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About 1,000 Gallons of Fuel Spills Following Manchester Crash

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Gallons of fuel spilled in Manchester following a crash, fire officials said. 

A home heating oil delivery truck tipped onto its side on New State Road after getting into an accident with another car, Manchester Fire Department Chief Don Moore said.

New State Road between Hilliard Street and West Middle Turnpike is closed. 

About 1,000 gallons of fuel spilled onto the road, but Moore said the spill is contained.

Both drivers were taken to the hospital for injuries and their conditions are unknown.

No other details were immediately available for this developing story. 



Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

More Wintry Weather Ahead Tonight

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We're tracking an area of precipitation that will bring another round of sleet, freezing rain, and plain rain to the state. Check out a list of the latest closings and delays. Numerous after school activities have been cancelled.

Here's a look at one of our computer models (Rapid Refresh Model) for tonight at 11:00 PM. It shows widespread rain showers with a wintry mix for areas north of the I-84 corridor.

Untreated roads and sidewalks could once again become slick as temperatures fall this evening. 

Temperatures throughout Connecticut will fall into the low 30s this evening. We're forecasting a low of 31 degrees in Torrington and 36 degrees in New Haven. 

In addition to the wintry mix the winds will also be gusty. We're forecasting wind gusts to 30 mph. Luckily winds won't be as strong as they were Monday night. Stonington received a gust of 66 MPH which was the highest recorded in the state. 

Get your detailed precision First Alert 10-day forecast plus hour-by-hour weather and interactive radar by downloading the NBC Connecticut app.

     


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Man at Center of Scheme to Defraud Homeowners Pleads Guilty

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A former Easton man who federal officials said targeted homeowners in foreclosure in Connecticut for years and personally benefited off the properties pleaded guilty in a Hartford court on Tuesday to fraud and tax evasion offenses, according to the United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut. 

Timothy W. Burke, 65, was accused of targeting homeowners who were going through foreclosure from 2010 to November 2015 and convincing them that he would buy their homes and pay off their mortgages. Federal officials said he went as far as telling the victims they could ignore any notices regarding foreclosure, but instead of paying off the mortgages, Burke advertised the properties and rented them for thousands of dollars.

Burke pocketed the money and many of the houses he purported to have bought ended up being foreclosed upon, according to federal officials.

The NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters began looking into Burke in 2014 and found that he used more than 20 aliases and business names, including "Jimmy" and "Bill." An IRS investigator credits the Troubleshooters’ coverage with exposing the scheme and preventing more victims.

A federal grand jury indicted him in New Jersey in 2002. Burke pleaded guilty to several counts in that case, including conspiracy to commit equity skimming and mail fraud, and he was sentenced to 60 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release

Burke served four years in federal prison and his supervised release was terminated in 2009, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, and he started his real estate dealings in Connecticut soon after.

Burke has been detained in Connecticut since he was arrested on Nov. 19, 2015. He could serve up to 20 years behind bars for mail fraud. His sentencing is scheduled for April 18



Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Tribes to Discuss Possibility of Third CT Casino in East Windsor

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Tribes are holding a community meeting in East Windsor to discuss the possibility of a casino in town. 

The Mashantucket Pequots and the Mohegans' meeting starts at 7 p.m. on Tuesday in the middle school auditorium.

Earlier Tuesday, the Coalition Against Casino Expansion said they do not want a third casino, focusing on the negative economic and social impact of gambling, bringing out victims of gambling addiction to state their case.

"I took it from playing bingo all the way to sleeping in a prison," said Joanie Masot of Advocacy Unlimited. "Before 2008, all I did was gambling. And literally in 2008, I hit the bottom rock. I lost my businesses. I lost my job. I lost everything," said Adam Osmond of Farmington.

On the other side are those who want a third casino. The police union in East Windsor said in a statement:

"If this is approved, it will help the local economy by bringing good jobs to our community and generating revenues that will benefit our entire town."

People in the area near where the proposed casino would go in East Windsor, by the old Showcase Cinema, had mixed reactions.

