<![CDATA[NBC Connecticut - Top Stories]]>Copyright 2017http://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/top-stories http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/NBC_Connecticut.png NBC Connecticut http://www.nbcconnecticut.comen-usSat, 21 Jan 2017 18:39:37 -0500Sat, 21 Jan 2017 18:39:37 -0500NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Monday's Nor'easter Brings a Wintry Mix and Gusty Winds]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 16:02:52 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Custom+Map+1+Web+%281%29.png

The NBC Connecticut meteorologists have issued a First Alert Monday for a Nor'easter that's expected to bring rain, sleet and gusty winds.

Temperatures climbed into the middle 50s Saturday and we're expecting the mild weather to stick around for Sunday with highs in the upper 40s.

Connecticut is in for an active weather pattern over the next seven days. The mild weather this weekend will be followed by a powerful Nor'easter that moves in on Monday.

A significant Nor'easter moves into the state on Monday. This storm will pack a punch with a wintry mix transitioning over to heavy rain and a strong wind. Some of our computer models are estimating wind gusts in excess of 50 mph. 

Temperatures on Monday will struggle to make it out of the middle 30s inland. Therefor we continue to monitor the threat for snow and sleet in the northwest hills. Right now, it looks like enough warm air will be in place that it will be primarily heavy rain and sleet for northern Litchfield county. The rest of the state will be dealing with all rain. Of course we will continue to review the latest information and change our forecast accordingly. 

The remnants of the storm will continue right into Tuesday. Heavy rain showers with a strong southerly wind can be expected for most of the day. 

Conditions improve drastically on Wednesday with partly cloudy skies and temperatures once again flirting with 50 degrees. 

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<![CDATA[DEEP Investigating Oil Spill in New Haven Harbor ]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 17:06:18 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/NEW-HAVEN-OIL.jpg

The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection was called in to investigate an oil sheen in the New Haven harbor.

DEEP officials said they were called in to determine the cause and source of the oil spill after the US Coast Guard noticed a sheen on the water Friday. The oil is No. 2 oil – typically used as home heating oil.

The New Haven Terminal has hired Alpine Environmental Co. to set up an oil containment boom to attempt to clean up the spill, DEEP said.

DEEP officials did not say how large the spill was.

The investigation is ongoing.

Photo Credit: Contributed Photo]]>
<![CDATA[White House Slams Coverage of Inaugural Crowd Size]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 18:38:28 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/182*120/spicer-slams-size-inauguration.jpg

The new White House press secretary used his first press briefing to launch a furious tirade against media coverage of President Donald Trump's inauguration, calling it "shameful and wrong" for focusing on the fact that it was noticeably smaller than Barack Obama's in 2009.

Sean Spicer harangued the media for not taking the administration's point of view on how to cover Trump's inauguration, and claimed that the National Mall was full during the president's oath of office when photographs from multiple vantage points showed that it wasn't. 

"This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe," Spicer said. "These attempts to lessen the enthusiasm of the inauguration are shameful and wrong."

Spicer took no questions at the briefing, which came hours after Trump told CIA officials in Langley that the media was inventing a feud between him and the intelligence community, despite suggesting the intel community leaked information to the press and comparing it to something that would be done in Nazi Germany.

It's the latest bump in a rocky relationship between the Trump team and the national press corps, but the first to take place in the White House. And it came as hundreds of thousands of demonstrators filled the streets in Washington and many cities both in America and abroad, all aimed at showing Trump that they will not be silent during his time in office. 

Spicer did not comment on the march other than to stipulate there are no official estimates about crowd sizes at the rallies. 

Photo Credit: AP/Inaugural Ceremonies Commission/Getty
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<![CDATA['American Justice': El Chapo Taken Before Federal Judge After Decades of Drugs, Bloodshed]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:39:58 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/el+chapo+ready+court+police.jpeg

It was a long time coming, but notorious Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman finally walked into an American courtroom Friday, to face charges that he was the murderous architect of a 3-decade-long web of violence, corruption and drug addiction in the United States.

As he was taken before a federal judge, prosecutors announced they were seeking a $14 billion forfeiture from Guzman, who arrived overnight after the sudden decision by Mexican authorities to grant his extradition to the United States.

"Today marks a milestone in our pursuit of Chapo Guzman,'' said Robert Capers, the U.S. attorney in Brooklyn. "He's a man known for a life of crime, violence, death and destruction, and now he'll have to answer for that.''

As boss of the Sinaloa cartel, Guzman presided over a syndicate that shipped tons of heroin and cocaine to the U.S., using tanker trucks, planes with secret landing strips, container ships, speedboats and even submarines, prosecutors said. Perhaps most famously, Guzman's cartel built elaborate tunnels under the U.S. border to transport drugs, said Wifredo Ferrer, the U.S. attorney in Miami.

The cartel made billions of dollars in profits -- hence prosecutors' bid for a $14 billion forfeiture -- and employed hit men who carried out murders, kidnappings and acts of torture, according to prosecutors. The Sinaloa smugglers also helped fuel an epidemic of drug abuse in the U.S. in the 1980s and `90s, the prosecutors said.

