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Bridgeport Man Accused of Sexually Assaulting Children 10 Years Ago


Police have arrested a Bridgeport man who is accused of sexually assaulting two children in Norwalk 10 years ago. 

The Norwalk Police Department Special Victims Unit started investigating allegations in May that 39-year-old Jose Cardenas, of Bridgeport, sexually assaulted two juvenile victims in 2006. 

Police said they arrested him on Friday and charged Cardenas with first-degree sexual assault, two counts of fourth-degree sexual assault and two counts of risk of injury to a minor. 

Bond was set at $500,000.

Photo Credit: Norwalk Police

Trump Calls For End to Violence


Delivering his law-and-order message at a rally in Chester Township, Pennsylvania, saying that "The main victims of these violent demonstrations are law abiding African-Americans who live in these communities and only want to raise their children in safety and peace and with a good education." He also criticized Hillary Clinton, saying that "The job of a leader is to stand in someone else's shoes and see things from their perspective. You have to be able to do that."

Scattered Showers This Evening


The first true taste of fall will arrive this weekend.

Clouds will give way to a few showers this evening, with temperatures in the lower 80s.

Morning clouds will be replaced by increasing sunshine on Saturday, but temperatures will only reach 70 degrees.

It turns even cooler Sunday, under sunny skies, as temperatures only rise into the middle 60s.

High pressure building in overhead means the wind will go calm and there's a chance for the season's first frost Sunday night.

Upper 30s are possible in the Connecticut River Valley, while middle 30s are possible in the hill towns.

Monday appears dry and seasonable with plenty of sunshine.

A period of rain is likely Tuesday morning as a cold front comes through. But, that looks to be the only rain of consequence next week.

Dry weather returns Wednesday and lasts into the weekend with high temperatures each day in the lower 70s.

5 Juveniles, 2 Adults Arrested Amid West Hartford Car Break-In Investigation


West Hartford police have arrested two adults and five juveniles in connection with an investigation into several car break-ins in Elmwood. 

Police said they were contacted on Thursday after burglars went into 20 vehicles and stole electronics and other valuables and the investigation led them to 1195 New Britain Ave. 

When police went to search the home, they noticed a drug transaction, stopped the suspected drug dealer, Quinton Prince, 21, of Hartford, as he was leaving and found illegal drugs, police said. 

West Hartford police said Prince is suspected of selling drugs to a 13-year-old. 

When police searched the house, they found stolen items and drugs and arrested five juveniles and one other adult. 

Prince was charged with two counts of possession of narcotics, one count of possession of a hallucinogen, one count of possession of less than half an ounce of marijuana, one count of possession of narcotics with intent to sell, one count of possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell, one count of weapons in a motor vehicle, one count of illegal tints, one count of unreadable license plate and one count of risk of injury to a minor. Bond set at $10,000. 

Alejandro Rodriguez, 18, of Newington, was charged with 20 counts of third-degree burglary, six counts of sixth-degree larceny, fifth-degree larceny, conspiracy to commit burglary in the third degree, risk of injury to a child and possession of less than half an ounce of marijuana. 

Bond was set at $10,000.

Photo Credit: West Hartford Police

Muslim Group Sues City Alleging Racial Discrimination


A New York Islamic group is suing the City of Yonkers for landmarking a house in, what they claim, is an alleged attempt to stop it from being converted to a mosque, NBC News reported.

The Islamic Community Center for Mid Westchester accuses the city of religious discrimination and constitutional violations for landmarking a 108-year-old mansion in June, after the group purchased it last year. 

"The landmark designation denies [the center] the right to have a house of worship bearing all relevant Islamic characteristics,” the lawsuit reads.

The Islamic group wants the court to block the City of Yonkers from enforcing the landmark designation, and to award attorneys' fees as well as compensatory damages no less than $25 million.

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York

Lockdown at Hospital, Health Center Over After Reports of Man With Gun


Johnson Memorial Hospital in Stafford and Evergreen Health Center were on lockdown after reports of man with a firearm, according to state police, but the situation has been resolved.

Police said no one was injured and a person was taken into custody.  

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Crash Closed Route 87 in Franklin


Route 87 in Franklin was closed for hours on Friday morning after a driver hit a traffic sign and a utility police.

State police said a 24-year-old Columbia man who was heading north veered out of his lane just before 1 a.m. and hit a Department of Transportation traffic signal and a utility pole before stopping.

The driver was injured and he was brought to Windham Hospital. Police said the injuries are minor.

The man’s truck towed his vehicle from the scene.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Governor Calls for Special Session on Sikorsky Deal


Gov. Dannel Malloy is calling for a special session on Wednesday morning for lawmakers to vote on a deal reached with Lockheed Martin to keep Sikorsky Aircraft in the state. 