Said Lisa Cloutier of East Granby, "I'm not sure. I'm concerned about traffic. I'm concerned about crime. I guess I am not that excited about it."

But, as pointed out by Loiubov Fedorov of Enfield, "It's closer than me driving to Foxwoods or Mohegan Sun."

A similar meeting to the one tonight will be held on Thursday in Windsor Locks, the other proposed site.

Representatives in Bridgeport are still fighting to get a casino in that city as well.



Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Badlands National Park's Climate Change Tweets Deleted

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The Twitter account for Badlands National Park in South Dakota published a series of tweets Tuesday on climate change. A few hours later, the tweets were deleted.

The first tweet, posted an hour after President Donald Trump signed executive orders advancing the construction of the controversial Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines, said: “The pre-industrial concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere was 280 parts per million (ppm). As of December 2016, 404.93 ppm.”

Just moments later, the park posted another tweet: “Today, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is higher than at any time in the last 650,000 years” — with the hashtag “#climate” added for good measure.

The next tweet said: “Flipside of the atmosphere; ocean acidity has increased 30% since the Industrial Revolution. ‘Ocean Acidification’ #climate #carboncycle” 

The last tweet said: "Burning one gallon of gasoline puts nearly 20lbs of carbon dioxide into our atmosphere." 

By 5:35 p.m. ET, all four tweets were deleted.

Tweeting about climate change isn't out of character for Badlands. The park's Twitter account feed addresses the national security implications of climate change, rising water temperatures and the decline of species driven by global warming. But it does contradict President Trump's stance on the issue. He has repeatedly claimed climate change is a hoax.

In response to the tweets being deleted, DNC national press secretary Adrienne Watson released the following statement: “Vladimir Putin would be proud.”

Tuesday's tweets followed a brief suspension Friday of the National Park Service’s Twitter account, as well as those of all its bureaus, over retweets the Department of the Interior deemed "inconsistent with the agency’s mission."

The prohibition came after the National Park Service’s official Twitter account, a bureau of the department, retweeted a pair of posts to its 315,000 followers. One of the tweets was a photo that compared the crowd gathered on the National Mall for Trump to the much-larger gathering that stood in the same spot eight years earlier for President Barack Obama's first swearing-in. The tweets were later removed from the feed, and the National Park Service apologized for sharing them.

A day later, National Park Service spokesman Thomas Crosson said the agencies could resume tweeting “Now that social media guidance has been clarified.”

It was not immediately clear what information was in the guidance and whether Badlands National Park violated it.

Crosson had no immediate comment on the deletions.



Photo Credit: Badlands National Park
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VW Driver in South Windsor Frustrated By Long Claims Process

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A South Windsor man has waited months to turn in his 2014 Volkswagen Jetta TDI but reached out to NBC Connecticut Responds when the claims process became frustrating.

Norman Cofalka leased the Jetta in February 2014 with the intent of buying it when the lease was up.

"I work in aerospace. We're looking at clean emissions, quieter engines. And this was an engineering marvel, that it was portrayed to be," he said.

However, Cofalka was disappointed to learn that was not actually the case in 2016 when Volkswagen admitted that about 475,000 vehicles with 2-liter four-cylinder diesel engines were equipped with software to cheat emissions tests.

In October last year, a federal judge approved a nearly $15 billion settlement, giving VW owners the option of selling their diesel vehicles back to the automaker or having them repaired.

Cofalka chose to terminate his lease early.

He stopped driving the Jetta in October and bought a new vehicle, believing the claims process would be fairly quick. He continued to make his monthly lease payments on the Volkswagen, as required under the terms of the settlement.

Cofalka received a formal settlement offer letter at the end of November. He had it notarized and faxed it back to Volkswagen the next day but received no further updates.

Cofalka called Volkswagen in January for an update and learned his paperwork never made it into the system.

Once he resubmitted it, an agent directed him to go to the online claims portal to make an appointment to turn his vehicle over to Volkswagen. The earliest available date was Feb. 23, 2017, right when Cofalka’s lease is set to end.

