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    Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have on thing in common when it comes to receiving automated phone messages.

    "They're annoying," said State Rep. Themis Klarides, the top Republican in the Connecticut House of Representatives.

    State Rep. William Tong, a Democrat from Stamford who chairs the Judiciary Committee, agrees.

    "They annoy me and I think we have to do something about it," said Tong.

    With support from both Democrats and Republicans, the Judiciary Committee is backing a bill that would create a statewide "do-not-call" list for political robocalls.

    Tong said his proposal has been brought in the past and hopes his comprehensive idea gains traction this year.

    "We’ve got a requirement that before you start a robocall you’ve got to identify who you are and what the purpose of the call is and say that it’s a political robocall in support of a particular candidate or a particular action or advocacy issue" in addition to the do-not-call list, Tong said.

    Klarides, who represents Derby, agrees with the proposal and said there need to be rules in place for the calls that seem to be never-ending during campaign season.

    "You know, robocalls are just soliciting for another reason. They’re not trying to sell you something. They’re trying to sell you someone. I think it’s a reasonable extension," she said.

    Tong conceded that the General Assembly can't outlaw all robocalls because they would likely be violating the First Amendment, but he did say there are ways lawmakers can act to try to limit them. He said candidates and advocacy groups do have the right to use phone calls to get their messages out.

    "We want to make sure that people get the opportunity to make their case and to make political speech but you know but there’s line at which there’s privacy issues and it burdens people in their homes," Tong said.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

    Connecticut may not be able to rely on a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow to boost revenue, but on St. Patrick's Day one idea is up for public debate before the state's Public Safety Committee in Hartford -- opening three smaller casinos in the state.Connecticut may not be able to rely on a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow to boost revenue, but on St. Patrick's Day one idea is up for public debate before the state's Public Safety Committee in Hartford -- opening three smaller casinos in the state.

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    Firefighters said they were sent to the wrong address Monday afternoon when flames tore through a home on Norfolk Street in Hartford, displacing five adults and three children and leaving two firefighters with minor injuries.

    Deputy Fire Chief David Serpliss said his crews were originally dispatched to 45 Milford Street around 12:30 p.m., but they learned after arriving that the fire was at 45 Norfolk Street.

    The addresses are almost half a mile apart, according to online maps. 

    "There was a delay at getting here," Serpliss said. 

    Firefighters arrived to find heavy smoke and flames on the second and third floors. They escalated the fire to a second alarm minutes after arriving on scene. Hartford fire officials said the flames spread into the attic.

    "Because of the delay in getting here, the fire had an extra possibly five minutes to get going," Serpliss explained.

    Power had to be shut off. The American Red Cross and the Special Services Unit are helping five adults and three children living in the burning home.

    Two firefighters reported minor injuries, according to the fire department.

    Eight people are displaced after a two-alarm fire tore through a home on Norfolk Street in Hartford on Monday afternoon, and firefighters said they were first sent to the wrong address.



    Photo Credit: Mimi Jackson

    Firefighters responded to a fire in Hartford on Monday afternoon.Firefighters responded to a fire in Hartford on Monday afternoon.

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    A 20-year-old man shot in the abdomen in Hartford has died, according to police.

    It's the city's sixth homicide of 2015 and the third in a week's time.

    Police said the victim, whose name has not been publicly released, was shot in an apartment at 17 Benton Street just after 6 p.m. Monday.

    He was alert and conscious at the scene and was taken to Hartford Hospital for treatment of what police originally thought to be non-life threatening injuries.

    But he took a turn for the worse and died at Hartford Hospital.

    "It's just tragic that it unfolded in this manner," said Hartford police spokesman Deputy Chief Brian Foley. "It's shocking to us, families, victims and the neighborhood."

    Police said they talked to the victim before he died but haven't revealed the information he disclosed.

    "Dying declarations carry a lot of weight in any investigation," said Foley.

    It's the third homicide in a week. A woman was shot and killed on Congress Street last Tuesday, and two days later, police found a man shot in the head on Blue Hills Avenue.

    "I've said it before and I'll say it again. One homicide is concerning and extremely upsetting. So when you group three together, obviously it's something we're really concerned with," said Foley.

