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Burglar Smashes AT&T Door, Steals Cell Phones


Police are trying to identify the man who smashed the door of an AT&T store in Windsor and stole several cellular phones early Tuesday morning.

Police responded to the store at 1095 Kennedy Road at 2:37 a.m. on Tuesday and found the front door had been smashed open.

When they viewed the store’s security footage, they saw a man go through the smashed out door, grab cell phones and leave with them, according to police.

Officers searched the area with help from a police dog, but did not find anyone.

Windsor Police hope someone can help in identify the person in the security footage and call the Windsor Police at 860-688-5273, extension 526.

Photo Credit: Windsor Police

Hartford Man Charged in Toddler's Death Found Not Guilty


A Hartford man charged with manslaughter in connection with the death of his girlfriend's 13-month-old daughter has been found not guilty, according to Hartford Superior Court.

David Brown-Barrett, who was 19 at the time of his arrest in September 2013, had been charged with manslaughter and risk of injury to a minor. A jury found him not guilty Wednesday morning.

The child, Taiasia Allen, died under suspicious circumstances in Hartford on Sept. 12, 2013. Police said Brown-Barrett was with the toddler the day she died.

According to the warrant for his arrest, Brown-Barrett told police he had lost his patience with the child and punched her in the stomach, then left the room and came back to find her bleeding and foaming at the mouth.

Officials at Saint Francis Hospital, where Brown-Barrett took the child, said Taiasia had gone into cardiac arrest.

Brown-Barrett pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Special investigations detectives and officials from the Department of Child and Family Services were involved in the investigation.

U.S. Training Program in Syria Being Reviewed


 The U.S. military is conducting a broad review of the training program in Syria when a commander for operations in the Middle East acknowledged that there are only four or five fighters left from the first group of Syrian fighters. 

The first group of 54 Syrian fighters that had been trained by the U.S. was part of a $500 million program and there are only 100-120 fighters in three more classes currently being trained, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Christine Wormuth told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Wednesday. 

Earlier this year, Secretary Ashton Carter called these efforts "a critical and a complex part" of U.S. efforts to fight ISIS. 

President Obama has vowed there would be no U.S. "boots on the ground" from the beginning of U.S. operations against ISIS.

General Lloyd Austin, lead of the U.S. military's Central Command, said he would take "appropriate action" if an investigation finds officials altered intelligence reports on the Islamic State and other militant groups in Syria to exaggerate progress being made against terrorist groups. 

Photo Credit: AP

Rock Cats to Hold Blowout Sale


It truly is the end of an era for New Britain Rock Cats baseball as the team closes out its final season and you can buy memorabilia during the team’s season-ending blowout sale on Thursday and Friday.

Everything will be for sale, including televisions, signs, team merchandise and game-used items, including jerseys, bats and helmets, in the team story. A news release from the team says items will be 50-percent off. 

Next season, the team will move to Hartford and their new name will be the Hartford Yard Goats.

The New Britain Rock Cats played their last game in New Britain Stadium on Aug. 30 against the Boston Red Sox affiliated Portland Sea Dogs, winning the game with a spectacular walk-off home run in the 15th inning.

The hours for the Rock Cats blowout sale will be from noon to 8 p.m. on Thursday and Friday.

New Britain Stadium is located at 230 John Karbonic Way, New Britain, CT 06051

Baseball’s independent Atlantic League, which includes the Bridgeport Bluefish, has announced a tentative deal to bring a team to New Britain Stadium for the 2016 season. 

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Burglary Suspects May Be Linked to Similar Crimes


A man and woman have been charged in connection with a burglary in North Branford, and police said they may also be linked to similar burglaries in surrounding towns.

Robert Picagli, 51, and Stacy Bailey, 42, were arrested Wednesday and charged with burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary and engaging officers in pursuit.

Police said the pair committed a burglary in the area of 1700 Middletown Avenue around 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, then sped off.

Officers spotted their car on Forest Road, and Picagli, the driver, led them on a chase, according to police. He pulled into the rear lot at 550 Forest Road in an effort to get away, at which point police used a K-9 to help take him into custody.