Approval from the General Assembly is a necessary step to the deal, which to keep Sikorsky Aircraft in Connecticut until 2032. 

Lockheed Martin purchased Sikorsky from United Technologies and the deal would ensure that Sikorsky will build the CH53 King Stallion Helicopter in Stratford. The Navy has already submitted orders for the Marines to use the helicopters. 

Malloy said in a statement that the deal would retain and grow approximately 8,000 jobs at Sikorsky Aircraft until 2032, keep the Sikorsky headquarters here in Connecticut, and increase investments in in-state suppliers.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Police Seek Help to Identify Man Who Robbed Canterbury Bank


State Police Detectives are investigating a bank robbery early this morning in Canterbury and they are asking for help from the public to identify the robber. 

State Troopers responded to Savings Institute on Route 14 in Canterbury at 9:10 a.m. after a man implied he had a weapon and left with cash. 

The robber was described as around 5-feet-7 and in his late 40s to early 50s. 

He has a light brown beard and was wearing a Yankee baseball hat, blue jeans, a maroon hooded sweat shirt and dark colored work boots. 

He walked away, going west on Route 14 and might have left in a dark-colored SUV. 

Anyone with information about the bank robbery should call detectives at 860-779-4900 or text “TIP711” with your information to 274637.

Photo Credit: Connecticut State Police

Man Stuck in Car 3 Days After Crash


For three days, Kevin Bell was trapped inside the wreckage of a crash with the body of his dead girlfriend, according to police. 

Shortly after 5 p.m. on Tuesday, officers responded to a crash on U.S. Route 50 near the Jennings-Ripley County line in southeast Indiana, according to Indiana State Police.

There they found Bell, 39, of Dover, Pennsylvania, who had crawled up a 70 to 75-foot ravine from the crash site with injuries to his legs and a bag of belongings, including two 14-pound bowling balls, according to the York Daily Record. Officers also located a 1999 Ford Explorer off the road with the body of Nikki Reed, 37, of Seymour, Indiana, inside. 

However, the facts of the crash and the days thereafter are not adding up for Reed's family because both Reed and Bell had cell phones on their person, according to LEX18.com. Bell reportedly texted a friend but did not call 911.

The crash occurred on Saturday, investigators said, when Bell lost control of the SUV and ran off the road into an embankment, striking a tree head on. Reed died instantly in the crash, police said, and Bell's legs were so badly damaged that he wasn't able to leave the car, which was not visible from the road, until Tuesday. 

Reed's family reported both her and Bell missing on Sunday when they hadn't heard from the two in more than a day, police said. Reed made a trip to Pennsylvania to pick Bell up and they were returning to Reed's home to celebrate her son's birthday when the crash occurred, according to WAVE

Bell was taken with non-life threatening injuries to a hospital in North Vernon, Indiana. 

The investigation into the crash is ongoing. 

Photo Credit: Indiana State Police

Muralist Salutes Colin Kaepernick


San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick has received death threats and the dubious title of the most disliked player in the NFL this week.

But there are plenty of people who like what Kaep's been doing, too: Not standing during the national anthem over issues of equity and police brutality.

And now, the QB has an Oakland artist who's got his back.

A muralist who signed the work "FLC" painted a striking image of Kaepernick on what appears to be the back of a garbage structure at 22nd Street and Telegraph Avenue. Across the athlete's face are the words "We Got Your Back." A mural of Ray Charles is on the other side of the wall, and the entire art piece is a block or two away from the Oakland Burmese Mission Baptist Church and a main thoroughfare in the downtown-to-Temescal district.

The image caught the eye of Pendarvis Harshaw, 29, a journalist and senior communications associate at PolicyLink, who saw it on Thursday walking home from work. After tweeting out a picture of it, Harshaw garnered nearly 1,000 retweets in 15 hours.

"The illustration speaks volumes," Harshaw said. "It's about the community rallying around the athlete." But he also noted how significant that is in Oakland, home to the rival football team, the Raiders. Oaklanders usually never tip their hats across the bay to the San Francisco 49ers.

Kaerpernick has indeed divided the country over what constitutes patriotism and received scorn in less progressive parts of the United States. But the biracial football player is a hero to many in Oakland. Several high school students are now starting to grow out their hair in full Afros, which Kaepernick sported a couple of weeks ago. The city of Oakland is comprised of roughly 30 percent African Americans, compared to the rest of the Bay Area, which has just about 7 percent, Census data shows.

Most recently, his coach, Chip Kelly, who is white, told reporters Thursday afternoon that he also believes his quarterback is standing up, or sitting down, for the right reasons.

