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Silver Alert Issued for Missing 48-Year-Old Stonington Woman


State police have issued a Silver Alert for a missing Stonington woman.

Christine McGugan, 48, of Stonington, has been missing since Nov. 12.

She was last seen wearing a gray sweater and black tights. State police described her as 5-foot-4 and weighing 110 pounds and said she has red hair and brown eyes.

She may be driving a green 2003 Chevy Tahoe.

Stonington police ask anyone with information to call 860-599-4411.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

World Grieves With France Over Deadly Attacks


The world grieves alongside France with vigils, rallies and displays in cities across the globe.

Photo Credit: AP

10 Dead After High-Speed Train Derails in France: Report


Ten people died when a high-speed train derailed in France on Saturday morning while crews were testing a new line from Paris to Strasbourg. 

The train fell into a canal after hitting a bridge and catching on fire. 

All 49 people aboard the train were employees of the national French railway system, SNCF. 

French authorities said the derailment had nothing to do with Friday's deadly attacks. 

Photo Credit: AP

House of Heroes Brings Army of Volunteers to Repair Meriden Veteran's Home


Rafael Castro has been relying on space heaters since his boiler broke two year ago. It’s one of many home repairs put on the back burner since he returned from Iraq.

“It just seemed like I always had a bump in the road,” recalled Castro.

But he was able to get needed repairs to his home with the help of House of Heroes Connecticut, a non-profit organization that does free home repairs for veterans.

Castrol, who has three children including one with Down Syndrome, was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and lost his job last spring. He took a entrepreneurship class through the University of Connecticut and bought his own business, a deli in Meriden. He’s poured all of his time and money into the project, further delaying the growing to-do list at home.

“Today’s a pretty big project for us,” said Bill May, chairman of House of Heroes.

The organization has made home repairs for 55 Connecticut veterans with financial or physical challenges, over the past four years. In addition to a new heating and cooling system, local contractors helped upgrade the plumbing and electrical work in Castro’s home, while other volunteers gave it a fresh coat of paint.

“It’s a blessing. Definitely a true blessing,” described Castro.

Many of the volunteers were veterans, like Andrew DiSilvestro, who’s served three tours in the last nine years, including one in Afghanistan.

“I’ve been fortunate enough to be well off in regard to the things that other veterans have helped me with and so I felt the need to pass that on to another fellow veteran,” said DiSilvestro who volunteered on behalf of the National Association for the Remodeling Institute.

“What I miss most about the army is the camaraderie involved and the ability to help a brother next to me at all times,” added May, an Army veteran.

While the sacrifices he made overseas have followed him home, Castro says he’s seen the appreciation his community has for his service.

“Iraq’s been tough on the whole family,” said Castro. “There’s so many people who really do want to help the veterans, and I think it’s great. I think it really is great.”

Find more information on House of Heroes at www.hohct.org.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

George Washington Turnpike Closed Due to Fallen Tree, Powerlines


The George Washington Turnpike is closed in Burlington due to a fallen tree and downed power lines.

The road was closed between Jerome and Woodcreek, Burlington firefighters tweeted just before 7 p.m.

Crews responded to restore the power, which is expected to be repaired by 9 p.m.

No further information was immediately available.

Waitress' 'Tip' Sparks Online Fury


A bad credit card "tip" is leading to fury online.

A man, whose name we are not releasing until he can respond to NBC4's request for comment, was served at Bamboo Thai Bistro in Redondo Beach, California. His server, a woman in her thirties from Thailand, came back to find a short note rather than a tip on his credit card bill.

It read, "Tip for U.S. citizens only."

"Keep it to yourself!" said her coworker Adison. "It doesn't... it doesn't help anything when you say something like that to someone."

While the man left the restaurant believing that was the end of it, social media thought differently when a photo of the receipt ended up on Twitter.

The photo went viral, with thousands of people weighing in and calling the man out by name, because it appears on the receipt. The server's coworkers said the note was a nasty and mean spirited way to express anger over the hot button issue of immigration.

