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    A fire forced three families from their homes on Lenox Street in Hartford on Thursday evening.

    According to fire officials, flames broke out in the basement of the home just after 7 p.m. Thursday.

    No one was injured in the fire.

    Authorities are investigating to determine the cause.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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    A stalemate between Anthem and Hartford HealthCare left Blue Cross Blue Shield patients out-of-network at five Connecticut hospitals, but just one day after the missed contract renewal deadline, the hospital group announced it had reached a “multi-year agreement” with the state’s largest health insurer.

    As a result, Hartford HealthCare’s five hospitals will rejoin the Anthem network and patients will continue receiving uninterrupted coverage. The deal is retroactive to Oct. 1, so patients will not be affected by the impasse.

    Both Hartford HealthCare and Anthem announced the failed negotiations on Wednesday and warned Blue Cross patients of higher costs at the Hospital of Central Connecticut’s New Britain campus, MidState Medical Center, William W. Backus Hospital, Windham Hospital and Hartford Hospital’s Institute of Living and the Jefferson House.

    But now patients don’t need to worry. Instead of being denied coverage, they now have access to even more in-network providers than before.

    “Under the new agreement, Hartford HealthCare and Anthem will broaden their existing accountable care arrangement, currently covering over 40,000 Anthem members, to include specialists and hospitals, creating a tighter integration across their network that will promote more proactive and coordinated management of their patients across the care continuum,” Hartford HealthCare officials said in a statement released Thursday night.

    “In addition, Anthem and HHC will work jointly to expand the current model by implementing a chronic care program focused on the special needs of individuals with complex conditions. The goal of the model will be to provide a comprehensive approach to improve health, quality of life and lower overall health care costs for this population,” the statement continues.

    Hartford HealthCare and Anthem are also considering ways to integrate behavioral health needs into primary care coverage.

    The presidents of both companies said they are “pleased” by the agreement and pledge to continue providing high-quality care to thousands of patients around the state.

    “Anthem would like to thank state, federal and municipal government officials, for encouraging the parties to stay at the table and continue negotiations. We also acknowledge our largest customer, the State of Connecticut, for strongly supporting the continued evolution of Anthem’s current value-based arrangement with HHC,” said Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield president Jill R. Hummel. “This ground breaking partnership will benefit our members through meaningful changes in how care is delivered in Connecticut.”

    Gov. Dannel Malloy, Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman and Comptroller Kevin Lembo released a joint statement following the announcement commending Anthem and Hartford HealthCare for working together.

    “The issue of providing good and decent healthcare is too important to let profit margins get in the way, and by working to reach an agreement, both Anthem and Hartford Healthcare have made it clear that wouldn’t allow that to happen,” Malloy said in the statement.


    This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.

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    The 26-year-old Massachusetts man accused of raping a child, then assaulting a family member and kidnapping a woman before stopping in Connecticut has been added to the Massachusetts State Police Most Wanted List.

    Gregory Lewis, of Southbridge, Massachusetts, is wanted on multiple felony counts. He’s considered armed and dangerous, and police say he has made both homicidal and suicidal threats.

    According to police, Lewis cut off his GPS monitoring bracelet and fled his home Sept. 15. He was seen in Kentucky and stopped at a business in Vernon, Connecticut, prior to returning home briefly on Sept. 25, where he assaulted a family member and stole a 9mm handgun, ammunition and money.

    Along the way, he kidnapped, assaulted and robbed a woman in North Carolina and is wanted on charges there too, police said.

    Lewis stands 6 feet 2 inches tall and weighs 270 pounds. He has brown eyes and brown hair and may be carrying a gun, baton and a set of handcuffs.

    He’s believed to be driving a blue 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee with Massachusetts license plates 85GF63, but police said he may have covered or swapped out the plates to avoid recognition.

    Authorities from North Carolina and Massachusetts are working together to track him down. They expect him to continue committing crimes and stealing money to find his flight from police.

    Lewis is considered armed and dangerous and should not be approached. Anyone with information is urged to call 1-800-KAPTURE (1-800-527-8873).

     

    Copyright Associated Press / NBC Connecticut



    Photo Credit: Southbridge Police Department

    Gregory Lewis, 26, of Southbridge, Massachusetts, is accused of raping a child, assaulting a family member and kidnapping a woman in North Carolina.Gregory Lewis, 26, of Southbridge, Massachusetts, is accused of raping a child, assaulting a family member and kidnapping a woman in North Carolina.

