<![CDATA[NBC Connecticut - Connecticut News]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/local http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC_Connecticut.png NBC Connecticut http://www.nbcconnecticut.comen-usWed, 04 May 2016 19:06:27 -0400Wed, 04 May 2016 19:06:27 -0400NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Residents Having Issues With DMV Boating Registration Renewals]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 18:13:44 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/connecticut+dmv.jpg

Officials with Connecticut's Department of Motor Vehicles said they are having issues with people who have signed up to get emailed vehicle registration renewals.

Some people who have signed up for them are not getting responses, therefore not being able to renew their vehicle licenses in time before they are expired.

The issue is also affecting some boat owners because the only way to renew your boat registration is online.

Bert Armington of Chester said he has been in contact with them since early March trying to renew his boater registration before it expired on April 30.

When Armington called the DMV, he was told to renew it on their website using the pin number provided to him but the website told him the pin was invalid.

Armington was told to wait and said he waited for his registration to arrive but nothing ever came in the mail or by email.

When he called again on April 7, he said he was told by the DMV they had sent out registration for boats.

After waiting several days, he had still not received anything.

NBC Connecticut reached out to a DMV spokesperson about the problem.

Just a few hours later, Armington said he heard back from the DMV. He said they resolved the issue and would mail his new registration Wednesday.

Armington said after waiting two months to get it, his registration experience hasn't been pleasant.

"It’s just part of the frustration that we all have with the state of Connecticut and it’s DMV."

A DMV spokesperson said they have now set up a special number for people to call if you signed up to receive e-mailed vehicle registration renewals and have not received your new registration. They will also be contacting those one our e-mail list who had a boat associated with their e-mail renewal sign up.

"We will work with anyone to get their boat registered promptly," said DMV Chief of Staff, Bill Seymour.

For assistance, call 860-263-5151.

<![CDATA[House Will Not Vote on Wednesday for Budget Deal]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 17:49:00 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/hartford_capitol.jpg

Connecticut lawmakers will not pass a state budget on Wednesday. 

"As a matter of democracy and fairness to all the members of the House, it is not possible to do a budget this evening," Larry Perosino, a press secretary for Speaker of the House Brendan Sharkey said. 

Since lawmakers are not voting, they will need to return for a special session. 

The newest state spending plan was expected to cut funds from every state program.

Perosino said there would not be enough time for adequate discussion of the bill and such a "scenario would not be fair for the purpose of allowing a complete and reasonable debate." 

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Showery, Cool Weather Continues]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 17:27:59 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Model+RPM4+Precip+Clouds+Floater%283%29.png

The cloudy, cool and wet weather looks to continue for the foreseeable future.

Showers will continue tonight with lows in the 40s.

The chance for showers continues again tomorrow, with highs in the lower 50s.

Showers and possibly even a storm are possible Friday.

Saturday looks primarily dry, just in time to start the weekend! An isolated shower is possible and it will be warmer, with highs in the lower 60s.

Mother's Day starts with a few morning showers, then clearing is expected. The afternoon hours will be best. Highs will be in the lower 60s.

Early next week, dry weather returns and 70 is possible by Tuesday, but it won't last long.

Indications show wave after wave of low pressure next week, possibly as soon as Wednesday.

This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Dead Mouse Sent to Avon Old Farms: Police]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 18:00:43 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/postal-stamp.jpg

An envelope containing a dead mouse was picked up at Avon Old Farms, police said. 

An Avon Old Farms School faculty member found the envelope at the school's post office and found inside a plastic bag containing an unknown "white powdery substance," police said. 

The envelop was turned over to Avon Police who examined the envelope and identified the unknown substance as a dead mouse. 

Police said they will continue working with Avon Old Farms if further action is needed. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images/EyeEm]]>
<![CDATA[Charges Filed Against Mom of Injured 11-Month Old]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 17:57:40 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Brittany+DeMasi+1200.jpg

Charges have been filed against the mother of an 11-month-old girl who was brought to the hospital with several head and facial injuries.

The Department of Children and Families contacted Southington police on Jan. after because they suspected abuse when the little girl was brought to the Hospital of Central Connecticut Bradley Memorial Hospital with several head injuries.

Police determined that she had been with her mother, Brittany DeMasi, 26, of Southington, when she was hurt.

DeMasi wasn’t able to explain the injuries, police said, and has been accused of neglecting to provide adequate supervision of the child.

DeMasi turned herself in at the Southington Police Department on Monday after learning of the warrant for her arrest.

She was charged with risk of injury to child.

She was processed and released on a $5,000 non-surety bond.

Photo Credit: Southington Police]]>
<![CDATA[Annual Construction Pro Rodeo Gives Students a Look at Jobs]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 15:59:07 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/180*120/jobs+employment+generic+newspaper.jpg

The event was designed by the Connecticut Associated Builders and Contractors and its member companies to give high school student a hands-on look at careers in the construction industry. Many of those jobs do not require four year college degrees.

More than 1,000 high school students from around the state got to meet with – and see the work of - representatives from electrical, plumbing and HVAC companies.

Leaders of the event said there is a significant national shortage of workers qualified to do many of the jobs showcased at the rodeo.

“It’s estimated that by 2022, nationwide 1 in every 6 current construction workers will have left the industry, creating a tremendous workforce shortage,” Chris Syrek, president of Connecticut Associated Builders and Contractors, said.

That means demand for people who do the jobs showcased at the rodeo could be higher than ever in the coming years.

Many of the positions also pay very well early on.

“The opportunity is there for people, especially in the licensed trades, to earn $50, $60, $70 an hour on these construction jobs,” Syrek said.

Students at the event said they appreciated the opportunity to learn firsthand about jobs they might not have otherwise considered.

“I think it’s very informative. I think a lot of people learn more about maybe what they want to do in the future. Maybe change their career path,” Bryan Keene, a junior at Platt High School, said.

“As important as a four-year education is, there’s always different opportunities out there and not everybody is college bound,” Billy Rich, a technical education teacher at Platt, said.

Learn more about Connecticut ABC. http://www.ctabc.org/

<![CDATA[Police Investigate Suspicious Death at Lawrence & Memorial Hospital ]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 15:46:53 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/lawrence+memorial+hospital+sign.JPG

Police are investigating the suspicious death of a 32-year-old Norwich woman at Lawrence & Memorial Hospital on Tuesday.

Police identified her as Roberta L. Karr, 32, of Norwich.

The investigation began when officers and detectives responded to the hospital at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday after a suspicious death was reported, but no additional details are available and the cause of Karr’s death is not known.

The medical examiner’s office is assisting with the investigation.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Fatal Crash Closes Avon Mountain]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 17:39:05 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/avon+mountain+crash_1200.jpg

A fatal crash shut down Avon Mountain on both sides in Avon and West Hartford on Tuesday afternoon.

