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Wolcott to Vote on Town Budget After Getting Word of Cuts


Town council members in Wolcott put off voting on the town budget because they were waiting to see what happened with the state budget, but they will vote this afternoon. 

The vote comes a day after Gov. Dannel Malloy proposed $20 million in cuts to cities and towns. 

He said the cuts are necessary because his criminal justice reform bill failed to pass in the House of Representatives and he has to come up with the money somehow. 

State Republicans are calling for a veto override of the governor’s proposal and said it will hurt people by raising property taxes and cutting services. 

Democrats, however, said the Republican budget was out of balance and avoided making tough cuts. 

The Republican-American reports that the Wolcott town council decided to cut $100,000 from the town budget and $150,000 from the school budget to help absorb the loss of nearly $500,000 they will be losing in state assistance.  

The town council will be meeting at 12:30 p.m.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Case Transferred for Meriden Kidnapping Suspect


A woman who was arrested in connection with the abduction of another woman in Meriden last month had no comment as she left court on Friday and the case has been transferred to New Haven.

Police said Chasity Marquez, 26, of Naugatuck, was one of the drivers in a kidnapping on Nancy Lane on May 26.

A detective sergeant who was on his way to work saw two men in an SUV with police-style lights pull a woman over on Nancy Lane, just off of North Colony Road, at 7:52 a.m. on May 26, force her into the back seat of her own vehicle and drive off in the victim’s car, police said.

Marquez remained in the SUV after the men drove off with the victim and police said they took her into custody.

Officers would find the victim on the ground, crying, around two miles away from where she was abducted.

Police said this did not appear to be random and the motive appears to be a robbery.

Marques has been charged with first-degree kidnapping, first-degree conspiracy to commit kidnapping, carjacking, conspiracy to commit carjacking and impersonating a police officer.

She was released on bond and is due back in court later this month.

Police are still searching for the men who were involved.

Photo Credit: Meriden Police and NBCConnecticut.com

Crews Battle Fire at Burger King in Windsor Locks


Firefighters responded to a fire at a Burger King under construction or renovation at 84 Ella Grasso Turnpike in Windsor Locks. 

No one was injured. 

Officials said it appears to have started in the events, but the cause is not clear.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Teen Alone on Birthday


A photo of a Maine teenager sitting by herself at her birthday party is going viral and prompting people to send her cards.

The photo of 18-year-old Hallee Sorenson was shared on Facebook by her cousin, Rebecca Guildford of Oxford, Massachusetts, who wrote that Hallee has autism.

"Hallee is funny, sweet, caring, smart, an athlete, a jigsaw puzzle champion, a wonderful student, and a best friend to all. Hallee is an amazing person — a person I am proud to be related to," she wrote. "She is also a person who just happens to have Autism. She has never let that small detail define who she is as a person — which is why I refuse to use it as something to describe her."

She described the heartbreaking scene at Sorenson's last birthday party — the teen had sent invitations to classmates and other friends, and was excited to go bowling with them.

"Hallee sat at her party anxiously waiting for her friends to arrive so they could have fun," Guildford wrote. "But Hallee's friends would never arrive. Not a single one."

It was Sorenson's 18th birthday. What should have been a milestone of adulthood was instead painful and lonely, Guildford wrote.

"My cousin is a beautiful young woman who will always have the mind of a child," she wrote. "She was heartbroken and beyond sad. She was hurt."

Guildford wants her cousin's next birthday, in July, to be special. She is asking people reading her Facebook post to send birthday cards.

As of Friday morning, the post had been shared more than 136,000 times and received dozens comments from people pledging to send cards.

When Guildford first posted the photo, she hoped she would convince 50 to 100 of her friends to send cards to Hallee. Now she has been deluged with emails, including ones from Ireland, Italy and France.

"This has blown up to something I couldn't have even thought of in my wildest dreams," she said. "It's overwhelming, but in a good way. I definitely never saw this coming."

If people take one message from the photo, she hopes it is to be kind to one another, she said. Hallee still remembers her disappointment last year, she said.

"I'm hoping that with all of this that we're able to replace those negative memories with some really good, strong, awesome memories of what a birthday really should be like," Guildford said.

Guildford noted that many people have been asking about sending gifts, and that while her family appreciates the sentiment, "gifts truly aren't necessary. A nice card would be just fine!!!"

People who wish to send cards may direct them here:

Hallee Sorenson
34 Wellesley Way
Bangor, ME 04401

"Hal loves getting mail — this would be the best birthday gift she could ask for," Guildford wrote.

Photo Credit: Rebecca Lyn/Facebook
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Police Search for Driver in Stratford Hit-and-Run


A person was hit by a car in Stratford on Thursday night and police said the driver left the scene. 

