

State police have arrested a Department of Transportation employee who is accused of pretending to be a state official in an email sent to a local newspaper.

Brian Mercure, 52, of Torrington, was arrested Thursday and charged with criminal impersonation.

He has been with the department since 1985 and serves as assistant district engineer in the DOT’s New Haven district and the manager of the Interstate 95 Corridor Q-Bridge project, according to a statement from the Department of Transportation.

Mercure was placed on paid administrative leave, according to the DOT.

The investigation was launched Dec. 4, 2013, when state police received a complaint asking for a criminal investigation into an email that had been sent to the Republican-American newspaper.

State police said the official Mercure was posing as never sent the e-mail and did not authorize Mercure to send it.

Detectives with the State Police Major Crime Division searched Mercure’s home, seized evidence and obtained an arrest warrant Thursday.

He was taken into custody on Thursday at work.

Mercure was released on a $2,500.00 bond and is scheduled to be arraigned Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014 at Bantam Superior Court.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Drunk Glastonbury Man Threatens Officers With Gun: Police]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 22:15:28 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/michael+murphy+glastonbury.JPG

A 38-year-old Glastonbury resident is facing charges after threatening officers with a gun outside his home on Matson Hill Road, according to police.

Officers responded on Matson Hill Road in South Glastonbury on Wednesday night after receiving the report of a drunk and distraught man, police said.

They arrived to find Michael Murphy in the driveway. Police said Murphy threatened officers with a gun and ran from the scene.

Police obtained an arrest warrant for Murphy and set up a perimeter around the home “for the protection of the public,” according to police.

Poor weather conditions prompted them to call off the search for Murphy last night, but authorities continued to monitor the area, police said.

He was taken into custody Thursday and charged with a number of offenses, including criminal attempt to commit first-degree assault, criminal use of a firearm, carrying a firearm while under the influence, risk of injury to a minor, second-degree threatening, first-degree reckless endangerment, interfering with an officer, second-degree breach of peace and disorderly conduct.

Bond was set at $450,000.

Photo Credit: Glastonbury Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Deck Collapses in Ledyard, Injuries Reported]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 16:49:35 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/ledyard+deck+collapse.JPG

Ambulances were sent to a home on Robin Hood Drive in Ledyard, where a deck collapsed and injured residents Thursday afternoon, according to police and the Gales Ferry Volunter Fire Company.

Police said the address is 31 Robin Hood Drive in Ledyard.

According to the fire department's Facebook page, firefighters and medics responded to the home around 2:10 p.m. Thursday to find that the deck had collapsed and people were injured.

Ambulances and paramedics from Lawrence + Memorial Hospital also responded, the fire department said. It's not clear how many people were hurt. The extent of injuries is unknown.

Online assessor's records state the house is a raised ranch and the photo shows a deck on the back of the house.

Ledyard police and the Ledyard Building Official are investigating the collapse, according to the fire department.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[East Windsor Shooting, Robbery Suspect Facing Charges]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 17:40:11 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/handcuffs12.jpg

A 22-year-old East Hartford man is facing assault, kidnapping and robbery charges following a shooting at Mill Pond Village in East Windsor earlier this month that left a man in critical condition.

Carlton Depeyster was arrested Wednesday night in Hartford. He’s charged with first-degree assault, first-degree kidnapping with a firearm, first-degree robbery, second-degree larceny and conspiracy to commit all four of the prior charges.

Police said 21-year-old Jayson Swain was shot at the apartment complex the afternoon of July 12. He was taken to Hartford Hospital in critical condition.

Investigators believe the shooting to be a robbery gone wrong. Police said it was not a random act and the suspect and victim knew one another prior to the incident. No one involved in the shooting lives at the apartment complex, according to police.

Depeyster was held on $400,000 bond and appeared in Enfield Superior Court on Thursday. He’ll be transferred to Hartford Superior Court.

Police are investigating and expect to make additional arrests.

Photo Credit: NBC10.com]]>
<![CDATA[Suspect in East Hartford Stabbing on the Loose]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 14:01:32 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Arielle+McFarlane1.JPG

East Hartford police are searching for a woman suspected in an assault and stabbing last month and ask for the public’s help to find her.

Arielle “Arie” McFarlane, 21, of East Hartford, is wanted for an assault in the area of Columbus Street and the Columbus Circle Extension on June 29, police said.

An arrest warrant issued on July 17 charges her with attempt to commit murder.

