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    A suspect was taken into custody Wednesday afternoon after a domestic violence incident sparked a police search in Lebanon overnight.

    Thirty-year-old Patrick Heath, of Route 289/Beaumont Highway in Lebanon, was apprehended around 12:45 p.m. Wednesday, state police said. A Silver Alert was issued for Heath early Wednesday morning.

    Police first arrived at the home in Lebanon around 5:15 p.m. Tuesday after an argument between Heath and the victim turned physical and Heath allegedly pointed a shotgun at the victim's head.

    The victim managed to leave the home and called for help, authorities send.

    Police subsequently launched a search for Heath but were not able to find anyone Tuesday night. A state police helicopter and K-9 unit were called in to help with the search.

    Heath was found in the woods near 67 Pine Street in Columbia, several miles from his house, police said.

    A search of his home turned up two shotguns wrapped in a plastic bag and hidden under a pile of leaves, according to police.

    Heath was charged with third-degree strangulation, two counts of second-degree reckless endangerment and two counts of disorderly conduct.

    Police said weapons charges could be filed later depending on the results of the investigation.

    He's due in court at 9 a.m. April 3. Bond was set at $100,000.

     



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com and Connecticut State Police

    Patrick Heath, 30, was taken into custody Wednesday afternoon following a domestic violence incident that sparked an overnight police search in Lebanon.Patrick Heath, 30, was taken into custody Wednesday afternoon following a domestic violence incident that sparked an overnight police search in Lebanon.

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    One person has died in a two-car crash on Route 44/Mashamoquet Road in Pomfret, according to state police.

    Police said 49-year-old Theodore Bolduc, of Willington, was driving a delivery van for S&D Coffee eastbound on Route 44 near the intersection with Drown Road when his vehicle drifted across the center line, hit a tractor-trailer, then struck a utility pole.

    The driver of the tractor-trailer, Thomas D. Thompson, 25, of the Central Village section of Pomfret, was not injured, police said.

    Route 44 was closed between Route 97 and Drown Road in Pomfret following the crash.

    Anyone with information is urged to contact Connecticut State Police Troop D at 860-848-6500.



    Photo Credit: Shutterstock

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    President Barack Obama responded to Wednesday's shooting at Fort Hood in Texas with the following statement, given while in Chicago.

    "I just got off the phone with the vice chairman of the joint chiefs of staff to get the latest on the shooting at Fort Hood. Obviously, we're all following it closely. The situation is fluid right now, but my national security team in close contact not just with Defense Department but with the FBI. They are working with folks on ground to determine exactly what happened and ensure that everyone is secure. Want to assure all of us we going to get to bottom of what happened.

    Any shooting is troubling. Obviously this reopened the pain of what happened at Fort Hood five years ago. We know these families. We know the service to their country and the sacrifices that they make. Obviously our thoughts and prayers are with the entire community, and we are going to do everything we can to make the community of Fort Hood has what it needs to deal with a tough situation but also any potential aftermath.

    We're heartbroken that something like this might have happened again. I don't want to comment on facts until we know exactly what happened. But just for now I would hope that everyone across the country keeps the families of Fort Hood in our thoughts and our prayers.

    The folks there have sacrificed so much on behalf of our freedom. Many of the people there have been on multiple tours of Iraq and Afghanistan. They served with valor; they served with distinction. At their home base they need to feel safe. We don't yet know what happened tonight but obviously that sense of safety has been broken once again. We need to find out exactly what happened."



    Photo Credit: AP

    President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks about the shooting at Fort Hood, Wednesday, April 2, 2014, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks about the shooting at Fort Hood, Wednesday, April 2, 2014, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

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    A motorcycle driver is in serious condition following a crash in Middletown around 5 p.m. Wednesday.

    According to police, 56-year-old Sharon Wassell, of Haddam, was driving northbound on Saybrook Road in the area of Windy Hill Drive when she turned left in front of a motorcycle traveling southbound.

    Wassell was not hurt, but 52-year-old Bruce Hall, who was driving the motorcycle, was seriously injured and was taken to Hartford Hospital for treatment, police said.

    Anyone with information about the crash is asked to contact Middletown Police Officer Inglis at 860-638-4063. 


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    Photo Credit: Shutterstock

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    Take a good look inside teacher Karen Ripa’s class at Pond Hill Elementary School in Wallingford and you just might find the next Thomas Edison.