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    The principal of a Granby middle school and a guidance counselor in Windsor are accused of using aliases to make independent horror films featuring violence and nudity.

    Dr. Mark Foley, the principal of Granby Memorial Middle School, and Aaron Vnuk, a counselor at Sage Park Middle School in Windsor, have been allegedly producing risque “slasher” films through their company Moongoyle Entertainment.

    “Fresh blood, hot babes, cool flicks” is the company’s motto.

    The company's business profile on the Secretary of the State's Web site lists Vnuk and Foley by name. IMDB, however, names them by their alleged pseudonyms "Mark Daniel" and "Aaron Thomas Howell."

    Local residents are questioning the educators' motives.

    “If he found doing those movies perfectly acceptable, why where they made under a pseudonym?” Granby resident Leonda Markee wondered.

    Granby Supt. Alan Addley said Foley has been placed on administrative leave while the school system investigates.

    “The administration and BOE are concerned about the judgment used to be engaged in such activities while serving as an educational leader. Accordingly, we are looking into this matter to obtain all the facts,” Addley said in a statement.

    He said initial reports indicate that Foley has not done anything illegal but that “all the facts need to be determined before any judgments are issued concerning this matter.”

    Vnuk's status at Sage Park Middle School was not immediately clear.

    "I do think there needs to be a discussion of what is appropriate and what isn't," said Markee.

    Neither Foley nor Vnuk returned a response for comment. Their current involvement with the film company is unclear.



    Photo Credit: Sage Mark Middle School/Granby Memorial Middle School
    This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.

    Aaron Vnuk (left), a guidance counselor in Windsor, and Mark Foley (right), the principal of a middle school in Granby, are accused of producing independent Aaron Vnuk (left), a guidance counselor in Windsor, and Mark Foley (right), the principal of a middle school in Granby, are accused of producing independent "slasher" films featuring violence and nudity.

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    Police are investigating an armed robbery at a convenience store in Norwich early this morning.

    Police said a man with a gun held up the clerk of the Xtra-Mart convenience store at 564 West Main Street at 1:10 a.m. on Friday.

    The man pulled a gun on the clerk, demanded all the money and left on a red and silver mountain bike toward Dunham Street, police said.

    The robber was thin, 5-feet-8 to 6-feet tall and was wearing black pants and a black hooded sweatshirt, with white drawstrings, under a black “puffy” vest, according to a news release from police.

    A white cloth or bandana with a gray design was covering most of his face and he wore black gloves with a unique white design covering the palm and finger areas, police said.

    No one was injured during the robbery and anyone with information about the case should call the Norwich Police Detective Division at (860) 892-2892. All calls will be kept confidential.



    Photo Credit: Norwich Police

    Police are looking for the man who held up a convenience store in Norwich this morning.Police are looking for the man who held up a convenience store in Norwich this morning.

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    An ex-counselor is now facing multiple charges for allegedly sexually exploiting a 6-week-old baby and exchanging sexually graphic photos and videos of the newborn with the baby’s foster father.

    According to the United States Attorney’s office, a federal grand jury indicted Stephen Schaffner, 34, of Greensboro, Maryland, on Wednesday for the sexual abuse of the baby boy, who was born prematurely.

    The document alleges Schaffner conspired with San Diego-based pediatric nurse Michael Lutts, 50, to sexually abuse the infant. Lutts allegedly sent photos of the abuse to Schaffner digitally, via cellphone and a messaging app.

    Lutts was the baby boy’s foster parent. He brought the child home on Aug. 4 and, according to the indictment, texted Schaffner that evening images of the infant.

    Over the next several hours, investigators say Schaffner allegedly exchanged numerous graphic and sexually explicit messages with Lutts about engaging in sexually explicit conduct with the baby.

    Lutts sent Schaffner videos with the infant, including images of an adult performing oral sex on the baby, according to the document.

    The 10-count indictment says Schaffner allegedly directed Lutts to sexually abuse the baby in order to produce the images and send them his way.

    In April 2014, authorities obtained a federal search warrant for an email address of a person who was distributing child pornography, which led to other suspects doing the same.

    On Aug. 26, officials obtained a search warrant for Lutts’ San Diego home and seized a cellphone containing images and videos of him allegedly sexually molesting the baby boy.