Commenters online commented that it was strange the man would choose to go to a Thai restaurant if he was so against anyone immigrating to the U.S.

The woman is here legally and working under a visa. She hopes to get her green card someday to give her two kids a better life.

"She thought it was her fault, that maybe she did something wrong to offend him or something," said Adison.

Photo Credit: via Twitter

Multiple Departments Respond to Ledyard Brush Fire


Multiple departments responded to fight a fast-moving brush fire in Ledyard Saturday afternoon.

The Ledyard Fire Company responded to the area of 1906 Center Groton Road (Route 117) around 4:06 p.m., according to Fire Chief John Doucette. When they arrived they found a wind-driven brush fire spreading in the woods about a half mile off the road.

High winds, dry conditions and a remote location made the fire difficult to put out. The Gales Ferry Fire Company, Old Mystic Fire Department, North Stonington Fire Department and Center Groton Fire Department all responded to assist. Mohegan Fire Department and Montville Fire Department were also called in but were not needed at the scene.

It took firefighters around one hour to bring the brush fire under control. No injuries were reported.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

UConn Investigates "Hurtful" Vandalism


The University of Connecticut is investigating vandalism apparently linking a Muslim student to the attacks in Paris.

UConn junior Mahmoud Hashem says someone wrote “killed Paris” under his name on a nametag that hangs on the door of his dorm room at Nathan Hale Inn. His roommate discovered this morning.

Hashem, who is originally from Egypt, was shaken by the incident. He says he has lived in the U.S. for five years and never had any issues before.

“I feel like upset because I don’t do anything. It’s not my fault,” he said. “This not my fault. These are terrorists not me. So don’t treat me like terrorists. I don’t deserve that.”

Dan Fay, Mahmoud’s roommate, took a picture and contacted authorities when he saw the vandalism.

“This is hate, blind bigoted hate,” he said.

University spokeswoman Stephanie Reitz released the following statement:

“This hurtful act is clearly unacceptable, and contradicts UConn’s values as it works to provide a welcoming environment for all students on all of our campuses. UConn Police and other UConn officials have begun investigations into this incident, and at the same time are working to provide support to the student and impacted community.”

UConn police and the community standards division, which handles student discipline, are investigating the incident.

ISIS Leader in Libya Presumed Killed by U.S. Airstrike


A leader of ISIS's branch in Libya was struck and presumed killed by a U.S. airstrike Friday night, a defense official told NBC News.

The terror suspect was struck by a missile fired by an F-15 fighter/bomber. The official said the operation began before the Paris attacks and was not related to that event.

Kevin Baron, editor of Defense One and a national security analyst for NBC News, said the man goes by the nom de guerre Abu Nabil. 

Connecticut Colleges React to Tragedy in Paris


The tragedy in Paris is hitting college campuses across the state.

Many schools have students and staff studying in the city.

On Saturday, UConn students held a prayer vigil for people suffering thousands of miles away. The events in Paris hit home for some students, including Lucie Rodriguez.

“It’s hard not to be able to do anything for them,” says Rodriguez, a UConn junior.

Rodriguez is from France and her father and brothers live in the outskirts of Paris. She is relieved to know at least they’re safe.

“Everything has been locked down and a curfew has been put on so everyone is scared and doesn’t know what to do,” says Rodriguez.

UConn says it has 12 undergraduates and one faculty member in Paris and they’re all okay.

Other Connecticut schools, including Quinnipiac University, have students studying in France. There was a moment of silence before Quinnipiac’s hockey game Saturday to honor the victims of the attacks.

Quinnipiac’s one student abroad in Paris was traveling outside the country during the attacks which left 129 dead and hundreds hurt.

“It’s really hard to see because I do see the pictures and I think ‘Oh my gosh, I walked on that street.’ I can’t believe that this happened somewhere I was just there,” says Jessa Sahl, a UConn junior.

Back at UConn, students who previously studied in France joined together. They painted a message of hope, “Peace for Paris,” on a spirit rock on campus.

Some students here have friends studying in the city right now.

“I think people are scared but it seems that people are ready to unite, stand together, and be strong,” says Sahl.