    "They have that spark, that curiosity, that asking the questions, that thinking outside the box,” Ripa said of her students.

    These young inventors are part of an enrichment program for gifted fourth and fifth graders. Twice a week, they come to this classroom to work on their creations, borne from a problem they want to solve.

    Caitlin Trutnau created a desk with reenforced rubber flaps that fold down and form a safe enclosure to protect kids from an intruder in the classroom.

    “We noticed that desks weren’t very safe as is, and we thought of a way that it can be safer,” she said.

    Julie Fredericksen invented a high-top sneaker that can be turned into a high heel with a simple screw-on piece.

    “Whenever I buy a high top, I always want a high heel, and so it gets my closet really messy and stuff," said Fredericksen. "So now, with the combination of both of them, it takes up less space.”

    Students compete with other students in town, as part of an Invention Convention, with winners taking their inventions to a state competition.

    But for their teacher, it’s less about the final product, and more about critical thinking, problem solving, and dealing with failure when the inventions don’t quite work out the first time.

    “We don’t teach our children to fail successfully, and I think it’s not just my children, it’s all children. We don’t teach them how to pick themselves up, brush themselves off, and start all over again,” said Ripa.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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  • 04/02/14--18:00: 4 Dead in Fort Hoot Shooting

  • Three victims and the gunman are dead following a shooting at the Fort Hood Army post Wednesday, NBC News is reporting. One other victim is in grave condition, while at least 11 others are injured, according to NBC News.

    A military official told NBC News that the deceased shooter, identified as 34-year-old enlisted Army soldier Ivan Lopez, appeared to be the only shooter despite an earlier report of two gunmen.

    NBC News reported that the shooter was in uniform, and that the shooting may have resulted from an argument with other soldiers in the motor pool.

    The Associated Press, citing an internal memo from the Justice Department, reported that the Fort Hood shooter died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

    The names of the victims have not yet been revealed.

    Scott & White Hospital in Temple confirms they have a command center in place and have received four patients from the post.

    In an update Wednesday night, Glen Couchman, chief medical officer for Scott and White Memorial Hospital, said patients are receiving treatment for wounds to their head and neck and range from "stable to quite critical." 

    Couchman said they planned to offer another update later in the evening.

    President Obama Gives Statement on Fort Hood Shooting

    From Chicago, President Barack Obama stood in front of a large black curtain Wednesday evening and, with an American flag to his right, addressed the shooting at Fort Hood.

    "We're following it closely. The situation is fluid right now ... I want to just assure all of us we are going to get to the bottom of exactly what happened," Obama said. "We're heartbroken something like this might have happened again."

    Active Shooter Reported at Fort Hood

    Fort Hood officials have confirmed that a shooting occurred at the post, though the post has not confirmed the number of people injured. Fort Hood's Directorate of Emergency Services said in a news release that it had an initial report that the shooter was dead, but that the report was also unconfirmed.

    Nearly three hours after the shooting, officials continued to search and clear buildings at the post before lifting the lockdown just after 7 p.m.

    Initial reports indicated that the shooting took place at the Medical Brigade Building at about 4:30 p.m. Local NBC affiliate KCEN-TV reported there were also reports of victims at the Battle Simulation Center.

    Just after 5 p.m. local time, the post tweeted that all personnel were being asked to shelter in place, close doors and stay away from windows.  Soon after, Central Texas College's campus was evacuated and all classes canceled.

    Officials with the Bell County Sheriff's Office and Texas Department of Public Safety were called in to help to secure the perimeter of the largest active duty armored post in the United States Armed Services.

    Army Psychiatrist Massacres 13 at Fort Hood

    In November 2009, 13 people were killed and more than 30 others injured when Maj. Nidal Hasan opened fire on dozens of people at the post. Hasan was paralyzed during an exchange of gunfire and, in late 2013, was sentenced to death.  He is currently awaiting execution.

    In February, officials at the Central Texas Army post said the site of the 2009 massacre, a processing center also known as Building 42003, had been razed.

    About Fort Hood

    Fort Hood covers a total of 340-square miles and supports multiple units, a corps headquarters and a robust mobilization mission. It is home to two full divisions, the 1st Cavalry Division and 4th Infantry Division (Mechanized) and 12 additional units. Around 50,000 soldiers work at Fort Hood and there are an additional 150,000 civilians who support the base.