    Hartford police Major Crimes detectives, Crime Scene investigators and Shooting Task Force members are investigating. Police have not yet identified any possible suspects.

    Check back for updates on this developing story.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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    A farm worker in Lebanon died after a pile of milled corn collapsed onto him late Monday afternoon, according to state police.

    Police said 54-year-old Donald Merchant was using farm equipment to move corn from a large mound at the Square A Farm at 1068 Trumbull Highway when part of the pile broke off and buried him just prior to 5 p.m. Monday.

    Other farm workers found Merchant unresponsive and dug him out. They called 911 and performed CPR until emergency responders arrived at the scene and brought him to Windham Hospital, according to police.

    Merchant, a resident of South Windham, was pronounced dead at the hospital at 5:20 p.m.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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    Supermarkets around the country are pulling Amy's Kitchen frozen food products from their shelves over concerns of possible listeria contamination.

    The nationwide recall affects nearly 74,000 cases of Amy's Kitchen products, according to the Food and Drug Administration, which said the company may have used contaminated organic spinach.

    The bacteria can cause listeriosis, a disease that’s rare but sometimes deadly. It most often affects people weakened immune systems, including babies and the elderly, according to the FDA.

    Amy's Kitchen has not reported any illnesses and is pulling the products from shelves in the U.S. and Canada "out of an abundance of caution," the FDA said.

    For more information, call Amy’s Kitchen at 707-781-7535.
     



    Photo Credit: AP

    Listeria monocytogenes is the infectious agent responsible for the food borne illness Listeriosis.  In the United States, an estimated 2,500 persons become seriously ill with listeriosis each year. Of these, 500 die.Listeria monocytogenes is the infectious agent responsible for the food borne illness Listeriosis. In the United States, an estimated 2,500 persons become seriously ill with listeriosis each year. Of these, 500 die.

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    A 21-year-old Vernon resident is facing charges after stabbing and critically injuring a relative at his condo complex late Monday afternoon, according to police.

    Police said Irving Mercado, a resident of the Mountainview Condominiums of Vernon Avenue, stabbed the victim in his condo around 1 p.m. Monday. Authorities said the two were family members but haven't elaborated on their relationship.

    The victim, a man who has not been publicly identified, was taken to Rockville Hospital, then airlifted to Hartford Hospital for treatment of life-threatening injuries. He is currently undergoing surgery and is listed in critical condition, according to police.

    Mercado suffered self-inflicted stab wounds and is being treated at Hartford Hospital for injuries that are not life threatening, police said.

    He was charged with first-degree assault and is being held on $500,000 bond. Police said Mercado is still in the hospital and is tentatively scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.

    Authorities are still investigating the circumstances that led up to the stabbing. Police said the expect to file more charges against Mercado.

    Vernon detective are working with the Tolland States Attorney and Connecticut State Police Eastern District Major Crimes division to investigate.

    Check back for updates on this developing story.


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    A car stuck on the train tracks in Danbury has prompted delays on the Danbury Branch of the Metro-North New Haven Line, according to Danbury police.

    MTA Police are heading to the scene to remove the car and figure out how it ended up on the tracks. Danbury police said everyone made it out of the car safely. No injuries have been reported.

    The Danbury Branch is delayed 10-15 minutes as a result, according to Metro-North.

    Police said they received word of the incident shortly after 7:30 p.m.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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    The chairman of the General Assembly's Finance Committee says "everything is on the table" in order to balance the state's budget, and that could include higher taxes for the wealthy.

    When asked directly about a possible tax on those who earn more than $1 million per year, State Rep. Jeff Berger, of Waterbury, said it's a possibility.

    "I’m not going to say that’s going to happen. There’s no guarantee that that will happen, but the discussion is that everything is on the table and that we’ll review it and see what becomes feasible," he explained.

    Sources said the notion of a tax on millionaires has been floated privately by Democrats and some Republicans in the Legislative Office Building.

    State Sen. Rob Kane, the ranking Republican on the Appropriations Committee, said tax hikes at the current time are not the answer.