The crash happened on the West Hartford side of the mountain. Route 44 may be shut down for as long as 8 hours, according to the Department of Transportation.

West Hartford police said the crash is fatal, but no other details have been released.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Bristol Race Car Driver ID'd as Long Island Plane Crash Victim]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 18:25:11 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/small+plane+crash+syosset+2.jpg

Bristol race care driver David Berube was among the victims killed after a plane broke apart in the air last night and crashed in Long Island, multiple friends told NBC Connecticut. 

Berube and two other people traveling from South Carolina to Connecticut were killed when the small plane crashed on Tuesday night. 

The tail number on the plane is registered to a Bristol, Connecticut resident. 

NTSB officials said that the pilot had reported to air traffic that he was having "difficulties" and instrumentation continued to malfunction. 

Two men and a woman were on board the single-engine Beech BE35 aircraft when broke up mid-flight on Cold Spring Road in Syosset just after 2:30 p.m., the FAA said. 

Nassau County police chief said that police have tentatively identified the owner of the plane and who was flying but still need to identify the others. Families have been notified of the loss. 

The plane took off from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, at 12:45 p.m., and was headed to Robertson Field in Plainville, Connecticut, according to the FAA.

During the flight, the pilot made a distress call over Farmingdale, New York, reporting some type of instrumentation problem -- something to the effect of, "'I have a partial panel loss,'" according to NTSB senior investigator Robert Gretz. 

The plane then disappeared off the radar and broke up in flight, leaving behind a debris field of about two miles. 

"Sometimes the higher up it breaks up, the larger the debris field," Gretz said. 

Recordings between responding police officers and dispatch revealed the sheer amount of wreckage that was scattered on the ground. 

Gretz said it's not clear why the plane broke apart in the sky. 

"It's not a common investigation for us," Gretz said of the plane breaking apart in the sky. "It does happen. In 18 years, I've probably worked five or 10 of them." 

Officials are looking at several factors in the crash, including whether the pilot was caught in bad weather. If the pilot didn't have functioning instrumentation in bad weather, it would be like driving through fog without lights or a dashboard, Gretz said.

Gretz said Nassau, New York police was assisting in the investigation by documenting each piece of plane debris.

A preliminary report is expected to be issued within five to 10 business days, and a final report, including a probable cause, will be issued in about nine to 12 months. 

The FAA will investigate the crash and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the cause.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 NY]]>
<![CDATA[Serve Here CT Accepting Application for Next Inaugural Class]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 14:48:46 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Fellows.jpg

The inaugural class of Serve Here CT kicked off this fall.

The program founded by Alva Greenberg of Old Saybrook allows millennials to help build a sense of community and social capital while also helping them with the cost of education.

“Connecticut is experiencing a brain drain,” Tom Gullotta, chief adviser of Serve Here CT, said. “Well-educated individuals are fleeing the state for other parts of the country, which will offer more opportunity."

The hope of the program is not only to help young adults build their careers right at home but to encourage them to help grow our local communities.

Serve Here CT partners with local non-profits to create jobs for its participants- organizations such as Safe Futures in New London.

Executive Director of Safe Futures Cathy Zeiner said she hired Amanda Boaz to improve on fundraising and the group's volunteer work. 

Boaz found support through Safe Futures after leaving an abusive marriage.

"Part of my healing was to give back and to find meaning in my life,” said Boaz, a member of the Serve Here CT inaugural class. “I didn't want to just be. I wanted to do."

In just nine months, Boaz has done wonders for the non-profit that helped her just four years ago, all while going to school part-time to finish her associates degree.

Serve Here CT helps supplement the cost of furthering education by granting each participant $10,000.

"She's created some energy and a fresh perspective in our work,” said Zeiner. “That's what we need to keep our agency energized and to keep our mission moving forward."

"I think what's been really great is the opportunity to meet with a lot of other people that I would not have had the opportunity to meet," Boaz explained. "Working here I don't have to be the victim anymore. I can be a survivor and I can start to thrive."

Serve Here CT is now accepting applications for the next class.

Photo Credit: Help Serve CT]]>
<![CDATA[Bristol Reservoirs Full After Recent Rain]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 14:31:22 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Water-Generic1.jpg

After eight months of water restrictions in Bristol the reservoirs are now at full capacity.

Bristol Water Department Superintendent Robert Longo said they lifted the mandatory restrictions on April 8 after the reservoirs were above 85 percent capacity for two consecutive months.

The recent rain certainly helps to keep them high, but it is tough for some, including Regis Letourneau, who owns Lachance Tree Service in Bristol.

"We need it but, enough is enough. We have to work for a living. We are going to go broke with all this rain," Letourneau, of Harwinton, said.

His crews have been at a standstill all week because of the rain.

“It is not safe to work in the rain, plus the ground gets so wet that we cannot drive our vehicles in to get to the trees," Letourneau said.

Others who live in the area recognize how crucial the rain is and said they are grateful for it.

"I am really sick of watering everything so I think it is great," Sarah Ryan, of Bristol, said.

"Other than trying to cut the lawn, it is not that big of a deal. It is something that you have to deal with always in the springtime anyways," Peter Grandy, of Farmington, said.

Although the reservoirs in Bristol are now at 100 percent capacity, Longo said that could all change if we get little precipitation and hot weather this summer.

<![CDATA[Police Investigating Break-Ins at 2 North Haven Businesses]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 14:11:47 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/north+haven+police+generic+1200.jpg

Police are investigating break-ins and burglaries at two North Haven businesses on Wednesday morning.

Burglars broke into the Stop and Save, at 1895 Hartford Turnpike, at 2:30 a.m. by smashing the front glass window and took the cash register, police said.

Then, at 5 a.m. burglars forced their way through the front door to the Mobil Gas Station, at 88 Quinnipiac Ave., across town.

Anyone with information is asked to call the North Haven Police Department at 203-239-1616.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Rates Dropping for Eversource, UI Customers]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 14:06:02 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/160*120/shutterstock_2615831.jpg

Electricity rates are dropping for residents across the state who get service from Eversource and United Illuminating.

As of July 1, rates will go down by around $20.

The Public Utilities Regulatory Authority approved the new Generation Service Charge rates on Tuesday and said this will affect residential and business customers who get standard service generation from Eversource Energy and the United Illuminating Company. The new rates go into effect on July 1.

Eversource said the average user will save about $21 per month, based on an electricity usage of 700 kilowatt hours per month.

Eversource's residential generation rate will decrease from 9.555 cents per kilowatt-hour to 6.606 cents/kWh.

UI's residential generation rate will decrease from 10.7358 cents per kilowatt hour to 8.0224 cents, which would save customers who use an average 700 kilowatt hours per month around $19 per month.

“We are very excited to share such positive news with our customers,” Penni Conner, senior vice president and Chief Customer Officer at Eversource, said in a statement. “These are the lowest generation prices in over a decade and are coming at the time of year when customers are increasingly using more energy to cool their homes and businesses.”