    Lutts is currently facing federal charges stemming from the abuse in San Diego. A grand jury indictment filed on Sept. 26 alleges Lutts may have also abused another child in the same manner – an 11-month-old girl.

    Meanwhile, Schaffner faces between 15 and 30 years in prison for his charges, plus a lifetime of supervised release. He appeared in U.S.District Court in Baltimore Wednesday.

    The indictment said Schaffner was a clinical professional counselor in Maryland but had his license suspended on June 14. He was also a licensed associate counselor in Arizona until his Arizona license expired in 2011.

    Anyone with information related to Schaffner’s case should contact the FBI at (410) 265-8080.
     



    Photo Credit: Office of U.S. Attorney

    Stephen Schaffner, 34 (L), and Michael Lutts (R), 50.Stephen Schaffner, 34 (L), and Michael Lutts (R), 50.

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    A seventh-grade teacher hit a 13-year-old boy over the head with a plastic milk crate during class, cutting open his skin and causing him to bleed, his family alleges. 

    Jaiquan Maples said his teacher at the Urban Assembly Bronx Academy of Letters in Mott Haven was asking another student a question on Sept. 18, and when the student didn't know the answer, Maples blurted it out without raising his hand as he was supposed to. 

    "She, with a mad face, went to the bookshelf where we hand in our homework and grabbed the crate and came furious with a mad face, walking really fast, and hit me in my head with it," he said. 

    Maples said his teacher gave him a tissue to clean the blood and then kept teaching. But the bleeding didn't stop, and he asked to use the bathroom. He said she agreed after 10 minutes and followed him there. 

    "She sat me down and talked to me and said that she was being playful with me and it was by accident, and that she didn't intend to hurt me," he said.

    Maples said he never went to see the nurse or to speak to the principal until his mother stepped in. 

    "No adult should play like that," said Jennifer Vasquez. "We teach our kids not to play like that with each other, so why would an adult play like that?" 

    Vasquez took her son to the emergency room. He did not need stitches, but doctors are monitoring him. 

    Now the honor-roll student who has won several awards for dance and pageants says he is nervous about going to class and wants to switch schools. His mother wants him removed from the classroom immediately. 

    "I sit there with my head down, worrying if she's going to hit me or something," he said. 

    The Department of Education said it learned about the case when Vasquez went to the school and reported it to the principal. The principal informed DOE authorities, and the "matter is under investigation," officials said. 

    The school has an enrollment of nearly 570 students in grades six through 12, according to the city's schools website. It offers a college-prep curriculum with a focus on writing. 

    "Our students achieve mastery of the word in the context of a rigorous, college-preparatory environment that celebrates vision, expression, tenacity, inquiry, integrity, and compassion," the school's website states. 

    Follow Ida Siegal on Twitter @idasiegal4NY


    Jaiquan MapleJaiquan Maple

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    The FBI is assisting Los Angeles police in a search for a California State University, Northridge student who disappeared last month, officials confirmed Thursday.

    Abdullah Alkadi was last seen on Sept. 17 at his home in the 9900 block of Reseda Boulevard, police said. He had been planning to sell his car to a man he met through Craigslist.

    Police could not immediately confirm whether detectives had contacted the buyer of Alkadi's car.

    Los Angeles and CSUN police have been searching for Alkadi since his disappearance, and requested assistance from the FBI, which is now helping with resources to locate him, officials confirmed in an email.

    Detective Frank Flores told the LA Daily News that the FBI expressed interest in the search for Alkadi because he is an international student, from Saudi Arabia.

    Alkadi's family has also asked the public’s help in spreading the word and reporting any information.

    "Please people, I am sure he is somewhere in the LA area," his brother Ahmed Alkadi said last month. "Give information around you on the street or bus, gas stations, wherever, give us a tip. It is a great help for us."

    A Twitter account with Alkadi's name lists him as an electrical engineering student at CSUN. The most recent tweet is dated Sept. 14.

    Alkadi is described as a Middle Eastern man with black hair and brown eyes, 5 foot 3 inches tall and about 110 pounds. He was last seen wearing a blue shirt, blue jeans or beige shorts, Los Angeles police said.

    Anyone with information should call LAPD's Missing Persons Unit at 213-996-1800. Anonymous tips can be reported to Crime Stoppers by calling 800-222-TIPS (8477) or by texting CRIMES (274637).