The pedestrian was struck around 9 p.m. on Broadbridge Avenue, near Vought Place, and a witness told police the car might have been a dark color Subaru. 

The injuries the pedestrian suffered are not life-threatening. 

Anyone with information is asked to call Stratford Police Department at 203-385-4145 or 203-385-4100.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Police Investigate Smash-and-Grabs in Farmington


Police are investigating two smash-and-grab burglaries in Farmington in two days. 

Someone stole money from the Henny Penny at 989 Farmington Ave. at 12:47 a.m. on Friday. Detectives are working on the case and no one is in custody. 

There was another smash-and-grab at the Exxon at 6 Colt Highway on Thursday. 

Police said it happened at 1:52 a.m. and cash was taken. 

It’s not clear if the burglaries are connected.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Drunken Woman Had Child, Stun Gun in Car at School: Police


Naugatuck police have arrested a New Haven woman who they said was drunk in the parking lot of a Naugatuck school, had a child in the car and was in possession of a stun gun. 

Police responded to the parking lot of the Hillside Elementary School in Naugatuck at 1:18 p.m. on Thursday after someone reported that a woman was in the driver seat drinking alcohol. 

The officer found the car on Meadow Street and noticed a juvenile passenger in the car, police said. 

The driver, Lynette Akey, 47, of New Haven, was under the influence of alcohol, according to police, who said she was also in possession of a stun gun. 

Akey has been charged with operation under the influence, risk of injury to a child, weapons in a motor vehicle and other charges. 

She is due in Waterbury Superior Court on June 22.

Photo Credit: Naugatuck Police

Father's Day Gifts That Keep on Giving


There are more subscription services that bring meals and products right to your door than ever before. Here are a few gift ideas that keep on giving long after Father's Day.

Photo Credit: Sock Fancy

Shooter Fires Shots Into East Hartford Duplex


Someone fired gunshots into a duplex on Higbie Drive in East Hartford this morning and police are investigating.

Residents were home at the time, but no one was hurt, and witnesses said they heard at least five shots around 4 a.m.

“I hear da, da, da, da and I’m like, ‘Babe, babe, did you hear that?’ He was like, ‘I don’t know babe, it could have sounded like some gun shots,’ Ana Gonzalez, of East Hartford, said.

After the shots, Gonzalez heard the driver speed off.

“I’m kind of new to the neighborhood, I’m like, ‘I don’t like this neighborhood no more,’” said Gonzalez, who has lived in the Mayberry Village area for only three months.

Carol Pilkin, who has lived in the area for more than 50 years, said she’s been noticing more police in the neighborhood lately.

“They’ve been circling around the block the last five days lately, which is unusual,” she said.

Police are investigating and trying to determine who fired the shots.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Beacon Falls Man Killed in Crash on Route 8


A 35-year-old Beacon Falls man was killed in a crash on Route 8 South in Waterbury early Friday morning.

Police said Roy J. Gruner was going south on the road just before 1:30 a.m., went off the road and hit a tree.

An ambulance responded and transported Gruner to Waterbury Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The crash is under investigation.

Anyone with information is asked to call state police at 203-267-2200, exit 4346.

9-Year-Old Looks to Break World Record, Swimming to Alcatraz


James Savage, 9, is looking to break a world record, preparing to swim three miles to perform a touch-and-go to Alcatraz Island. Right now, that record is held by a 10-year-old.
Savage starting swimming at 5 years old, and now, four years later, he rarely leaves the water. "He comes out here and it's almost like he's home. He just wants to swim," James's mom, Jillian said.
In fact, James likes the water so much, he swims with sharks. Last year, he swam the San Francisco Bay in a race from Alcatraz Island.

Photo Credit: KSEE

3 Injured in Crash in Route 4 at Goshen-Torrington Line


Three people were flown to the hospital after a two-car crash on Route 4 on the Goshen-Torrington line.

The road was closed, but has since reopened. 

No additional information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Former 'Shield' Actor Sentenced


Michael Jace, an actor who portrayed a police officer on the TV series "The Shield," was sentenced to 40 years to life in prison Friday for fatally shooting his wife in front of their two young children in their Los Angeles home.

Before the sentence was handed down, Jace spoke for the first time in court, saying there was "no justification for my actions that night at all, and I am profoundly sorry for the pain I have caused everyone ... There is no replacing April."

The woman's mother, Kay Henry, quickly walked out of court after Jace maintained that "there was no premeditated anything."

"Irealize it doesn't bring her back," Jace said, turning to tell her family members, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry."

Jace was convicted of second-degree murder last week by a jury of six women and six men that deliberated for about two hours before finding the 53-year-old guilty in the killing of April Jace on May 19, 2014. He was also convicted on a special allegation charge that he used a handgun.