Guzman was recaptured a year ago in Mexico after escaping from a maximum-security prison for a second time. The episode was highly embarrassing for President Enrique Pena Nieto's government, and Mexican officials were seen as eager to hand him off to the U.S.

By finally bringing their case in the Eastern District of New York, prosecutors chose that city over Chicago and other jurisdictions, who have long hoped to put Guzman on trial.

“After the tunneling into a maximum security prison which had to have the involvement of government officials, that was a huge embarrassment for the government of Mexico,” said Thomas Shakeshaft, a former assistant U.S. attorney in Chicago. “There was still a chance that he was running the cartel behind bars, but this is a symbolic victory both for the government of Mexico, and the United States.”

The Chicago case did carry a big plus, or perhaps more accurately, two of them. Two brothers, Pedro and Margarito Flores, who had been the prime distributors for Guzman’s Sinoloa cartel in Chicago had agreed to cooperate with authorities and would have been the chief witnesses in a Chicago trial. It isn’t clear if the two will still be called in the New York case.

“It took ten years to get Osama Bin Laden,” notes Shakeshaft, who spent years developing the Chicago prosecution. “It took more than that to get to Chapo, but ultimately we did!”

The Drug Enforcement Administration flew Guzman to New York from the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez on Thursday, hours before the inauguration of President Donald Trump, who has criticized Mexico for sending the U.S. "criminals and rapists'' and vowed to build a wall at the Mexican border.

When Guzman got off the plane, "as you looked into his eyes, you could see the surprise, you could see the shock, and to a certain extent, you could see the fear, as the realization kicked in that he's about to face American justice,'' said Angel Melendez, who leads U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's homeland security investigations in New York.

The U.S. has been trying to obtain custody of Guzman since he was first indicted in California in the early 1990s. Now in his late 50s, he faces the possibility of life in a U.S. prison. Prosecutors had to agree to not seek the death penalty as a condition of the extradition. While he faces federal charges in several U.S. states, federal prosecutors in Brooklyn won the jockeying to get the case. The U.S. attorney's office there has substantial experience prosecuting international drug cartel cases and was once led by outgoing U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

After breaking out of prison the first time in 2001, Guzman spent more than a decade at large, becoming something of a folk legend among some Mexicans for his defiance of authorities. He was immortalized in ballads known as ``narco-corridos.''

Captured in 2014, Guzman then made an even more audacious escape, coolly stepping into a hole in the floor of his prison cell shower and whizzing to freedom on a motorcycle modified to run on tracks laid the length of the tunnel.

While on the run, he secretly met with actors Sean Penn and Kate del Castillo in a fall 2015 encounter that Penn later chronicled in Rolling Stone magazine.

In Penn's article, Guzman was unapologetic about his criminal activities, saying he had turned to drug trafficking at age 15 because it was "the only way to have money to buy food, to survive.''

The piece was published shortly after Mexican marines rearrested Guzman in a January 2016 shootout that killed five of his associates and wounded one marine.

Photo Credit: Handout]]>
<![CDATA[Thousands Flood Chicago Streets for Women's March]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 15:23:27 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/WMAQ_000000021722262_1200x675_859804227770.jpg An estimated 250,000 people descended on the city for the Women's March on Chicago Saturday. Sky5 caught the view from above of the massive crowd at the rally. ]]> <![CDATA[From Antarctica to Europe: Women's Marches Around the World]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 17:01:20 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/London_England_1_March1.jpg From Antarctica to the Netherlands, global marches and rallies for women's right were held around the world in solidarity with the hundreds of thousands of people gathered for the Women's March in Washington, as well as the 600 "sister marches" held across the United States, on Jan. 21, 2017. See the photos.

Photo Credit: Dan KitwoodGetty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Women's March Mosaic: Social Posts from Washington, DC]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 15:16:19 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/dc-social-mosaic.jpg

The day after President Donald Trump's inauguration, hundreds of thousands of people gathered in rallies and marches across the globe in support of women's rights. The largest such march was in Washington, D.C., where authorities estimated 500,000 gathered. The above mosaic shows social posts from people at the march, overlaid on a photo of the crowd itself. Were you there tweeting? Use the 'Find Yourself' tool to find your post or click on the faces to see posts by others. 

<![CDATA[West Haven Man Injured in New Haven Shooting]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 12:19:59 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/NEW-HAVEN-SHOOTING-ARTHUR-AND-LAMBERTON.jpg

A West Haven man was critically in a shooting in New Haven Saturday morning, according to police.

New Haven police said they were called to the intersection of Arthur Street and Lamberton Street around 3:15 a.m. The victim was find near the passenger side of his car, suffering from gunshot wounds to the neck, shoulder, and leg.

The 45-year-old victim was taken to the hospital where he is listed in critical but stable condition, police said. 

Police said a female friend of the victim witnessed the shooting and is cooperating with police. She told police the pair had left a New Haven bar before the shooting occurred.