    Photo Credit: Los Angeles Police Department

    Abdullah Abdullatif Alkadi, 23, was reported missing Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2014, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. He is a full-time student at California State University, Northridge. The FBI have now become involved in the investigation.Abdullah Abdullatif Alkadi, 23, was reported missing Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2014, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. He is a full-time student at California State University, Northridge. The FBI have now become involved in the investigation.

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    A portrait of the first Ebola patient diagnosed in the United States, and of the web of contacts he may have made in the few days since he arrived in Dallas from West Africa, is emerging as health officials try to contain the deadly virus' spread.

    Here's what we know so far about the patient, how he got here, whom he may have exposed to Ebola, how the virus may have been spread and what could happen next.

    WHO IS THE EBOLA PATIENT?

    Thomas Eric Duncan, a Liberian man with family in the United States, boarded a Brussels-bound plane in his hometown of Monrovia en route to Dallas on Sept. 19, days after neighbors in Monrovia said he helped carry a woman dying of Ebola to the hospital. It is unclear whether he knew of her diagnosis before traveling.

    His brother in Phoenix, Arizona, told The Associated Press that Duncan had headed to the U.S. to be with his girlfriend and child. He said he did not believe Duncan knew he had Ebola before he left Liberia.

    HOW DID HE GET HERE?

    Duncan is believed to have flown to the U.S. via Brussels on Sept. 20. United Airlines believes he took two connecting United flights that day to get to Dallas — flying from Brussels to Washington Dulles on Flight 951 and then from Dulles to Dallas-Fort Worth on Flight 822 the same day.

    He boarded those flights, according to the Liberian government, after answering "no" at the airport to a health screening form's questions about whether he had cared for anybody with the virus or touched the body of anyone who died in an area where Ebola is prevalent.

    Liberia says it will prosecute him for lying on the forms, though it is unclear whether Duncan knew the woman he had helped had Ebola.

    WHAT HAS HE DONE SINCE HE GOT HERE?

    Duncan was taken to the emergency room at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital after 10 p.m. Sept. 25 — not Sept. 26, as officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had earlier said — with a low-grade fever and abdominal pain.

    Hospital officials said Duncan told a nurse that he had traveled from Liberia, but that information was not passed on to other workers there. Doctors, apparently not suspecting Ebola, diagnosed him with a low-risk infection and sent him home with antibiotics. The hospital later said flaws in its electronic health record-keeping, not human error, had caused doctors to miss the diagnosis.

    Duncan returned to the hospital by ambulance on Sunday, Sept. 28, and was isolated. NBC News reported that a neighbor said that Duncan was "throwing up all over the place" as he was bundled into an ambulance.

    A specimen sent to a state lab in Austin confirmed Tuesday, Sept. 30, that Duncan had contracted Ebola. Those test results were confirmed by the CDC in Atlanta.

    As of Friday, Duncan remained listed in serious but stable condition.

    WHO MAY HAVE BEEN EXPOSED?

    The four people living in the apartment where Duncan was staying when he fell ill — a woman, her 13-year-old son and her two nephews — were being moved to a new apartment Friday, after earlier being ordered to stay in their contaminated apartment in court-ordered quarantine under armed guard.

    Texas health officials, meanwhile, are focusing their efforts to contain the virus. They have narrowed their monitoring to a group of about 50 people who may have had some level of exposure to Duncan, after earlier saying they would reach out to as many as 100 who may have had direct contact with him.

    Among those are 12 to 18 people who came in direct contact with Duncan, including an ambulance crew and a group of school children. Three siblings who attend Wallace Elementary School in Richardson were sent home Thursday after authorities learned they may have come in contact with him, after five students at four different Dallas schools were sent home earlier in the week.

    None of those people is showing symptoms, but health officials have educated them about Ebola and told them to contact them if they fall ill, a health official told The Associated Press.

    Because Duncan did not fall ill for several days after he arrived in Dallas, the CDC says the other passengers on the flights he took are not at risk. Duncan showed no symptoms of Ebola when he traveled to the U.S., and he registered no fever when his temperature was checked at the Monrovia airport, CDC chief Dr. Tom Frieden told reporters on Thursday.

    HOW MIGHT EBOLA HAVE BEEN SPREAD?