"I was told that I the lease could be terminated early. And in essence, even though they've said that, they're stretching it out so I'm paying the full lease amount," he said.

NBC Connecticut Responds reached out to VW on Cofalka’s behalf. The company did not directly address his situation, but provided the following statement:

“Overall, we are encouraged by the customer response to the 2.0L TDI settlement program and the exceptional participation rate so far. As of January 14th, Volkswagen had extended more than 266,000 offers to affected customers and by the end of January, we expect to have processed approximately 96,000 buybacks and lease terminations. This program is unprecedented in terms of its size and scope and we have hired, approximately 900, contract employees to help accommodate demand. We know that there have been some issues along the way and our teams have been working tirelessly to make necessary adjustments and continually improve the process.”

A member of Volkswagen’s customer care team reached out to Cofalka directly to address his concerns.

Unfortunately, Cofalka will not be able to hand over the vehicle before February 23.

"All my possessions have been removed from the vehicle. I have the keys ready. I'm ready to drop this off today. That's all I want to do," he said.

Plainville Officer Accused of Stealing Hundreds of Pills

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A Plainville officer was put on paid leave last year after being accused of taking hundreds of prescription pills while on the scene of a suicide.

Plainville Police Chief Matthew Catania suggests terminating Sgt. Michael Bisnov amid from the police force, according to the final report of the internal affairs investigation, obtained by NBC Connecticut.

Bisnov was one of the officers who responded to a suspected suicide on January 18, 2016, after a family friend of 54-year-old Frank Iris called 911 to report not hearing from his friend for a couple of days. The report said he was the scene supervisor.

The responding officers found Iris’ body inside his apartment. Scattered nearby were 21 bottles of prescription pills, including painkillers.

In video obtained by NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters, Bisnov is seen carrying a yellow bag into the police station after responding to the scene. The final investigation report said the bag contained prescription pills found at Iris’ residence.

“[Bisnov] is then observed dumping the contents of the bag into the prescription drop box, without properly logging the medications as evidence,” according to the author of that report Lt. Nick Mullins.

The report also states that Bisnov took a stop in between to the men’s locker room.

“Bisnov opened sealed prescription bottles and at some point in time, an oxycodone 5 mg pill inside one of the bottles fell on the floor without his knowledge. The best evidence is that during this time, Sgt. Bisnov took a substantial amount of Frank Iris' medication (pills) and mixed together some of the remaining medications prior to disposing the rest in the prescription drop box," Mullins wrote.

The officer was put on paid leave eight days after the suicide report. Bisnov denied taking any of the 230 pills that went missing for his personal use. When specifically asked if he stole the medication, the former officer’s response was, “No, I didn’t,” according to documents contained within the report.

In fact, Bisnov told investigators he disposed of the pills at the request of Iris’ family, however, the victim’s mother, Carolyn, said the officer offered to get rid of the pills himself.

“(Bisnov” said he was going to put the medications in a safe place” Carolyn told NBC Connecticut.

When investigators pulled Bisnov’s prescription history from the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection, they found medications that matched pills gathered at the suicide scene.

The internal affairs report concluded Bisnov violated nine sections of the department's rules and regulations, including truthfulness, conduct unbecoming an officer and falsifying records. No criminal charges have been filed against Bisnov, of Meriden.

The town council will meet next month to consider Bisnov’s future with the department.

In the meantime, Bisnov is still earning his $83,000 annual salary from the sidelines. The NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters requested and obtained the most recent direct deposit slips from Town Manager, Robert E. Lee.

We reached out to both Sgt. Bisnov and the police union multiple times but have not heard back.

State police are also investigating this case.