    The post is about 60 miles north of the capital city of Austin, 50 miles south of Waco, 160 miles south of Dallas, and 150 miles north of San Antonio.

    As this story is developing, check back and refresh this page for the latest updates.



    Photo Credit: AP

    Krystina Cassidy and Dianna Simpson attempt to make contact with their husbands who are stationed inside Fort Hood, while standing outside of the Bernie Beck Gate, on Wednesday, April 2, 2014, in Fort Hood, Texas. One person was killed and 14 injured in a shooting Wednesday at Fort Hood, and officials at the base said the shooter is believed to be dead. (AP Photo/ Tamir Kalifa)Krystina Cassidy and Dianna Simpson attempt to make contact with their husbands who are stationed inside Fort Hood, while standing outside of the Bernie Beck Gate, on Wednesday, April 2, 2014, in Fort Hood, Texas. One person was killed and 14 injured in a shooting Wednesday at Fort Hood, and officials at the base said the shooter is believed to be dead. (AP Photo/ Tamir Kalifa)

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    Greg Kloehn wonders why it didn’t dawn on him sooner.

    The West Oakland artist had long been fascinated by the temporary shelters his homeless neighbors created for themselves out of materials they scavenged from the street.

    So fascinated, in fact, a couple of years ago, Greg decided to give one a try. “I wanted to build a home in a day, for no money.”

    One week (and $50) later, he had one: a tiny home on wheels, long enough to lie down in, not tall enough to stand in, roughly the size of a compact car.

    The first small home Greg built sat in his studio for months before he gave it to a homeless woman.

    And that was that.

    Greg had no plans for what to do with it once completed, so the home simply sat in his studio for months.

    Then, one rainy night, Charlene, a homeless woman in Greg’s neighborhood, knocked on his door.

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    “She asked if I had a tarp,” Greg recalls. “I told her, no, I didn’t.”

    As Greg walked back into his studio, though, he glanced at the home, “and I thought, What am I doing with this? So I ran back outside, and said, ‘Charlene, come back tomorrow and I’ll have a home for you.'”

    The next day Charlene did return. Greg wheeled the home out to the street, handed her a bottle of champagne and keys to the refrigerator door that was the home’s front entrance.

    Each morning Greg sifts through the piles of illegally dumped trash in his neighborhood looking for building materials.

    “As soon as I gave it away,” Greg says, “it felt so good. Why didn’t I think of this sooner?”

    While he may have been late to the idea, Greg is now making up for lost time. Each morning, with a cup of coffee in one hand and his van’s steering wheel in the other, Greg scours the streets around his home and studio looking for the piles of illegally dumped trash that show up every night.

    From the piles he takes anything that might help him build a home: pallets, 2x4s, refrigerator doors and shelving, and paint.

    A team of volunteers helps Greg mold those pieces into tiny, moveable structures.

    Greg, with the help of volunteers, has now built, and given away, more than a dozen small homes on wheels.

    Since his first home give-away, Greg has built more than a dozen small homes on wheels and gifted them to the area’s homeless.

    “Everyone’s really happy,” Greg says about the donations, “lots of hugs, lots of happiness. That’s the best part for me.”

    With the exception of some nails and screws, the homes are built entirely from materials that Greg has found on the streets.

    Greg does not claim that his homes are the answer to the problem of homelessness, they are simply a way for one man to do something nice for a person in need of a little help.

    “It’s funny,” Greg says, “they may be homeless, but they are my neighbors.”

    Greg recently delivered a home to a homeless neighbor, Kelly, who has been living on the streets for 19 years.

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  • 04/02/14--18:15: NYC Doormen Rally, March

  • Thousands of New York City doormen rallied and marched through Manhattan Wednesday amid negotiations over their next contract.

    The workers who hail cabs, walk dogs, sign for packages and help New Yorkers in many other ways say they could go on strike by the end of the month.

    The Realty Advisory Board, which bargains with the union on behalf of the real estate industry, says the last contract, negotiated in 2010, covers more than 30,000 building service workers in more than 3,000 residential buildings in all five boroughs.

    The contract includes doormen, porters, handymen and building superintendents.

    The union is battling for a raise while also maintaining their current health and pension benefits.

    The contract expires April 20.

    The Realty Advisory Board tweeted Wednesday that negotiations "are going extremely well on both sides."