McFarlane’s last known address is 35 Evergreen Ave, Apt C-1 in Hartford and she was last seen operating a red four-door Infiniti G35 with Connecticut license plate 382ZWN.

If you have any information that could help police locate her, call Detective Johnston at (860)-291-7526 or (860)- 528-4401.

Photo Credit: East Hartford Police]]>
<![CDATA[Lake Waramaug Closed]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 13:45:50 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Lake+Waramaug.jpg

Lake Waramaug in Kent is closed on Thursday because of water quality, according to the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.

A water sample was taken today and results are expected on Friday.

All other state park beaches that  DEEP tests are open.

Photo Credit: Submitted]]>
<![CDATA[Computer Tech Accused of Touching Teen]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 18:09:21 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Inpanh+Thammavongsa1200.jpg

Monroe police have arrested a technician who is accused of inappropriately touching an 18-year-old girl during an appointment to repair her Internet modem.

The teen told police that Inpanh Thammavongsa, 58, of Meriden, a technician with Tri-Wire Service technician, massaged her back and repeatedly touch her during the appointment just before 11 a.m. on June 19, according to police.

"The person who came out from Tri-Wire arrived, and according to the victim, began massaging her and then repeatedly, repeatedly began to touch her inappropriately," said Lt. Brian McCauley of the Monroe Police Department.

Thammavongsa was working as a subcontractor for Charter Communications, according to police.

The teen left the room, waited for Thammavongsa to finish his work and called the police to report what happened.

"She was very afraid," McCauley said.

Police found Thammavongsa, arrested him and brought him to police headquarters.

He has been charged with fourth-degree sexual assault and disorderly conduct and released after bond was posted. Thammavongsa is due in court on July 29.

Charter Communications released the following statement in response to the incident:

"Charter recognizes that it is a privilege to be allowed into our customer's homes and their safety is of the utmost importance. We require criminal background checks on all in-home contractors prior to performing any work for Charter. We are cooperating fully with the Monroe Police Department to aid in this investigation."


Photo Credit: Monroe Police]]>
<![CDATA[Greenwich Music Tutor Charged With Risk of Injury]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 11:33:00 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/police_generic21.jpg

Greenwich police have arrested a music tutor who is accused of making an unsuitable request of a 10-year-old student.

Police have not released much information, but said Sean Jackson, 41, of Stamford, was arrested on Wednesday and charged with risk of injury to a minor.

Jackson was alone with the victim and had been providing musical tutoring in “a private school setting,” according to a news release from Greenwich Police.

He was released on $500 bond and is due in court on July 30.

Police ask anyone with information about this incident or a similar incident to call the Greenwich Police Special Victims Unit at 203-622-8030.


<![CDATA[Former Newington Town Employee Arrested]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 09:17:31 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Robert+Korpak.jpg

Newington police have arrested the former Director of Facilities Management for the town and said he is accused of stealing town property and trying to solicit a kickback from a town contractor.

Newington Police arrested Robert Korpak, 60, of Newington, on Wednesday, according to a news release from police.

He previously resigned from his position with the town.

According to an online job posting, the director is responsible for renovations, major repairs and expansion of all town buildings and facilities, as well as overseeing maintanance and minor repairs, overseeing contracted work and participating the bid review process.

Police said Korpak is accused of stealing materials the town of Newington had purchased and attempting to solicit a kickback from a town contractor. 

Korpak was charged with larceny in the second degree, receiving kickbacks and criminal attempt to commit larceny in the second degree.

He was released on a $5,000 non-surety bond and is due in court on August 6.

In May, the Hartford Courant reported that Korpak was the subject of an unspecified investigation. A woman at Korpak's home who answered the reporter's call at the time said he had no comment.


Photo Credit: Newington Police]]>
<![CDATA[Police Search for Intruders After Columbia Home Invasion]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 19:37:10 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Oakwood+Lane+Columbia+home+invasion.jpg

A resident was assaulted during a home invasion in Columbia early morning and police are searching for the two intruders.

The resident was hiding in a bedroom when he called 911 around 2 a.m. and said people were in his Oakwood Lane home with weapons, according to state police.

This is the second time in weeks that police have responded to the house, according to neighbors who said it was targeted rather than a random incident.

The victim was taken to a local hospital to be treated for injuries that are described as not life-threatening. He has since been released.

One of the intruders is around 5-foot-5 and was wearing dark clothes and dark knit cap. He was carrying  handgun. The other intruder is around 5-foot-9 and was wearing a dark knit cap. He had a long gun.