"He's shedding light on a situation that is heinous, it shouldn't happen in this country," Kelly said, regarding police shootings of black men. "You look at what's going on in Tulsa and Charlotte in the last two nights — it's an issue that's in the forefront of our country. It needs to be addressed. It needs to be taken care of because it's not right."

Photo Credit: Pendarvis Harshaw
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Waterbury Residents Asked to Conserve Water as Levels Lower


The mayor of Waterbury is asking residents to conserve water as the city’s water levels continue to get low.

The city Water Department monitors its water levels daily and Water Superintendent Chris Bogucki said the usable supply as of Sept. 22 was 55 percent, or a 201-day supply.

“As you may know, the state Department of Public Health issued a statewide drought advisory in June due to a lack of rainfall,” Mayor O’Leary said in a statement. “Over the course of the summer, we have continued to experience below normal rainfall. So we are asking Waterbury customers and the other town water departments supplied by our water system to help us voluntarily conserve water.”

The mayor’s office remedies to help conserve water include fixing leaking pipes and fixtures, running only full loads of dishwashers and washing machines, rinsing all hand-washed dishes together, turn off water while brushing your teeth or shaving, and limiting the amount of outside water use.

Photo Credit: AP

Key NJ Legislators Considering Christie Impeachment: Sources


Key members of the New Jersey Assembly have begun researching whether or not to bring articles of impeachment against Gov. Chris Christie, NBC 4 New York has learned. 

This follows early testimony in the George Washington Bridge scandal trial, which some Assembly members believe shows the Republican governor had more knowledge of the lane closures in Fort Lee during and after that week in 2013 then he has led the public to believe.   

One committee chairman who did not want to be named said "clearly obstruction of justice" would be an obvious charge against the governor.   

The legislator told NBC 4 New York the chances are probably 50-50 that the assembly would pursue impeachment.   

A Christie spokesman offered a one-word response to the report: "Ridiculous."

The decision on impeachment will be up to Democratic Speaker Vincent Prieto and if he gives the go-ahead, the Assembly Judiciary Committee would begin the process.   

It takes a majority of the 80-member Assembly to vote articles of impeachment.

If it passes the Democrat-controlled body, the trial would be in the Senate, where two-thirds of senators would be needed to convict. Although Democrats hold a majority in the Senate, they would need three Republican senators to join them if all Democrats vote to convict.

Christie is nearing the end of his second term, with a new governor due to be sworn in 16 months from now. The one-time presidential candidate and key Donald Trump advisor is often mentioned as a possible attorney general in a Trump administration.

Earlier this month, Christie acknowledged to MSNBC that the bridge scandal was likely a factor in Trump passing him over for vice president. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Hartford Police Responding to Report of Assault Weapon Arrest 2 Suspects


Hartford police have arrested a man accused of pointing an assault weapon on Risley Street this morning. 

Police said they learned at 7:39 a.m. that a man had a gun on the street, so they responded and found several people around a vehicle at Risley St. 

As the investigated further, they saw a man in the road with a Bushmaster AR 5.56 mm assault rifle, police said, and they detained him. 

Police also found an Interarms Firestar .40 caliber pistol and arrested two people. 

Horace Kelly, 20, of Hartford, was charged with possession of an assault weapon, criminal possession of a firearm and possession of a large-capacity magazine. 

Nicki Butler, 20, of Wethersfield, was charged with criminal possession of a pistol, pistol without a permit and weapons in a motor vehicle.

Photo Credit: Hartford Police

Brits Bash Pugs, American Dog Lovers Respond


It’s a good thing Instagram celebrity Doug the Pug lives in the United States.

If he were from the United Kingdom, he might confront an unexpected stigma this week after the British Veterinary Association called for prospective dog owners to avoid flat-faced dog breeds.

The warning targets canines of the brachycephalic variety, or dogs with little to no snout, like pugs, bulldogs, and shih tzus.

According to The Guardian, Sean Wensley, president of the BVA, said “prospective dog owners need to consider that these dogs can suffer a range of health issues throughout their lives, from eye ulcers to painful spine abnormalities and severe breathing difficulties that can result in otherwise preventable surgery.”

Many domestic canine lovers say the Brits are grossly overreacting.

Richard Goldstein, chief medical officer at Manhattan’s Animal Medical Center, explained that nearly all thoroughbreds will come with baggage because of their specializations; if you’re looking for a problem-free dog, he recommended swinging by a shelter and picking out a medium-sized mutt.

That said, Goldstein has his own brachycephalic pooch, an 8-year-old English toy spaniel he absolutely adores. 

