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One Injured in Shooting at Stamford Barber Shop

Silver Alert Canceled for Willimantic Woman


Police have canceled the Silver Alert for a Willimantic woman who had been missing since Saturday.

Police said 33-year-old Kelly Ann Danforth left a state-run housing complex andhad been seen outside her workplace at Toasted Restaurant in Storrs around noon Saturday. Police were concerned for Danforth’s welfare because she has a medical condition.

The Silver Alert was canceled on Monday after family members informed police that Danforth contacted them overnight.

Police are still looking to speak to Danforth and Michael "Mike Rock" Rivera, who they believe she is with, in person and ask anyone with information on her whereabouts to contact them at 860-465-3135.

Photo Credit: Willimantic Police Department

Girl, 13, Killed Retrieving Phone From Subway Tracks


A teenage girl was killed in Queens Sunday afternoon after trying to retrieve a lost item from the subway tracks and being hit by a train.

The NYPD said the call came in just before 4 p.m. 

The girl, identified as 13-year-old Diana Kadribasic of Queens, was killed by an R train when she was on the tracks trying to get her cellphone, police said.

"I was in the front train and we hear this bump," subway rider Stephen Topete said. "You hear everyone jumping and screaming." 

The accident occurred at 63rd Road and Queens Boulevard, near the 63rd Drive - Rego Park station on the E/M/R lines. 

A maintenance worker said the train tried to slow down, but it couldn't stop in time. 

The girl was taken to Elmhurst Hospital and later died. 

Following the tragedy, New York City Transit sent out a statement reminding customers about platform safety and to remain behind the yellow strip at all times. 

Florida Woman, Son Fatally Shot In Domestic Dispute


Editor's note: An earlier version of this story said police told the victim to stop calling 911. In fact, they were speaking to a third party in another location who was on the phone with police.

A few hours before a Florida woman and her 8-year-old son were fatally shot last week, police responded to a domestic dispute between the woman and the suspect, NBC News reported.

Early on the morning of March 27, Sanford police were twice called to intervene between Latina Verneta Herring, 35, and Allen Dion Cashe, 31, who were quarreling over the keys to her house and car, according to an arrest report obtained by NBC affiliate WESH of Orlando and The Orlando Sentinel.

About three hours later, around 6:30 a.m., Cashe emptied the magazine of an assault-style rifle, investigators said. Herring, who was shot seven times, died at the scene. Her 8-year-old son, Branden, was critically wounded; he died Tuesday. Police said four other people were also shot — Herring's father and 7-year-old son, who were critically wounded, and two bystanders.

Photo Credit: WESH-TV

North Korean Defector: Kim Would Use Nukes on US


North Korea's "desperate" dictator is prepared to use nuclear weapons against the United States and its allies, a senior defector told NBC News.

Thae Yong Ho was North Korea's deputy ambassador to the United Kingdom until he defected to South Korea this summer. Though not directly involved in his country's nuclear program, he believes it "has reached a very significant level of nuclear development."

Estimates peg North Korea's nuclear arsenal at upward of eight weapons, but with no ability to attach them to a long-range rocket, or ICBM, capable of hitting the U.S. Thae said that ruler Kim Jong Un wants to maintain his rule with ICBMs, and a senior official told NBC News in January that Kim's government was ready to test-fire an ICMB.

"Once he sees that there is any kind of sign of a tank or an imminent threat from America, then he would use his nuclear weapons with ICBM," Thae said in an exclusive interview on Sunday.

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, File
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National Work Zone Safety Week Kicks off Monday


Monday kicks off National Work Zone Safety Week, an annual event meant to bring attention to driver and worker safety in work zones.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation is joining the Federal Highway Administration and other states in promoting the event, which runs April 3 through 7. Officials want the remind the public to look out for construction and work zones, because it can be a matter of life and death.

Connecticut State Police remind drivers to slow down, move over, and avoid distractions in these areas. Penalties for moving traffic violations double within marked work zones in Connecticut. Many other states have similar laws on the books.

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Since the campaign was started by the Federal Highway Administration there has been a drop of the number of work zone fatalities nationwide.