Police believe an unattended car across the street from the home might be connected to the home invasion.

State Police spent several hours searching for the intruders and brought K9s in to assist.

Investigators left the neighborhood before noon. They said they have some leads and no reason to believe the intruders are still in the area.


Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Equipment at Local Fire Departments Pulled After Nationwide Recall]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 09:52:15 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/mansfield-fire-truck.jpg

Several fire departments across Connecticut have taken some of their trucks out of service because of a nationwide recall issued after an accident in Georgia.

Ohio-based Sutphen Corporation issued the recall and it is affecting fire departments in Wethersfield, Middletown, Guilford, New Haven and Milford.

The recall was issued after three firefighters in Georgia were injured during a training exercise when a ladder they had extended suddenly dropped.

"There's a cable that runs that aerial up in the air, that cable snapped, sending that ladder track back into its bed," Deputy Chief Steven LaRosa of the Middletown Fire Department, said, describing what happened in Georgia.

Sutphen has instructed fire departments to remove SPH 100, SP 110, SPI 112, and SAI 110 Aerial devices from service, until further notice. 

Middletown’s truck is now out of service.

"If these other towns have that type of service where they need that ladder, that's going to put an awful crimp on their everyday responses to keep their people safe," LaRosa said.

Fire officials in Middletown said the public's safety was never compromised, but the recall has affected fire departments statewide.

"When those trucks are in service, it's difficult to lose them," LaRosa said.

New Haven's Fire Department also lost two tower ladders, but the chief insists it's not affecting staffing or public safety.

Two trucks in Wethersfield were affected and Guilford and Milford each have one.

Middletown is using a truck that has not been used regularly as a temporary replacement for the truck they had to take out of service.

"We have to make sure everybody is covered, so we made the decision to put this back into service," LaRosa said.

Middletown firefighters had a truck handy even though they don't use it regularly.

On Wednesday the president of Sutphen issued a letter and said they're investigating as quickly as possible.

“As a proud company of over 124 years, we have taken our responsibility to our communities and customers very seriously – for generations,” he wrote. “We have now voluntarily removed all 5-Section Aerial Devices (SPH 100, SP 110, SPI 112, and SAI 110)  from Service and are undertaking a thorough review.”

Middletown says it hopes to get the truck back into service next week.

<![CDATA[Car Crashes at Shelton Gas Station]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 11:57:24 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/shelton+bp+gas+station.jpg

The BP gas station at 198 Leavenworth Road in Shelton is open, but they are not selling gas after a car crashed into the gas pumps around 9 p.m. on Wednesday.

Witnesses said the woman behind the wheel of the Mazda was driving fast and lost control before the crash. A gas station attendant said she heard a loud screech, looked outside and saw that a car had slammed into the pumps.

Police said Susan Linnane, 41, of Derby, was driving south on Leavenworth Road, hit another vehicle and a guardrail before going down an embankment and hitting a gas pump at Mont’s Mart.

According to gas station staff members, the pumps were turned off after the crash.

They should be in operation by 3 p.m. or 4 p.m. on Thursday, according to the owner of the gas station.

The car flipped over between gas pumps and was towed from the scene around 10:30 p.m.

No one was struck.

Linnane was pulled from her car. Police said she was conscious and speaking with police officers at the scene.

Police are investigating and no charges have been filed.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Equipment Stolen From Suffield Tree Service]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 21:48:21 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/police_generic21.jpg

Police are asking for the public’s help in tracking down the burglars who stole more than $11,000 worth of equipment from H.T. Sikes Tree Service in Suffield last week.

Workers reported the burglary July 18 and told police the door to their equipment garage had been forced open and $11,500 in equipment was missing. According to police, 13 chainsaws and a leaf blower were taken sometime between July 16 and July 18.

Anyone with information on the burglary is urged to call Suffield police Det. Justin Fuller at 860-668-3870.

<![CDATA[Special Probation for Cafe Sweepstakes Manager]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 21:26:02 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/sweepstakes+new.jpg

The former manager of Enfield business that was shut down for operating Internet sweepstakes games has been granted special probation on charges related to illegal gambling.

Stephen Scott has six months to complete the state’s accelerated rehabilitation program for first-time offenders and his record could be wiped clean.

Scott will be required to perform 10 hours of community service and prohibited from engaging in any illegal or professional gambling between now and Jan. 15.

If he abides by the conditions set, the charges against him will be dropped.