    Duncan may have been infected with Ebola from helping to get his landlord's Ebola-stricken daughter to the hospital in a taxi. It is not yet known whether, or how, he may have spread the virus to anybody else while infected.

    Ebola can only be spread by infected people who show symptoms. The virus can be spread through the blood or other bodily fluids of an infected person, or an infected person's body. It can also be spread by objects contaminated with Ebola, like syringes or other medical equipment, and by infected animals or meat. Contaminated objects can be disinfected with bleach.

    If an exposed person does not develop symptoms within 21 days of exposure, the person will not become sick with Ebola, according to the CDC — though the virus has been found in semen for up to three months after exposure.

    WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

    The four people with whom Duncan was staying were being moved to a new, clean apartment on Friday, just after crews finished decontaminating their apartment.

    For days they had been ordered not to leave that apartment. On Friday, that changed, after the apartment was cleaned and the sheets and dirty towels Duncan had used while sick were removed.

    A Dallas County official apologized to the family for how long it took to remove those items from the apartment; officials said they had had trouble finding a contractor willing to clean up the apartment.


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    Police are investigating after a man pointed a gun at a gas station clerk in Watertown last night and fled with cash.

    Police responded to the Shell Gas Station at 535 Straits Turnpike at 10:20 p.m. after an armed robbery was reported.

    The man is in his late 20s or early 30s, with a short well-groomed beard, and pulled the gun from his waistband, demanded cash and fled the store, police said.

    He was wearing a sweatshirt with a “Timex” logo on it, a white baseball hat and jeans, police said.

    The robber was in a newer model dark four-door hatchback vehicle, possibly an Audi.

    If you have information on the robber, call the Watertown Police Department at 860-945-5200 or Crimestoppers at 860-945-9940.

    Calls will be kept confidential.
     



    Photo Credit: Watertown Police

    Police are searching for the man who robbed a gas station in Watertown,Police are searching for the man who robbed a gas station in Watertown,

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    Police are investigating a bank robbery in Cheshire just before 10 a.m today. 

    A man with a gun robbed the United Bank at 286 Maple Avenue in Cheshire a short time ago, according to police at the scene.

    The robber ran from the scene.

    The bank is closed and police are reviewing surveillance.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut and Cheshire Police

    Police are investigating a bank robbery in Cheshire.Police are investigating a bank robbery in Cheshire.

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    Police have arrested a 14-year-old New Haven boy suspected of setting fires in the Yale University Bookstore in New Haven on Monday.

    Police released surveillance footage showing someone walking into the bathroom, then walking out and leaving the building. Shortly thereafter, a fire was discovered in the bathroom.

    The boy's foster parents contacted police after seeing a news report with the video and recognizing him, according to police. 

    Police said the teen used a lighter to set several small fires in the bookstore around 1 p.m. Monday.

    The teen has been charged with third-degree arson, reckless endangerment in the first-degree and criminal mischief in the third degree.

    His name has not been released.


    Police have arrested a 14-year-old New Haven boy suspected of setting fires in the Yale University Bookstore in New Haven on Monday.Police have arrested a 14-year-old New Haven boy suspected of setting fires in the Yale University Bookstore in New Haven on Monday.

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    A patient is being evaluated for Ebola at Howard University Hospital in Washington, D.C., a hospital spokesperson confirmed Friday.

    That person has been admitted to the hospital in stable condition and is isolated. The medical team is working with the CDC and other authorities to monitor the patient's condition.

    "In an abundance of caution, we have activated the appropriate infection control protocols, including isolating the patient," said hospital spokesperson Kerry-Ann Hamilton in a statement. "Our medical team continues to evaluate and monitor progress in close collaboration with the CDC and the Department of Health."

    Hamilton did not share further details about the patient, citing privacy reasons, but said the hospital will provide updates as warranted.

    In a White House briefing Friday, Sylvia Burwell, the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, said of the Howard case,  "What you see are people taking precautions."

    The D.C. Department of Health released a statement shortly before 1 p.m. Friday, saying that the department has been working with the CDC and Howard University Hospital to monitor "any patients displaying symptoms associated with the Ebola virus."

    There are no confirmed cases of Ebola in D.C., said the statement.

    Meanwhile, Shady Grove Adventist Hospital in Rockville, Maryland, said a patient that had been tested for possible Ebola does not have the disease.