Police have not released a suspect description at this point.

According to police, there have been other shootings in the area and a nearby building has been known to sell alcohol after-hours at parties. Police are investigating whether the pair was attending one of those parties.

The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information should contact New Haven police sy 203-946-6304.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA['We Shall Over-Comb': The Best Signs of the Women's March]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 16:55:12 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/overcombfeuerherd.jpg

Protesters attitudes toward President Trump were on display on handmade signs at women's marches around the globe Saturday. 

Many of the signs were playful and whimsical, but conveyed a protest message. 

One of them showed recently-deceased actress Carrie Fisher dressed as her Star Wars character Princess Leia with the title, "RESISTER." 

Another Instagram photo captioned with #womensmarch showed a sign that poked fun at Trump's speech. "Trump has the best misogyny, it's very big misogyny. Sad!" the sign reads.  

In Washington, where crowds are expected to reach 500,000 people, one marcher held a sign that read, "we shall over-comb," with a drawing of Trump's notorious hairstyle. 

A girl at the march held a sign that read, "girl's just want to have fundamental human rights." 

Photo Credit: Riya Bhattacharjee
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<![CDATA[Watch Women's Marches From Across the Country]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 12:49:06 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/214*120/marches-streams-th.jpg
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<![CDATA[Hartford Rally Mirrors National Women's March on Washington]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 17:23:48 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Women%27s-march-on-Connecticut.jpg

As hundreds of thousands of women descend on Washington, D.C. for the National Women’s March on Washington, Connecticut residents held a sister rally of their own in Hartford.

Connecticut residents gathered at the State Capitol Building’s north lawn to stand in solidarity with women across the nation. Organizers expected about 5,000 people to attend but police estimate the crowd was double that - around 10,000 people attended.

Planned for the day after President Donald Trump took office, the march stands for the idea that women’s rights are human rights, no matter what race, ethnicity, religion, immigration status, sexual identity, economic status, age or disability.

Participants wanted to represent a wide range of concepts including ending violence, reproductive rights, LGBTQIA rights, workers' rights, civil rights, disability rights, immigrant rights and environmental justice.

“I think it’s very important for us to come out and represent a lot of concerns that are not being addressed by the new administration,” said New Britain resident Victoria Harris Cloud.

Gov. Dannel Malloy threw his support behind the march and what it stands for, declaring Saturday “Women’s March on Washington Day” in the state of Connecticut.

“This day is more than an expression of disappointment as some people will try to say it is. It is an expression of outrage at the direction some people would lead us in,” Malloy said at the Hartford rally.

The governor went on to say that the peopel have an obligation to protect each other's rights. Another speaker asked the crowd to join together peacefully in the face of opposition.

Connecticut was also represented by an estimated 20,000 people who traveled down to Washington, D.C. for the national march.

Events were hosted all across the nation and in places as far as Australia and Antarctica. In Connecticut, there were also events in Stamford and East Haddam.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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<![CDATA[Man Verbally Harassed Students at Danbury High School: Mayor]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 15:15:34 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/DANBURY-HS-INCIDENT.jpg

Danbury officials are looking into a video that appears to show a man holding a Trump sign verbally harassing students coming out of Danbury High School, according to Mayor Mark Boughton.

The mayor said school officials and police are investigating the incident after video surfaced on Twitter that appears to show a man in the parking lot holding a Trump sign and shouting at students.

"You’ll be out of the country you [expletive] illegal," the man can be heard shouting.

According to Boughton, the man was there after 2 p.m. on Friday, when the high school becomes public space, and he was there to pick up a relative from school. There was also a physical fight between the man and the student, though the mayor said it appeared the student initiated the altercation.

It is unclear if the man will be charged with anything but the situation is under review.

“This is just horrible behavior,” the mayor said. “The individual should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, should any laws have been broken. Horrendous.”

Photo Credit: Hugo]]>
<![CDATA[First Alert Issued for Monday Nor'easter]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 13:09:00 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Web+Scenarior+Noreaster.png

The NBC Connecticut meteorologists have issued a First Alert for Monday as a Nor’easter moves through New England.

The weekend looks mild with high temperatures in the upper 40s to near 50 through the weekend, well above the average of 34 degrees in Hartford this time of year.

Sunday night into Monday most of the state will begin seeing rain and sleet, possibly a wintry mix in the hill towns. The shoreline will see rain and maybe some sleet. The rain will be heavy at times.

The chances for a significant storm are increasing for the Monday/Tuesday time frame. Right now we're forecasting heavy rain for most of the state with the potential for a wintry mix in the northwest corner. While the heavy rain won't totally alleviate the drought it will definitely help.

In addition to the heavy rain and wintry mix, winds could really whip and a high wind alert has been issued for the shoreline starting Sunday night through Monday night.

We're forecasting sustained winds gusting 40-40 miles per hour, perhaps up to 60 mile per hour gusts along the shoreline. This could cause tree limbs to fall which may lead to power issues.