In January, the NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters went undercover to expose three local business centers offering free “sweepstakes” to customers who purchased merchandise from their stores.

Along with the Mouse Pad Business Center and Tech Solutions in Enfield, sweepstakes games were also available at the Bloomfield Business Center in Bloomfield and Internet Connections in East Windsor.

The investigation revealed dozens of people, mostly senior citizens, playing slot-style video games to win money.

One day after the NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters investigation aired, State Sens. Joan Hartley and Dante Bartolomeo held a press conference to announce a bill that would ban Internet sweepstakes café-style businesses from operating in the state.

They accused the businesses of “preying” on the elderly and violating the exclusive slot revenue compact with the state’s two tribal casinos.

In February, the businesses were shut down following raids by state and local police.

Scott turned himself in the next day to state police in Hartford on charges of illegal gambling, operating gambling devices and illegally maintaining a gambling premises.

Representatives for the business centers argued the games were legal under the state’s sweepstakes laws.

By phone today, Scott’s attorney questioned why his client was arrested in February for operating Internet sweepstakes when the state hadn’t passed a bill to ban these games until May.

The ball was included in the state’s 300-plus page Budget Implementer Bill. The state House and the Senate both passed the bill in the waning minutes of this year’s legislative session.

Active arrest warrants are pending for two out-of-state residents associated with the Bloomfield Business Center.

Bloomfield police say the accused are aware of the warrants but show no signs of getting ready to turn themselves in.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[New London Police Arrest Suspected Drug Dealers]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 21:01:07 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/new+london+cox+waites.jpg

Police have arrested two men accused of dealing drugs in New London.

Police arrested Raashid Cox, 24, and Lamont Waites, 19, of 365 Jefferson Avenue in New London, after searching their home Wednesday morning as part of a long investigation. Authorities found drugs and weapons at the house, according to police.

Cox and Waites were each charged with possession of marijuana, possession with intent to sell, possession of marijuana within 1500 feet of a housing project, operating a drug factory and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Cox was additionally charged with criminal possession of a firearm and altering or removing the identification mark of a firearm.

Photo Credit: New London Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[2 Accused of Stealing Copper Piping From Norwich Home]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 20:26:06 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/norwich+copper+pipe+suspects.jpg

Two men are facing charges after stealing copper piping from a vacant home on Joseph Perkins Road in Norwich, according to police.

Eric Vic, 29, and Kevin Banta, 30, were arrested Wednesday morning. Police said witnesses helped them identify the suspects’ vehicle, and officers set up surveillance in the area until they spotted the car.

Inside, officers found “tools generally used to commit burglaries,” according to police.

Banta and Vic were each charged with possession of burglar tools, third-degree burglary, first-degree criminal mischief and sixth-degree larceny. Vic was additionally charged with carrying weapons in a motor vehicle.

They were held on $25,000 bonds and are due in court Thursday.

Police said the investigation is ongoing and has provided insight into a number of unsolved burglaries in Norwich and the surrounding area. They expect to make additional arrests.

Photo Credit: Norwich Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Students Use Humor to Teach Peers About Distracted Driving]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 21:29:24 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/comedy+driving+distractions.jpg

Some Connecticut high school students are trying to spread the message of safe teen driving through comedy performances.

The student production is called “Drive It Home”, and it is aimed at spreading awareness about safe driving, set around a session between a “Dr. Phil”-type psychologist, a parent, and child.

"There is a lot of lack of communication going on. The mom is not doing appropriate parenting, and so the skit is explaining different forms of parenting, how to be a good parent, and how to go through the steps of driving with your teenager," said Catherine McElaney, one of the student actors.

The project is funded, in part, through the Allstate Foundation and Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.

"We see kids going to the hospital with so many different injuries related to car crashes and other things, so we want to make sure that we reduce the amount of kids that are being seen because of this stuff we know can be prevented," said Luis Rivera, the hospital's Program Coordinator.

Connecticut Children's found willing participants at schools throughout the state, including at Hartford Public High School, where the drama program was looking for a project, but didn’t have enough money.

"It was kind of a match made in heaven, said Danielle Procaccini, Hartford Public's drama teacher.

Though the performances are designed to be funny, the subject matter is very serious.

"I feel like the biggest thing that kept hitting people were the distractions, whether it be the radio, whether it be the phone, friends in the car, things like that. It was always the distractions," said Elyssia Reyes, a student actor taking part in the program.

