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Dry Weather Continues, Scattered Showers Friday


High pressure will provide dry weather throughout the midweek period.

Fog is expected tonight as temperatures fall back into the 50s.

Tomorrow brings a similar weather day with lots of sunshine, no humidity and temperatures in the 70s.

It's a cold front that brings a few showers Friday, with highs around 70 degrees.

An early look at the start to the weekend shows mostly sunny skies for Saturday with highs in the upper 70s and lower 80s.

Rain is likely on Sunday into Sunday night, so temperatures will be lower, in the 70s.

Unsettled weather sticks around through early next week as an upper-level low moves overhead.

That means more clouds than sunshine, with occasional showers and perhaps a storm. Temperatures will be in the 70s.

Teen Killed While Baby-Sitting


Police are searching for the gunman who shot a teen girl in front of the 3-year-old she was baby-sitting, then left her for dead in her Brooklyn apartment.

Shemel Mercurius, 16, was baby-sitting her young cousin in her sixth-floor apartment in East Flatbush on Tuesday when she was shot multiple times, police said. 

Officers were called to the Brooklyn Avenue apartment building just before 6 p.m. following reports of gunfire.

They found Mercurius semi-conscious in her apartment with multiple gunshot wounds, authorities said. Mercurius was taken to Kings County Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Mercurius' aunt told NBC 4 New York her 3-year-old son witnessed the shooting.

"My son was in the apartment screaming, and the neighbors heard him crying and started banging the door, but Shemel wasn't able to get up or move or do anything," said Latoya Price.

She also said Mercurius was able to describe the gunman to police before she died. Price's 3-year-old son was unharmed.

"They have to pay for it. Why would you want to take someone's life?" Price said in tears. "She's only 16. You took her whole life away from her. For what reason?" 

A law enforcement source tells NBC 4 New York police are searching for the teen's ex-boyfriend, calling him a person of interest they want to question. They're also reviewing surveillance video that appears to have captured a suspect in the elevator before the shooting. 

No one is in custody at the moment. 

At a vigil for the girl Wednesday night, her anguished father became overwhelmed and had to leave in tears. 

Family and friends say Mercurius left her native Guyana to come to America in hopes of a better life. Her 13-year-old friend Anastassia said she wishes they could have had more time together.

"I saw her the other day. I should have said hi because you don't know when you'll be gone," she said. 

The vigil took place on the first day of gun violence awareness month. Community leaders asked for the public's help to identify Shemel's killer. 

"There's no honor in protecting individuals who wreaking havoc and terrorizing this community and putting fear into the hearts of our loved ones," said councilwoman Laurie Cumbo. 

Photo Credit: NBC 4 Ny

Hartford School Renovation Plan on Hold, But Plans to Move Students Continue


The Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in Hartford is nearly 100 years old and renovations were set to begin after this school year, but they are on hold because of the city and state’s financial issues.

While there is no funding, students will still be moved to another school because the Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School is in disrepair, according to a statement from Hartford Public Schools.

“The Martin Luther King school building, which is nearly 100 years old, has been in disrepair for far too long. The most serious pending matter is the outdated boiler system. Out of the four original 80-year-old-boilers, only one of them remains functional. This boiler is liable to fail at any time, which would likely provoke an emergency relocation during the school year,” a statement from the school department says. “This is an unnecessary risk to take, particularly during the winter months, and it is unreasonable to impose this risk on our families.”

When parents were notified last summer that the children would be moved, the plan was to move them to the Lewis Fox Middle School building across the street.

On Tuesday, school officials said determining the location of MLK students for the upcoming school year requires immediate attention to provide a place that is optimal for learning.

People who oppose moving the students said it’s a disgrace to relocate the children and essentially “warehouse” them at an unfamiliar facility with no plan for that to end. Some said this latest move continues a pattern of neglect of this school community.

They will be holding a news conference this afternoon.

The Hartford Public Schools department recently launched Equity 2020, a long-term facilities planning project that takes financial realities into consideration and more information will come on that plan in the weeks ahead, according to the school department.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

UN: 20,000 Children Trapped in Fallujah


The U.N. children's agency warned Wednesday that 20,000 children are trapped in the Iraqi city of Fallujah as coalition-backed Iraqi troops fight to retake the city from ISIS, NBC News reported.

UNICEF said food and medicine are running out and clean water is in short supply. 

UNICEF's Iraq representative Peter Hawkins called on all sides to provide safe passage for those wishing to leave the city. The U.N. has already raised concerns that ISIS has been using families as human shields.

Iraqi government troops — backed by air support from the U.S.-led coalition — launched a military operation over a week ago to recapture Fallujah, which has been under ISIS control since 2014.

Photo Credit: AP

Arrest in Connection to Teen's Opiate Death in Groton


One man linked to the 17-year-old old who died of an apparent opiate overdose at a Groton hotel has been arrested, police said. 