“Our role is not to try to eliminate certain breeds or tell people that they shouldn’t get them,” said the vet. “I definitely feel like there’s a place for them, and I don’t feel like we should be discouraging the appropriate owner from adopting one.”

The American Kennel Club agrees with the message, writing that it "emphatically supports freedom of choice in selecting a pet." 

"AKC actively promotes efforts to ensure that people are educated, understand the demands of responsible ownership and have access to healthy, well-bred dogs that are right for them," a spokesperson told NBC.

They emphasized "that breeding programs should be undertaken responsibly for the purpose of preserving breed characteristics and producing healthy, well-socialized purebred puppies... Owners should be diligent in the care and overall well-being of their dog by keeping track of their exercise, health visits, vaccinations and other preventative measures that aid in their dog maintaining its best health."

All breeds have their pros and cons, and flat-faced canines do come with flaws.

Goldstein allowed that brachycephalic dogs are more prone to airway and back problems, and sometimes suffer from skin damage, like many breeds.

According to Julie Legred, executive director at the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America, "brachycephalic breeds have an increased risk of complications during anesthesia." But, she countered, by following protocols and using certified veterinary technicians, such surgical errors dramatically decrease.

Because the dogs' faces are so close to the objects they sniff, their owners must be attentive, said Cynthia Cool, a pug breeder in Vacaville, California.. They’re also more sensitive to weather than other breeds. 

“If you’re walking the dog, you need to exercise them when it’s cooler as opposed to too warm outside,” she advised. 

In terms of life expectancy, Cool bragged that some of her pugs celebrated 16th birthdays. On average, the animals make it to 11 or 12, which is typical for a dog under 20 pounds. By contrast, Goldstein said that large dogs tend to have the shortest lives, with some considered geriatric at only 5 years old.

John Little, president of the Bulldog Club of America, didn't seem convinced about his favorite pooch's deficiencies.  

“The fact is that the bulldog is an exceptional breed,” he added. “It’s a tremendous pet, and it has all the characteristics we want in it.”

Not all canine experts pushed back hard against the BVA's recommendations.

The American Veterinary Medical Association said in a statement to NBC that flat-faced dogs and their associated physical attributes "that negatively affect the animal's welfare should not be bred, as those characteristics and related problems are likely to be passed on to their puppies." 

But rescues are a different story, the group said. 

"Existing dogs with these conditions should not be passed over for adoption as long as the potential owner is informed of the animal's potential health risks and is willing to provide an appropriate lifestyle and necessary veterinary care as issues arise."

Photo Credit: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

Burglars Stole Computers, Coin Collection and Wine from Orange Home


Police are investigating after someone broke into a home in Orange on Thursday and stole two computers, a coin collection and bottles of wine.

Police said a neighbor contacted police just before 10 a.m. about a shiny silver sedan with tinted windows that fled after people were in the neighbor’s house because she thought the people in the car committed a burglary.

The neighbor said two people wearing hoods left the house carrying items and entered the sedan, which sped off.

She said she tried to follow the car, but returned to the neighborhood and called police.

The victim returned home after learning of the burglary and reported items were missing, police said.

Police urge residents to call police as soon as you see suspicious activity and avoid getting directly involved.

Try to get vehicles license plates and a description of the vehicle and its occupants.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Investigative Services Unit at 203-891-2138.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News

Water Search for Missing Middletown Mother, Son Suspended


After six days of an exhausting effort to find two missing Connecticut boaters, the Coast Guard has suspended its search for them.

Rescuers were unable to locate 54-year-old Linda Carman and her son 22-year-old Nathan Carman, of Middletown, along with their 32-foot fishing boat. The pair was reported missing Sunday night when loved-ones didn’t hear back from them.

The Coast Guard searched an area near Block Island, a search that expanded through 62,000 square miles. The search expanded from the coast of Rhode Island to New York and as far as New Jersey.

“They’re good people and if they’re not home, they should be,” Said Sharon Hartstein who has been friends with Linda for over 20 years. She said Coast Guard officials came to her home today to tell her the news.

Hartstein said Linda let her know she would be leaving Ram’s Point Marina in Point Judith early Sunday morning and they were supposed to come back later that day.

She showed us the last text messages between her and Linda: “So she sent this email Friday, I mean text message, saying that they were going from ‘Rams Point around 1 [a.m. Sunday], back by 9 [a.m. Sunday]. Call me 12 noon if you don’t hear from me. Thanks for being there.’”

As the search is suspended for the pair, NBC Connecticut has learned, according to Windsor Police, Nathan is the grandson of John Chakalos, the 87-year-old man who was found dead in his home by a gunshot wound to the head back in December 2013. Linda is Chakalos’s daughter.