“I’m hoping that even though the show is a comedy, that they take home the main points that distracted driving isn’t okay and that parents and teens need to cooperate effectively with each other to prevent distracted driving and other things that could lead to potential accidents on the road," said Shaila Murdock, one of the program's actors.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Suspect Climbs Onto Roof to Avoid Arrest: Police]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 19:39:34 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Norwalk+Bank+robbery+suspect.jpg

Norwalk police have arrested the man accused of robbing the First County Bank earlier this month after he climbed onto a motel roof in an attempt to get away, according to police.

Isaiah Gary, 32, of Norwalk, was taken into custody Wednesday morning after police received a tip that he was in a car behind the Norwalk Westport Motel at 344 Westport Avenue.

He’s accused of robbing the First County Bank at 469 Westport Avenue on July 17.

According to police, Gary climbed onto the motel roof to get away from officers but was apprehended and charged with first-degree robbery and second-degree larceny.

Gary was held on a $200,000 bond and is due in court July 24.

Photo Credit: Norwalk Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[State Police Arrest Suspects in Killingly Home Burglary]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 19:25:53 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/handcuffs12.jpg

State police have arrested two men in connection with the theft of more than $100,000 of collectible items from a home in Killingly in January.

Hector Camacho, 29, of Danielson and John Gee, 50, of Woodstock, were charged this week with first-degree larceny by possession.

The arrests come after police Rhode Island and Massachusetts helped recover the stolen property. It’s now in the custody of Connecticut State Police Troop D in Danielson, according to state police.

Police said the investigation is ongoing.

Photo Credit: NBC10.com]]>
<![CDATA[Enfield Officer Will Not Face Assault Charges]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 19:52:00 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/mark+maher.jpg

The Hartford state’s attorney has thrown out an arrest warrant for Officer Matthew Worden of the Enfield Police Department, who was accused of using force while arresting a man in April.

The warrant would have charged Worden with third-degree assault and falsifying or tampering with evidence. Enfield police filed the application July 10 and Hartford State’s Attorney Gail P. Hardy denied it six days later, according to a memo from Hardy to Enfield Police Chief Carl J. Sferrazza.

Worden arrested Mark-Andrew Maher, of Windsor, the night of April 1 after another officer spotted Maher at the River Street boat launch with three other people after hours, according to the memo.

Maher was arrested and charged with assault on a police officer and interfering with an officer. Days later, he filed a police brutality complaint against “three or four” unnamed officers who he claimed assaulted him while taking him into custody, the memo says.

The state’s attorney investigated using video from the police cruiser, the incident report Worden prepared for Maher’s arrest, two additional case reports dated April 1 and April 5, medical records for Maher and his police brutality complaint, according to the memo.

According to Hardy’s memo, Worden arrived that night with a police dog and helped detain the suspects after another man was seen furtively passing an object to Maher. A search of Maher’s pockets turned up several items, including a box cutter.

A scuffle broke out and officers put Maher on the ground in an attempt to restrain him. Dashboard video from a police cruiser parked at the scene shows Maher twisting his body and resisting the officers. Worden is seen punching Maher at least twice while trying to handcuff him, according to the memo.

“It is worth nothing that, at no time, are all four civilians together in one place, where officers could have them, and their hands, clearly in view, for officers [sic] safety,” the memo says.

It goes on to explain that “Worden’s conduct seemed to be aimed at an attempt to restrain Maher who was resisting officers [sic] attempts to handcuff him, rather than an intention to inflict physical injury.”

Hardy concludes that Worden may have violated the police department’s “use of force” policy but did not break the law.

Photo Credit: Enfield Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Plans for West Haven Outlet Mall Move Forward]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 18:33:14 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/180*120/WestHavenOutletsPic00000000.jpg

A developer is scheduled to break ground in March 2015 on a massive project that will turn a currently unused space in West Haven into an outlet mall with a hundred shops and restaurants.

That project took another step forward Tuesday night.

“Last night, at the Planning and Zoning Commission Meeting, they amended the zoning regulations to allow for a retail shopping center down in this area,” said West Haven Mayor Ed O’Brien.

O'Brien says that means the developer, Gordon Holdings, won't need a special permit to begin the project at 105 Water Street.

“This is something that is going to turn around West Haven,” said O’Brien.

The project is privately funded, and Gordon Holdings has been working to acquire additional properties in the area to make way for the new outlet mall. One of those properties is right next door to the site at Bilco.

“Of course, any time you relocate a business that's been at a site, as we have – since the 1950s, we've been here – that's always going to be difficult to accomplish, but we're planning for it and actually looking forward to moving to a new location,” said Bilco Vice President of Finance Robert Santoro.