During the trial, the couple's 10-year-old son testified that he saw his father bring his mother into a hallway, where she fell down. "Then my dad said, 'If you like running, run to heaven, and then he shot her," the boy told jurors.

According to prosecutors, the actor was upset his wife wanted a divorce and was obsessed with the belief that she was seeing someone else.

Jace waited in their Hyde Park home in the 5400 block of Brynhurst Avenue and when his wife arrived, he shot her once in the back, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.

The defense memo requested the minimum sentence prescribed by law.

"Outside of this tragic killing, Mr. Jace has been a law-abiding citizen who has never been convicted or even arrested for a crime," defense attorney Jamon Hicks stated in a sentencing memorandum. "This was truly an anomaly for Mr. Jace."

The defense said there was no evidence that Jace was brewing and plotting the demise of his wife of nine years, and that the prosecution had "oversold this case" by pursuing a first-degree murder conviction.

One of Jace's attorneys, Jamon Hicks, conceded that Jace shot his wife once in the back and then twice in the legs. But he questioned whether the actor would have premeditated the shooting knowing that the children would be there.

Jace is best known for his role as Los Angeles police Officer Julien Lowe in "The Shield." He has also appeared in such films as "Forrest Gump," "Boogie Nights" and "Planet of the Apes."

Photo Credit: Getty Images

More Changes to Yard Goats Baseball Schedule


More changes are coming to the Yard Goats baseball schedule through early July because of construction delays at the stadium in downtown Hartford. 

Earlier this week, the Hartford Yard Goats announced changes through the end of June.  This afternoon, the team released schedule changes through July 10. 

The stadium was supposed to be substantially complete by May 17, but the city of Hartford gave the developer until 5 p.m. Tuesday to “demobilize” construction equipment and effectively vacate the site.

With construction stopped, the Eastern League of Professional Baseball has altered the schedule. 

Hartford was supposed to play the Binghamton Mets in Hartford in July and August, but the four-game series against the Mets, from July 4 through 7, will now be at NySeg Stadium in Binghamton, New York. 

The Yard Goats’ three-game series against the Portland Sea Dogs will also be at NySeg Stadium in Binghamton on July 8 and July 9. July 10 will now be an off day.

Yard Goats season ticket holders will be allowed to attend all of the games in Binghamton, New York with complementary tickets, courtesy of the Yard Goats. All other ticket sales will be handled by the Binghamton Mets.

Yard Goats New Schedule


  •  July 4 vs. B-Mets at Binghamton, New York 6:05 p.m.
  • July 5 vs. B-Mets at Binghamton, New York 6:05 p.m.
  • July 6 vs. B-Mets at Binghamton, New York 6:05 p.m.
  • July 7 vs. B-Mets at Binghamton, New York 1:05 p.m.
  • July 8 vs. Portland at Binghamton, New York 6:05 p.m.
  • July 9 vs. Portland at Binghamton, New York, with a doubleheader beginning at 1:05 p.m.
  • July 10 is now an off day

Photo Credit: Hartford Yard Goats

Medical Examiner to Determine Cause of Utility Worker’s Death in Wilton


A utility worker has died after a medical emergency while working on a job in Wilton on Thursday and an autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of his death.

Police said dispatchers received a 911 call reporting that a utility worker suffered a medical emergency on Rivergate Drive just after 12:30 p.m. on Thursday and emergency crews responded and transported Marcos Silva, 44, of Danbury, to Norwalk Hospital.

Norwalk Hospital then reached out to police and said they could not resuscitate Silva and he was pronounced dead.

Silva, an employee of KTI Utility Construction of Wilton, an Eversource subcontractor, was part of a crew placing a pole when he collapsed, according to police.

This might have been an electrical-related incident, according to police, and they are working with OSHA and Eversource Energy to investigate.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Mutual Aid Called in for New Milford Fire


Firefighters are battling a fire on Bonnie Vu Lane in New Milford and Litchfield County Dispatch said several departments are responding. 

Departments from Washington, Kent and Bridgewater are providing mutual aid, according to dispatchers. 

No additional information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: NBC 7

Vandal Tags New Haven Buildings With Anatomical Graffiti


Someone has been spraying images of male genitalia on property in the Westville neighborhood of New Haven for the last five months, including on a synagogue. Police have been trying to identify the person and finally have surveillance images of the man they think is responsible.

The man, who police referred to in a news release as a “member-marking mischief-maker” has tagged the properties with the word “penis” or images of one, police said.

The photos police released came from Congregation Beth El-Keser Israel Synagogue, at 85 Harrison St., on Wednesday and they show a man in a doorway urinate on the building. They he spots the surveillance camera above him, looks directly at it, and gives the camera lens a blast of spray paint, police said.