Police said they responded to a hotel room in the town of Groton just after 2:30 a.m. on Sunday and found the female suffering from what appeared to be a drug overdose. Emergency crews brought the teen to Lawrence & Memorial Hospital and the patient was later pronounced dead.

On Wednesday, police arrested Ramon B. Gomez, 40, of Uncasville and accused of of first-degree prostitution promotion, a class B felony. 

As police investigate the teen's death, they found a connection between Gomez and the victim. An arrest warrant was issued when police determined Gomez was allegedly forcing the teen to prostitute herself for "monetary gains."

Gomez bond was set at $150,000.

Groton police are investigating and ask anyone with information to call detectives in the Groton Police Department at 860-441-6716.

Police, as well as federal officials, have been cracking down on the opiate and heroin epidemic in Connecticut and a new statewide plan includes a protocol for police responding to heroin and opioid overdose deaths, time-sensitive investigative techniques and preserving all evidence at the scene of an overdose death.

Police are also asked to contact the DEA early in the investigation and to ensure that an autopsy is performed. The DEA and local police will then work together to investigate what led up to the death, the source of the drug involved and the composition of the drug.

According to statistics from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, there were 729 accidental drug deaths in the state in 2015 and heroin was detected in 416 of them.

The latest figures available on drug deaths are those that occured between January and March of this year. There have been 208 accidental drug deaths, with heroin detected in 110 of them.

Crash Closes Route 99 in Cromwell


Part of Main Street in Cromwell, or Route 99, is closed near TPC River Highlands golf club after a car hit a pole early this morning.

The pole is broken, wires are across the road and Route 99 is closed between Reiman Drive and Fairview Heights.

Cromwell Police said the crash happened around 5:30 a.m., but it will be several hours before the road reopens.

The driver sustained some minor injuries and was transported to Middlesex Hospital, according to police.

Use Route 3, which is also Shunpike Road, or Washington Road to get around the closure.

Follow Heidi Voight on Twitter for traffic updates.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Gas Leak Closes Albany Avenue in Hartford


A gas leak has shut down part of Albany Avenue in Hartford.

Employees at an auto parts shop at 144 Albany Avenue smelled the gas and called the fire department, according to Hartford police.

The building was evacuated and the gas company turned off gas to the area.

The road is closed while crews try to locate the source of the gas leak, police said.

Police said lanes will be restricted on Albany Avenue through rush hour but expect the road to be completely cleared before tomorrow's morning rush.

Photo Credit: Hartford Police

Police ID Man Found Dead on I-84 in Hartford


Police have identified a man found dead on Interstate 84 East in Hartford on Wednesday morning as Mikhal T. Coleman, 36, of West Hartford, and said his death is untimely.

State police received a report of a body in the shoulder of the highway near exit 48 at 1:15 a.m. and found Coleman.

Police are investigating and ask anyone with information to call Troop H at 860-534-1000.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Man Stabbed Ex-Girlfriend in Hamden Walmart: Police


A woman was stabbed at the Walmart on Dixwell Avenue in Hamden on Tuesday night and police have arrested her ex-boyfriend.

Police said responded to the Walmart at 2300 Dixwell Ave. at 6:45 p.m. on Tuesday and found a 62 year-old Hamden woman with a stab wound in her chest on the ground, near the cash registers.

She was transported to Yale-New Haven Hospital and her condition is not known. Police have not released her name.

Officers found Nathaniel. Williams, 68, of New Haven, in front of the store and took him into custody.

According to police, the couple dated several years ago.

Williams was charged with first-degree assault and breach of peace and was detained on a $50,000. He is scheduled to appear in court in Meriden today.

Photo Credit: Hamden Police

Possible EgyptAir Signal Detected: Egypt


A French ship has picked up signals in the Mediterranean Sea believed to be from black boxes of the EgyptAir plane that crashed last month, killing 66 on board, the Egyptian committee investigating the crash said Wednesday, NBC News reported. 

The committee said French naval vessel "La Place" had received signals from the search area which are assumed to be from the plane's data recorders.

The development was confirmed by the French investigation agency, BEA, which said the signals were detected from the seabed in the wreckage search area. Spokesman Sebastien Barthe told NBC News the signal had been detected on the vessel by a private contractor, Alseamar. 

There have been a series of conflicting reports in recent days regarding whether new signals have been received.

EgyptAir Flight MS804 crashed on May 19 while en route from Paris to Cairo.

Photo Credit: AP

Moment of Silence on 5th Anniversary of Springfield-Area Tornado


Memories are flooding back for people in western Massachusetts on the five-year anniversary of when a tornado touched down, destroying dozens of homes and killing three people in West Springfield and Brimfield on June 1, 2011.