     


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    A 73-year-old Miami man was arrested on attempted murder and arson charges after police say he tried to burn down his neighbor's trailer home containing two women and eight children because the women are lesbians.

    Braulio Valenzuela-Villanueva is also facing a hate crime charge over the blaze that was sparked early Saturday at the River Park Trailer Park at 2260 Northwest 27th Avenue, according to a Miami-Dade Police arrest report released Wednesday.

    Valenzuela-Villanueva was being held on $230,000 bond Wednesday, jail records showed. An attorney was not listed.

    According to the arrest report, Valenzuela-Villanueva had been involved in an ongoing feud with his neighbors that had resulted in several heated arguments.

    Tensions allegedly boiled over around 4:25 a.m. Saturday, when Valenzuela-Villanueva set fire to a mattress that was leaning against his neighbor's trailer, the report said.

    The fire consumed the mattress and began to burn the trailer, going undetected for several minutes. The trailer had no smoke detector or fire warning system.

    At one point, a neighbor noticed the fire and alerted the victims, who were able to escape. Valenzuela-Villanueva casually came out of his home and observed the fire, and had to be compelled to assist in bringing a garden hose to extinguish the fire by a neighbor, the report said.

    Firefighters responded, but the trailer sustained considerable damage, the report said.

    A neighbor's security system recorded Valenzuela-Villanueva set the fire, but when he was questioned, he didn't admit to setting it, the report said.

    "He stated that he despised the two adult victims for the simple fact that they were lesbians," the report said. "According to the defendant, every time he saw them kissing he felt a deep repugnance, and in his opinion they did not deserve to have children."

    Valenzuela-Villanueva faces 10 counts of attempted second-degree murder and one count of first-degree arson.



    Photo Credit: Miami-Dade Corrections

    Braulio Valenzuela-VillanuevaBraulio Valenzuela-Villanueva

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    Hartford police have arrested a registered sex offender accused of stalking a 16-year-old girl.

    According to police, 56-year-old Jose J. Gonzalez, of Collins Street in Hartford, reportedly approached the girl repeatedly while she was walking to school.

    The teen reported the incidents to police on March 14 and told officers Gonzalez tried to get her to enter his car and continued to confront her after she asked him to leave her alone, police said.

    Police said Gonzalez is a registered sex offender previously convicted of public indecency and risk of injury to a minor.

    He was arrested April 1 and charged with second-degree stalking and disorderly conduct in connection.

    Gonzalez is being held on a $75,000 bond.



    Photo Credit: Hartford Police Department

    Jose Gonzalez, 56, is accused of stalking a Hartford teen on her way to school. Police said Gonzalez is a registered sex offender.Jose Gonzalez, 56, is accused of stalking a Hartford teen on her way to school. Police said Gonzalez is a registered sex offender.

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    Police said the parent of a Darien High School student recently fell victim to a phone scam in which the caller said the student had been kidnapped after a crash involving gang members and demanded money.

    According to police, the parent paid $1,800. Police received reports of two other scam calls on Wednesday but said the targeted residents did not hand over any money.

    Police said the caller will claim that the victim’s child was involved in a crash involving gang members and is being held at gunpoint. The scammer demands money to pay for damage to the gang members’ car and instructs the victim to drive to an ATM while remaining on the line.

    The caller warns against contacting police and threatens to torture the child who has been allegedly kidnapped, police said. Ultimately, the victim is told to wire over money.

    Law enforcement believes the calls have been coming from outside the U.S. and that the wired money will never be recovered.

    Authorities warn against giving out personal or family information over the phone. Police encourage would-be victims to try to identify the location of the caller and ask him or her to describe the child in question.

    Residents who have been targeted by this kind of scam should write down the scammer’s phone number, keep from panicking and call police immediately.


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    Four people have been treated for smoke inhalation following a boat fire in Stamford Wednesday night, according to fire officials.

    Firefighters said a 45-foot power boat and a small sail boat caught fire at Avalon Harbor at 150 Southfield Avenue in Stamford.

    The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection responded to the scene to clean up approximately 400 gallons of fuel that spilled when the fire broke out, according to fire officials.

    No additional information was immediately available.



    Photo Credit: Jon Tenca

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    Parents in Manchester are rallying to save two schools after the district said they might shut down Robertson and Washington Elementary schools to save millions of dollars.

    “I’m fighting,” said parent Kristina Diaz. 