No arrests have been made in the case.

Before that, Nathan – who suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome -- was also the center of a 2011 investigation when he went missing and was found in Virginia.

Middletown Police also tell NBC Connecticut they have made several attempts this week to go to the home in hope of the Carmans’ returning.

While coast guard officials said they found a white cushion Thursday in Point Judith, where the pair left from, at this point they have not been able to determine whether it is connected to their boat.

Photo Credit: United States Coast Guard

Green Party's Jill Stein Visits CCSU


Green Party presidential hopeful Jill Stein visited Central Connecticut State University Thursday.

College campuses have been friendly territory for the little known physician who also ran for president in 2012 on the Green Party ticket, though her name never made it onto the Connecticut ballot.

She described herself as the sensible alternative to both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

“We say, forget the lesser evil, fight for the greater good like our lives depend on it," Stein told the crowd of about 200 in the middle of CCSU's New Britain campus.

Stein brought with her a message that the federal government has an obligation to pay to cancel out all student loan debt in the United States. She said she would pay for it by charging Wall Street traders a more than 5 percent sales tax on every trade they make.

Wall Street firms, Stein said, got a bailout in 2008 during the financial crisis, that left ordinary Americans out in the cold.

“They found a way to bail out the crooks on Wall Street. Well if they did that, it’s about time they bailed out the victims of that crashed economy, the young people who were held hostage by student loan debt.”

Stein suffers from a serious lack of name recognition. She's consistently polled in the low single digits and she will not be on the stage for the first presidential debate scheduled for next Monday at Hofstra University in Long Island, New York. However, like she's done in the past, she will be at Hofstra to protest for what she calls an "open debate system."

“We will be there, like it or not, we are showing up because we have a right.”

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

New Britain High School Introduces Energy Fuel Cell


New Britain High School staff said they will soon be keeping the lights on and the classes warm with a new emission friendly energy source.

A large object now sitting in the back of New Britain High administrators said is the future when it comes to their energy production.

"It makes less noise than the noise you hear in the background" said New Britain Public School Energy Manager Robert Smedley.

It's called a fuel cell and administrators said it works by pumping natural gas over a hydrogen core, DC electricity is created which is then converted to AC electricity which powers the school. 

"The fuel cell also generates a byproduct of heat from the electricity that we will also use to heat the building versus using the boilers," said Smedley.

How is the school paying for this 60 ton, $27 million, emission friendly fuel solution?

"It cost the school district zero. It's a no capital investment and the reason for that is because the power purchase agreement," said Smedley.

Smedley said before the fuel cell New Britain administrators said they paid more than $490,000 for both gas and electric per year.

Now with a new 20 year agreement with the fuel cell company the school will received a discounted rate for energy produced. Driving the cost down to close to $430,000 a year.

"The fuel cell is outside and it has all the standard features of safety equipment you can have. It would shut itself down if there is ever any trouble. The building will switch over to the normal boilers so it's it uninterrupted power essentially," said Smedley.

Staff said the new power will used by this December.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Plainville Installs Wi-Fi LED Traffic Lights


The town of Plainville has installed hundreds of new LED street lights and some are being equipped with a special feature.

If you look up in Plainville, you'll see some of the 1,400 new LED street lights. A more than $360,000 upgrade from the bulbs you're used to. According to town officials the new lights should save the town nearly $70,000 a year on electric costs because of the LED’s efficiency.

But there's one more bright idea from the town: having 123 new LED street light emit free Wi-Fi.

"Who doesn't feel good about free Wi-Fi?" said New Britain Visitor Yara Velazquez.

Town officials say of the 123 lights, 25 will act as access points.

Those access points will catch the 10mbps signal beamed out of the municipal building.

Then the other 98 Wi-Fi lamps will act as extenders pushing the signal all around downtown Plainville.

"Now everyone can walk up and down the street to play Pokémon,” laughed Pam Kristoff.

Kristoff said she’s intrigued as a business manager whose customers often ask to connect to their internet.

"They are all looking for the passwords.” said Kristoff.

She also doesn't mind the towns idea of using the Wi-Fi login page for paid advertising space.

"I’ll have to check that out,” said Kristoff.

Ad-money town officials said will be used to help pay for the more than $10,000 per year service.

"With that, we are hoping it will offset any cost of maintenance for the Wi-Fi" said Assistant Town Manager Shirley Osle.

With Plainville being the first town in Connecticut to have Wi-Fi showering down on its residents from street lights, the signal for support is clear.

"It's awesome!” said Velazquez.

Town officials said the new Wi-Fi should begin in about a month.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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