    "I certainly think this administration and this Democrat-led majority has not met a tax it didn’t like," said Kane, who represents Watertown.

    Kane said the governor's proposed cuts to social services will eventually be restored, but said that doesn't mean Democrats have a long-term solution to bolstering programs like Medicaid.

    "We on our side of the aisle want to provide that safety net but do it in a better fashion, and the way to do that is by giving it to more private providers, community action agencies, faith-based organizations," said Kane. "That’s how you save money and still get better results and outcomes from the people you serve."

    Berger said the budget, as it always does, will look very different in June than the one that Gov. Dannel Malloy proposed in February. He stopped short of criticizing it and saying it would be scrapped, but did say changes are coming.

    "I think he presented a document and his constitutional charge has been achieved. It’s up to the legislature now to review that document and come up with an alternative," said Berger. "I will say that it is my strong belief that the document will have a different look on it once we’ve completed this process."

    Berger said he's had conversations specifically about allowing Keno in Connecticut and that lawmakers are considering the possibility of expanding gambling in the state.

    "We’re looking at Keno. If we’re going to allow gaming to move beyond reservations, then we cannot disregard our Connecticut Lottery, which is a thriving business," he said.

    On supporting social services, Berger said his committee will look to keep them whole.

    "I think the budget that has been presented to us has some flaws and certainly on a delivery of service to those people that need it the most," he said.


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    Police said Monday they've been investigating a link between the 1971 disappearance of a Middlebury College student and millionaire murder suspect Robert Durst.

    Investigators have been aware for several years of a link between 18-year-old Lynne Schulze and Durst, who operated the All Good Things health food store in the town, the Middlebury Police Department said in a statement.

    Schulze, a native of Simsbury, Connecticut, who entered Middlebury College as a freshman in September 1971, was last seen that December. 

    The Schulze case was reopened in 1992 and has continuously generated leads, police said.

    Middlebury police call it an ongoing criminal investigation and say they aren't releasing any other details. 

    Meanwhile, Vermont State Police were recently looking into unsolved homicide cases and are now looking into any links to Robert Durst. But so far, officers say they are not aware “of any information from the FBI with regard to unsolved crimes and Durst.”

    The 71-year-old Durst is a member of a wealthy New York real estate family that runs 1 World Trade Center. He's charged with killing a woman 15 years ago in Los Angeles. He's been ordered held on weapons charges in Louisiana, where a judge decided he's a flight risk and a danger to others after considering what FBI agents found in his hotel room — an elaborate disguise and other escape tools fit for a spy movie.

    Durst was arrested at a hotel in New Orleans, where he had registered under a fake name and was lying low while HBO aired the final chapters of his life story, a documentary series called "The Jinx."

    Authorities said FBI agents found Durst's passport and birth certificate, stacks of $100 bills, bags of marijuana, a gun, a map folded to show Louisiana and Cuba and a flesh-toned latex mask with salt-and-pepper hair.

    "This was not a mask for Halloween," Assistant District Attorney Mark Burton said.

    Durst's lawyers say his arrest was illegal. They say the timing of an agent's inventory proves the search was illegal.

    "That's an improper search," defense attorney Dick DeGuerin told the judge.

    Durst, who previously was acquitted of murder after a neighbor's dismembered body was found in a Texas bay in 2001, appeared in court Monday with his hands shackled to his sides in padded cuffs. He has been in a prison's mental health unit for nearly a week. Prison officials have called him a suicide risk.

    Authorities have said they believe Schulze, at the time of her disappearance, may have been a little depressed and self-conscious because of an acne condition but appeared to be well-adjusted. In 2005 they called her "a typical, wholesome, all-American kid off at college" who "wasn't into the counterculture scene of that time."

    On Dec. 10, 1971, Schulze was with some friends heading to a final exam when she told them she had to go back to her room to get a pencil, police said in 2005.

    "She didn't show up for the exam," Officer Vegar Boe said then. "Later, her friends went back to her room. All her stuff was there, but she was gone."


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    Tuesday will be the last day manager Janice Spears will take orders at American Steakhouse in West Haven.