Photo Credit: Plainville Police Department

Yard Goats 2017 Promotional Schedule

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DayDatePromotion & SponsorTimeOpponent
ThursdayApril 13Opening Night (Dunkin' Donuts), Atlas Fireworks (Atlas Pyrovision Entertainment Group)7:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
FridayApril 14Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
SaturdayApril 152017 Yard Goats Team Poster Giveaway6:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
MondayApril 17Most Improved Student Night (Pro Health Physicians)7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
TuesdayApril 18Baseball Bingo, Most Improved Student Night (Pro Health Physicians)7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
WednesdayApril 19Most Improved Student Night (Pro Health Physicians)7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
ThursdayApril 20Yard Goats Sweatband Giveaway, Most Improved Student Night (Pro Health Physicians)7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
FridayApril 28Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
SaturdayApril 29Atlas Fireworks (John Deere), Boy Scout Night6:05 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
SundayApril 30Healthy Kids Summit (Stop & Shop), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
TuesdayMay 2Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
WednesdayMay 3Baseall in Education Day10:35 a.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
TuesdayMay 9Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
WednesdayMay 10Baseball in Education Day10:35 a.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
FridayMay 12Pink in the Park, Atlast Fireworks (ACT Group)7:30 p.m.SeaWolves (DET)
SaturdayMay 13Seat Belt Awareness Day (CT DOT), Atlas Fireworks6:05 p.m.SeaWolves (DET)
SundayMay 14Mother's Day, Yard Goat Vase Giveaway (iHeart Media), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti(1:35 p.m.SeaWolves (DET)
FridayMay 19Atlas Fireworks, Military Apperciation Night (NEOS LLC)7:05 p.m.RubberDucks (CLE)
SaturdayMay 20Atlas Fireworks6:05 p.m.RubberDucks (CLE)
SundayMay 21Chompers' Birthday Party, Yard Goats Baseball Cap Giveaway (NAPA Auto Parts), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.RubberDucks (CLE)
TuesdayMay 30Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
WednesdayMay 31Yard Goats Foam Finger Giveaway (News Radio 1410 WPOP)7:05 p.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
ThursdayJune 1Baseball in Education Day10:35 a.m.Flying Squirrels (SF)
FridayJune 2Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
SaturdayJune 3Atlas Fireworks (Stratis Visuals)6:35 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
SundayJune 4Mascot Salt & Pepper Shakers Giveaway, Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Fisher Cats (TOR)
TuesdayJune 13Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
WednesdayJune 14Chew Chew Mascot Bobblehead Giveaway (Dunkin' Donuts)7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
ThursdayJune 15ZOOperstars National Entertainment Act7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
FridayJune 16Star Wars Night, Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
SaturdayJune 17Girl Scout Night, Atlas Fireworks (Big Y), Kids Health and Wellness Day (Big Y)6:35 p.m.Curve (PIT)
SundayJune 18Father's Day, Yard Goats Baseball Cap Giveaway (Travelers), Post Game Catch, Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)5:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
TuesdayJune 27Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Rumble Ponies (NYM)
WednesdayJune 28Yard Goat Baseball Giveaway (Hartford Healthcare)7:05 p.m.Rumble Ponies (NYM)
ThursdayJune 29Kickoff to Summer, Sunglasses Giveaway (Red Robin)7:05 p.m.Rumble Ponies (NYM)
FridayJune 30Atlas Fireworks (ConnectiCare)7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
SaturdayJuly 1Atlas Fireworks (Bob's Stores), Halloween Night6:35 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
SundayJuly 2Atlas Fireworks Independence Day Celebration6:35 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
ThursdayJuly 13Flippen Out Trampoline Pros Apperance7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
FridayJuly 14Whalers Alumni Weekend (UConn Health), Atlas Fireworks (UConn Health)7:05 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
SaturayJuly 15Whalers Alumni Weekend (UConn Health), Whalers Alumni Apperances (UConn Health), Atlas Fireworks (Hospital for Special Care)6:35 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
SundayJuly 16Whalers Alumni Weekend (UConn Health), Whalers Alumni Poster Giveaway (UConn Health), Connecticut Children's Medical Center Game, Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Thunder (NYY)
MondayJuly 17Yard Goats Baseball Cap Giveaway (Frontier Communications)7:05 p.m.Baysox (BOS)
TuesdayJuly 18Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Baysox (BOS)
WednesdayJuly 19Yard Goats Pennant Giveaway, Parks & Rec Day12:05 p.m.Baysox (BOS)
ThursdayJuly 27What If Night (NBC Connecticut), Baseball Cap Giveaway (NBC Connecticut)7:05 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
FridayJuly 28Atlas Fireworks, Christmas in July7:05 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
SaturdayJuly 29Organized Labor Night (Reid & Riege, Anthem BCBS), Atlas Fireworks (Reid & Riege, Anthem BCBS)6:35 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
SundayJuly 30Chompers Mascot Bobblehead Giveaway (CT DOT), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
TuesdayAugust 8Stike Out Cancer Night (Jefferson Radiology), Baseball Bingo7:05 p.m.Trenton (NYY)
WednesdayAugust 9Parks & Rec Day12:05 p.m.Trenton (NYY)
ThursdayAugust 10Human Cannonball Appearance, Princess & Pirates Night7:05 p.m.Trenton (NYY)
FridayAugust 11Atlas Fireworks7:05 p.m.Senators (WAS)
SaturdayAugust 12Atlas Fireworks, Boy Scout Night6:35 p.m.Senators (WAS)
SundayAugust 13Yard Goats Light Switch Plate Giveaway (John Deere), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Senators (WAS)
FridayAugust 18Roberto Clemente Celebration, Atlas Fireworks, Latino Beisbol Fiesta Poster Giveaway (CT DOT)7:05 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
SaturdayAugust 19Atlas Fireworks, Faith & Family Night6:35 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
SundayAugust 20Yard Goats Baseball Cap Giveaway (The Hartford), Kids Run the Bases (Harte Nissan & Infiniti)1:35 p.m.Fightin' Phils (PHI)
MondayAugust 21Yard Goats Team Card Set Giveaway, Reading Books in Summer Night7:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
TuesdayAugust 22Baseball Bingo, Reading Books in Summer Night7:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
WednesdayAugust 23Back to School Night Lunch Bos Giveaway (Travelers)7:05 p.m.Curve (PIT)
MondayAugust 28Hero Celebration Night7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
TuesdayAugust 29Baseball Bingo, Eat Well Night (Stop & Shop)7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)
ThursdayAugust 31Atlas Fireworks, Fan Apperciation Day7:05 p.m.Sea Dogs (BOS)


Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Senate Committee Indefinitely Delays Votes on Perry, Zinke

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A Senate committee on Monday night abruptly postponed its scheduled votes Tuesday on President Donald Trump's nominations of Rick Perry and Ryan Zinke to lead the Energy and Interior departments.

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee gave no explanation for the postponement, which it said was in effect "until further notice."

During his hearing before the committee last week, Perry — the former governor of Texas who unsuccessfully challenged Trump during the Republican presidential primaries — walked back controversial statements from his past campaigns promising to abolish the Energy Department.

Meanwhile, Zinke, a Republican U.S. representative from Montana, contradicted his would-be new boss during his confirmation hearing, testifying that he accepts the scientific conclusion that climate change is real.



Photo Credit: AP

Senate Democrats Propose $1 Trillion Infrastructure Plan

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Senate Democrats unveiled a $1 trillion infrastructure bill Tuesday that they say will create 15 million jobs -- and they challenged President Donald Trump to work with them to pass it, NBC News reported.

Trump often touted the need to repair the country's infrastructure on the campaign trail and has continued to since the election, mentioning it in his inaugural address last week when he pledged to "build new roads and highways and bridges and airports and tunnels and railways all across our wonderful nation."

Democrats have released their plan ahead of a Trump proposal in order to pressure him to stick to his campaign promises. It's also an attempt to drive a wedge between Trump and Republicans who are ideologically skeptical of a large infrastructure spending measures. Republicans successfully defeated a major infrastructure bill during the first term of former President Barack Obama's administration and have not enthusiastically embraced Trump's focus on it yet.

"We're challenging him here today," Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said during a news conference. "Now that we've been stymied by our Republican colleagues … now we have a president elect (sic) who has called for a large infrastructure bill."