Bailey, the passengers, was also arrested.

Officers at the scene found stolen items in the car, including several rounds of ammunition, a safe, hundreds of dollars in coins, a printer, jewelry and other valuables, according to police.

Police said the duo is being investigated in connection with similar robberies in surrounding towns.

It's not clear if either has an attorney.

Photo Credit: North Branford Police Department

Teen Jailed Over Mother's ISIS-Inspired Stabbing Death


Lisa Borch, a 16-year-old Danish teen, has been sentenced to prison for nine years for stabbing her mother to death after watching ISIS beheading videos, local media in Denmark reported.

Borch, then 15, killed her mother Tina Römer Holtegaard with the help of her 29-year-old Iraqi boyfriend, Bakhtiar Mohammed Abdullah, in October 2014, according to Danish website The Local.

The court was told that the couple had agreed to kill Holtegaard together the same night they were watching ISIS beheading videos. According to Broch's step-father, the teenager was infatuated with the terrorist group. 

Abdullah was sentenced to 13 years in prison for his role in the killing. 

Photo Credit: NBC News

Oklahoma Death-Row Inmate Wins Two-Week Reprieve


Oklahoma death-row inmate Richard Glossip won a two-week reprieve just hours before his scheduled execution on Wednesday.

Glossip, who was slated to die via lethal injection for the 1997 murder of a hotel owner, had filed a last-minute appeal arguing new evidence pointed to his innocence.

Although Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin denied the appeal, she was overruled by the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals, which issued an emergency stay of execution that runs out on Sept. 30. The judges wanted to give “fair consideration” to all of the materials Glossip’s defense submitted.

Nearly a quarter of a million people signed an online petition opposing the execution, and the Innocence Project released a letter of its own urging a stay. The letter was signed by University of Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer and Sen. Tom Coburn, a capital punishment supporter. 

Photo Credit: AP

Man Robs Bank, Drops Money Outside


A man robbed a bank in a busy section of Arlington, Virginia, Wednesday morning, dropping some of the money outside the bank as he left the scene. 

The man walked into the TD Bank in Clarendon and handed the teller a note that implied he had a weapon, Arlington County Police said.

Photos taken from the bank's security camera show the man grabbing money from the teller while holding a blue and black bag. In one picture, he appears to yawn. 

Police say the suspect walked out of the bank, dropping money onto the sidewalk. He then walked into an adjacent neighborhood.

"He was in a hurry, obviously, to leave the scene," Dustin Sternbeck of Arlington County Police said.

A witness who didn't know the bank had just been robbed told the he dropped something.

"You can have it," he told the witness.

If you recognize the man in the surveillance photos, you can call the Crime Solvers line at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).

Syrian President Assad Blames West for Refugee Crisis


As Europe faces border chaos with thousands of migrants and refugees fleeing Syria rush to the borders, Syria's President Bashar Assad said the West is "responsible" for the crisis.

"The West now is crying for the refugees with one eye and aiming at them with a machine gun with the second one," Assad said, repeating his accusation that the West supports Islamist militants against the regime in Syria's bloody, four year old civil war.

Over 428,000 Syrians applied for asylum in Europe between April 2011 and August 2015, the UNHCR said.

A former American ambassador to Syria maintains that regime brutality is the root cause of the refugee crisis, not Western policy. The U.S. is conducting airstrikes in Syria in an effort to defeat ISIS. 

Photo Credit: AP
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GM and Justice Department Settle Over Faulty Ignition Switches


The Justice Department has reached a settlement with General Motors over the issue of faulty ignition switches that led to over 100 deaths, according to officials familiar with the case. 

The settlement, which will include a fine of hundreds of millions of dollars, will be announced Thursday by the Department of Justice.

Last year, GM recalled 2.5 million cars with ignition switches that could shut off the engine which could disable airbags and cut off power steering and brakes. The agreement settles charges that the company did not obey federal laws that require prompt disclosure of safety problems. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Residents Cast Votes in Primary Election


Residents of 23 Connecticut cities and towns are casting ballots today for primary elections, including in a heated race in Hartford, where two mayoral candidates are in a political battle.