    "Tomorrow is our last day. We're closing up," she told a customer on Monday.

    The owners are scaling back their restaurant business and that means closing the place that has been on Sawmill Road for the last 30 years. Spears is sad to see it go.

    "The staff here, many of them have been here for years, and even some of the newer people have become like family. We always have been. Customers that come every week, who you know are coming, you get to know them by name, and we're going to miss them," said Spears.

    Alex Mongillo has been working here for four years.

    "Getting nostalgic, definitely. Today is my last day working, so pulling into the parking lot this morning, it was a big, kind of just hit me. I've been here for so long. I used to come and eat here as a kid. It's not going to be here at all, it's really something different," said Mongillo.

    Mongillo already has another job lined up in Milford. Restaurant owner Isabel Tartaglia has been working to make sure that her other employees also have a place to go.

    "You know that they care. It's really nice to know," said Mongillo.

    Even former employees who are now customers say this restaurant will never be replaced. The chain's other locations in Meriden, Norwalk and Bridgeport will stay open.

    "I have an American Steakhouse out there, but it's nothing like this place. This is like home," said Michelle Robinson, of Bridgeport.

    Any gift cards for American Steakhouse will be honored at the other locations.

    Tartaglia said the space has already been leased to Aspen Dental. Negotiations are underway for another business to move in as well.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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    New Haven Toni Harp has launched a campaign website and filed the necessary paperwork to run for re-election later this year.

    The mayor, who was in Washington on Monday, hasn't formally announced her run, but supporters said she filed with the clerk's office in order to begin the fundraising process and work toward building campaign staff.

    The filing comes less than two years after Harp first won the seat. Her opponent in the 2013 race, Justin Elicker, said that while there are some things he may have done differently, he thinks she’s doing a good job in office. Elicker will not be running in the 2015 race.

    "She's really put her all into things. She's visible around the city. I see her at many meetings and many events around the city, so she clearly really cares about the job and wants to do her best to improve the city," said Elicker.

    That's the sentiment felt by many New Haven residents.

    "She is a very good person. She's been doing a lot for the community," said Jhamal Gallimore.

    Downtown businesses have been happy with the way snow removal was handled this winter. And it's not lost on residents that overall violent crime, and specifically shootings, has gone down since Harp has been in office.

    "It's calmed down a lot, so I think she's doing a very good job," said Angie Suggs.

    Some say, however, it's still too soon to judge how Harp has left her mark on the Elm City.

    "I think it takes time for their actions to actually have an effect on the community they're serving," said David Cooke.

    Harp is expected to make a formal announcement about her re-election campaign soon.


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    A newly unsealed arrest warrant details the horror police say a woman endured at the hands of convicted sex offender James Polk during a brutal attack in early March.

    The woman told police "she thought she was going to die," according to the warrant for Polk's arrest.

    Polk was charged with kidnapping and raping the woman after police caught him in the act at about 3 a.m. on March 5 at Power Service Concepts, the East Windsor business he manages.

    Police said the two met earlier that night at a club in town, Mardi Gras II, where the woman was a dancer.

    According to the warrant, Polk claimed he wanted to hang out with the victim and told her he had marijuana. He brought her to the business in his pickup truck, which was still warm when police arrived, according to the warrant.

    The woman told police that once inside, Polk repeatedly beat and raped her at knife-point, strangled her to the point where she couldn't breathe and even called one of his friends, urging him to join in. The friend declined, the warrant says.

    The woman managed to call 911 as Polk raped her, according to the warrant. A dispatcher heard "heavy breathing" and a man's voice before the line went dead. She told officers she "had a bad feeling" about the call.

    Before police arrived, Polk poured rubbing alcohol over the victim hoping to remove evidence, according to the warrant.

    Officers at the scene shattered a window and broke down a locked office door to rescue the victim, who allegedly told police, "He raped me and tried to kill me!"

    According to the warrant, Polk refused to surrender and told officers, "You are going to have to shoot me!" He then slit his own throat.

    East Windsor Police Det. Matthew Carl said at the time of Polk's arrest that the victim's injuries were "brutal" and described the case as one of the worst he's ever seen.