The new rates will be in effect through the end of 2016, marking a nearly 20 percent reduction compared to the Eversource summer cycle rates from July to December 31, 2015, according to PURA. UI rates will decrease by 12 percent compared to the 2015 summer cycle.

Around two-thirds of Connecticut’s residential customers receive Standard Service generation from Eversource and UI.

Other residential customers get electricity from licensed electric suppliers, whose rates might be more or less.

You can compare UI and Eversource Standard Service generation rates to licensed suppliers' offers on Connecticut's official generation rate board.

Photo Credit: Shutter Stock ]]>
<![CDATA[New Lake Compounce Roller Coaster Opens Saturday]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 13:17:15 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/LAKE-2015-Phobia-Phear-Coaster-KEY-ART_LRZ.jpg

A new roller coaster will open at Lake Compounce in Bristol on Saturday and 12 people have been chosen to be the first to ride it.

The Phobia Phear Coaster opens at 11 a.m. on May 7 and the first 12 people to get onboard shared their deepest, darkest phobias for the chance to take the inaugual ride. 

Lake Compounce said the rollercoaster, which goes 150 foot into the air, is one of the highest in existence and the tallest in the Northeast.

Photo Credit: Lake Compounce]]>
<![CDATA[Police Investigating Untimely Death of Westport Officer]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 15:45:00 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/newtown+police+generic.jpg

Police are investigating what they called the untimely death of a Westport police officer who was a member of the Newtown Board of Police Commissioners.

Police officers responded to a home on Elizabeth Street in Newtown at 6:42 a.m. for a medical assist and then determined that it was an untimely death.

On Wednesday afternoon, police identified the person who died as Robert Myer, 48, of 6 Elizabeth St. in Newtown, He was a police officer in Westport and a member of the Newtown Police Department Board of Commissioners, police said.

“On behalf of Chief James Valdero and the Newtown Police Department, this day is a tragic loss for the family, friends and community of Newtown,” a news release from the Newtown Police Department says.

The medical examiner’s office will determine the cause of death. Police said there is nothing criminal at this point.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[City of Hartford Laying Off Around 40 Employees]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 18:26:45 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Hartford+city+hall+new+1200.jpg

Around 40 city of Hartford employees are getting layoff notices today, according to Mayor Luke Bronin, and he said they will be in almost every department in the city.

The budget proposal Bronin submitted to the town clerk last month includes 42 layoffs, the elimination of 95 positions and $15.5 million in cuts.

"It's almost every department in the city," Bronin said. "There will be layoffs in almost every department."

Bronin, who is serving his first term as mayor, warned during his State of the City Address that budget cuts would hurt and could eliminate some city services.

"The hardest part of this process is telling somebody that they no longer have a job," Bronin said today. "That weighs on me every day, but we have to get this city on track and we have no choice but to make the kind of cuts that are in the budget that I've recommended."

The employees who are being laid off are not getting severance packages, but will have health care through the end of June and will remain on the payroll for a few weeks, Bronin said.

"We will be doing our best to provide employee assistance, make some resources available to help employees prepare for the job application process and manage that transition, deal with COBRA benefits -- all of those things that can be helpful in a very tough time like this -- but there is no getting around that it's a very difficult, challenging thing for anyone who's affected," Bronin said.

When asked if this is the end of the layoffs or if more are coming, Bronin said his budget includes a large amount of hoped for and anticipated "labor savings" and his office is in negotiations.

"But if we don't get those savings, there will have to be other cuts and there will have to be deep cuts and I think there is no way to make those without even more layoffs," Bronin said.

The latest announcement comes the day after Hartford parents packed a meeting to discuss a $30 million budget gap and learned that layoffs are inevitable.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Drivers Stop to Rescue Geese on I-84]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 10:00:51 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/goose+rescuers+on+I84.JPG

A mother goose and her babies are safe thanks to the drivers who stopped on Interstate 84 East in Waterbury this morning and guided them to safety.

The rescuers were spotted on traffic cams as they led the geese to the barrier and safely away from cars.

Photo Credit: Connecticut Deparment of Transportation]]>
<![CDATA[Police Investigate Reports of Abduction, Robbery at Hartford Auto Shop]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 10:21:36 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Hartford+241+Ledyard+Street+Hartford+1200.jpg

Hartford police are investigating reports of an abduction and armed robbery at an automotive shop in Hartford on Tuesday night.

Police responded to M&J Auto, at 241 Ledyard St., in the South Meadows neighborhood, at 10:41 p.m., a time they said the business is usually closed.

The victims told police they were working late when four to five men wearing ski masks and black clothing came in with guns and demanded money, police said.

One of the victims said his father, who had been in the shop with them, was abducted and the intruders took him in a small black Cadillac SUV.

About an hour after police brought the victims to the Hartford Police Department, officers learned the victim's father was on Interstate 91 South, by exit 8, and he was not injured.

Hartford Police then brought the man back to the Hartford Police Department to be interviewed.

Around $200 was reported stolen from the shop, but no cars, tools of electronics taken from the shop.

The investigation is ongoing.

Police said the motive is not clear and detectives are trying to determine why the auto shop, which is in an industrial neighborhood, would by the target of an armed robbery and abduction at that time of night.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Crews Responded to Boater in Distress on Connecticut River]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 10:23:39 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/south+windsor+water+search.JPG

Emergency crews responded to the Connecticut River in South Windsor early this morning after a boat got stuck in a sandbar.

Emergency crews received a call for a boater in distress at 1 a.m. and they found the missing boater, but couldn't get to him because of sandbars in the river.

"Trying to get to him was a challenge because of the sandbar, so we actually had to deploy a smaller boat, a Zodiac, and put one of our firefighters in a cold water suit to actually be able to get to him and get him in a boat." Deputy Chief John Hofmann, of the South Windsor Volunteer Fire Department, said.

Officials believe the boater was trying to free the boat and did not fall in the water. They said he was able to walk out on his own.

He was evaluated in an ambulance, but was not transported to the hospital.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Dog Killed, Firefighter Injured in Norwalk Fire]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 08:10:48 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Fire+at+13+Dock+Road+in+Norwalk.JPG

A pet Dachshund died in a fire at a home in Norwalk early Wednesday morning and a firefighter was injured in a fall down the stairs.

Firefighters responded to 13 Dock Road at 12:36 a.m. and found heavy fire coming from the back of the basement.

When firefighters went inside, they found a 13-year-old pet Dachshund dead in an upper level room.

There was heavy smoke throughout the house and one firefighter fell down a flight of stairs and sustained a minor shoulder injury.

The fire caused extensive damage to the basement and there was heavy smoke damage throughout the house.

Firefighters left the scene at 3:09 a.m. and the fire marshal is investigating the cause of the fire.