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2nd Derailment at NY's Penn Station in 11 Days Wreaks Havoc


UPDATE: Commuters, Mets Fans Face Travel Nightmare After NJ Transit Derailment Wreaks Havoc at Penn Station

A train derailed at New York's Penn Station Monday for the second time in less than two weeks, crippling the morning commute for tens of thousands of riders but causing no serious injuries, authorities said.

A spokesperson for NJ Transit said there was a "slow-speed derailment" as the train out of Trenton pulled into Track 9 at the height of rush hour, totally shutting down service in and out of the Manhattan hub for more than two hours. Customers in the last four cars had to be escorted off, the spokesperson said. NJ Transit said four of the 1,200 aboard suffered minor injuries; the FDNY said it treated five people. All were expected to be OK. 

Limited service was restored by early afternoon, but several lines remained disrupted and Midtown Direct was to be diverted through Hoboken through the day. Amtrak and LIRR service is also affected, and cross-honoring remains in effect system-wide. Get the latest details on commute alternatives here. 

As was the case with the March 24 derailment, when an Acela slipped off the tracks and bumped an NJ Transit train heading the opposite way, delays were expected to be significant -- and lasting. The MTA said it planned to cancel up to 30 LIRR trains because NJ Transit would need some of those tracks. 


Passengers described feeling a jolt prior to the train reaching the platform, but no crash. At least one Twitter user described "total panic" erupting, and one person was seen being loaded onto an orange stretcher. 

Another Twitter user said her husband, who was in one of the derailed cars, reported both exit vestibules were crushed. Others described confusion and chaos.

"We were just pulling into Penn Station and all of a sudden we felt this kind of ... shake which I've definitely felt before but this was just out of normal," said rider Caroline Grenis. "It was like the biggest rock I've ever felt." 

Grenis said she grabbed her friend Carly Susman and the two clutched each other. 

"We didn't know honestly if it was just going to keep going and get worse," Susman said.

The accident is under investigation; Amtrak, which owns the tracks, is also assessing the situation. Meanwhile, riders described a frenzied aftermath. Passengers on city-bound NJT trains said their trains were being backtracked to Secaucus, where video showed people standing shoulder-to-shoulder about six deep on the platform. Chopper over the Secaucus scene showed throngs of stranded passengers also standing outside. Other riders said their trains were being held in various stations along the Northeast Corridor line.

No one was hurt in last month's derailment, but the accident wrought havoc on the morning and evening commutes, bringing all of Penn Station to a standstill for most of the day.  

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Motorcyclist Dies After Crash in Torrington


A 29-year-old New Hartford man died after speeding away from police and crashing into a minivan in Torrington on Monday, according to police.

Police stopped the man around 9 a.m. on Prospect Street for operating the motorcycle without a license plate.

The man took off at a high rate of speed and traveled onto North Elm Street, where the motorcycle hit a 2010 Dodge Caravan at the intersection with Red Mountain Avenue, according to police.  The motorcycle burst into flames after the accident.

Lifestar was called, then canceled, and the man was rushed to Charlotte Hungerford Hospital, where he died.

Police have not released the man's identity.

An adult and two small children were riding in the minivan. They were taken to the hospital to be treated for non-life threatening injuries.

Officers did not pursue the motorcycle, according to police.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Three Injured in Vernon Crash


Three people were taken to the hospital after a three-vehicle crash on Hartford Turnpike in Vernon.

The road has reopened.

No additional information was available.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Red Sox Taking on Pirates for Opening Day


Red Sox fans circle opening day on their calendars, looking forward to the event all winter, and this afternoon's season debut against the Pirates proved to be worth the wait.

Sunny skies greeted fans and temperatures climbed to 49 degrees for the opening pitch, with 2016 Cy Young Award winner Rick Porcello opposing the Pirates' ace, Gerrit Cole.

The Red Sox scored five runs in the fifth inning to take a 5-0 lead. The big hit was a three-run homer by Andrew Benintendi.

Prior to the game, the Red Sox shared the field with the Super Bowl Champion Patriots, including Dion Lewis, James White, Rob Gronkowski and Tom Brady, who threw out the first pitch.

Gronkowski, ever the prankster, "stole" Brady's jersey as the Patriot players greeted the Fenway faithful during their pregame appearance.

Numerous improvements have been made to Fenway Park during the off-season, including a new tavern, new seating and some new concessions.