Photo Credit: AP

Analysis: Did Democrats Miss the Boat on the Women’s March?

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Millions of people showed up to protest the new Republican president in one of the largest demonstrations in history and the Democratic Party was barely in sight, NBC News reported.

This weekend's enormous women's marches in Washington, D.C., and elsewhere are the latest signs that the official Democratic Party apparatus, hobbled by a post-election lull that saw it lay off staff and freeze some operations, has so far missed out on opportunities to head the resistance to Donald Trump.

Only one of the seven candidates vying for the chairmanship of the Democratic National Committee, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, attended a march, while the others participated in a forum held as part of a conference of Democratic mega-donors in Miami.

"Millions of people are coming out to march and protest, and it's not because of the leaders of the Democratic Party," said Dan Cantor, the national director of the progressive Working Families Party, which both endorses Democratic candidates and runs its own candidates on its ticket. "This movement and energy can't ever be run by the leaders of the Democratic Party, as it will also need to be able to hold Democratic elected officials accountable to standing up to Trump."



Photo Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images

YNHH Looking at Intersection Safety After Worker Hit by Car

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Yale-New Haven Hospital has requested a meeting with city officials to discuss intersection safety after an employee was struck and killed by a car while she was outside on the sidewalk during a break.

Candles, flowers and the words Rest in Peace Melissa still sit just across the street from the hospital at the intersection of South Frontage Road and York Street. NBC Connecticut obtained surveillance video from the deadly accident, which shows the final moments before 42-year-old Melissa Tancredi was hit by a car.

The hospital technician was taking her break on Jan 17. and can be seen in the video standing at the corner of the busy intersection. The video then shows a car fly up onto the sidewalk and hit her. Despite witnesses rushing to help her, she died of her injuries.

Yale-New Haven Hospital requested a meeting with city officials to discuss the incident and look at possible safety improvements to the intersection. The meeting is scheduled for Thursday.

State Comptroller Unveils Plan to Combat High Drug Costs

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Linda Clemens of Glastonbury has been battling Multiple Sclerosis, and the high cost of her medicine, for years.

"I'm sorry. $1,600 for an MS drug, a shot that I have to take every day, is ridiculous," she exclaimed.

If State Comptroller Kevin Lembo gets his way, that could change. On Tuesday, he laid out a plan to address skyrocketing drug costs.

The plan makes sure "that when they're at the pharmacy counter, they're paying 20 percent of a negotiated price, not 20 percent of retail. They shouldn't have to pay retail. Their insurance company has already negotiated down that price with rebates and other incentives," explained Lembo.

Lembo also wants drug companies to justify costs above a certain level, by providing the state with information on things like research, development, and marketing. That's something Clemens has been complaining about for years.

"Those companies, yes they have to do research. They have to figure out the next best drug. It would be great if they could find something to cure MS. But you know what, they still charge way too much," she said.

As for how this will work with potential changes by the Trump administration to the Affordable Care Act?

"This is a state regulatory question. It has little or nothing to do with what the Feds do or do not do. So, I think some of us believe that we need to make sure to step up our efforts on state level regulation and we will see what the Feds ultimately do," said Lembo.

The next step: this plan will be brought up in the insurance committee at the state legislature.



Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Stamford Man Accused of Sexually Assaulting 12-Year-Old

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Stamford police have arrested a man accused of grabbing a 12-year-old’s butt and trying to lure her into an elevator, police said.

The suspect, Cordero Greaves, 20, was charged with fourth-degree sexual assault, first-degree unlawful restraint, risk of injury and breach of peace.

Police said the incident happened Tuesday afternoon at a building on Bedford Street. The victim told police she had just gotten home from school and was getting out of the elevator when she was followed by a man. She said as she walked down the hallway the man grabbed her butt then grabbed her arm and told her to be quiet. He pulled her along by the arm until she started screaming, at which point he let go and took off, police said.

Officers checked the building’s surveillance footage and confirmed her story, according to police.