Hartford, which was plagued with voting problems during the general election in November 2014, had some glitches this morning, but officials from the Secretary of the State's office said they have been fixed.

Tabulators weren't working at the Hartford Public Library, United Methodist Church and Rawson School. So, anyone who filled out a ballot when they were broken handed it to a moderators to scan it through when the tabulators were fixed.

Av Harris, director of communications for the secretary of state's office, said these were common voting day issues. 

One of the major races in Hartford is the heated battle between Mayor Pedro Segarra and challenger Luke Bronin, who have spent every spare second campaigning.

The voted in the morning and went right back to campaigning.

In the months leading up to the election, they've debated everything from the budget to safety in the capital city and say the key to fixing Hartford's rising homicide rate is engaging young people.

"And we start them early and create interest and create a pipeline as we have done," Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra said.

Bronin said there needs to bee more officers on the street to do that.

"If you want the best ambassadors who are going to get those kids thinking about a potential career in public safety," Bronin said, the key "is making sure that there’s an officer that they know."

Segarra said that 52 percent of Hartford's Grand List is tax exempt, "so we can’t entirely foot the bill for this on our residents and our businesses."

Segarra will vote at the Hartford Seminary at 7 a.m.

In New Britain, one polling place opened 45 minutes late when a janitor overslept. 

But he's not the only one in a difficult race.

In New London, the incumbent is facing a tough fight to hold onto the mayoral seat.  

In Bridgeport, a former mayor who was jailed for corruption is trying to return to office.

Cape Air Plane Makes Emergency Landing at Bradley


A Bradley International Airport runway is closed after a Cape Air plane made an emergency landing because of an engine problem.

The 10-seat Cessna 402 aircraft was heading from Lebanon, New Hampshire to White Plains, New York when it experienced an engine problem and declared an in-flight emergency, according to Alisa Sisic, a spokesperson for Bradley Airport. 

The plane safely landed at Bradley. The runway should reopen soon, Sisic said.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

New London Mayoral Candidates Face Off in Primary


The two candidates for mayor of New London came face to face at one of the city's three polling places on primary day, each confident he would gain enough votes to win Wednesday's election.

They agreed that turnout by New London Democrats was a bit ahead of the city's pace in 2011, when Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio became the first mayor to actually run the modern city government.

Since then, Finizio has had a confrontational relationship with his now-challenger, City Council President Mike Passero.

"Our first attempt at elected mayor hasn't worked out so well in a lot of people's eyes, and I'm prepared to show the city of New London and state of Connecticut how it's done," Passero said.

Finizio invoked Ronald Reagan as he defended his record.

"In every category, we are better off than we were four years ago, and we need to continue that process and not go back to the policies of the past," he said.

He said 2,000 votes may be the total turnout, and it's just a matter of getting his voters to the polls.

"This primary could decide the future of the city for the next four years so if you haven't voted yet, get out and vote," said Finizio.

Passero was also confident he'd have enough support at the ballot box to take the primary.

"This is the democratic process. It's the second election for a mayor in the city of New London... in 100 years, and if you miss this opportunity, you have to wait another four years so let's get out here," he said.

Polls are open until 8 p.m.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

4 East Hartford Massage Parlors, Spas Shut Down


State officials issued stop-work orders at four massage parlors and spas in East Hartford after investigators discovered labor law violations on Wednesday, according to police.

The following locations were found in violation of workers compensation laws:

  • Golden Lily Spa at 205 Burnside Avenue
  • King Spa at 419 Main Street
  • Silver Lane Spa at 775 Silver Lane
  • Healthy Massage at 1096 Main Street

Police said Wednesday's compliance checks were part of an ongoing investigation into spas and massage parlors in town.

Blossom Spa on Ellington Road and Royal Spa on Main Street were shut down in March amid allegations of prostution. Investigators checked Royal Spa again Wednesday and found no violations, according to police.