For a more in depth and meteorological explanation of the storm check out Ryan Hanrahans latest article on Ryan's Radar.

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<![CDATA[Hartford Man Arrested On Drug Charges Following Foot Chase]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 08:43:13 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/hartfordbustpic.jpg

Hartford police said that they have arrested a man on drug and firearm charges after a brief foot chase on Friday night.

According to police, at 9:47 p.m. officers conducting a "Hot Spot" search in response to an increase of gun incidents in the area of the city's North District, observed a vehicle parked in the area of 221 Sisson Avenue.

Upon approaching the car, the officers were pushed by the vehicle's front passenger who began to flee the scene on foot, police said.

According to police, the suspect was subsequently apprehended in the area of Fales Street following a brief pursuit and was found to be in possession of crack cocaine and heroin packaged for street level sales.

Following this, a police investigation made with the assistance of the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives led authorities to apartment 205 at 221 Sisson Avenue, police said.

According to police, the sole resident of the apartment gave consent to a search where officials located a firearm as well as various items used to manufacture and package heroin.

In total, police said they recovered a .22 caliber pistol with 11 live rounds, various narcotic paraphernalia and packaging, a single plastic bag containing crack cocaine and nine purple wax sleeves containing heroin.

Police said the recovered gun was found to have been stolen from Weybridge, Vermont during a 2013 home invasion.

According to police, the accused, 39-year-old Howard King aka "Wow" of South Marshall Street in Hartford was arrested and charged with criminal possession of a firearm, possession of a stolen firearm, violation of a protective order, interfering with police, possession of narcotics, possession of narcotics with intent to sell, drug factory charges and possession of paraphernalia charges.

King, a convicted felon with multiple prior firearm related arrests in Hartford, was additionally served two outstanding violation of probation warrants for the State of Connecticut, police said.

According to police, following a debriefing King was transported to the Hartford Police Booking Facility for processing.

Photo Credit: Hartford Police]]>
<![CDATA[Handgun, Drugs Found in Car that Fled Police: West Haven PD]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 09:44:14 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/tlmd_police_tape_lights_generic23.jpg

Four people face charges after after a vehicle fled police and wound up crashed in the area of Forest Road and Bristol Street in West Haven, according to police.

Police said that around 2 a.m. Saturday officers spotted a vehicle near Forest Road and David Street speeding and ignoring traffic signals. When police tried to pull the car over the driver fled, police said.

According to police officers caught up to the vehicle when it crashed near Forest Road and Bristol Street. Three of the four occupants were taken to the hospital for treatment of minor injuries. They have not been identified.

Police said a handgun, heroin and marijuana were all found in the car. Charges are pending.

<![CDATA[CT Residents Head to DC for Trump Inauguration]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 08:34:50 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/186*120/GettyImages-632002110+%281%29.jpg

Many people from Connecticut are heading to Washington, DC to be there for Donald Trump’s inauguration today as he is sworn in as the 45th president while others are making the trip to protest. 

George Noujain, of Waterbury, said he met the president-elect when Trump came to Connecticut during his campaign and is looking forward to being in Washington to welcome the new administration. 

“It’s still surreal to me, especially knowing in 24 hours I’m going to be standing there with millions of people,” Noujain, who has amassed a large collection of Trump memorabilia, said Thursday. 

Iv Staklo is a member of a group of about 50 people who headed from New Haven with the Answer Coalition to be part of a massive demonstration in Washington, DC today. 

“We are prepared to organize nationally, locally, in our communities against any attacks that might come from the Trump administration,” Staklo said. 

Many will be watching here in Connecticut too.

The state Republican Party is holding an inauguration watch party at the Hartford headquarters at 31 Pratt St. from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Protester Punches White Nationalist Richard Spencer]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 12:39:44 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/richardspencerfeuerherdIBIB.jpg

White nationalist Richard Spencer was punched in the face during an on-camera interview with Australian Broadcasting Corporation News not far from President Trump's inauguration, NBC News reported.

Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[1 Injured in West Haven Shooting]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 09:31:59 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/West+Haven+police+generic.jpg

One person was injured in a shooting on Dix Street in West Haven Saturday morning, according to police.

Police said they responded to a report of gunfire with four or five shots heard and a person running into a Dix Street address. When officers arrived, they found a victim suffering a gunshot wound to his back, near the shoulder.

The victim told police he was outside in his car when someone approached him and fired multiple shots, hitting him once.

The victim was taken to Yale-New Haven Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, police said. Detectives are investigating the incident.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Man Taken to Hospital After House Fire in Suffield ]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 09:00:25 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Fire+on+Boston+Neck+Road+in+Suffield.JPG

A man was taken to the hospital after fire broke out at a house on Boston Neck Road in Suffield Friday morning. 

Officials responded to reports of a structure fire around 7 a.m., found a man in the kitchen and rescued him and took him to the hospital. 

No additional information was available on his condition. 

The fire chief said the fire started in a back bedroom on the first floor and was contained to that area. 

The house sustained some minimal smoke and water damage, officials said. 