However, not every business is happy to relocate. Laurence Czajkowski is uncertain if he'll move, even though Sheldon Gordon from Gordon Holdings confirms that a deal has been reached to sell the property. Czajkowski says he's concerned about the honesty and transparency surrounding the project.

“Not once has anyone from City Hall has ever come in to my office and/or as I understand it, my neighbors, to say hey, here's what we're doing in the area,” said Czajkowski.

Sheldon Gordon says that barring any major road blocks or hurdles, the project will move forward. He says Gordon Holdings has already poured millions of dollars into the project, which is scheduled to be completed by fall 2016.

<![CDATA[Waterbury Condos in Disrepair, Authorities Intervene]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 18:27:42 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/530pwtbycondostill072314doug00000000.jpg

"For rent" and "for auction" signs outside Bradley Gardens condominiums in Waterbury reveal all is not well in the complex.

Inside some of the apartments and condos, residents report mold and damaged walls, a day after city government officials went into the Bradley Avenue condo complex to document evidence of neglect.

Ashfaq Butt led a tour of several buildings, pointing out missing emergency lights and gaping holes in the ceilings in common areas.

In one apartment, he showed not just missing ceiling panels but a disconnected toilet. The owner is living with his son in New York, trying to get his condo fixed.

The owner of GW Property Maintenance, was not available for comment when NBC Connecticut called the property management company Wednesday.

"They've been collecting a lot of money every month," said Dee Vigant, a resident of Bradley Gardens for 26 years, "and they've done nothing for us for the past two-and-a-half years."

She said that's how long a vine has been growing up the side of one of the buildings, a vine stretching from the ground to the roof.

On closer inspection, it's a lush case of poison ivy.

<![CDATA[New Fire Chief, Recruits for New Haven]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 18:21:00 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/new+haven+fire+academy.jpg

With the formal oath of office, New Haven welcomed its newest leader, Fire Chief Allyn Wright.

Wright has been on the job for a few months now, and one of his main goals is to increase manpower at the department.

He got started on Wednesday with 45 recruits who attended the first day of the fire academy.

“We have a lot of vacancies, and what we basically want to do is minimize the overtime. Chief Egan along with myself, have been working very diligently to get this done,” said Wright.

The fire department currently has about 120 slots to fill. The new class of recruits will cover about a third of those vacancies, and Wright says another class will start in the fall.

“We're just going to make a small dent right now,” said Wright.

As for the recruits, they have about 15 weeks of training ahead of them, and they're excited about it.

“The good parts, and even the stressful parts, that's how you learn, and that's how you become better, and just interact with other people, help each other, and just learn,” said recruit Yaniris Cardona.

They all come from different backgrounds and professions, but all 45 have a desire to be a big part of the New Haven Fire Department.

“My uncle was a fireman for the New Haven Fire Department, retired about three to four years ago, so it's definitely an honor to here. It's been a long process, so I'm just really just happy to be here,” said Harry Bosley, another recruit.

“I love the city of New Haven," said recruit Daniel Del Prete. "I have four young children. I'm expecting my fifth, and would love nothing more than to work and help in the city that I love, and that I'm raising my family in.”

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Grandmother Left Child Alone in Car: Police]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 18:00:10 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/car-seat-generic.jpg

A Stratford grandmother was charged with leaving her grandchild alone in a car on Wednesday.

A passerby noticed the 3-year-old child alone and in its car seat in the back of a car in the parking lot at 444 Ferry Boulevard around 2:30 p.m.

The car's windows were closed, the doors were unlocked, and the car was not running, according to police. Officers said the air conditioner was running, even though the engine was not on.

Rosanna Sinatra, 59, came out of a store and told police she was inside for about five minutes. She told the officers she didn't want to disturb the toddler because the child was sleeping, according to police.

The toddler was not injured, police said.

Sinatra was issued a misdemeanor summons charging her with leaving a child under 12 unsupervised in a motor vehicle.

She is scheduled to appear in court on July 29.

<![CDATA[New Canaan Public Works Employee Struck By Car]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 15:37:51 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/ambulance-shutterstock_14588642.jpg

A New Canaan Public Works employee suffered serious injuries when he was struck by a car while spray painting the intersection of New Norwalk Road and East Avenue on Wednesday morning, according to police.