Photo Credit: Norwalk Fire Department]]>
<![CDATA[Police Investigate Armed Robbery at Berlin ]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 07:06:14 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Robbery+at+Berlin+Irving+Gas+Station+1200.jpg

Police are looking for the man who robbed a Berlin gas station at gunpoint on Wednesday morning.

The robbery was at the Irving Gas Station at 2005 Berlin Turnpike, close to the Meriden line, and the robber fled on foot, police said.

No one was injured.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Crash Closed Merritt Parkway Northbound in Greenwich]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 06:50:24 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Greewhich+fire+Merritt+Parkwway+crash+1200.jpg

The northbound side of the Merritt Parkway was closed in Greenwich for a short time on Wednesday morning.

The parkway was closed between exits 27 and 28 as emergency crews extricated a person.

One lane is now getting by, but there are heavy delays back to New York.

Police said the driver is OK.

Photo Credit: Greenwich Fire Department]]>
<![CDATA[Parents, Teachers Weigh in on Hartford School Cuts]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 23:30:26 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/BOEMEETINGHARTFORD.jpg

Tensions were high Tuesday night as parents packed the M. D. Fox School in Hartford to sound off on the proposed budget cuts being considered by the Board of Education.

With a $30 million budget gap, the district is scrambling to come up with the money after years of flat funding. It is a gap the city and the state cannot help them close, and one that they say is the product of years of flat funding, decreased grants and increased needs.

“The reality is there are things that are going to get cut that people care about,” Hartford Board of Education Chair Richard Wareing said.

Layoffs are inevitable and under the proposed budget, 235 positions would be cut including nearly 100 teachers. Schools like Bulkeley High School would be consolidated and resources would be slashed.

Parents are angry that the cuts fall on their children and the people who educate them.

“Our children deserve the best,” Milly Arciniegas of Hartford said. “They deserve better than this.”

At the last public hearing before the board votes on the budget, parents expressed frustration that class sizes would get bigger and learning would get harder.

Board members said there are only so many ways they can slice it and the cuts have to come from somewhere. The city cannot give less to education, but the state could, which would make the hole Hartford schools are facing even wider.

The board is scheduled to vote on the budget May 17.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Small Plane That Crashed in Long Island Linked to Bristol]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 10:27:30 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/small+plane+crash+syosset+2.jpg

Three people traveling from South Carolina to Connecticut were killed when the small plane they were in crashed on Long Island on Tuesday. 

The tail number on the plane is registered to a Bristol, Connecticut resident. 

Two men and a woman were on board the single-engine Beech BE35 aircraft when broke up mid-flight on Cold Spring Road in Syosset just after 2:30 p.m., the FAA said. 

The plane took off from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, at 12:45 p.m., and was headed to Robertson Field in Plainville, Connecticut, according to the FAA.

During the flight, the pilot made a distress call over Farmingdale, New York, reporting some type of instrumentation problem -- something to the effect of, "'I have a partial panel loss,'" according to NTSB senior investigator Robert Gretz. 

The plane then disappeared off the radar and broke up in flight, leaving behind a debris field of about two miles. 

"Sometimes the higher up it breaks up, the larger the debris field," Gretz said. 

Recordings between responding police officers and dispatch revealed the sheer amount of wreckage that was scattered on the ground. 

Gretz said it's not clear why the plane broke apart in the sky. 

"It's not a common investigation for us," Gretz said of the plane breaking apart in the sky. "It does happen. In 18 years, I've probably worked five or 10 of them." 

Officials are looking at several factors in the crash, including whether the pilot was caught in bad weather. If the pilot didn't have functioning instrumentation in bad weather, it would be like driving through fog without lights or a dashboard, Gretz said.

Gretz said Nassau, New York police was assisting in the investigation by documenting each piece of plane debris.

A preliminary report is expected to be issued within five to 10 business days, and a final report, including a probable cause, will be issued in about nine to 12 months. 

The FAA will investigate the crash and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the cause.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 NY]]>
<![CDATA[Man Arrested After Shots Fired During Domestic Dispute: Police]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 13:43:41 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/daniel-olesnevich.jpg

A 35-year-old Willington man was arrested after state police said shots were fired during a domestic dispute on Tuesday morning. 

Police responded to a domestic disturbance complaint on Tinkerville Road around 5 a.m. on Tuesday after a caller said shots had been fired. 

State Police surrounded the home and then took Daniel Olesnevich into custody.

The two victims were about to escape the home, police said.

Olesnevich is accused of reckless endangerment, unlawful discharge of a firearm, risk of injury to a child and disorderly conduct. 

Bond was set at $250,000.

Photo Credit: Connecticut State Police]]>
<![CDATA[Lawmakers Try To Revise HUD Inspection Process In Light of Church Street South Crisis ]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 21:31:31 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/new+haven+church+street+apartments+1200.jpg

Some of the 300 families living at Church Street South have moved into new subsidized housing and others are staying at hotels.

Then there are families like Emelia Hernandez and her 5-year-old son who are still waiting to get out.

“I hope I can move soon out of here because I don’t want my son to get lung infection,” Hernandez said. “From the mold, cause I know mold is behind the walls.”

Hernandez showed NBC Connecticut how the property managers still have not replaced a broken window nor fixed leaks in her apartment’s walls.

“It’s very embarrassing because on these conditions,” she said. “Nobody should be living like this.”

Now, federal lawmakers are putting pressure on the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to revamp its inspection process.

“There’s no way this property should have been deemed habitable by the Department of Housing and Urban Development,” Senator Chris Murphy said.

At a press conference Tuesday at New Haven’s City Hall, Murphy pointed out how HUD gave Church Street South a respectable score of 80 during an inspection in 2014. That report prompted outrage, he said, which led to another inspection in 2015 that gave the housing complex a dismal failing grade of 20.

Murphy has included changes for the HUD inspection process in the Senate housing appropriations bill. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro is fighting in these changes in the House version of the bill.

“HUD needs to add to its criteria things like mold, and bedbugs and asbestos and lead that aren’t in their inspections today,” Murphy said.

Murphy said he also wants Congress to command HUD to take prompt action, within 90 days, when violations are discovered at public housing units.

“If there’s a silver lining in this Church Street South saga,” Mayor Toni Harp said, “It’s that the lessons learned here in New Haven might well prevent other people elsewhere from having to go through all the illness, heartache and disruption.”

Amy Marx, an attorney with New Haven Legal Assistance who is helping Church Street South residents, said it is important to track the health of children who have been exposed to hazardous conditions.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[U.S. Soccer Changes Age Guidelines]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 20:12:00 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/SOCCERPIC05032016.jpg

Thirteen-year-old Alexis Sanders of Oxford has spent seven years on a soccer team.

Playing is her passion.

She turns 14 in the fall, which means as an 8th grader, she’ll age out of league soccer according to the new guidelines being handed down by the United States Soccer Federation.