The man, who lives alone, has a disability and his caretaker wasn't at the house when the fire broke out, officials said.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut,com]]>
<![CDATA['In God We Trust': World Newspapers React to Trump]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 07:29:56 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/AP17021357654857_opt.jpg

Newspapers around the world led with the news Saturday of Donald Trump's inauguration as the 45th president of the United States and his bold declaration that "from this moment on it's going to be America first."

His vow made headlines from Denver and Dallas to the United Kingdom where it was featured on the front pages of both the Scotsman and the Guardian, which declared in a separate headline that "in pledging to put 'America first', Trump holds the world at his mercy."

"The president's inaugural address put the rest of the planet on notice on Friday that it would, from now on, have to deal with a United States that is far less willing to do things for other countries, buy their products or protect their borders," the article said.

Germany's Der Spiegel perhaps went further, declaring on its cover, "a New World Order." Featuring a billiards table that shows the United States as the cue ball about to break things up, the weekly magazine went with the headline "Trump's Game."

The Times of London also described Trump's presidency as a "new era," while the Sydney Morning Herald said that the new president would now "unleash his shock and awe agenda."

China's official Global Times newspaper said in a commentary that Trump had made a number of "lofty promises" but offered few details on how he intended to carry them out, The Associated Press reported. 

Other governments that have had strained relationships with the Obama administration welcomed the change in Washington, including Turkey. The country's pro-government Daily Sabah went with a straightforward headline for Saturday's cover that said: "Turkey sees Trump as a force to correct US’s misguided policy in fight against [ISIS]."

Photo Credit: AP
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<![CDATA[Italy Bus Crash Kills 16 People Returning From School Trip]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 04:07:30 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/AP17021296752918_opt.jpg

Sixteen people were killed when a bus crashed and caught fire in Italy while carrying Hungarian teenagers home from a school trip, authorities said Saturday.

Police commander Geralomo Lacquanita said the bus crashed and burst into flames just before midnight on the A4 highway near Verona as it returned from France, NBC News reported.

The bus was returning to Budapest with boys aged 15 to 17 along with parents and teachers.

Police say 16 badly burned bodies have been pulled from the wreckage.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Best Moments of the Presidential Inaugural Balls ]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:19:20 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-632249496.jpg See some of the best moments at the presidential inaugural balls held in honor of Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States.

Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Experts Say Flu Hasn't Hit Peak of Season]]> Sat, 21 Jan 2017 17:13:22 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/flu+shot+generic1.JPG

The flu is widespread in 29 states including Connecticut at the beginning for 2017.

Experts say it likely has not even hit the peak yet.

“We’ve definitely seen an uptick in the past week or two,” Dr. Steven Wolf from Saint Francis Hospital, said.

It’s a similar situation at the Hospital of Central Connecticut in New Britain.

“We’ve certainly seen an increase in number of patients,” Dr. Virginia Bieluch said.

They confirm what many of us are experiencing: a lot of people are coming down with the flu right now.

The Department of Public Health released updated numbers showing the flu is widespread in the state with nearly 800 reported cases since August.

Hot spots include 287 flu reports in Fairfield County, 209 cases in Hartford and 177 in New Haven.

So far this season, five people in the state have died from flu-complications.

While, anyone can be develop problems, those most at danger include the young and elderly, as well as people with health conditions.

“The sooner you get your flu shot the better,” Bieluch said.

Health experts said the flu vaccine seems to be working fairly well this season by matching the strain of flu going around.

Also to help preventing the flu, think about eating well, resting, and practicing good hygiene.

“Just trying to take care better care of yourself during this time probably pays some dividends,” Wolf said.

While the flu vaccine takes several weeks to reach full effectiveness, it can help in the meantime.

And we’re still not at peak, which last year was into February and March.

Photo Credit: NBC]]>
<![CDATA[DEEP Seeing More Bear Sightings Than Usual ]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 22:21:03 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/229*120/bears+connecticut.JPG

The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is seeing more bear sightings than usual this time of year and the weather is playing a big part in that number.

Cellphone video provided to NBC Connecticut shows a family of bears walking through a West Simsbury home's yard Friday morning.

Polly Rice captured the video. She said she's seen the bears come by three times this month: an usual sight for January.

“For a time the momma was just in the backyard without them and I know that they were probably either looking for each other or something because she turned to look at the neighbor’s yard over there and eventually they caught up and too the little tour and then across the street,” said Rice.

DEEP says usually bears become more active between March and April, after the coldest winter months have passed; but with the mild January Connecticut has had DEEP is getting more reports of bear sightings than normal, at least one a day. Many of those calls are coming from western Connecticut.

“They’re not full hibernators and they can move around when it’s a little bit warmer out,” said DEEP wildlife biologist, Paul Rego.

The lack of snow on the ground is a bigger factor than the mild temperatures. 

Rego said there is also an increasing bear population in Connecticut. Last year DEEP received more than 6,000 reports of black bear sightings, compared to twenty years ago when there were only about 500 per year.