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno is asking residents and businesses to observe a moment of silence at 4:38 p.m. on Wednesday, the time the tornado hit.

Michael Bynum remembers the day vividly.

He was on the second floor in his home at the corner of Pennsylvania Avenue and Ithaca Street in Springfield when he heard strong winds.

“I remember when the tornado hit the house. I remember the force of it, how powerful it was. I remember being on my back. The next thing I know, I was picking myself off of my neighbor’s front lawn and it was kind of surreal because it was very calm and the tornado was gone,” he said.

Bynum walked away with a few scratches. His dog, Jimmy, who was also beside him when the tornado hit, also survived.

“I figured he was dead. But remarkably, he was literally standing on top of the pile of rubble of the house and he didn’t have a scratch. It was pretty remarkable,” Bynum said.

The tornado leveled several houses on Pennsylvania Avenue in Springfield. Farther down the street from Bynum’s home, homeowners consider themselves lucky.

“We had roof, windows and siding and some trees came down around the garage -- a lot of debris, but we were more fortunate,” Dave Downie, of Springfield, said.

Neighbors still have pictures to remind them of the destruction five years ago and they now say they are happy to see the neighborhood has been rebuilt.

“In a way, it improved the neighborhood. Some new houses were built, the only thing you miss is the trees. You don’t have the large trees,” Bynum said.

Health Officials Unclear Why US Deaths Rising


The overall death rate in the United States ticked up in 2015, according to new federal data, NBC News reported. 

Nearly 730 deaths were reported for every 100,000 people in 2015 compared to 723 deaths in 2014, according to initial data from the National Center for Health Statistics.

Experts aren't sure why the death rate has been rising and need to analyze the data which shows that suicides, Alzheimer’s and gun deaths increased in 2015. 

The last complete report on deaths in the U.S. came in 2013, when 2.6 million Americans died. The crude death rate was 821.5 deaths per 100,000 and the average life expectancy was 78.8 years. The crude deaths rate — not adjusted for age — was 841.9 per 100,000 people in 2015.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Shooting Sends UCLA Students Running for Cover


Students scrambled to safety or crouched quietly in classrooms at the University of California, Los Angeles, on Wednesday after two people were killed in a murder-suicide on campus.

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said two men were found dead in the engineering building Wednesday morning. Police are investigating the shootings as a homicide and suicide.

The campus was deemed safe about two hours after an emergency alert sent students running for cover.

UCLA senior Bahjat Alirani was getting ready to take an exam in the building where gunfire erupted when he encountered police in the hallway.

"As soon as I got off the staircase, I saw a SWAT-looking police officer and he was pointing a big gun and and said for everyone to run and get out of the area," Alirani recalled. "I look at my phone and see that the alert was saying 'shooting at Engineering 4.'"

Alirani said he tried to find a hiding place away from the building.

Alex Darouie, a sophomore, told NBC San Diego he was walking from a parking garage on campus when he received an emergency alert from the university.

He rushed to the school music building, just a few hundred feet away from the engineering lab, where he hunkered down in a dark classroom with about 20 other students.

"Everybody is trying to keep it quiet. The lights are off," he said in a phone interview with NBC San Diego. "Everybody is trying to not freak out right now."

Darouie said he could hear little from inside the classroom — just the sound of students running for cover and police units swarming outside.

Another student, Carrie Rapaport, spoke with NBC San Diego on Twitter while huddled with classmates in the Broad Art Center. She tweeted a photo of a peer using her belt to secure the door.

"Everyone is sitting on the floor in the dark," she told NBC San Diego, adding she could hear helicopters circling overhead.

Pranasha Shrestha, who also tweeted from inside a classroom, posted a photo showing desks and chairs propped against the door.

"Doors open outward with no locks so we had to improvise our own locking mechanism," she captioned the image.

Photo Credit: Carrie Rapaport/Twitter
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No Swimming Today at 2 State Parks


There will be no swimming at Chatfield Hollow State Park in Killingworth and Wharton Brook State Park in Wallingford because of bacteria.

Staff from the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection test water weekly at several swimming areas and beaches and results on tests done today are due tomorrow.

Grandma Was Selling Prescription Drugs from Shelton Home: Police


A Shelton, Connecticut, grandmother has been arrested, accused of selling prescription drugs out of her home.

Police said they have been investigating 74-year-old Arlene Bruneau for a month and she is accused of selling drugs that were prescribed for her out of the Howe Avenue home, where she lives with her 15-year-old grandson.

Shelton Police, along with the DEA New Haven District Office Tactical Diversion Squad arrested Bruneau on Wednesday and also arrested was her 56-year-old son Richard Rich, who is also from Shelton.

Police said they realized while arresting Bruneau that Rich had narcotics and failed to keep prescription pills in the original container.