    It's not Polk's first run-in with the law.

    Records show he's a convicted sex offender in three states: Connecticut, New Hampshire and Florida.

    Polk is due in Hartford Superior Court on Tuesday and is being held on $1 million bond.


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    Nine-year-old Hunter Pageau shouldn't be able to pronounce the disease he's had since birth, yet it rolls off his tongue too easily.

    He calmly recited the name of his illness Monday: spinal muscular atrophy with respiratory distress, or SMARD for short.

    State Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano, State Rep. Dave Yaccarino, and Michael Freda, the first selectman in Hunter's hometown of North Haven, gathered with the boy and mother at the state capitol Monday for an occasion worth celebrating.

    The Connecticut Government Administrations and Elections Committee has voted to approve a bill that would establish a "SMARD Awareness Day" in the Nutmeg State.

    It's important, they say, because the disease usually proves deadly for children within their first year of life. It's also so rare – only about 80 people have it worldwide – that there are no support groups, not even online.

    The local recognition isn't the only good news recently for Hunter, who has spent his life constantly dependent on a ventilator, a wheelchair and life support.

    "There has been a 450 percent improvement for SMARD symptoms," Hunter rejoiced at the Capitol.

    And, best of all, just days ago, Italian researchers made an apparent breakthrough.

    "Prior to this news, there had been no clinical proven avenue or path to a cure," explained Hunter's mother, Sharon Pageau. "Human clinical trials will be offered in the near future, and we have every intention to be there to participate."

    Those trials might require a trip to Italy, but this brave young man is no stranger to trials. Hunter is confident that local awareness coupled with progress from afar means a cure could be near.

    "Always have hope, love and never give up," he said.

    You can donate online to help Hunter fund a trip to Italy when human trials get underway.


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    The man whose image was captured on surveillance footage during a bank robbery in Orange visited the bank branch as a customer hours before the heist, according to police.

    Police said the suspect, who was wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt at the time of the robbery, stopped by the Webster Bank at 247 Boston Post Road around 2:30 p.m. Monday. He was wearing a maroon vest and was accompanied by a woman.

    Just over two hours later, around 4:45 p.m., he returned alone and stole cash. Police said he may have gotten into a black Nissan Altima with front bumper damage, the same car he and his female accomplice were driving during their earlier visit.

    Police suspect the robber is about 25 years old and 5 feet 6 inches tall.

    The Connecticut Bankers Reward Association is offering a $2,000 reward in exchange for information leading to his arrest.

    Anyone with knowledge of the suspect or the incident is urged to call Orange Police Det. Brian Petrucelli at 203-891-2138.



    Photo Credit: Orange Police Department

    Surveillance video shows the man accused of ripping off a bank in Orange on Monday evening visited the bank as a customer just two hours prior.Surveillance video shows the man accused of ripping off a bank in Orange on Monday evening visited the bank as a customer just two hours prior.

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    A nine-year-old boy fell 40-feet down a well on a vacant property in Mineral Wells, Texas, on Saturday but was pulled to safety by his “hero” neighbors, his family said.

    Jaxson Tune suffered head injuries but was released from the hospital on Monday and is talking and walking around, according to family.

    “All I remember is waking up with one light above me and I was very cold and I didn’t know what was going on,” Tune said of the accident.

    It was just around 3 p.m. on Saturday, when Tune's aunt called 911, telling the dispatcher her nephew “fell into a well.”

    Shawnee Coomer said Tune and other neighborhood kids were playing in the grass of a home that no one lives in next door, near the Airport Mobile Home Park. While Tune was doing pull-ups on a bar over the well when he fell.

    "All he remembers is picking flowers and then waking up in the hospital," Coomer said. "He doesn't remember the accident, he doesn't remember falling through."

    His mother, Teresa Degarmo, was overwhelmed when she got the call about her son Saturday.
    “Hysterical, that’s about the only way to describe it. Nobody expects to hear leaving work that your son fell into a well,” she said.

    The family said their neighbors, Joshua Richard and Christopher Hicks, rushed to the well, pulling off the remaining pieces of tin and tile covering the well and then finding a long strap to lower Hicks down.