“She was actually in tears when she found out she might not be able to play in September. It’s definitely affecting her a lot. It’s going to affect a lot of other kids as well," said her father Jim Sanders.

Sanders said he’s talked to local and state soccer officials, but their hands are tied. U.S. Soccer is mandating that youth soccer leagues use birth dates instead of grade-level to determine placement of players on their teams by 2017.

Much like the metric system, the US is one of the few countries in the world that currently uses the school year instead of birth year.

On its website U.S. Youth Soccer U.S. Youth Technical Director Tab Ramos says, “now it becomes easier to identify for U.S. National Teams and everything else when it comes to international soccer.”

“I like the uniformity of it. Right now, whenever a player comes up they don’t know which age group they’re going to be on. So now they say what year you were born. 2004. Ok, you’re going to be on the 2004 team," explained the Farmington Soccer Arena's Director of Coaching, Mick D'Arcy.

Now, any athlete born after August will be moved up in age group and have to change teams. D’Arcy says that also means hundreds of children in Connecticut will not be able to play competitively next season when the new rules are put into practice because most Connecticut youth soccer leagues end at age 13.

“It depends if the games are competitive or not. If they’re competitive and count toward league standings then you cannot play down," D'Arcy said.

U.S. Soccer allows athletes to play up to higher level teams. Not down. Which means, Alexis will either have to wait until she’s in high school to play again, or join a club league which is a considerable investment.

“Usually travel team might be $150 for the year, but club soccer might be $1,000, but then a lot of the tournaments may be out of state. You’re talking about travel, hotels, a lot of other things in play," said Sanders.

D’Arcy said Connecticut leagues could allow the players that have aged out but are not yet in high school to play scrimmage games on their teams, or ones that don’t count towards competitive standings. Sanders said he hasn't heard of any league willing to do that, yet.

<![CDATA[Raising Juvenile Age Stalls in Senate]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 04:52:05 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/TLMD-HANDCUFFS.jpg

Governor Dannel Malloy's Second Chance 2.0 initiative to raise the age of a juvenile has hit a snag in the state Senate.

Debate on the issue was delayed and now it's unclear whether the issue will come up for a vote at all before the midnight deadline Wednesday.

The House approved the measure in April.

“What we’re trying to do is align the law with the new knowledge that we have, so those of us who are supportive of Second Chance, raise the age, think this is the proper way for the state to move forward," said Sen. Gary Winfield.

The bill would make Connecticut the first state in the country to raise the age of a minor from 17 to 20 in one-year steps by 2019.

Winfield agrees with the governor's proposal, which is based on recent research completed in Europe and the United States that showed that human brain doesn't fully develop until age 25.

Winfield contends that shows many people who commit crimes, may not quite understand both their actions and potential consequences.

“I think at its core what we’ve been trying to deal with is young people that might do some foolish things don’t find themselves in our system," Winfield said.

Opponents, like minority leader Sen. Len Fasano, said there are many circumstances where even 17-year-olds need to be prosecuted as adults. He also said the current system leaves a gap when it comes to punishment.

"They want to treat them as a separate group so if they get probation and they violate probation, they can’t go to a juvenile jail which we have, or an adult jail which we have, so there’s no place to put them," Fasano said.

Fasano said as a whole, the bill is, "not well thought out".

Winfield said raising the age will lead to decreased recidivism.

“What we know is that when young people find themselves in our system, they tend to come back to our system and that’s a cycle that we’re trying to avoid in the state of Connecticut.”

<![CDATA[Officials Address Delays in Chip Card Rollout ]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 19:41:51 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/credit-card-chip-generic.gif

Consumer groups met with a White House policy adviser today to discuss the three biggest issues in the retail industry’s transition to chip card readers.

Groups in attendance included the Electronic Transactions Association, Merchant Advisory Group, Consumer Policy Solutions and American Consumer Institute Center for Citizen Research, alongside White House adviser Camille Fischer of the National Economic Council.

All parties agreed that both consumers and retailers have expressed concerns amid the rollout.

One concern: banks haven’t upgraded 600 million credit or debit cards—roughly half of the cards out there. If this trend is consistent with what the United Kingdom faced during its decade-long chip card transition from 2004-2014, consumers can expect fraud to increase significantly during this in-between period.

Retailers have also had issues switching to the new card readers. Most blame the delay on a backlog in the certification process.

The third major complaint comes from consumers who say the new process of inserting the card, rather than swiping it, takes too long.

To that, officials urge shoppers stay patient.

Companies like Visa are working on ways to expedite the process, but in the meantime, experts say the added layer of security is worth the wait.

“When you put the card reader in, it takes a few seconds to register and authenticate,” said Fischer. “And it takes those few seconds because it is actually authenticating, creating an additional security step.”

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Know How to Protect Your Used Car Purchase]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 19:32:54 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Know_How_to_Protect_Your_Used_Car_Purchase_1200x675_678788163651.jpg

NBC Connecticut Responds found several laws many consumers didn’t even know about when it comes to buying a used car.

“I just feel like they took advantage of me,” said consumer, Maria Hart.

Hart is a hard working single mother, trying to put her daughter through college.

“We share a car, she goes to college full-time I work full time and she works part time and we needed something reliable that we both could share and use,” said Hart.

She poured her hard-earned cash into a 2008 Nissan Altima. It looks shiny and new but it’s a clunker that didn’t come cheap. She bought the car for $7,500 at Empire Auto in South Windsor.

“A couple days after I bought the car, I noticed that the breaks were squeaking and there was a grinding noise and I brought it back it was within that week that I bought the car,” said Hart.

Hart said Empire Auto told her the problem was fixed but it wasn’t long before the car was back in their shop. It was six times over the course of five months; once for a broken catalytic converter, next for a bad transmission, then again for a leak in the new transmission.

Each time, she was without a car and relying on friends for transportation. Frustrated, she filed complaints with the Better Business Bureau, the Department of Consumer Protection and NBC Connecticut.

The manager at Empire Auto declined to speak on camera but said he sold the car in “as is” condition.

According to Connecticut law, a dealer has the right to sell a vehicle in “as is” condition, if the car is more than six model years old or bought for under $3,000. Hart’s car is eight years old.

“The dealership is still required to do a comprehensive safety inspection and they’re supposed to give the consumer a certification that the vehicle is safe and proper for use on Cpnnecticut highways and roads,” said Dan Blinn with the Consumer Law Group.

Blinn with the Consumer Law Group said if dealers don’t provide that documentation, it’s considered unfair trade practice and they can be fined $500.

I showed Hart a copy of the inspection form Blinn said she should have received. She said she’s never seen it before.

When we asked Empire Auto for a copy of the inspection for Hart’s car, they said they would send it but they never did. NBC Connecticut calls haven’t been returned.