Staff at Trinity College, Connecticut College, and Wesleyan University say all their students abroad in Paris are safe. At last check, Yale University said it was still reaching out to those in Paris.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Paris Terror Attacks: Who Are the Assailants?


French authorities have detained a father and brother of one of the suspected attackers who carried out the series of coordinated Paris attacks that left 129 dead and 352 injured, a former French official confirmed with NBC News. 

Three teams of extremists carried out the gun-and-suicide bombing attacks across Paris, Paris prosecutor Francois Molins said. 

"We can say at this stage of the investigation there was probably three coordinated teams of terrorists behind this barbaric act," Paris prosecutor Francois Molins said.

Speaking at a news conference, Molins confirmed one of the hostage takers involved in the deadly siege at the Bataclan concert hall, where 89 people were killed, was a French-born citizen and known to authorities. The 29-year-old suspect was placed on a security file for Islamist radicalization in 2010 but was never implicated. Another attacker at the concert hall was born in Syria, he added.

The attackers at the concert hall mentioned Syria and Iraq during their rampage, the Associated Press reported, citing the prosecutor.

Molins said a Syrian passport found near the body of another attacker was linked to a man who entered the European Union through a Greek island last month and was not known to French intelligence services, The Associated Press reported.

Belgium's federal prosecutor's office says authorities have so far made three arrests after a car with Belgian license plates that was seen near the Bataclan theater Friday night was stopped at the Belgian border.

Spokesman Jean-Pascal Thoreau said it was a rental vehicle and police organized several raids in the St. Jans Molenbeek neighborhood in Brussels on Saturday.

All seven suicide attackers wore identical explosives vests in the assaults that spanned six locations and involved at least eight terror suspects. Molins said they used Kalashnikov rifles with 7.62 mm-caliber bullets, NBC News reported.

French President Francois Hollande has vowed that France will wage "merciless" war on the Islamic State group, after the jihadists claimed responsibility for the attacks, which included restaurants, Friday night. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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CT Colleges Report Students Studying in Paris Are Safe


So far all Connecticut colleges that have confirmed to NBC Connecticut that they have students abroad in Paris say their students are safe amid terror attacks that killed 129, including an American, and injured 352 others.

There are 12 undergraduate students and a teacher in Paris for a study abroad program, as well as a UConn graduate student, UConn officials said. There are also four UConn students on vacation in Paris. All 17 students and the faculty member are unharmed.

"Our staff in the Office of Global Affairs were able to contact the 17 UConn students and one UConn faculty member who are in Paris right now," UConn President Susan Herbst wrote in an email to the UConn community on Saturday morning. "I am relieved to report that all of them are safe and accounted for."

UConn students gathered for a vigil at 4:30 p.m. in light of the terror attacks in Paris. Students from a French club on campus painted a spirit rock at the university the colors of the French flag.

Trinity College has 30 students overseas in Paris right now and none of them were hurt, according to spokesperson Kathy Andrews.

Connecticut College reported that all the students they have abroad right now "are safe" and that they "have reached out to all of them - as well as to their parents - to offer" support and "help connect them with any resources they may need as they deal with this tragic situation."

Wesleyan University  President Michael S. Roth tweeted Friday, "Heartsick for Paris...relieved that @wesleyan_u students on program there reported safe. What horror!"

He said in his blog that when school officials learned of the tragedy, they immediately got to work reaching out to make sure students in the university's Paris study abroad program were okay.

"The attacks in Paris were meant to create terror in everyday life, and we have seen similar attempts in various parts of the world over the last several years," Roth said in his blog. "Mixed with our revulsion at this brutality is a determination to struggle against the tyranny of violence. Educational institutions depend on eliminating violence, and I trust that the Wesleyan community will stand in solidarity with people around the world in this effort. There is much work to be done — on campus and around the world."

Then today he tweeted, "Hearing from shaken @wesleyan_u students and friends in #Paris, facing a scary future. #LiberteEgaliteFraternite Our Hearts Go OUt to Paris."

"May the time not be distant when we can give peace and justice the attention so often now taken up by violence," Roth wrote in his blog.