    And two Virginians are being tested for the disease after they met the travel criteria set by the CDC, according to NBC12 in Richmond -- though state health officials said they do not believe the patients have the disease.

    The patients were isolated from the general population, but were not ordered to be quarantined, NBC12 reported.

    U.S. officials said at the White House briefing Friday that the Ebola outbreak in West Africa was not just an international health crisis but a national security priority.

    The health systems of some West African countries are "inadequate" and not capable of stemming the outbreak that they face, said Dr. Anthony Fauci, who runs the infectious disease division of the National Institutes of Health. But, he said, the U.S. system is able to handle any cases of Ebola that emerge safely.

    Between July 27 and Oct. 1, there have been 100 consultations between the CDC, state and local health departments, and healthcare providers regarding persons suspected of Ebola, according to a CDC spokesperson. Only 15 people warranted testing by CDC or one of the labs certified to do Ebola testing, because they met the travel profile and their symptoms were consistent.

    Fourteen labs in the U.S. can test for Ebola, and most will still send a sample to the CDC for confirmation.

    So far, only one of those 15 cases tested by the CDC has tested positive for Ebola.

    Ebola is contagious only when infected people are showing symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People who have been exposed to Ebola will show signs of it within 21 days of exposure, the CDC said.

    "There is no risk to people who have been in contact with those who have been sick with Ebola and recovered, or people who have been exposed and have not yet shown symptoms," said Dr. Thomas Frieden of the CDC.

    On Tuesday, the CDC confirmed the first case of Ebola to be diagnosed in the United States. The patient, Thomas Eric Duncan, flew from his hometown of Monrovia, Liberia, and through Brussels, Belgium on Sept. 20 before entering the United States via Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia. He then traveled on to Dallas-Fort Worth.

    Duncan, a Liberian man with family in the United States, first went to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Sept. 25 but was sent home. He returned to the hospital via ambulance Sunday.

    On Friday, he was listed in serious but stable condition.

    Thursday, news broke that a freelance NBC cameraman covering the outbreak in Monrovia, Liberia had tested positive for Ebola after experiencing symptoms of the disease.

    The cameraman, Ashoka Mukpo, had been working with chief medical correspondent Dr. Nancy Snyderman. NBC News is flying Mukpo and the entire team back to the U.S. so Mukpo can be treated and the team can be quarantined for 21 days.

    Snyderman told MSNBC's Rachel Maddow that she and the rest of her crew have shown no signs of the disease and have taken precautions while covering the outbreak, including washing their hands with bleach.

    The crew are quarantining themselves as a precaution.


    This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.

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    Ashoka Mukpo, the freelance cameraman diagnosed with Ebola while working for NBC News in Liberia, was there because he cared so deeply about the country, his mother told NECN on Friday.

    "Ashoka feels tremendously connected to the Liberian people, and really, after coming home from his work there this summer, when he heard about the extent of the Ebola outbreak, he felt compelled to go back," his mother Diana Mukpo told NECN from her Providence home. "He wanted to document the impact that this is having socially and economically."

    Mukpo, 33, is being treated in the Liberian capital of Monrovia until he can be returned to the United States on Sunday. He will be treated at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, where he is expected to arrive early next week and will be treated by the same team that treated Dr. Rick Sacra.

    Chad Bilyeu, a friend and former classmate at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., told NECN about the men’s shared passion for hip-hip and about Mukpo’s desire to help people. They had recently kept in touch on social media.

    "Ashoka's like a brother," Bilyeu said. “I just always knew him as a very thoughtful, caring person. I saw that the studies, and his interest in Africa, was very altruistic."

    After Ashoka Mukpo began showing symptoms of Ebola, he quarantined himself and was tested at a Doctors Without Borders clinic in Monrovia. The U.S. State Department is to fly him to the United States on Sunday, Diana Mukpo said. He is in the early stages of the disease, she said.

    "There's no way to feel alright about it. It's incredibly stressful," she said. "We're getting him the best medical care we can, but it's only stress and anxiety for all of us."

    She and her husband, Dr. Mitchell Levy, have been speaking with their son throughout the day, she said.

    Ashoka Mukpo was hired on Tuesday as a second cameraman for NBC News Chief Medical Editor and Correspondent Dr. Nancy Snyderman in Liberia.