Officials warn that if you don’t want to attract a bear to your yard, don’t leave bird feeders up.

“My neighbor’s bird feeder was knocked over so they ate all of that," said Rice.

Photo Credit: Polly Rice]]>
<![CDATA[Final Piece of Dunkin Donuts Ballpark in Hartford Placed]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 22:08:43 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Dunkin-Donuts-Stadium-Hartford.jpg

The final piece of the concourse at Dunkin Donuts Park in Hartford was placed on Friday at the stadium.

Construction crews with Whiting-Turner were seen using a crane to place the bridge, which connects left field to center field. It was a gaping hole left behind when the city fired the old developer.

Mayor Luke Bronin said Arch Insurance has committed to the deadline of finishing work on the stadium on time for it’s opening on April 13, about a year behind schedule.

Bronin said the city, Arch Insurance and Whiting-Turner Construction all have the same mission: to complete construction of the ballpark.

“We’re working well with both of those partners, you know we’ve got a good, strong partnership with both Whiting-Turner and with Arch and we’re doing everything we can to make sure progress continues well," said Bronin.

Bronin said that at this time, the city will not have to put more money into the stadium project, but that can always change. 

“When Arch Insurance took responsibility for this project, took responsibility for funding it, they are doing it with their own dollars. There is always the possibility of litigation beyond completion of this thing. There’s always a possibility that there’ll be litigation that goes on for a long time,” said Bronin.

Bronin said his hope has always been to minimize taxpayer spending, especially on the stadium project.

NBC Connecticut reached out to Whiting-Turner Construction, Arch Insurance and the Hartford Yardgoats for comment. 

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Could Trump Shut Down an Investigation if He Wanted?]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 19:27:07 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/AP_17013713721598-Trump-head.jpg

The FBI is conducting a counterintelligence investigation into Russia's efforts to manipulate public opinion in the United States presidential election, examining how the operation was paid for and whether any Americans were involved, current and former U.S. officials told NBC News.

Former intelligence officials told NBC News that President Donald Trump would technically have the authority to order an end to the investigation — which the CIA, NSA and Treasury Department are also participating in — given that the intelligence agencies report directly to him.

Officials have not said whether the investigation has unearthed any evidence of wrongdoing by Trump aides or any other Americans. Trump spokesman Sean Spicer said on the "Today" show that the president would let the investigation go wherever it leads. And it would be politically disastrous for Trump to end the probe, the former intelligence officials said.

"I remember the last president who ordered a stop to an investigation and it cost him his presidency," said Raymond Batvinis, a former FBI counter intelligence agent who teaches national security at George Washington University, speaking of Richard Nixon and Watergate.

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci]]>
<![CDATA[Protestors Hold Peaceful Demonstration in New Haven on President Trump Inauguration Day]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 22:25:26 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/nh+protest1.jpg

Unlike the clashes with police and vandalism in the nation’s capital on Inauguration Day, protestors in New Haven peacefully voiced their opposition to President Donald Trump, his positions on several issues and his cabinet selections.

“This is just a peaceful demonstration to get all of the residents of the city of New Haven together,” said Alderman Darryl Brackeen Jr.

After a rally outside City Hall, protestors began marching down Church Street in downtown New Haven.

Jennifer Hernandez from Wallingford did not watch President Trump’s inaugural speech because she doesn't, “want him to have any ratings today from me, at least,” she said.

Hernandez told NBC Connecticut she is concerned with what he said after reading the transcript.

“Very nationalistic, very fascist type rhetoric and very anti a diverse America,” she said. “But very pro-white male America, and I won’t stand for that, that’s not who we are.”

While President Trump delivered his speech on the steps of the U.S. Capitol after swearing in, dozens gathered on the steps of City Hall in Milford for their own demonstration. 

“There are just too many things Trump and the republican agenda want to eliminate or harm,” Wayne Theriault of Milford said.

Back in New Haven, the diverse group of demonstrators started gathering outside City Hall around 2 p.m. They rallied against President Trump’s positions on issues such as immigration, women’s rights and climate change.

“He’s talking about rolling back all the progress we’ve made under Obama,” Steve Winter of New Haven said. “Installing, basically, an oil lobbyist as the head of the EPA.”

Winter was collecting signatures for a petition to drop the Electoral College, pointing out Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by nearly three million votes.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut]]>
<![CDATA[Compare the Crowds: Obama and Trump Inaugurations]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 17:41:45 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/182*120/inaug-aerial-th.jpg

President Donald Trump promised an “unbelievable, perhaps record-setting turnout” for his inauguration, but it appears he fell short of a record.

Photos taken from the same vantage point at roughly the same time during the inaugurations of Trump and Barack Obama show far fewer people on the National Mall on Friday, Jan. 20, 2017. Subway ridership figures released Friday also show a drop between 2009 and 2017.

Various groups involved with the planning of Friday’s ceremonies — the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Activities, the D.C. Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management and the U.S. Armed Forces Joint Task Force-National Capital Region — predicted 700,000 to 900,000 would attend Trump’s swearing-in and parade.