“We really don’t appreciate this and you should not do this, it’s a crime and it’s an insult to the community,” said Evan Trachten, the Westville neighborhood specialist with New Haven’s Livable City Initiative.

The vandal tagged six locations that night, including the traffic control box at the synagogue’s corner, according to police.

Anyone with information should call Sgt. Renee Dominguez at 203-946-7560.

Justin Schecker contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: New Haven Police

Trump Will Reverse Progress for Woman: Clinton


Speaking to the Planned Parenthood Action Fund on Friday, Hillary Clinton laid out a forceful case why Donald Trump would set progress back for women, NBC News reports. 

Clinton said Trump wants to take the country “back to the days when abortion was illegal,” is opposed paid family leave and wants to defund Planned Parenthood. 

"Instead of working to continue the progress we've made, Republicans, led by Donald Trump, are working to reverse it," Clinton said. "When Donald Trump says, 'Let's make America great again,' that is code for 'Let's take America backwards.'" 

Clinton also pointed to Trump’s controversial comments about Judge Gonzalo Curiel and said he “mocked” a disabled reporter. 

This was her first policy speech since becoming the presumptive Democratic nominee. She indicated she would continue pressing forward on the women’s rights issues she championed in the primary.

Photo Credit: AP

Couple With Stroller Steals $1,300 Worth of Items From CVS


A couple with an empty baby stroller walked into a CVS in Watertown and walked out with more than $1,300 worth of merchandise, police said. 

On Tuesday, a man and woman walked into the CVS on 25 Davis Street in Oakville with a baby stroller at 9:40 p.m., according to Watertown Police. 

The couple stole about $1,353 worth of items from the store by placing them into the stroller, police said. 

Police described the the man in his late 20s or early 30s, wearing a white t-shirt, long plaid shorts, sneakers and a red New England Patriots cap. The woman, also in her late 20s, wore a gray hooded zip-up, jeans, sneakers and a New England Patriots cap.

The pair drove a small silver sedan, police said. 

Anyone with information on the couple is asked to call Detective Ferrucci at (860) 945-5200 or Crimestopopers at (860) 945-9940.

Photo Credit: Watertown

CT Remembers 'Mr. Hockey,' Gordie Howe


Gordie Howe, a former Hartford Whaler and one of the greatest hockey players of all time, has died at the age of 88 and people in Connecticut are remembering him for the legacy he left behind as well as the mark he left on our state. 

Howe, a Hockey Hall of Famer who was known as “Mr. Hockey,” came to play for the New England Whalers in 1977 and he was a member of the team when the Hartford Whalers joined the NHL. 

During the 1979-1980 season, which would be his last in the NHL, he scored 41 points.

"Hockey lost a giant last night. A great player and a great man. The greatest honor I had in hockey was to be able to say Gordie Howe was my friend and he played for the Whalers,” Howard Baldwin, former owner of the Whalers, said in a statement posted on the Facebook page for Hartford Whaler Nation

 “There will be thunderstorms in heaven due to its latest arrival throwing some mighty body checks," he said in a statement. 

U.S. Rep. John Larson, one of the many Whalers fans who had the opportunity to watch Howe play here, said Mr. Hockey was already a living legend when he came to Hartford to play hockey. 

“This week, we say goodbye to another giant of the sports world, Gordie Howe. Those of us who still reserve a special place in our hearts for the Hartford Whalers remember how incredibly lucky we felt to watch Mr. Hockey himself take the ice with his sons, Mark and Marty, as the pillars of the brand new franchise,” Larson said.

Larson said the Howes became Connecticut’s First Family of Hockey when they moved to Glastonbury. 

“We remember his endurance, his achievements, and the uncanny combination of brute strength and sheer skill that baffled goalies and left those in his wake battered and bruised. Most of all, we remember his love of the game and his service to his community and the sport,” Larson said in a statement.

On a sad days for fans, Connecticut residents are reflecting on the positive memories. 

“I have some sorrow because he was a player that gave the kids a lot of drive to be hockey players and also to do good in life,” Joseph Morin, of Bristol, said. 

John Werner, Bristol, said Howe was probably one of the top 12 players in the world at that time. 

“And to see him play with his sons, that was his big thing, that's why he came back for some few more years,” Werner said. 

Among the marks Howe left on Connecticut is at Quinnipiac University, where he raised money to build the TD Bank Sports Arena. 

“My senior year, we opened this building. Mr. Howe came into the locker room and spoke to the team. I remember his big message was, ‘Keep your ears open and keep your mouth shut,’” Reid Cashman, Quinnipiac’s assistant coach, said. 

At Quinnipiac, a sweater that says “Mr. Hockey” and has his number 9 hangs on the wall in tribute to him. 

Photo Credit: Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
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