    "They helped out a lot, he probably wouldn't be here if it wasn't for them," Coomer said.

    Hicks said he thought the well was only a foot or two deep, but discovered it was deeper then he is tall.

    "When I got down there, I was up to here," Hicks said, referring to his chest.

    Hicks was able to brace himself in the well and pulled Tune onto his lap, while Richard and others used the strap to pull Tune out.

    "I'm just glad I was able to be around and he was around when we did (act), because there's no telling what would have happened to that little boy," Richard said.

    A Mineral Wells police officer also went into the well to help get Hicks out. The family and many other neighbors consider Hicks to be a hero.

    "I don't consider myself a hero," Hicks said. "I did what any good natured human would do. They're calling me a hero, an angel; I'm not. I'm just a normal human being.”

    Tune suffered a fractured scull and was taken to Palo Pinto General Hospital and then transferred to Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth. He had surgery to relieve the pressure from that injury, but it went so well he was released from the hospital just before 5 p.m. Monday, family said.

    “I feel great since I get to go home. I get to sleep in my own bed again,” Tune said outside the hospital Monday.

    Tune and his mother are both thanking everyone who saved the boy's life.

    “'Thank you'’, is all I can say. Very blessed, very blessed. Don’t know what we would have done if they wouldn’t have been there,” Degarmo said.

    NBC 5's Kevin Cokely and Holley Ford contributed to this story.



    Photo Credit: Mineral Wells Index/NBC 5 News

    Nine-year-old Jaxson Tune fell 40-feet down a well and was saved by a neighbor and police officer. He was discharged from the hospital Monday afternoon.Nine-year-old Jaxson Tune fell 40-feet down a well and was saved by a neighbor and police officer. He was discharged from the hospital Monday afternoon.

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  • 03/23/15--19:21: Fire Breaks Out in Vernon

  • Crews are responding to a fire at 65 High Street in Vernon, according to emergency dispatchers.

    It's not clear if anyone was inside the building when the flames broke out or if anyone was hurt.

    No additional information was immediately available.

    Check back for updates.



    Photo Credit: Monica Garske

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    Carlos Montoya's birth certificate shows he was born in Los Angeles in 1977. But when he tried to come back to the U.S. from Mexico on March 1, he says border agents deported him.

    "I showed them everything," he said, admitting he struggles with English. "And they took everything away from me."

    Montoya, who showed his birth certificate to NBC4, says he spent the last year in Mexico undergoing treatment for epilepsy but had been traveling back and forth to Mexico for treatment every six months before then.

    He says he always carried his birth certificate, social security card, and California ID card and had no problems. But he says when he scanned his fingerprints this time, something very different came up on the border patrol’s screen.

    Attorney Luis Carrillo who now represents Montoya, explained.

    "What pops up on the screen is a photo of another individual and they turn the screen and they show him," Carillo said. "And Carlos says, 'That’s an impostor, ‘yo soy Carlos Montoya,’ and they say, 'No, you’re the impostor.' And he says, 'No, I’m Carlos Montoya."

    Montoya's sister said her brother was born in Los Angeles in 1977 and has spent much of his life in Mexico, particularly recently as, she says, medication and treatment for epilepsy is cheaper there.

    The Chief Customs and Border Patrol Office and Public Affairs Liaison in San Diego, Angelica De Cima provided this statement to NBC4:

    “While we are not at liberty to discuss an individual’s processing due to the Privacy Act, we can provide general information about document requirements for U.S. citizens. As part of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI), U.S. citizens entering the United States at sea or land ports of entry have been required to present a WHTI-compliant document such as a valid passport, U.S. passport card, Trusted Traveler Program card or an Enhanced Driver’s License since June 2009. For more information about documents required to enter the U.S. please click on (this) link."

    Montoya couldn’t provide anything else, admitting he did not have a passport, so he said after a four-hour interrogation and two nights in a jail cell, he felt forced to do whatever the border agent told him.

    He claims he was coerced to come up with a fake name — he says he chose Jose Francisco Garcia-Garcia — and to sign the paperwork that would deport him back to Mexico. Among the questions he says he was forced to answer falsely — that he was born in Mexico and that he had never been to the United States.