Bruneau was charged with two counts of sale of a controlled substance and injury and risk and impairing the morals of a child and Rich was charged with illegal possession, use of drug paraphernalia and failure to keep a drug in its original container.

Shelton Police will continue to be proactive in investigating drug dealing and are asking anyone with any information to contact the Shelton Police Department at 203-924-1544. All call will be keep confidential.

Photo Credit: Shelton Police

Police Investigating Attempted Carjackings in North Haven


Police are investigating two attempted carjackings in North Haven on Tuesday night.

Officers responded to the first report at 7:30 p.m. on Universal Drive Bridge after a man walked up to the victim’s vehicle in traffic and said he needed a ride to New Haven.

When the victim refused to let the man into the vehicle, he said, “I need a ride to New Haven” and reached into the passenger side window, unlocked the door and opened it, but the victim sped away and then called 911, police said.

The man was described as 5-feet-8, 190 to 200 pounds and was wearing a white shirt and shorts.

A second victim said he was at McDonald’s on Universal Drive with his children when a man matching the same description approached his vehicle in the drive-through line and said he wanted a ride to New Haven.

Then he said, “don’t make me do this, don’t make me do this” and gestured toward his waistband.

This victim also drove away at a high rate of speed and called 911.

Anyone with information regarding either incident is asked to call the Investigative Services Division of the North Haven Police Department at 203-239-1616.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Chill Ride: Bristol Teen Takes Ice Cream Truck to Prom


A Connecticut teen had a "chill" ride to his prom this year. 

The Bristol teen shocked classmates when he showed up to the senior prom in an ice cream truck. 

Zack Nichparenko said he wanted to take a "non-traditional" approach to prom. 

"I don't think anyone took me seriously at first," the teen said about his idea. 

The 17-year-old said he was outside his house about two weeks before Bristol Eastern High School's prom on May 27 when Daren's Ice Cream Truck stopped by. That's when he got the idea. 

Nichparenko said the ice cream man, Daren Carroll, has been a staple in his neighborhood since he was roughly 4 years old. 

Carroll said he's been asked to plenty of events in the past, like weddings or birthday parties, but never a prom.

"Never has anybody asked me to go the prom in the ice cream truck," Carroll told NBC Connecticut. "Never, ever."

The day of the prom, Carroll met with the high school senior at Slider's Grill and Bar parking lot to take some pictures with family before dropping Nichparenko off at the dance around the corner.

"At first I tried to talk him out of it," Carroll said, noting that at his own prom, no one was outside to see anyone arriving. "But he was right. When we showed up, about 200 people were there."

When Nichparenko and Carroll rolled up in the ice cream truck, they were stopped by security at the gate and asked what they were doing there. 

"I have a delivery!" Carroll told them. "I have a guest!"

No ice cream was sold to students outside the prom at Aqua Surf in Southington because the teens were about to go inside to eat, and Carroll said he didn't want to take away from that. 

"I wanted to do something that not only people will remember, but something that hasn’t been done before," Nichparenko said.

An ice cream truck ride to prom in Connecticut is apparently a first, which comes as no surprise from the aspiring entrepreneur. 

Nichparenko said his plans after high school is to start a dryer vent company in Bristol and has started drafting business ideas with his dad. 

Photo Credit: Zackery Nichparenko
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Juveniles, Adult Linked to 2014 New Haven Murder Arrested: PD


Four people, three of which are juveniles, connected to a 2014 New Haven murder were arrested on Monday, police said. 

In January 2014, the 20-year-old Durrell Patrick Law was fatally shot in chest in the parking lot of the Fairview Apartments.

Three of the suspects were juveniles at the time and their court documents are sealed, New Haven Police said.

The adult suspect, Joel Alexander 23, is a convicted felon charged with felony murder, first-degree robbery, firearms crimes and conspiracy to commit first-degree robbery, according to police.

Alexander's bond was set at $2,000,000. 

All three juveniles face multiple charges that include murder, felony murder and robbery. Two the the juveniles had been incarcerated before for unrelated crimes, police said. 

Photo Credit: New Haven Police

Clinton Calls Trump a 'Fraud' Over Trump U. Lawsuit


Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton called Donald Trump a “fraud” during a campaign stop in Newark, New Jersey, Wednesday afternoon, NBC News reported. 

Clinton jumped on information from newly unsealed court documents in a lawsuit against Trump University, accusing the billionaire businessman of taking “advantage of vulnerable Americans.” 

"This is just more evidence that Donald Trump himself is a fraud. He is trying to scam America the way he scammed all those people at Trump U," Clinton said during a campaign stop ahead of next week's New Jersey primary. 

Her entire speech was Trump-focused, calling him out on veterans, women, foreign policy and more. 

"On issue after issue, we see someone who is unqualified and unfit to be president of the United States,” she said.

Photo Credit: AP
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Police Respond to Stabbing in Hartford

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