    Diaz said she wants Robertson Elementary to stay open. “My son doesn't want to go to another school he told me to come here and fight for his school,” Diaz explained.

    The Manchester School District could shut it down, along with Washington Elementary.  Dozens of parents, and even teachers showed up at the Board of Education meeting and told leaders to reconsider plans. “When you leave an empty school you leave an empty neighborhood,” another parent added.

    Superintendent Richard Kisiel showed parents plans in detail.  He explained time has taken a toll on Washington and Robertson Schools, and they needed a complete overhaul.  That was something that could run tens of millions of dollars and may not be cost effective. “There’s a whole range of issues…electrical, roof, handicap accessibility,” Kisiel said.

    The idea is to close the schools and use that money to fix up the other 6 elementary schools that are in better shape. That would make more more space and room for students from Robertson and Washington. 

    The possible project is 5 to 10 years down the road.  School leaders said a more advanced learning environment would help the kids.  “We want to make sure our designs and plans meet the teaching and learning of the future,” Kisiel explained.

    If the plan becomes a reality, some parents worry there will be overcrowding. “I’m angry I’m disturbed,” said Gladys Ortiz.  She said she would pull her kids out of the district. “I’m thinking about selling my house moving out of town,” Ortiz explained.

    The Board of Education plans to make a decision on the proposal in the next few weeks.
     



    Photo Credit: NBC CONNECTICUT

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  • 04/03/14--03:57: Small Tsunami Waves in SoCal

  • Small tsunami waves measuring just a few inches arrived on the Southern California coast Wednesday hours after a magnitude-8.2 earthquake off the coast of Chile.

    Strong currents were expected in Southern California after tide gauges in Santa Monica showed  levels above predicted readings early Wednesday morning, according to the NWS. The elevated waves arrived just before 5 a.m. in Santa Monica and about 20 minutes later to the north in San Luis Obispo County.

    Wave heights measured only a few inches and just above the predicted level, but the NWS reported "noticeable currents" in Ventura and Santa Barbara harbors. Tsunami waves lose energy as they travel from the quake epicenter, but can still impact currents thousands of miles away, sometimes hours after the intial waves arrive.

    The small surges generated by the sudden displacement in the sea floor will likely continue Wednesday in and out of harbors and marinas. The NWS adviced anyone going in the water Wednesday to be aware of potentially strong and unusual ocean currents.

    The magnitude-8.2 quake off the Chilean coast was linked to at least six deaths. Energy generated by the quake triggered tsunami warnings for a large area of the Pacific coast of Central and South America, where 6-foot-high tsunami waves  were reported.

    The quake was about 60 miles northwest of Iquique, Chile at a shallow 12.5 miles deep. About 40 aftershocks have been reported in the region.

    A tsunami advisory was issued for Hawaii, about 6,500 miles away from the epicenter. The advisory, canceled late Wednesday morning, was issued to alert beach visitors, surfers and swimmers of strong ocean currents.

    No tsunami warnings or advisories were issued for the United States West Coast, unlike in 2011 when advisories were issued for the California coast after the magnitude-8.9 earthquake that devastated Japan.

    Damage related to the 2011 tsunami occurred in Santa Cruz and Crescent City. In Southern California, the tsunami generated small surges in Southern California, prompting beach closures.



    Photo Credit: NWS

    This National Weather Service animation image shows the tsunami wave generated by the April 1, 2014 earthquake off Chile.This National Weather Service animation image shows the tsunami wave generated by the April 1, 2014 earthquake off Chile.

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    A deadly mass shooting shook Fort Hood in Texas on Wednesday, leaving three victims and a lone gunman dead, less than five years after 13 people were massacred in another shooting there.

    Photo Credit: National Guard in Puerto Rico

    The gunman in the mass shooting was identified as 34-year-old Spc. Ivan A. Lopez, a veteran of the Iraq War. Three people died and 16 others were wounded Wednesday before Lopez turned the gun on himself and committed suicide, officials said.The gunman in the mass shooting was identified as 34-year-old Spc. Ivan A. Lopez, a veteran of the Iraq War. Three people died and 16 others were wounded Wednesday before Lopez turned the gun on himself and committed suicide, officials said.

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    Interstate 384 westbound in Manchester has reopened. It was closed near exit 3 because of several crashes.

    No additional information was immediately available. 
     