The employee has been identified as 71-year-old Benjamin Olmstead, of Norwalk. Police said the car that hit him was driving northbound on New Norwalk Road and turning left onto East Avenue.

According to police, the driver stopped and stayed at the scene. Olmstead was taken to Norwalk Hospital for treatment. His condition is unknown.

An accident reconstruction team comprised of New Canaan and Wilton officers is investigating.

<![CDATA[Man Stole Elderly Woman's Purse, Used Charge Cards]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 08:45:31 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/watertown+purse+suspect.jpg

Police are searching for the man who stole an 80-year-old woman's purse inside a Watertown supermarket on Wednesday morning, then tried to use her charge cards at a nearby bank.

According to police, a man approached the elderly woman while she was getting a cart inside the Stop & Shop supermarket on Straits Turnpike around 10 a.m. Wednesday.

He grabbed her purse, knocking her to the ground, and drove off in a newer-model black Nissan Altima or Maxima, police said. The purse contained money, personal documents and charge cards.

Police said a bank located at Chase Avenue and Thomaston Avenue in Waterbury contacted them 15 minutes later to report that the women's cards had been used in several locations until they were declined.

Officers searched the area of the declined transaction and found the woman's purse, which had been hidden, police said.

The suspect also tried to use the woman's checks at the Stop & Shop store on Reidville Drive in Waterbury, according to police.

Police are still searching for the suspect and getaway car. The victim was shaken up but not injured.

He's described as a white man with a brown goatee. Police believe he's 25-35 years old and said he was wearing a Detroit Tigers baseball cap marked with the letter "D."

He was wearing a black T-shirt with flames and a design printed on the front, along with blue-and-white plaid shorts and sneakers, police said.

Anyone with information on the robbery is urged to call Watertown police at 860-945-5200 or Crimestoppers at 860-945-9940. Calls will remain confidential.

Photo Credit: Watertown Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[2 Charged in Hartford Shooting That Left Victim Critical]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 15:05:54 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/hartford+Dudley+gooden.jpg

Two men are facing charges in connection with a shooting in Hartford last month that left a 25-year-old man in critical condition.

According to police, Jonathan Weaver was riding in a car stopped at the intersection of Albany Avenue and Oakland Terrace the evening of June 14 when a man identified as 28-year-old James Dudley, of East Hartford, walked up to the car and shot him.

Weaver drove into the intersection, struck a Volkswagen Beetle, then continued to Saint Francis Hospital. He was listed in critical condition and underwent emergency surgery, police said.

Police obtained arrest warrants for Dudley and his alleged driver and accomplice, 23-year-old Tyvonne Gooden, of Manchester, on Monday. Both are convicted felons who had been previously arrested in Hartford. Dudley was already in federal custody on unrelated charges, police said.

Dudley is charged with first-degree assault, carrying a pistol without a permit, criminal use and possession of a firearm and first-degree reckless endangerment.

Gooden was arrested Wednesday on Garden Street and is charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree assault and criminal liability for first-degree assault.

Police said Weaver survived the shooting and is recovering from his injuries.

Photo Credit: Hartford Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Man Charged in 1995 Murders of Daughter, Wife]]> Thu, 24 Jul 2014 14:49:41 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/honsch+family.jpg

Almost 20 years after the body of a 17-year-old girl was discovered behind a Connecticut shopping plaza, police have identified the slain teen and charged her father with murdering her and her mother.

Robert Honsch had moved to Dalton, Ohio, and was living under the name Tyree Honsch with his current wife and children, authorities said.

His daughter, Elizabeth Honsch, was found shot in the head near 593 Hartford Road in New Britain on Sept. 28, 1995. Her body had been wrapped in a sleeping bag and plastic trash bags, according to police.

The body of her mother, 53-year-old Marcia Honsch, was found eight days later, 40 miles away near the entrance to a state park in Tolland, Massachusetts. She had also been shot in the head and had been dead for a week when her body was discovered, according to police.

Both women were found without any identifying information and, until Wednesday, were known publicly only as Jane Doe. DNA testing revealed that they were related, and their names were released at a news conference on Wednesday.

Police said they have obtained arrest warrants charging 70-year-old Robert Honsch with murder in both Connecticut and Massachusetts.

He's in the custody of the Wayne County Sheriff's Department in Wooster, Ohio, and will be extradited to New England, authorities said.

The Honsch family was living in Brewster, New York, at the time of the murders. According to police, the Honsches "suddenly lost contact with all other family members" in October 1995, shortly after the bodies were found.