    The NBC team, which had shared a work space, vehicles and equipment, also are returning to the United States and will quarantine and monitor themselves, Snyderman said. But she said everyone had taken strict precautions against the illness and she thought the risk of the others becoming sick was extremely low.

    The cameraman is the second New Englander to be diagnosed with Ebola after Dr. Sacra, who is recovering at his home in Holden, Massachusetts. Sacra was also treated at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

    NECN will have more as this story develops.



    Photo Credit: NBC News/AP

    A medical worker sprays people being discharged from the Island Clinic Ebola treatment center in Monrovia, Liberia, Tuesday Sept. 30, 2014. Mukpo was working in Monrovia as a cameraman with NBC's Dr. Nancy Snyderman.A medical worker sprays people being discharged from the Island Clinic Ebola treatment center in Monrovia, Liberia, Tuesday Sept. 30, 2014. Mukpo was working in Monrovia as a cameraman with NBC's Dr. Nancy Snyderman.

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    Enfield police have fired an officer who was accused of using excessive force while making an arrest in April.

    Officer Matthew Worden was terminated Friday morning after "a thorough, comprehensive and exhaustive investigation" into his conduct, according to Enfield Police Chief Carl Sferrazza.

    Worden was placed on paid administrative leave while the police department conducted an internal investigation into the events of April 1, when Warden arrested Mark-Andrew Maher, of Windsor, after another officer caught Maher after hours at the River Street boat launch with three others.

    Maher was charged with assault on a police officer and interfering with an officer, but the criminal charges against him were later dropped.

    Days after he was arrested, Maher filed a police brutality complaint against “three or four” unnamed officers whom he claimed assaulted him while taking him into custody, according to the state's attorney.

    The incident was captured on police cruiser dashcam video.

    Connecticut State's Attorney Gail Hardy investigated the case using the cruiser video, Worden's incident report, two additional case reports April 1 and April 5, Maher's medical records and his police brutality complaint.

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

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

    Enfield police tried to bring criminal charges against Worden following the incident, but prosecutors declined to sign the arrest warrant application.

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

    Police released a statement on Friday saying Captain Golden, Captain Hall and Deputy Chief Collins reviewed the investigation report and its conclusions and agreed with the final decision. 

    "I reviewed their recommendation as well and agreed with the findings and made my recommendation to the Public Safety Director Christopher Bromson," Sferrazza said in a statement. "Director Bromson made the decision to discharge Officer Worden based on these recommendations of the entire command staff as well as the investigative report itself."


    This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.

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    Police are asking for help from the public to find a man suspected of shooting a woman in the leg last Saturday night.

    Alton Mac Youngs, 20, of Meriden, is suspected in a shooting at 289 Center Street on the night of Sept. 27.

    When police responded to a call of shots fired, they found an 18-year-old woman suffering from a gunshot wound to the leg.

    Police say she was shot at least once, and there may have been additional wounds to the leg. She was transported to an area hospital with non life-threatening injuries.

    The victim told police she knew her male attacker, but she did not know his full name.  Police are trying to identify the suspect.

    Police have since identified Youngs as the suspect and said he was last seen running toward Camp Street  that day and police do not know where he has been since, police said.

    Police believe he still has the gun that was used in the shooting and witnesses who have seen Youngs in the past year and a half told officers that he is always seen with a gun.

    Youngs is 5-feet-5, weighs 170 pounds and has a tattoo on his right hand, according to police.

    He should be considered armed and dangerous, according to police.



    Photo Credit: Meriden Police

    Alton Mac Youngs is wanted in connection with a shooting.Alton Mac Youngs is wanted in connection with a shooting.

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    The Ebola outbreak has infected 7,000 people in Africa and has killed over 3,500 since March, NBC News reported.

    Doctors, organizations and missionary groups have been working hard in West African countries like Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Gambia, Senegal and Mali. Outside support in these countries has been critical to help contain the Ebola virus, but crowded hospitals and lack of medical supplies has made caring for patients and preventing further infection difficult.

    Here is a list of top organizations where Americans can donate to help Ebola patients and aids in Africa.

    Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF or Doctors Without Borders)

    MSF has been responding to the outbreak of Ebola in West Africa since March and has 3,058 staff working to treat patients in Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Senegal. Donate here.