For their own protection, consumers can print the inspection form right from the DMV’s website, and have the dealer sign it.

They should also ask about the history of the car and if it’s been in an accident.

But make sure to get it all in writing.

Dan Blinn with the Consume Law Group said every car MUST pass emissions.

He also said that state law requires dealerships to allow an independent mechanic to perform an inspection upon request.

It can be on the premises or at their mechanic shop. He said if the dealership refuses to allow the consumer to take the car off the lot to have the inspection, that’s a pretty good sign that maybe this is a dealership that you don’t want to do business with.

<![CDATA[Stadium Authority Raises Concern Over Yard Goat Stadium Completion ]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 21:43:04 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/dunkin-donuts-park.jpg

The stadium authority has raised some concern over the Hartford's Yard Goats stadium being completed by May 17, like developers promised. 

The city's mayor Luke Bronin said he is putting the pressure on the builders but he's still skeptical about the project after a meeting with the stadium authority

"They are pushing up against a tight deadline right now," Bronin said.

"I'm hopeful that they will be able to get in there and play but I'm not predicting the future and never have predicted the future when they tell us that they're done and we get in there and inspect and we see a completed stadium we will hand it over to the team."

In January, Bronin announced that he came up with a plan to close the $10 million hole in construction costs with $5.5 million of taxpayer money, $2.3 million from the developer, while $2 million from the Hartford Yard Goats, the team that will play in the stadium.

The team's owner, Josh Solomon, said he was "hopeful" that the ballpark will be done by May 17:

"We are hopeful that the ballpark can be delivered to the team by May 17. When the city communicates to us that substantial completion has been met, we will move our operation to the stadium and bring to our great fans, sponsors and the greater Hartford community the best of minor league baseball."

The baseball team also announced in January that it would play its first 17 games on the road due to the delay in construction. Yard Goats won their first game ever against the Richmond Flying Squirrels in April. 

Photo Credit: Yard Goats Instagram]]>
<![CDATA[Unsettled, Cool Weather Continues]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 17:00:43 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Model+RPM4+Precip+Clouds+Floater%281%291.png

Unsettled, cool weather will continue for the rest of the workweek.

Isolated showers are expected overnight with lows in the 40s.

Tomorrow will be mostly cloudy with a chance for showers, with temperatures again in the middle 50s.

The chance for showers continues again Thursday, with highs in the upper 50s.

Organized rain returns Friday to close the workweek. Yet again, temperatures will be stuck in the 50s.

The next dry day appears to be Saturday, just in time to start the weekend! It will be warmer, with highs in the middle 60s.

Mother's Day looks mostly dry though a cold front will bring a few shower through the state. Not a washout. Highs will be in the lower 60s.

Early next week, dry weather returns and 70 is possible by Tuesday!

<![CDATA[L&M Hospital Went Into Full Lockdown Following Perceived Threat]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 19:52:34 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/new+london+police+generic.jpg

Lawerence & Memorial Hospital went into full lockdown mode on Tuesday following a perceived threat called into the hospital, a spokesperson said. 

The lockdown went into effect at around 3:25 p.m. after an alleged threat was called into the Emergency Department, Michael O'Farrell, an L&M spokesperson said.

New London police and fire department were called to investigation with help from the hospital's public safety, O'Farrell said. 

Police were able to trace the call back to Aleksey Kuperman, 51, of New London and he faces charges for first-degree threatening and breach of peace.

By 4:20 p.m., officials cleared the threat and the hospital resumed normal operations. 

Kuperman's bond was set to $2,500.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Small Plane Flying to CT Crashes in Long Island, 3 Dead]]> Wed, 04 May 2016 11:59:42 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/small+plane+crash+syosset+credit+richjcho.jpg

Three people were killed when a small plane broke up in the air and crashed on a residential Long Island road lined by homes and schools Tuesday afternoon, authorities say.

Two men and a woman were on board the single-engine Beeech BE35 aircraft when it crashed on Cold Spring Road in Syosset just after 2:30 p.m., the FAA says. Authorities on the scene have recovered their bodies, Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano said. 

No one on the ground was hurt, authorities said. 

The plane took off from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, at about 12:45 p.m., and was headed to Plainville, Connecticut, according to the FAA.  

The pilot made a distress call over Farmingdale reporting some type of instrumentation problem, according to NTSB senior investigator Robert Gretz. He said the pilot said something to the effect of, "I have a partial panel loss." 

The plane then disappeared off the radar and broke up in flight, leaving behind a debris field of about two miles. 

"Sometimes the higher up it breaks up, the larger the debris field," Gretz said. 

Recordings between first responders and dispatch revealed the sheer amount of wreckage that was scattered on the ground. 

"I got multiple parts to a plane," one first responder is heard saying in the recordings posted to Broadcastify. "I just found a sneaker... I got like a sneaker... a bag." 

Another says, "I've got a fuselage of one single-engine plane. I see a lot of clothes and another sneaker." 

The stretch of Cold Spring Road is lined by homes and several schools. Melissa Wesley Kessler, a teacher at Berry Hill Elementary School, said she was working inside when she suddenly heard a very loud noise, like a motorcycle revving its engine.

"I didn't hear a crash or anything, it just sounded like something kind of coming down out of the sky," she said. 

When she walked out, "there were fire engines and pieces of debris partly on our school grounds, across the street, down the block. Pieces of glass, twisted metal."

"It was really frightening," she said. "I had a pit in my stomach, it was scary." 

Neighbor Bianco Devito recounted a similar scene.

"I was just sitting in my living room and all of a sudden, I heard a buzzing noise and then a huge boom, sort of like something was being dropped," she said. 

When she ran outside into her backyard, which faces the parking lot of the BOCES Long Island High School for the Arts, she saw a body. 

"Oh God, it was terrible. It's not something you're expecting to be seeing every day. It was very scary," she said. 

A woman named Nicole told NBC 4 New York she was driving to Southwoods Junior High School to pick up a girl she babysits when something suddenly fell out of the sky, landing about 20 feet in front of her to the right.

"I didn't know what it was first at all, but it looked like an airplane seat," she said. 

"I had to do a triple take. I couldn't believe an airplane seat just fell in front of me," she said.

Nicole said she didn't know what to make of the "bizarre" incident, especially because she didn't hear anything, but when she got to the school, "everyone was looking up at the sky and then we kind of found out a little bit after that." 

The schools in the area -- including the Long Island High School for the Arts, Berry Hill Elementary Syosset High School, Southwoods Junior and Senior High School and Syosset High School -- were locked down briefly after the crash as authorities investigated. 

Gretz siad it's not clear why the plane broke apart in the sky. 

"It's not a common investigation for us," Gretz said of the plane breaking apart in the sky. "It does happen. In 18 years, I've probably worked five or 10 of them." 