UConn officials are "reaching out to students from France and surrounding nations who are currently at UConn" to provide them with any help they need on campus, Herbst said. UConn currently has 13 French citizens enrolled there.

Herbst said that UConn's campuses, "like the entire world, are shocked and horrified by the terrorist attacks that took place in Paris last night, which claimed the lives of more than 120 people, thus far."

"Our hearts ache for the victims, for the people of France, and for all those who lost someone they love to this unspeakable and senseless brutality," Herbst said. "President Obama noted last night that these were not only attacks on the people of Paris, but on all humanity. UConn is an international institution. We are home to students, faculty and staff from across the world – and members of our community and our alumni are spread throughout the globe as well, including in France.... Wherever we are, and wherever we are from, we all share the same sense of profound loss. Because, as a community, we abhor violence in any form, against anyone, whether here at home or anywhere in the world."

Yale is also standing in solidarity with Paris.

"We are all shocked and deeply saddened by news from Paris. We are a global university, and many in our community have close ties to France. We have a number of students with family in the area, faculty with close colleagues and friends there, and a small number of students, faculty and staff traveling there. We are reaching out to contact those who may be affected and hope that all are safe," Yale President Peter Salovey wrote in a message to the Yale community posted on the college's website. "Our hearts go out to all affected by this horrible event.... I also hope you will reach out to friends and colleagues on campus who may have personal connections to offer expressions of comfort and care."

Salovey also advised anyone concerned about someone from Yale in Paris to contact Don Filer at donald.filer@yale.edu and said that anyone needing "support and assistance" in the Yale community should contact Mental Health and Counseling 24 hours a day at 203-432-0290 during work hours and then 203-432-0123 after hours.

Quinnipiac University held a moment of silence at its hockey game Saturday night "to honor the victims of the Paris attacks," the university tweeted.

It's unknown if any other Connecticut colleges have students in Paris right now.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

French Flag Flies in Connecticut After Paris Terror Attacks


The French flag is flying on the dome of the State Capitol building and outside the Governor's Residence Saturday as Connecticut shows it's standing in solidarity with the people of France after terror attacks in Paris that killed at least 129, including one American, and injured hundreds.

"It was an extraordinary tragedy and a truly dark day across the globe. The people of Connecticut stand in solidarity with France. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families who suffered through yesterday's attacks,” Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said. “We must stand up against terrorism and extremism across the world."

UConn in Storrs reported that 17 of its students and one faculty member in Paris are unharmed and Trinity College in Hartford said that its 30 students studying abroad in Paris now are also safe.

Devon Puglia, a spokesperson for the governor, said enhanced measures are being taken by state police, on trains and at the airport in the aftermath of the Paris attacks, but that there's no "specific or credible threat" here in Connecticut.

"The Connecticut State Police continues to monitor the situation in Paris and asks residents to be vigilant and report suspicious activity or people to police immediately," Trooper Kelly Grant, spokesperson for the Connecticut State Police, wrote to NBC Connecticut in an email.

Local police, including officers in Bridgeport and New Haven, remained on extra alert Saturday.

"In light of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, France, all officers are reminded to remain vigilant while on and off duty, especially around transportation hubs and areas where large groups of people gather," Bridgeport Police Chief Joseph L. Gaudett Jr. said. "While there are no specific or credible known threats to Bridgeport, or Connecticut, at this time, the sad reality is that radicalized individuals may take actions similar to those in Paris at any place and at any time. Never before has law enforcement’s role been so critical in identifying and thwarting potential terrorist action in our Homeland."

He added, Our residents have been stunned by these series of attacks in Paris, and they rely upon us to ensure their safety. I know that you will not let them down. Please maintain your situational awareness at all times, and if you see something, say something."

New Haven Officer David B. Hartfman wrote that patrol officers "will be as observant as ever, checking the city’s neighborhoods and infrastructure for anything deemed suspicious."