Police also visited Lemon Leaf Spa on Church Street but said the business was closed Wednesday.

Hartford Mayoral Candidates Push for Votes


Both candidates vying for the title of Hartford mayor spent Primary Day visiting polling places throughout the capital city.

Luke Bronin, who served as legal adviser to Gov. Dannel Malloy and earned the backing of the Hartford Democratic Town Committee, is going up against incumbent Mayor Pedro Segarra.

"You keep doing what you’ve been doing for the past few months. You try to reach every single voter you can," Bronin said at a polling place in Hartford's Blue Hills neighborhood. "You make sure they know what’s at stake and make sure they get to the polls and cast their vote."

Segarra, meanwhile, visited the Rawson School just half a mile away.

"You continue to go out to the voting places. You continue to engage and talk to people. They ask questions. You answer questions and you encourage them to support you and vote for you and so far the feedback has been very good," he said.

Bronin will not be on the November ballot if he loses in the Democratic primary. He did not collect signatures to stage a run as a petitioning candidate.

"This is it. I’m a Democrat. I’m a proud Democrat. I’m going to respect the results of the Democratic primary and I plan and hope to win the Democratic primary," Bronin said.

Segarra, on the other hand, has the option to remain on the ballot or withdraw from the race if he loses Wednesday's primary.

Low turnout was expected for the Democratic primary election. Few voters, roughly 10 percent, generally show up for such elections, and because the polls are open on a Wednesday rather than a traditional Tuesday election day, turnout was even more of an unknown.

Secretary of the State Denise Merrill, who said she had to deal with several "minor" voting issues early in the morning, expected more voters to cast ballots than initially thought.

"I think there will be a pretty decent turnout today. We’ll see," she said.

Bronin is running a campaign based on change as he tries to unseat the incumbent Segarra, who is serving his first full term.

He said he's gotten a good feeling from voters all day.

"There’s been a great energy. I’ve been feeling for a while that voters in Hartford are ready for a change and I have a feeling of that at the polling places," he said.

Segarra said Wednesday that Bronin's TV ads have spread "misinformation" that "confused many voters."

The mayor said his records on education and downtown development speak for themselves. He hopes voters see it that way.

Segarra said the more people head to the polls, the better his chances of winning reelection.

"I think a higher turnout does help me because that means that people have been encouraged to come out and vote," he said.

Polls close at 8 p.m.

Mosquitoes Carrying West Nile Found in 27 Communties


Mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus have been identified in 27 Connecticut communities so far this year, according to the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station.

Milford is the latest municipality to identify the virus.

"September is the peak month for West Nile Virus (WNV) activity in Connecticut and we continue to urge everyone to take precautions against mosquito bites and to maintain their properties so that they prevent mosquitoes from breeding," Milford Health Director Deepa D. Joseph said in a statement Wednesday.

According to the CAES, mosquitoes in the following towns have tested positive for West Nile:

East Haven
New Haven
West Hartford
West Haven

Two human cases have been reported in Connecticut this year, both in Bridgeport


Most people who are infected with West Nile develop a mild illness that may include fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting or a skin rash, according to the CAES.

Less frequently, people develop severe illness of the nervous system that can also include neck stiffness, disorientation, loss of consciousness, tremors, muscle weakness and paralysis.

People older than 50 years of age are more likely than younger people to suffer the more severe health consequences if they become infected.

Learn more about West Nile virus and mosquito management:

Parents Upset Amid Possible Scabies at School


Parents whose children attend South Side Elementary School in Bristol wonder why officials haven't contacted them directly about a possible case of scabies affecting one of the students.

Scabies, a skin infection caused by mites, is spread through direct contact. The school was alerted to the potential case Tuesday.

While a notice was sent to families of the student's classmates, parents of other children who attend the school said they have not received any official communication regarding the case.

"Everybody has a right to know what’s going because it’s their children," said Gloria Pelletier, whose grandchild attends South Side School.

Parent Stephanie Ramone said she, too, would have appreciated an alert.