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    A mother who was picking up her 4-year-old son from soccer practice on the Fort Hood post when Wednesday’s frightening shooting occurred said the "only thing I could tell him was somebody’s not playing nice."

    Charlotte Spencer said her son had just climbed in the car when a woman came over a loudspeaker telling everyone to shelter in place immediately.

    NBC News reported an active shooter at Fort Hood at about 4 p.m., and the sirens sounded soon after. 

    “The siren came over and she was like, ‘This is an emergency. Get in your homes, lock your doors, lock your windows, turn off your AC units and turn off your heaters if you have them running. Just stay in place. This is an active emergency,’” Spencer described.

    Three people were killed, and the shooter, who has been identified as 34-year-old Ivan Lopez, is dead, according to NBC News. Officials said as 16 others were injured.

    “It was very scary because my initial thought was OK, they don’t know where the shooter is," Spender said. "So it was like, OK, I have to protect my kid, so what do I do? So, we just got in the car, rolled up the windows and we just stayed in the car. We tried to drive off base, but it was already closed.”

    NBC 5 spoke to Spencer on the phone as she was still sitting in her car taking shelter.

    “All we see is police officers driving by us up and down the road non-stop, telling us to stay in our cars," Spencer said. "There are helicopters. I’ve seen a few med-evacs go by and we really don’t know anything yet.”

    Spencer said she tried to delicately explain the situation to her son.

    “And the only thing I could tell him was somebody’s not playing nice, so we have to wait for them to play nice,” Spencer said.

    “You know, that’s the best way I can describe it because I can’t tell him, ‘Hey, somebody’s shooting at another person,’ because they’re not going to understand that,” she said.

    Spencer lived in Killeen during the 2009 Fort Hood massacre and said Wednesday’s events are all too familiar.

    “It’s very scary having to live something like that again," Spencer said. "Because not only do we have this, we had it 2009 and then I also have a husband who was killed overseas. So it’s very emotional and it’s just hard to deal with. Because it’s like okay, you’re at a point now where is this going to be the norm here? How do I cope with this? How do I deal with this? How do I explain this to my children? It’s very hard to deal with!”

    Spencer was able to leave the post at about 9 p.m. after spending more than four hours locked in her car.


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    State police are investigating the untimely death of a 2-year-old boy in Putnam and arrested the child's father and his girlfriend.

    According to court documents and a friend of the couple charged, Renee Peterson, left the boy and his 1-year-old brother alone, locked in a bedroom with food, while she went to a methadone clinic in Willimantic. As she was gone, the baby choked.

    Danielle Boncek, a friend who went with Peterson to the clinic, called her a good mom who made a mistake.

    "Really what happened was, she left the boys home alone. She gave them cereal so they wouldn't be hungry and the baby choked on cereal," Danielle Boncek, a friend, said. "She came home, tried to sweep it out of his mouth, but it was just too late."

    At 11:03 a.m. on March 26, Peterson called 911 and reported than the 2-½-year-old boy was unresponsive and not breathing, according to state police.

    The 911 dispatcher gave her instructions on how to perform CPR and EMS had responded to the home at 129 Mechanic Street, then transported the little boy to Day Kimball Hospital.

    He was pronounced dead soon after he arrived at the hospital and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner was notified.

    An investigator responded and the Windham County State’s Attorney requested that the State Police Eastern District Major Crime Squad take over the case.

    On Wednesday, detectives obtained arrest warrants for Peterson, 32, and the child's father, David Mahan, 30, both of 129 Mechanics Street in Putnam.

    Mahan recently returned to work and the couple hadn't made arrangements for childcare. 

    According to court documents, Peterson had left the boys locked in their rooms at home several times.

    Peterson was arrested without incident and Mahan was arrested in Douglas, Mass. as a fugitive from justice from Connecticut.

    According to Boncek, Peterson and Mahan have been dating about six months and she talked about the two little boys as if they were her stepchildren.

    "I wouldn't have a problem leaving my kids with her," Boncek said. "She made a mistake and she knows that. And, Unfortunately it's not the kind of mistake that you can just start over."

    Peterson also has two children, ages 4 and 6, who live with the couple.

    "Since the incident, she's lost her own children," Boncek said. 

    Peterson was charged with two counts of risk of injury, two counts of reckless endangerment and two counts of cruelty to persons.

    State police said Mahan will be charged with the same when he is brought back to Connecticut.  

    Peterson has no prior criminal record. She is being held on $125,000 bond.