    Samaritan's Purse

    Samaritan's Purse has been responding to the outbreak in Liberia by creating and managing Community Care Centers in disease-ridden areas. The missionary group also trains caregivers, distributes kits and runs public education campaigns about prevention and control. Donate here.

    UNICEF, UN Foundtation, World Food Programme

    To prevent further spreading of the Ebola virus, UNICEF is using mobile messaging and communication campaigns to counter misinformation about how the virus is transmitted in Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Senegal and Sierra Leone. Donate here. The United Nations Foundation is providing technical assistance, funding, supplies and personnel in countries across West Africa. Donate here or text EBOLA to 27722 and give $10. The World Food Programme is working to deliver food to Ebola patients and family, along with assisting with logistics, helping other organizations to get aid workers and getting critical supplies. Donate here.

    Save the Children

    Save the Children trains teachers, health workers, nurses and local organizations in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea on prevention measures and distributes protective kids and essential medical equipment. Donate here.

    The American Red Cross

    The group has already collected $2.8 million from the Paul G Allen foundation. The Red Cross focuses on managing outbreaks and increasing public awareness. Donate here.

    International Medical Corps

    The group has been providing health support in Liberia since 1999. International Medical Corps treats patients and delivers humanitarian support to the West African region. Donate here.

    For more, check out the U.S. Agency for International Development's list of organizations working to fight Ebola.



    Photo Credit: AP
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    Yarkpawoto Paye, 84, is taken to an ambulance after showing signs of Ebola infection in the village of Freeman Reserve, about 30 miles north of Monrovia, Liberia, Tuesday Sept. 30, 2014.Yarkpawoto Paye, 84, is taken to an ambulance after showing signs of Ebola infection in the village of Freeman Reserve, about 30 miles north of Monrovia, Liberia, Tuesday Sept. 30, 2014.

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    Waterbury police have arrested the man accused of robbing a local Subway restaurant at gunpoint Thursday night and carrying out similar crimes in Waterbury and the surrounding area.

    Kevin Savage, 26, of Waterbury, was arrested Friday evening at his home on Highland Avenue in Waterbury. Earlier in the day, police tracked down the stolen car he was believed to be driving – a gray Audi A3 hatchback.

    According to police, Savage robbed the restaurant on New Haven Road on Thursday night and is wanted in connection with a number of larcenies in the area. Police believe he’s also responsible for similar crimes in Waterbury.

    Savage was considered armed and dangerous prior to his arrest. He's described as a black male who stands 6 feet 6 inches tall and weighs 248 pounds. Police said he has brown hair and brown eyes.

    Police said he has used force in a number of the crimes.



    Photo Credit: Naugatuck Police Department

    Police have identified the man who robbed a Naugatuck Subway restaurant on Thursday as 26-year-old Kevin Savage, of Waterbury.Police have identified the man who robbed a Naugatuck Subway restaurant on Thursday as 26-year-old Kevin Savage, of Waterbury.

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    Police have arrested the man accused of robbing four banks in Connecticut and New York state.

    Jamar J. Jarrett, 26, of Bridgeport, was arrested on a parole violation Wednesday morning.

    He’s suspected of robbing banks in Suffield, Trumbull, Bridgeport and Rye, New York. Authorities searched two homes on Mill Hill Avenue and Platt Street in Bridgeport and found evidence linking him to the robberies, according to police.

    Jarrett admitted to committing the four robberies and told investigators he had been planning to rob a fifth bank, police said.

    Police expect to file additional charges against him.



    Photo Credit: Bridgeport Police Department
    This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.

    Jamar J. Jarrett, 26, of Bridgeport, is accused of robbing four banks in Connecticut and New York and plotting to rob a fifth.Jamar J. Jarrett, 26, of Bridgeport, is accused of robbing four banks in Connecticut and New York and plotting to rob a fifth.

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    Guilford police are investigating after thieves stole money, gift cars and iPods from unlocked cars during a rash of break-ins overnight Thursday into Friday.

    Police said the suspects targeted unlocked cars in the area of Little Meadow Road, Lantern Hill Road and Nut Plains Road. They rifled through the vehicles and stole from multiple cars in each driveway, according to police.

    Residents are urged to keep their cars locked and their valuables out of sight. Police also recommend installing motion sensor lighting outside their homes to deter criminals.

    Anyone with information is urged to call Guilford police at 203-453-8061 or submit an anonymous tip at 203-453-8240.


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