    Carrillo is asking the U.S. Inspector General to investigate the case, claiming coercion, incompetence and even corruption. All the while, Montoya remains in Nayarit, Mexico, hoping to come back home to Compton, California.



    Photo Credit: Dennis Lahti

    Carlos Montoya's birth certificate shows he was born in Los Angeles in 1977. But when he tried to come back to the U.S. from Mexico on March 1, he says border agents deported him.Carlos Montoya's birth certificate shows he was born in Los Angeles in 1977. But when he tried to come back to the U.S. from Mexico on March 1, he says border agents deported him.

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    A 32-year-old woman was killed in a freak accident after a gravel truck tipped onto her car in Martinez, California, Monday afternoon, crushing her inside it, Martinez police and the California Highway Patrol said.

    The woman was identified as Lindsey Combs. Family members say Combs' 4-year-old daughter ran out of the house and saw the accident in their driveway. Combs' fiancé was in the house at the time.

    The accident happened at 820 Shell Ave. According to the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health, a member of the JJR Construction crew asked Combs to move her car. Preliminary reports indicate that as soon as Combs got into her car, a truck trailer full of gravel tipped over, crushing her vehicle.

    But truck driver Darryl Crockett told NBC Bay Area he had nothing to do with asking Combs to move the car. Crockett said he was about to drop a load of gravel and his trailer was very near the top of its lift. The last time he saw the car it was right next to the garage door, and when the truck tipped over, the car had moved 10 feet closer to the sidewalk putting it in harms way, he said.

    Investigators from Cal-OSHA's American Canyon Office are currently on scene. The construction company has been cited once for a minor infraction in the past five years, Cal-OSHA said.

    According to witness Travis Hagerthy, at least three men, including himself, tried to help the woman before firefighters arrived.

    "I started helping them dig, and I cut my foot a little bit on the broken glass," Hagerthy said. "I yelled at them to get a backoe up there."

    One of the men from the construction team used a backhoe to rip off the backdoor to the car.

    "As far as I know she was either pulling in or backing up and the truck was pulling in to dump the gravel," he said.

    Hagerthy said that after construction crew members tried to rip off the backdoor, he look inside the car and found the woman "smashed." "It's horrible," he said.

    According to Contra Costa County Fire officials, the trailer's "dump capacity" being used on a hill may have caused some stability issues.

    NBC Bay Area's Gonzo Rojas and Terry McSweeney contributed to this report.



    Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area
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    A person was killed when a gravel truck overturned onto a car inA person was killed when a gravel truck overturned onto a car in

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    With a unanimous decision by the board of selectmen, Madison has become the latest shoreline town to ban tobacco use in outdoor recreational areas, including beaches and parks.

     

    Madison First Selectman FIllmore McPherson said the board voted 5-0 Monday night in favor of the ordinance, which prohibits smoking at all outdoor recreational areas but allows for designated smoking spots.

    The town's Beach and Recreation Commission pitched the idea, and McPherson supported the proposal from its aegis.

    "It's enough of a problem that people have brought it to our attention," McPherson said earlier this month. "These days, the whiff of secondhand smoke, we're finding more and more evidence that it's not healthy, number one, and number two, it's not liked by other people."


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    Amy’s Kitchen, Inc. is voluntarily recalling approximately 73,897 cases of certain frozen food products due to a possible health risk.

    The recall is based on a recall notice from one of Amy’s organic spinach suppliers that Amy’s may have received organic spinach with the possible presence of Listeria monocytogenes, an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems, according the company's release.

    Amy’s Kitchen is not aware of any illness complaints to date related to the recalled products, the release said.

    The recalled products were distributed to stores nationwide in the United States and in Canada.

    For a complete list of the recalled products, CLICK HERE.

    Amy’s Kitchen has notified its distributors and retailers.

    Consumers who have any of the products are urged to dispose them or return them to the store where they were purchased for an exchange or full refund.

    Consumers may also call Amy’s at (707) 781-7535, Monday through Friday between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. CST.



    Photo Credit: fda.gov

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