    Police have not released the name of the child.


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  • 04/03/14--11:45: TSA Worker Saves Woman

  • A Transportation Security Administration employee is being hailed as a hero for putting his life on the line to save a woman laying on Chicago Transit Authority train tracks Wednesday.

    But to hear Eddie Palacios tell it, he did nothing out of the ordinary.

    "I told one co-worker, maybe another one that was there but I really didn't tell anybody because it wasn't a big deal. I got up and went on the train and went to work," Palacios said Thursday morning.

    DNAInfo.com/chicago radio reporter Jon Hansen was on his way to work Wednesday when he saw the woman fall from the Blue Line platform at the Chicago Avenue station just as a train was approaching.

    "Everyone just kind of let out a gasp. You could hear it audibly in Chicago station. And everyone starts waving their hands and screaming, 'No,'" Hansen said.

    That's when Palacios, wearing a bright orange University of Illinois sweatshirt, jumped onto the track to get the attention of the train operator. The train stopped 20 feet in front of the woman.

    "When the man jumps down and starts waving, you just freeze in a way, it's so compelling to watch, it's almost as if you can't look away," Hansen said.

    Hansen introduced himself to the man -- who initially said his name was Edgar -- and identified himself as a reporter.

    "It almost seemed to him like it was his duty, and he didn't think anything of it. And he wasn't looking for praise, he immediately got on the train when it got to the station and left like nothing. It was really quite an act of heroism," Hansen said.

    NBC Chicago later tracked "Edgar" down and learned it was really Eddie Palacios.

    "It was nothing really," Palacios said. "At the TSA they teach us sensitivity. They teach us how to respond to certain situations."

    He said he later caught some flak from his son, who learned of the incident from Hansen's video.

    "My son, he was very upset," Palacios recalled. "He called me [and said] 'What's wrong with you? What are you thinking?' ... 'You jumped on the track!' ... So I can understand why he was kind of, a little upset."

    Another witness said she tried to pull the woman off of the tracks as the train was coming, but was unsuccessful. 



    Photo Credit: DNAinfo

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    The history of gun attacks at military facilities in the United States in many ways reflects those in society at large: they run the gamut from domestic attacks and drunken fights to politically motivated massacres, including the 2009 killing of 13 at Fort Hood, Texas. But unlike the rest of society, the people who live and work on these posts often suffer from stresses caused by the trauma of war and serving in the armed forces. They often end in suicide.

    Violence hit Fort Hood again Wednesday, when an Iraq War veteran opened fire on the base, killing three and injuring 16 others before committing suicide. 

    Here is a brief recent history of shootings on the grounds of military installations prior to Wednesday's shooting. 

    March 2014: A sailor was killed while trying to stop a gunman attempting to board a ship in Norfolk, Va. Authorities say Petty Officer 2nd Class Mark Mayo, 24, jumped between the civilian shooter and a another sailor, saving her life. The alleged gunman, Jeffrey Savage, was killed by Navy security forces.

    September 2013: Twelve people died and four were injured after a government contractor opened fire inside the Navy Yard complex in Washington, D.C., committing one of the worst attacks at a U.S. military installation since the November 2009 killing of 13 at Fort Hood. Gunman Aaron Alexis, who had just recently begun an assignment at the site, was shot and killed by officers. Authorities later said that Alexis, who appeared to target his victims at random, "held a delusional belief that he was being controlled or influenced by extremely low frequency, or ELF, electromagnetic waves.”

    June 2013: An Army captain at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas was allegedly shot and wounded by her common-law husband, Alvin Roundtree at the Army Medical Department Center and School, where she was an instructor. Roundtree is a retired soldier.

    April 2013: Lloyd Gibert, a civilian employer at a Fort Knox, Ky. parking lot, was shot to death outside the post's Army Human Resources Command building. A Fort Knox soldier, Marquinta E. Jacobs, was arrested in the killing.

    March 2013: Marine Sgt. Eusebrio Lopez, a tactics instructor, shot and killed two colleagues at Marine Corps Base Quantico’s Officer Candidates School in Quantico, Va. before shooting himself to death. The victims were Lance Corporal Sara Castromata, a warehouse clerk, and Corporal Jacob Wooley, a field radio operator.
     