"Law Enforcement officials throughout the country are urging the public to report suspicious conditions to their local authorities. If you see something, say something. Our efforts are to assure an anxious public that we, and our policing partners are here to protect our communities. Our nation stands in solidarity with the people of Paris as they go through this heartbreaking time," Hartman said.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

U2 Lays Flowers Near Site of Attack in Paris


Irish rock band U2 visited the Bataclan in Paris and laid flowers at the site of the deadly hostage siege that stunned France on Friday night.

U2 was in Paris to perform on Nov. 14 and 15 for televised live concerts by Live Nation and HBO. The shows were postponed after the Paris attacks and U2 said they would perform again "at an appropriate time."

"We watched in disbelief and shock at the unfolding of events in Paris, and our hearts go out to the victims' and their families across the city tonight," the band wrote on its website on Friday. 

The multiple terrorist attacks that unfolded in Paris, killed 129 people and injured 352, police said. Bataclan was the site of the biggest casualties where concertgoers were attending a show by American band Eagles of Death Metal.  

U2 frontman Bono spoke out about the terrorism in an interview with RTÉ2fm radio in Ireland on Saturday morning.

"Our first thoughts at this point are with the Eagles of Death Metal fans," he said. "This is the first direct hit on music that we’ve had in this so called war on terror or whatever it’s called. It’s very upsetting. These are our people. This could be me at a show. You at a show, in that venue. It’s a very recognizable situation for you and for me and the coldblooded aspect of this slaughter is deeply disturbing and that’s what I can’t get out of my head."

He added that he did not want terrorists to "set our agenda" and he looked forward to playing music again in Paris.

"I remember U2 was the first big act back into New York after 9/11," Bono said.

In playing at Madison Square Garden "the feeling just this is who we are, you can’t change it," Bono said. "You’re not gonna turn us into haters or you’re not gonna turn us around in the way we go about our lives. That was the feeling of Madison Square Garden back then and I hope that will be the feeling at Bercy when we get back there."

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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Jeb Bush: 'We Should Declare War' on ISIS


Two days after terrorists killed 129 people and wounded 352 others in a bloodbath in Paris, U.S. presidential candidate Jeb Bush told "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd "we should declare war" on ISIS, which has claimed responsibility for the massacre.

"You destroy ISIS and then you build a coalition to replace this radical Islamic terrorist threat to our country and to Europe and to the region with something that is more peace-loving," Bush said on "Meet the Press" Sunday.

Bush, who is seeking the Republican presidential nomination, said ISIS "is not something you can contain."

"Each day that ISIS exists, it gains more energy and recruits around the world," he explained. "We should declare war and harness all the power that the United States can bring to bear — both diplomatic and military, of course — to be able to take out ISIS. We have the capabilities of doing this, we just haven't show the will."

When asked how he would like to see President Barack Obama respond to the attacks, Bush said the president should declare a no-fly zone over Syria, arm Kurdish forces fighting ISIS in Iraq, "reengage" with Sunni leaders and "garner support" from the United States' European allies.

"Lead. That's what I want him to do. Lead," Bush said.

Multiple terrorists carried out coordinated attacks Friday at six locations in Paris, authorities said.

Assailants opened fire at multiple restaurants in the city's 10th and 11th arrondissements, while suicide bombers detonated explosive vests outside the national stadium, where a soccer match was underway. Others gunned down at least 89 people at a music venue where concert-goers had gathered to see a California-based rock band.

Paris' prosecutor said Saturday seven assailants died in the attacks, which French president Francois Hollande has called an "act of war" that warrants a "merciless response."

Photo Credit: AP/File
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Police Investigate Hartford Shooting

Teen Stabs, Bites Officers Responding to Domestic Dispute: PD


Three New Britain police officers were injured when a teenager pulled a knife on them during a domestic disturbance, police said.

Officers responded to a Chestnut Street home on Friday at 7 p.m. to investigate after a caller said an 18-year-old female picked up a knife during a domestic dispute and then put the knife down.

Police identified the suspect as Marisol Ortiz. When police arrived, Ortiz was in the living room. As an officer was talking to one of her parents, she jumped up and started yelling, police said. As officers tried to restrain her, she pulled a knife out that she had hidden under her shirt, according to police.