Officials are looking at a number of factors in the crash, including whether the pilot was caught in bad weather. If the pilot didn't have functioning instrumentation in bad weather, it would be like driving through fog without lights or a dashboard, Gretz said.

Gretz said Nassau police was assisting in the investigation by documenting each piece of plane debris. A preliminary report is expected to be issued within five to 10 business days, and a final report including a probable cause will be issued in about nine to 12 months. 

Cold Spring Road was closed in both directions between Townsend Road and Chelsea Drive as emergency responders attend to the scene.

The FAA says it will investigate the crash and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the cause. 

Photo Credit: @richjcho/Twitter]]>
<![CDATA[Man Allegedly Assaults Diner Workers Over Food Order]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 16:10:33 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/TLMD-HANDCUFFS.jpg

A man was arrested for assaulting a security officer and diner employee after a dispute over a food order, a Bridgeport spokesperson said. 

Dennis Berrios, who has a pending case for manslaughter from 2014, is accused of third-degree assault on an elderly person, second-degree breach of peace, third-degree criminal mischief, second-degree threatening and creating a public disturbance. 

On May 1, Berrios was asked to leave a diner while causing a disturbance, the Bridgeport spokesperson, Av Harris, said. Berrios allegedly attacked a security office and diner employee after becoming irate over food he had ordered, Harris said. 

Later, officers spotted Berrios driving on Main Street with flattened tires and he was pulled over. Harris said Berrios refused to obey the officers and an investigation found that he had caused the disturbance at the diner earlier. 

While in booking, Harris said Berrios remained belligerent and threatened to kill police officers. 

Berrios' bond was set to $250,000. It is unclear if he has an attorney or when he is expected to appear in court. 

<![CDATA[Pregnant Connecticut Woman Contracts Zika Virus: DPH ]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 23:37:29 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/AP_71939457309-zika.png

A pregnant woman from Connecticut tested positive for the Zika virus after traveling to Central America, the Department of Public Health said. 

The child was conceived during the woman's trip, according to the DPH. While traveling, the woman became ill with a fever and rash, the department said. The woman is about 11 weeks pregnant, DPH Commissioner Raul Pino said.

The woman has since returned to Central America but the DPH had contacted her Connecticut physician in an effort to get in touch with the patient or her family to ensure she seeks medical care.

“We are working with the patient’s physician to ensure that both the physician and the patient have all the necessary information and guidance they need,” said Pino. “This virus is very dangerous for the babies of pregnant women, causing serious birth defects and miscarriages."

Pino said the woman, who is originally from Central America, left the state on Feb. 5 and returned on March 30. She had began developing symptoms on March 17, Pino said. He was not sure when she traveled back to Central America after that, he said in a press conference on Tuesday. 

Pino warns women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant avoid travel to Zika-stricken areas. He said while the virus itself is mild for adults, it could be quite severe for fetuses. 

"The more that we learn, the more grave it looks," Pino said at the press conference. 

Tuesday's results is the third positive test in Connecticut and first for a pregnant woman. 

Editor's Note: Officials from the Department of Public Health originally said the woman had gone to South America.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[90 Laid Off From Developmental Services, Military Dept.]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 15:10:04 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Connecticut+State+Capitol+edited.jpg

Ninety Connecticut state employees received layoff notices on Tuesday as the state grapples with a $922 million budget deficit. 

Eighty-nine are from the Department of Developmental Services, and one was in the Military Department. 

A statement from the Office of Policy and Management for the state says the layoff notices go into effect at the end of business today. 

“Today’s layoffs to workers who have dedicated their lives to caring for the intellectually disabled are very harmful for our state,” SEIU 1199 spokesperson Jennifer Schneider said in a statement. “Eliminating workers who care for the disabled should be Connecticut’s last resort, not the first step in solving budget deficits.  We encourage the Governor and lawmakers to use a portion of the $406 million in the state’s rainy day fund before making the drastic step to remove caregivers from the disabled who depend on them for their most basic every day needs.”  

In total, 650 state employees have been laid off and several more are expected. 

When Gov. Dannel Malloy released a new budget plan last month, it included about 2,500 total layoffs.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Name of Woman Struck and Killed By Acela Train in Milford Released]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 14:30:45 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/TLMD-tren-metro-north-st.jpg

A 45-year-old Milford woman was struck and killed by an Acela train on Friday afternoon and officials from Metro-North said they have no information to indicate that this was an accident.

Metro-North officials identified the woman as Lauren Escobar.

The Acela Express 2158, heading from Washington to Boston, was going 200 miles per hour when it hit Escobar in the area of Gulf Street and Buckingham Avenue in Milford around 2 p.m., according to Amtrak.

The train was carrying 297 passengers and none was injured, according to Amtrak.

Officials from Metro-North said there is nothing criminal about the incident.

This was the second death involving an Acela train in Connecticut on Friday.

On Friday morning, an Acela train hit a person on the tracks in Guilford and the person died.

<![CDATA[Man Described as 'Wolverine' Charged in Fatal Hit-and-Run]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 14:44:49 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/antonio+calderon_1200.jpg

A man described as a “Wolverine” with “vampire teeth” has been charged in a fatal hit-and-run in New Haven, Connecticut, in March.

Police said the victim, 54-year-old Michael Kucher of New Haven, was seriously injured when a white Honda Accord hit him as he tried to cross Grand Avenue, between Poplar and Ferry streets, at 12:06 a.m. on March 7. 

Kucher sustained blunt impact injuries of the head, neck, torso and extremities and died on March 16, according to police. 

The driver who hit Kucher left the scene, police said.

One witness described him as a “Wolverine” – short and stocky with “vampire teeth” so police began searching for him.

Surveillance from the scene showed the driver in a race with others, police said. 

The next day, police received a report of a suspicious vehicle "hidden" between a wall and a passenger van on Chapel Street.  The windshield was cracked and covered up, police said.

When police checked towing records for it, they found that the vehicle had been towed on Aug. 15. From there, they tracked down the owner, who reported selling it, along with a bogus Tennessee license plate, police said. 

Police then tracked down the owner of the vehicle and officers on patrol in Fair Haven received a tip about "Wolverine" who was at a local bar.  

Now police have identified the suspected driver as Antonio Calderon, 27, of New Haven. 

They said he did not admit hitting Kucher, but said he'd been in the car the night of the crash. 

Calderon, who is in custody on another matter, was charged with felony evading, manslaughter in the second degree, misconduct with a motor vehicle and reckless driving.

Photo Credit: New Haven Police]]>
<![CDATA[Part of Route 42 Closed Between Bethany and Beacon Falls]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 13:47:51 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/COPSPTSD00000000.jpg

Part of Route 42 in Bethany is closed after a crash. 

The road is closed from the Litchfield Turnpike to the Beacon Falls town line. 

No additional information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[West Hartford Debates Fate of UConn Campus]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 13:22:32 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/west+hartford+uconn+meeting.jpg

It was standing room only at West Hartford Town Hall Monday night, as officials presented proposals and debated the options of what to do with the 58 acre property UConn is leaving in 2017.