    December 2012: Spc. Marshall D. Drake, a soldier at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Alaska, shot to death a fellow solder, Pfc. Grant Wise, after a night of heavy drinking. Wise was found dead in Drake's barracks on Christmas morning. Drake was sentenced for 12 years in a military prison.


     
    June 2012: Spc. Ricky Elder killed himself a day after allegedly shooting and killing his battalion commander, Lt. Col. Roy L. Tisdale, during a safety briefing near his unit's headquarters at Fort Bragg, N.C. News reports indicated that Elder faced legal troubles, and had said he'd been diagnosed with dementia.
     
    May 2012: A soldier was shot by a fellow service member after a traffic accident on the grounds of Fort Carson, Colo. The shooting happened after one of the soldiers allegedly lost control of the car he was driving and crashed into the other soldier's home. After a fight, the resident opened fire, hitting the driver twice and himself once.
     
    April 2012: A soldier at Fort Campbell, Ky., Spc. Rico Rawls Jr., allegedly shot and killed his wife, Jessica Rawls, at their home on the Army post, then led police on a highway chase into Georgia. Before his arrest, he shot himself and eventually died.
     
    July 2011: Army Pfc. Naser Abdo, 21, was arrested in Killeen, Texas, near Fort Hood, on warrants out of Fort Campbell, Ky., for being AWOL and possessing obscene material.  Abdo, who claimed to be a conscientious objector, later admitted to planning a "massive" attack at a restaurant near the Texas post.  After his arrest, the FBI said bomb-making materials were found in his motel room and said he was in possession of a large amount of ammunition, weapons and a bomb in a backpack. The day after his arrest, Abdo shouted "Nidal Hasan, Fort Hood 2009" as he was escorted out of a Texas courtroom. In 2012, Abdo was sentenced to life in prison. 
     
    May 2011: Sgt. Jason Seeds, a soldier at Fort Drum, N.Y., allegedly shot his wife during a dispute at their home on the Army post. She lived, and explained later that her husband had suffered from deteriorating mental health since returning home from war.
     
    October and November, 2010: Marine Corps reservist Yonathan Melaku committed a series of drive-by shootings at various military installations in northern Virginia, none of which resulted in anyone getting hurt. When law enforcement agents arrested him, they found bomb making material with him. Melaku was sentenced to 25 years in prison.
     
    November 2009: Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan carried out the largest mass murder at a military installation in American history, opening fire on dozens of unarmed soldiers at a medical deployment center at Fort Hood, Texas. Thirteen were killed and another 32 were wounded. Hasan was sentenced to death.
     
    July 2009: Army Sgt. Ryan Schlack was shot while trying to break up a fight at Fort Hood, Texas. A fellow soldier, Spc. Armano Baca, is serving 20 years in prison for the murder.
     
    June 2009: Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad, a self-described Islamic radical, opened fire on a military recruiting center in Little Rock, Ark., killing one Army private, William Long, and wounding another, Quinton Ezeagwula. Muhammad was sentenced to life in prison.
     
    September 2008: A soldier at Ft. Hood, Texas, shot and killed his lieutenant then committed suicide on the balcony of his apartment.
     
    October 1995: Sgt. William J. Kreutzer Jr. went on a shooting spree at Fort Bragg, N.C., killing one officer and wounding 18 soldiers, members of the 82nd Airborne Division, as they participated in morning physical training exercises. He was sentenced to life in prison.
     
    March 1995: Ernest J. Cooper Jr., a civilian Navy worker, shot and wounded two co-workers at Naval Air Systems Command in Arlington, Va. then killed himself. One of the victims, Nils F. ``Fred'' Salvesen, was Cooper's supervisor and the first to be shot. The other, Navy Cmdr. Harry F. Molyneux, was sitting nearby when Cooper turned the gun on him.

    June 1994: Airman Dean Mellberg opened fire at the Fairchild Air Force Base hospital outside Spokane, Wash., killing four people and wounding 23 before a security officer killed him.

     


    Photo Credit: AP

    Members of the media wait outside of the Bernie Beck Gate, an entrance to the Fort Hood military base, for updates on a shooting that occurred inside on Wednesday, April 2, 2014, in Fort Hood, Texas. (AP Photo/Tamir Kalifa)Members of the media wait outside of the Bernie Beck Gate, an entrance to the Fort Hood military base, for updates on a shooting that occurred inside on Wednesday, April 2, 2014, in Fort Hood, Texas. (AP Photo/Tamir Kalifa)

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