Police released pictures of the clothing and jewelry Elizabeth Honsch was wearing at the time of her death, along with facial reconstruction images.

Police began investigating the disappearance of the mother and daughter when relatives reported them missing in June.

The arrest warrants for Robert Honsch have been sealed and it's not clear why family members waited so long to report the women's disappearances.

Information on an attorney for Robert Honsch was not immediately available.

Photographs of Marcia, Elizabeth and Robert Honsch were released on Wednesday.

Elizabeth Honsch isn’t the only woman to be found dead on Hartford Road in New Britain.

In 2007, the bodies of three other women were discovered in the same area near the intersection of Route 9 and Hartford Road.

Two of the woman have been identified as Joyvaline “Joy” Martinez, of East Hartford, and Diane Cuzack of New Britain. Their deaths are also considered homicides but police have not said whether they're connected.

Photo Credit: New Britain Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Bridgeport Officer Credited With Helping Save Toddler's Life]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 17:53:56 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/officer+novia.jpg

A toddler is alive and well today after a Bridgeport officer helped rush the boy to the hospital after finding him unconscious in the backseat of his parents’ car, according to police.

Police said Officer Michael Novia was on patrol near Park Avenue on Tuesday when a woman waved him over and told him her child wasn’t breathing.

Novia approached the car and saw the 18-month-old boy unresponsive in the backseat.

Police said the boy and his family are from the Bronx and had spent the day at the beach in Seaside Park. The child, Dylan, had shown "signs of distress" throughout the evening.

Dylan's parents called 911 and brought him out to the car. They were "disoriented" and looking for a hospital when they spotted Novia and flagged him down, police said.

Novia radioed dispatch, who contacted medical personnel at Saint Vincent’s Medical Center, then turned on his lights and siren and told the family to follow him to the hospital, police said.

Dylan was transferred to Yale-New Haven Hospital and is listed in good condition.

Personnel at Saint Vincent’s told police that the toddler likely would not have survived had they waited for an ambulance to arrive, according to police.

Novia was recognized at police headquarters at 4 p.m. Wednesday.

“We called the hospital this morning and I am so happy to report Dylan is in good condition. I have four sons and I can’t imagine being in that situation,” Mayor Bill Finch said in a statement Wednesday afternoon. “I want to thank Officer Novia and all of our police officers. The reality is that were it not for that actions of this officer, a family could be mourning the death of a child. Instead, we have hope and good news from doctors.”

Photo Credit: Bridgeport Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Police Seek Suspect Who Robbed Elderly Woman: Cops]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 15:46:20 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Watertown+Robbery+Suspect+Edited.jpg

Police ask for the public's help in identifying a suspect who robbed an elderly woman at Stop & Shop in Watertown, police said on Twitter.

Watertown police tweeted a photograph of the suspect on Wednesday afternoon.

Police also tweeted a picture of the suspected vehicle used in the robbery.

More information will be provided when it becomes available.

Photo Credit: Watertown Police Department Twitter Account]]>
<![CDATA[Fire at Super 8 Motel in Cromwell]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 12:33:49 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Super+8+Motel+Cromwell+fire.jpg

Firefighters from Cromwell and Berlin have responded to a fire at the Super 8 Motel at 1 Industrial Park Road in Cromwell.

A truck driver who is staying at the motel said guests were evacuated after an electrical fire in a bathroom on the third floor, but officials have not confirmed that.

No additional information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Man Pleads Guilty in Connection With Murder-for-Hire Plot ]]> Wed, 23 Jul 2014 22:20:52 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Javier+Reyes.jpg

A New London man has pleaded guilty in connection with a 2012 homicide that federal officials describe as a murder-for-hire plot to take over a drug operation.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the attack and homicide of Javier Reyes, 36, was connected to a "Green Garages" operation in which marijuana, cocaine and other narcotics were distributed from a series of garage bays at 12/14 Walker Street in New London.

Officials said former members of the enterprise were attempting to take over the drug operation and Jose Rosado, Jr. and others were paid to attack Reyes.

On the night of Sept. 12, 2012, Reyes was found outside his apartment at 187 Huntington Street He'd been stabbed several times, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

He was transported to a local hospital, then airlifted to Yale-New Haven Hospital, where he died of his injuries.

Video surveillance taken at the time of the attack shows Rosado, who was carrying a bat, and another person approaching Reyes, then running away from him seconds later, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Rosado has been in police custody since he was arrested in January. He pleaded guilty on Tuesday and could face up to 20 years in prison.