From office space to apartments to open space, a lot of options were discussed, but town officials say most of them are not feasible financially. The zoning issues and wetlands on the property make it extremely difficult.

There is an offer for $12.6 million from China’s Weiming Educational Group to use the land for an international school. Town officials believe the for-profit school would bring beneficial tax revenue.

“If indeed the school opens up there, it’s like a half million dollars in taxes to the town every year,” Jeff Smith, of West Hartford said.

The students would also complete part of their education at a public school, and the town could charge them tuition. The concept does not sit well with some parents.

“I don’t feel like West Hartford should be for sale,” Rick Bush, of West Hartford said. “Selling our spots in public schools sets a bad precedent.”

There is also concern that the influx will leave their current students competing for resources.

“They’re not going to be the dumb kids,” Bush said. “They’re going to be the smart kids and they’re going to be competing directly for classroom time and teacher time.”

Supporters say it would diversify the population and expose students to new cultures.

“I think that adding international flavor to the town and bringing students from all around the world is a healthy thing to do,” Joel Gordes said.

The town still has a few more weeks to decide whether or not to make an offer. Hours before the forum Monday, UCONN officials announced they were extending the deadline from next week until the middle of June.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Man Who Said Cromwell Teen Committed Suicide Arraigned on Murder Charge]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 15:24:57 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Torrick+Maragh+1200.jpg

A 21-year-old Hartford man who told police that an 18-year-old Cromwell woman committed suicide has been charged in her murder.

Torrick Maragh was arraigned on Tuesday and bond has been set at $1.5 million.

Maragh was initially charged with two counts of possession of a sawed-off shotgun and has been incarcerated on those charges, but police later obtained a warrant charging him with the murder of Nasashalie Hoy, 18, of Cromwell,.

Hartford police found Hoy after receiving a frantic 911 call at 11:15 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 5.

When they rushed to the basement of 1688 Broad St. in Hartford, they found her lying on the ground and bleeding from the throat.

She was rushed to Hartford Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at 11:58 p.m.  

According to arrest paperwork, Maragh told detectives Hoy shot herself with a shotgun after the two had an argument.

Hoy's family never believed that was the case. 

“We knew she didn’t commit this herself. She was never capable of doing this. She was just a happy soul,” Hoy's cousin, Kassandra Ortega, said.

They maintained that Hoy didn't shot herself and several family members were at the courthouse for the arraignment.

“I’m just glad that it finally happened today, because it’s been sitting here for so long,” Felix Hoy, Nasashalie’s father, said.

Maragh told police he and Hoy were initially “tussling” over a shotgun shell and she had a knife in her hand, but he was able to confiscate it from her before she ran out of the room, according to the arrest warrant.

When Hoy came back, she straddled Maragh, who was sitting on a bed, and she had a shotgun pointed at her neck when it went off, he said, according to the warrant.

The medical examiner’s office classified Hoy's death as a homicide and determined she died from a bullet to the neck.

Police said they worked closely with the state forensic science lab to analyze evidence.

According to arrest papers, Maragh owns the gun that took Hoy's life and admitted to hiding a second gun in the ceiling before police got to the scene.

“I think this situation all around is tragic,” Maragh’s attorney, Steve Slattery, said.


In court today, the state’s attorney said they had a strong case against Maragh, but his attorney says it's not an open and shut case.
56:52 Slattery: “The warrant does indicate that there was DNA of the deceased on both the handle and the trigger of the gun.”
He also pointed out that Slattery stayed on the scene to cooperate with police, telling them that Hoy killed herself when an argument between the two got out of hand.
48:49 Felix Hoy, Victim’s Father “I’m hoping he takes it to trial. If he says she killed herself, which I know she didn’t, let him prove it.”
Maragh’s family was also in court today, but declined to comment.
He is due back in court on May 16th.


In court, the state’s attorney said they had a strong case against Maragh, but his attorney said it's not an open and shut case.

"The warrant does indicate that there was DNA of the deceased on both the handle and the trigger of the gun,” Slattery said.

Felix Hoy said he hopes this case goes to trial.

“I’m hoping he takes it to trial. If he says she killed herself, which I know she didn’t, let him prove it,” he said.

Maragh’s family was also in court, but declined to comment.

Maragh is due back in court on May 16.

The warrant charging Maragh with murder has a judge-set bond of $1.5 million.

Photo Credit: hartford Police]]>
<![CDATA[Police Investigate Armed Robbery at Hamden Shop]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 15:28:36 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/hamden+police+generic+1.JPG

Police are searching for the man who robbed a Hamden store, demanded cash and threatened to kill the employee on Sunday morning. 

Police responded to the Hamden Variety Store, at 1555 Dixwell Ave., at 10:15 a.m. on Sunday to investigate an armed robbery and learned that the robber threatened to kill the employee if he didn’t hand over the money from the cash register. 

The robber was described as a 5-feet-6-inch tall man in his 20s with a medium build. He was wearing a dark sweatshirt, had a silver handgun and ran north on Dixwell Avenue after the robbery. 

Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Donald Remillard of the Hamden Police Department Major Crimes Division at (203) 230-4040.

<![CDATA[South Windsor Man Reported Missing Has Been Found]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 11:40:26 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/JOHN+J+MCLEAN+web.jpg

A 53-year-old South Windsor man who was reported missing on Friday has been found and police said he appears to be be healthy.

Two friends reported John McLean missing on Friday and said they were concerned about his well-being and he might have been in the area of the Manchester, Vernon and South Windsor town lines that evening.

Police canceled the Silver Alert on Tuesday and said officers have found him.

Photo Credit: South Windsor Police Department]]>
<![CDATA[Hamden Father and Daughter Arrested on Drug and Gun Charges]]> Tue, 03 May 2016 16:38:55 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Yeshiva+of+New+Haven+1200.jpg

A father and daughter from Hamden have been arrested on drug and gun charges after a raid at their home. 

Hamden Police, along with the Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms Violent Crimes Task Force and the New Haven Police Department Criminal Intelligence Unit executed a search warrant on the second floor of 128 Circular Ave. early Friday morning and seized a .32 caliber revolver, .25 caliber semi-automatic handgun, .22 caliber revolver, ammunition, around 600 grams of marijuana and $6,000, police said. 

Jorje Santiago, 47, and his 19-year-old daughter, Venessa, were arrested. 

Jorje Santiago was charged with possession of marijuana, sale of a controlled substance, operating a drug factory, criminal possession of a firearm and altering the identification of a firearm. 

He was held on a $100,000 bond. 

Venessa Santiago was charged with possession of marijuana, sale of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and altering the identification of a firearm. 

She was detained on a $25,000 bond. 

It’s not clear if they are being represented by an attorney.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>