His predecessor drew what was originally estimated to be a record 1.8 million people to the National Mall for his inauguration in 2009. That estimate was provided by Washington D.C. officials, though The Washington Post later questioned whether it was too high.

On Friday, ridership numbers from the Washington D.C. Metro showed a drop from the 2009 inaugural. As of 11 a.m. on Friday, it recorded 193,000 rides, compared to 513,000 at that time in 2009.

Meanwhile, an expert told The New York Times the crowd on the National Mall on Friday was about one-third the size of the crowd for Obama in 2009. 

The Joint Congressional Committee for Inaugural Ceremonies distributed about 250,000 tickets for Trump’s inauguration on Friday, 1,600 on platforms and 1,000 on bleachers, which it said was on par for previous ceremonies. But most people attending the festival watch from elsewhere.

Photo Credit: AP/Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies
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<![CDATA[RAW: Limo Engulfed in Flames Near Inauguration Parade]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 16:52:16 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/WRC_0000000017480688_1200x675_859360836000.jpg A limousine at 13th and K streets NW became engulfed in flames as demonstrators protested in the area near President Trump's inauguration parade.]]> <![CDATA[Protests Worldwide as Trump Takes Office]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 17:14:49 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Berlin_Germany.jpg Protests broke out in countries around the world as Donald Trump became the 45th President of the United States on Jan. 20, 2017.

Photo Credit: John MacDougall/AFP/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Man Pleads Guilty in 2013 Robbery and Kidnapping]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 15:32:32 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/lennoxphoto1.png

Another man charged in a violent kidnapping in Meriden and jewelry store robbery in Fairfield in 2013 has pleaded guilty.

Timothy Forbes, 35, of Allentown, Pennsylvania pleaded guilty Thursday to his role in the crime.

Authorities said Kasam Hennix, William Davis, Christopher Gay and Jeffrey Houston, were wearing masks and gloves and two of them had handguns when they broke into an apartment on Gravel Street in Meriden around 9 p.m. on April 11, 2013, bound four victims with tape and covered their heads with pillowcases, towels and jackets.

Hennix, Davis, and Houston then forced two of the victims into one of the victim’s vehicles and drove to Lenox Jewelers in Fairfield, where the two victims worked, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Forbes then traveled to Fairfield in a separate vehicle, while Gay remained in the Meriden apartment to guard the two other victims, federal officials said.

While at the jewelry store, Hennix, Davis and Houston stole jewelry, watches and loose diamonds worth more than $3 million and fled in the victim’s car, leaving the two victims bound inside the store, federal officials said. 

Hennix, Davis and Houston then abandoned the victim’s vehicle and got into Forbes vehicle and one of them called Gay to say they carried out the robbery and should leave the apartment. Then they fled the state. 

In May 2013, all five defendants were arrested. 

Investigators said Forbes, Houston and Gay had traveled from Pennsylvania to Connecticut on several occasions in the weeks before the robbery to track the victims’ movements and Forbes and Gay placed a GPS on one of the victim’s vehicles. 

Forbes pleaded guilty to one count of kidnapping, one count of interference with commerce by robbery and one count of use of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence and is scheduled to be sentenced in Hartford on April 13. 

Hennix, of Easton, Pennsylvania; Davis, of Allentown, Pennsylvania; Houston, of Allentown, Pennsylvania; and Gay, of the Bronx, New York also pleaded guilty to federal charges.

Davis was sentenced to 176 months in prison on April 17.On Jan. 27, 2016, Gay was sentenced to 102 months in prison, and on Feb. 8, 2016, Hennix was sentenced to 171 months of imprisonment. Houston awaits sentencing. 

The men have been ordered to pay restitution of more than $3.1 million, and have forfeited gemstones, jewelry, watches, a vehicle and more than $127,000 in cash seized from them at the time of their arrests. 

U.S. officials said Forbes has been involved in at least three other similar jewelry store robberies, including one that occurred in York, Pennsylvania in July 2012

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[Guilford Police Arrest Suspects in ID Theft Along I-95 Corridor]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 15:02:45 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/guilford+police+generic.JPG

Guilford police arrested three people suspected in a credit card skimming and identity theft operation and said they are suspected of similar crimes along the Interstate 95 corridor. 

The investigation started Thursday as a report that stolen credit cards were used at a Guilford Wal-Mart. 

Police said Devin Lee Rhames, Maurice Pringle and Tyshaun Landells, all of Brooklyn, New York, used stolen cards or cards made with stolen material to buy gift cards and left the store. 

After being alerted about what happened, police started searching for the people involved and took Landells into custody, but said Rhames and Pringle fled. They were later taken into custody in a thick marsh and officers recovered evidence and said it includes stolen and manufactured credit cards, gift cards, a laptop computer connected to a credit card skimming device and several other electronics and media storage devices, according to police. 

The three suspects were arrested on several charges, including trafficking in personal identifying information, third-degree identity theft, receiving goods from illegal use of a credit card and additional charges. 