"They haven’t sent anything out to the house, or email," she said. "They usually text for any little reason but they haven’t texted of emailed or anything about this."

The school system released a statement Wednesday afternoon.

"We are following all state and local guidelines regarding detailed school cleaning and disinfecting protocols across the district. All school nurses in conjunction with medical professionals in the Bristol-Burlington Health District will closely continue to monitor students and staff," Bristol superintendent Dr. Ellen Solek said in the statement.

The Bristol-Burlington Health District declined to comment and directed all questions

The school is not closed and there has been no official diagnosis of scabies.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

New London Challenger Defeats Mayor in Primary


New London City Council President Michael Passero has declared victory over incumbent Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio in Wednedsay's primary election, according to the Connecticut Democratic Party.

Final numbers from the New London registrar indicate Passero received 1,242 votes to Finizio's 798.

"Congratulations to Michael Passero on his hard-fought victory tonight. His service to the community over the years has been admirable, and I am confident that the city will continue to move forward under his leadership," Connecticut Democratic Party Chairman Nick Balletto said in a statement Wednesday night. "I also want to thank Darryl (sic) Finizio. He has been a real leader for the Democratic Party, and I am confident that his future is bright."

Finizio, who is finishing out his first term, is the city's first elected mayor.

He and Passero have clashed throughout Finizio's tenure.

Both were confident they would garner enough votes to win Wednesday's election.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra Concedes to Luke Bronin


Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra has conceded Wednesday's primary election to Luke Bronin.

"I want to start by thanking each and every one of you," the mayor told his supporters Wednesday night. "You just don't know how grateful I am for you having accompanied me through this very difficult journey."

Preliminary results indicated Bronin garnered 55 percent of vote to Segarra's 45 percent. Nearly 10,000 votes were cast Wednesday.

Bronin, the Democratic Town Committee-endorsed candidate who previously served as legal adviser to Gov. Dannel Malloy, will now appear on the general election ballot as the Democratic candidate for mayor.

"Hartford Democrats voted for change," Bronin announced during a victory speech Wednesday night. "You voted for a City Hall that works for all of Hartford. You voted for accountability. You voted for leadership whose priorities are clear and unchanging: stronger schools, safer streets, and job opportunities for Hartford residents."

He seeks to unseat Segarra, who has the option to remain on the November ballot as an independent candidate.

Segarra has not yet decided whether to go forward with the general election, according to a spokesperson for his campaign.

"While I am disappointed in tonight's results, this does not change my commitment to this campaign nor the people of Hartford," Segarra said in a statement Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the head of the state Democratic Party tipped his hat to Bronin.

"I want to offer my sincere congratulations to Luke Bronin. He is an energetic leader who will undoubtedly help move Hartford forward. I look forward to working together to ensure he is elected in November," Connecticut Democratic Party Chairman Nick Balletto said in a statement Wednesday night. "I also want to thank Mayor Segarra for his service to the city. I have tremendous respect for the Mayor, and I wish him the best."

Drug Bust Finds World Series Ring


Police in Quincy, Massachusetts, recovered a stolen 2004 Red Sox World Series ring while searching a home as part of an on-going distribution of Oxycodone investigation.

According to police, the Quincy Police Drug Control Unit conducted a search of Dennis Leclair's house at 97 Hall Place. Upon arrival, Leclair allegedly was conducting a drug transaction with James White of Quincy and George Green of Dorchester. Both individuals were stopped and Oxycodone was recovered.

Through the search, police recovered Oxycodone tablets, a stolen World Series ring, multiple police scanners, a money counting machine, and over $9,000 cash.

Leclair was charged with two counts of distribution of a Class B drug, possession with intent to distribute a Class B drug, conspiracy to violate the drug law, and receiving stolen property.

In addition, White was charged with possession with intent to distribute a Class B drug, conspiracy to violate the drug laws, stop sign violation, and operating a vehicle after suspension. Green was charged with possession of a Class B drug and conspiracy to violate the drug laws.  

Photo Credit: Quincy Police
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