Police said they identified Greaves, who lives in the building, as a suspect. When police arrived at Greaves’s apartment they found the clothing seen in the surveillance video. The victim was also able to identify Greaves as her attacker, police said.

Greaves was held on a $100,000 bond and is expected in court on Jan. 25.



Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Train Slams Into FedEx Truck on Tracks

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A passenger train slammed into a FedEx semi Saturday after the railroad crossing arms were not lowered or flashing to warn drivers. Two drivers in the vehicle narrowly escaped injury, and the approximately 80 passengers on the train were unharmed.

Photo Credit: North Salt Lake Police Department

Red Panda Goes Missing From Virginia Zoo

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A red panda has gone missing from her enclosure at the Virginia Zoo in Norfolk, the zoo announced Tuesday. 

Sunny, a 19-month-old red panda, was last seen in her habitat on Monday evening, but she was nowhere to be found when zoo employees checked for her Tuesday morning.

A thorough search of the zoo on Tuesday turned up no results. 

Zoo employees are hopeful Sunny is still on the zoo grounds, but urge people in the Norfolk area to call the zoo hotline if she is spotted outside. 

They note red pandas are typically not aggressive, but any wild animal's behavior can be erratic. 



Photo Credit: Virginia Zoo

Meeting Tonight on I-84, I-91 Tunnel Project

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Congressman John Larson will hold a public meeting in Hartford today to discuss plans to improve parts of Interstate 84 and Interstate 91 in Hartford.

Larson has been talking about the idea for months and recently met with officials from the U.S. Department of Transportation to discuss the proposed project, which would put I-84 underground from Hartford to East Hartford.

The project would require a lot of funding, which could come under the new Trump administration.

The primary way Trump has proposed paying for such infrastructure projects is through tolls, something Connecticut hasn’t seen in decades.

The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. on the main floor of the Hartford Public Library on Main Street.



Photo Credit: Connecticut Department of Transportation

Proposed Bill Would Increase Legal Smoking Age from 18 to 21

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Connecticut lawmakers and the public are set to debate a bill that would increase the legal age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21 statewide.

The discussion comes as the American Lung Association gives the state an F for efforts to control smoking.

The American Lung Association said the number one way states can keep young people from picking up the habit by raising the legal smoking age. It gave Connecticut low scores in the areas of tobacco prevention and cessation funding and access to services to publicly funded initiatives to help residents quit smoking.

The proposed bill, H.B. No. 5384, is sponsored by Rep. Prasad Srinivasan (R-Glastonbury) and co-sponsors. The measure has already become reality in two other states – Hawaii and California.

Those interested learning more or expressing their opinion to lawmakers can attend the Public Health Committee meeting at 10:30 a.m. in Room 1 D of the Legislative Office Building in Hartford.

Dow Jones Hits 20,000 for First Time Ever

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed 20,000 points soon after it opened Wednesday, the first time it's crossed the milestone, CNBC reports.

Dow futures rose around 100 points overnight, after the index closed at 19,913 — rising after President Donald Trump signed a series of executive orders — pushing it above 20,000 soon after it opened, an important psychological milestone.

Global shares rose strongly Wednesday, building on Wall Street's overnight rally.

President Trump responded to the news on Twitter Wednesday, writing simply, "Great!" and including the hashtag, #Dow20k." 



Photo Credit: Getty Images, File
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Police Investigate Bank Robbery in Killingly

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State police are investigating a bank robbery in Killingly Tuesday.

State police said a man robbed the Putnam Day Bank on Wauregan Road at 12:46 p.m. Tuesday.

He demanded cash from the teller, did not show any weapons, and left with the money, according to police.

The man police said they are looking for was wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt, gray sweatpants and white sneakers and left the bank parking lot in a red four-door compact sedan last seen traveling southbound on Route 12 in Killingly.

Eastern District Major Crime responded to the scene and assumed the investigation.

If anyone who thinks they might have information, or knows who the man in the photos is, is asked to call Troop D at 860-779-4900 or text TIP711 with any information to 274637.



Photo Credit: Connecticut State Police
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