They were held on $25,000 bond.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com]]>
<![CDATA[WhiteHouse.gov Switches Hands, Gets Trump Refresh]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 20:45:54 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-632199332.jpg

Many of the pages on the White House's website were taken down Friday, shortly after Donald Trump's inauguration as president, including pages on LGBTQ rights, climate change and the Affordable Care Act.

However, those pages are still accessible online. Anything that was at WhiteHouse.gov under the Obama administration has been moved to ObamaWhiteHouse.gov. The plan to do so was announced earlier in the week.

Everything on the archived version of the Obama White House page is marked as "historical material" that's "frozen in time."

The new version of WhiteHouse.gov lists Trump and Mike Pence as president and vice president, and made no mention of LGBT or climate change Friday afternoon. A new page calling for an "America first energy plan," however, was live.

"For too long, we’ve been held back by burdensome regulations on our energy industry. President Trump is committed to eliminating harmful and unnecessary policies such as the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule," the new page reads

The Department of Labor's page on advancing LGBTQ rights in the work place appears to have been scrubbed from the department's website. The many pages that were once devoted to explaining and helping Americans sign up for the Affordable Care Act appear to have taken down. 

Meanwhile, the first online petition of Trump's presidency appeared on whitehouse.gov shortly after his inauguration. 

The petition calls for the White House to "Immediately release Donald Trump's full tax returns, with all information needed to verify emoluments clause compliance." 

It had received more than 2,000 signatures hours after the inauguration. 

NBC has reached out for comment to President Trump's team. 

Photo Credit: Jim Bourg/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[#MAGA: Twitter Reacts to Donald Trump's Inauguration]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 15:24:01 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-632201972.jpg

A mix of emotions streamed down Twitter timelines as President Donald J. Trump was sworn in Friday. 

“We are transferring power from Washington, D.C., and giving it back to you the people," Trump said in his inaugural address. 

"This American carnage ends right here and ends right now."

Trump was sworn in by U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts with his hand on two Bibles: his own and one used by Abraham Lincoln in 1861. He campaigned on the #MAGA promise or on making America great again. 

"January 20th 2017, will be remembered as the day the people became the rulers of this nation again," Trump tweeted following the inauguration ceremony.

Social reaction to the inaugural pomp and circumstance was swift.

White supremacist David Duke tweeted, "Hail Prez Trump!" as protesters formed along Washington streets, later clashing with police. 

See social media reaction to the inauguration here: 

Photo Credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Showers Friday Followed by a Powerful Nor'easter on Monday]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:59:21 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Custom+Map+1+Web.png

Connecticut is in for an active weather pattern over the next seven days. A mild weekend will be followed by a powerful Nor'easter that moves in on Monday.

Skies will remain mostly cloudy with scattered rain showers this evening. Temperatures tonight fall into the low to middle 30s inland and upper 30s at the shore. 

The mild January temperatures will continue over the next several days. We're forecasting high temperatures on Saturday near 50 degrees statewide. While these temperatures are well above normal it doesn't come close to the record high temperature of 61 set back in 1951. 

Conditions stay quiet for Sunday with temperatures in the middle to upper 40s statewide. 

A significant Nor'easter moves into the state on Monday. This storm will pack a punch with heavy rain, a wintry mix in the northwest hills, and a strong wind. Some of our computer models are estimating wind gusts in excess of 50 mph. 

[[411343805, C]]

Temperatures on Monday will struggle to make it out of the middle 30s inland. Therefor we continue to monitor the threat for snow and sleet in the northwest hills. Right now, it looks like enough warm air will be in place that it will be primarily heavy rain and sleet for northern Litchfield county. The rest of the state will be dealing with all rain. Of course we will continue to review the latest information and change our forecast accordingly. 

The remnants of the storm will continue right into Tuesday. Heavy rain showers with a strong southerly wind can be expected for most of the day. 

Conditions improve drastically on Wednesday with partly cloudy skies and temperatures once again flirting with 50 degrees. 

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<![CDATA[Inaugural Words: America, Country, People, Carnage]]> Fri, 20 Jan 2017 13:32:11 -0500 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/trump-inaug-speech-wordcloud.gif

America. Country. People. These were the most commonly used words by President Donald Trump in his inaugural address on Friday. 

Trump used either "America" or "American" 33 times in his speech, in which he spoke of the problems that have plagued the country in recent years, and promised to fix them. He said "country" 11 times and "people" 10 times. 

Those three words have been used in nearly every inaugural speech in the country's history, according to a database of the speeches compiled by the Washington Post. But Trump also had at least one unusual word choice: "Carnage." 

"But for too many of our citizens, a different reality exists: mothers and children trapped in poverty in our inner cities; rusted out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation; an education system flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of all knowledge; and the crime and the gangs and the drugs that have stolen too many lives and robbed our country of so much unrealized potential," he said.

"This American carnage stops right here and stops right now," Trump added.

According to the Post, this was the first time "carnage" was used in an inaugural address.