Ortiz lunged, stabbing an officer in the leg, police said. Officers were able to gain control of Ortiz quickly as she resisted them, ultimately letting go of the knife, according to police. During the struggle, she also cut another officer's hand and bit a third officer's hand, police said.

The officers were treated for their injuries at an area hospital and have since been released.

The officer stabbed in the leg couldn't finish his shift because of the knifewound, but police said he's expected to fully recover.

Police charged Ortiz with three counts of assault on a police officer, first-degree assault, second-degree assault and disorderly conduct. New Britain police are holding her in custody on a $500,000. She is scheduled to appear in New Britain Superior Court on Nov. 16.

Photo Credit: New Britain Police Department

2 Newborns Found Dead in Philly


The bodies of two babies were found in a weeded lot in North Philadelphia and police are investigating.

Police say 9-year-old Kasime Crawford and another child found the baby boy and girl lying in a patch of grass next to a used-car lot on Mutter Street near Montgomery Avenue Saturday night. Crawford told NBC10 he thought they were toys at first.

"Both of their faces were blue," Crawford said. "There's a doll baby. That's when it started stinking and that's when we checked and there was a baby. I went home and told my dad." 

Residents returned to the lot Sunday morning and found the bodies. They then called police. The babies were pronounced dead at the lot by medics at 10:31 a.m., police said. Investigators said both of the infants had cuts on them while one had a clamp attached to the umbilical cord.

"They were just thrown away like trash," said Stephanie Farrell who lives near where the babies were found.

While processing the scene, the Medical Examiner discovered the bodies had an autopsy performed on them by unidentified medical personnel at an unknown time. Investigators have not yet determined how or when the babies died. They also have not yet determined how long they had been in the lot before they were found.

"You shouldn't throw little kids away," said Ronnie Jackson, Kasime's father. "You could've left them in the hospital, gave them to a charity, gave them to the fire department or knocked on my door and gave them to me." 

Police later received information stating that people inside a black pickup truck with an unknown license plate were dumping trash on the highway near where the bodies were found. Officials are searching the area for possible surveillance video.

This is a developing story. Stay with NBC10.com for updates.

Photo Credit: NBC10 - Pete Kane
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Coast Guard Rescues 2 Mariners From Long Island Sound Waters


Members of the United States Coast Guard based in New London rescued two boaters from the water in Long Island Sound Friday near Watch Hill, Rhode Island, Coast Guard officials said.

The Coast Guard Long Island Sound command center received a "mayday" radio distress call from people on a 32-foot boat reporting that water was filling their boat and that they needed help, Coast Guard officials said.

A New London Coast Guard crew was dispatched to the scene on a 47-foot motor life boat at about 3:20 p.m. Dispatchers also issued "Urgent Marine Information Broadcast" and had the boat's captain "activate his PLB," Coast Guard officials said.

An Air Station Cape Cod HC-144 Ocean Sentry aircraft also flew overhead in the rescue mission.

Crews pulled two men from the water and onto the rescue boat. They transported the boaters to Noank Shipyard and emergency medical services were waiting at the docks to give them any needed medical care.

“This is a great example of mariners being prepared prior to going out on the water,” Chief Petty Officer Frank St.Pierre, the command duty officer at Sector Long Island Sound, said. “They remained calm, maintained constant communications with the Coast Guard on channel 16 VHF-FM, donned their life jackets, activated their personal locator beacon, and confirmed their position using emergency flares. The reliable gear on board the vessel and the outstanding response from Station New London and Air Station Cape Cod led to a successful rescue.”

Both boaters were transported to Pequot Hospital in Groton.

Photo Credit: U.S. Coast Guard

LifeStar Airlifts Man Freed From Car in Somers Crash


LifeStar airlifted a driver who had to be extricated from a car in Somers overnight.

The man was headed northbound on Route 83 when he veered off the road and his car crashed into a tree, police said. It happened near the intersection with Mallard Circle.

After he was freed from the car, a LifeStar helicopter flew him to the hospital to be treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com
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