Aramark, the park's concessionaire, recently released new menu items for the season, including a lobster melt with Muenster cheese and sliced tomato as well as surf and turf kebabs.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Public Hearing to Discuss State Budget System


Legislators are set to discuss a series of bills regarding the state’s budgeting system Monday.

Lawmakers are considering several bills that would require the government to figure out how much money they have to spend before actually spending it by implementing a constitutional spending cap. 

Connecticut voters instituted an income tax 25 years ago, and at the same time they approved a cap on spending. However that cap was never really established. Now lawmakers are considering that cap, which could limit government spending.

Also on the agenda is talks to set a deadline to decide how much money will go to cities and towns.

Right now two dates have been floated –March 1 or April 1. Each of those bills would require the General Assembly to adopt the education cost sharing formula and other aid to municipalities.

This is significant because often cities, towns and school districts struggle to make decisions without knowing how much funding they will receive from the state.

That scenario is playing out in Bristol right now – the district is considering laying off more than 100 teachers and administrators.

The public hearing begins at noon Monday in room 2E of the Legislative Office Building.

Man Accused of Assaulting Girlfriend with Handgun


An East Granby man is accused of assaulting his girlfriend with a handgun, according to Connecticut State Police.

Justin Czaplinski, 37, faces charges of third-degree assault, unlawful restraint, disorderly conduct, and assault weapons charges and violation of large capacity magazine requirements.

Police said they responded to a home on Old Country Highway around 9:30 a.m. Sunday for a report of a woman being held against her will. When they arrived the victim reported that her boyfriend, Czaplinski, attacked her with a handgun.

Responding troopers found “numerous” firearms inside the home, police said. The incident is under investigation.

Photo Credit: Connecticut State Police

Fitbit Helps Save Harwinton Woman’s Life


A Fitbit fitness tracker helped save a Harwinton woman’s life.

Patricia Lauder, 73, of Harwinton had just retired and bought a Fitbit to track her steps in the hopes that she would lose weight and improve her health by walking, according to UConn Health.

Not only did the device on her wrist track her steps, but it also indicated something was wrong, which allowed Lauder to quickly seek medical help and get treatment for blood clots.

“I wasn’t feeling well for a few weeks, and thought I might be battling a bad cold or walking pneumonia that I just couldn’t kick,” Lauder said, according to UConn.

She visited doctors and had tests and X-rays, but they were negative for pneumonia or any other health issues.

Lauder then began experiencing shortness of breath and she’d get tired while walking just short distances, then she noticed that her Fitbit was recording increases in her resting heart rate --- five points a day -- eventually increasing from 68 to 140 beats per minute.

“I was going downhill fast,” she said. “I knew I was in trouble, and dialed 911.”

Lauder asked the ambulance to take her to UConn Health and she was taken to the emergency department at UConn John Dempsey Hospital, where a CT scan revealed she had two large blood clots in her lung arteries, according to UConn Health.

“If I didn’t have a Fitbit on my wrist, I would never have known that my heart rate was getting dangerously high,” Lauder said. “And I might not be here to tell my story.”

Lauder's heart was overworking and had become enlarged. According to UConn, Dr. JuYong Lee applied clot-busting drugs directly into the lungs’ blood clots through a catheter.

The very next day, Lauder’s blood clots were gone and her lung and heart health normalized.

“I have never seen such a dramatic improvement overnight,” Dr. Lee said, according to UConn.

Learn more about the Pat and Jim Calhoun Cardiology Center.

See the American Heart Association website for information on prevention and treatment of excessive blood clotting. 

Photo Credit: UConn Health

Police Participate in Distracted Driving Campaign


Cromwell Police Department has announced that they will participate in the “U Drive. U Text. U Pay” 2017 Distracted Driving High Visibility Enforcement Campaign.

Teaming up with the Connecticut Department of Transportation, the Cromwell Police Department and other local police departments aim to bring attention to distracted driving. This will take place during April for national distracted driving awareness month.

According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 3,477 people were killed and an estimated 391,000 injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers in 2015. This is a 9 percent increase in fatalities from 2014, officials said.

Cromwell police will add special patrols this month that are geared toward catching drivers who are using their phones and other distracted drivers. Patrol officers will be posted in various areas in undercover vehicles. It will begin on April 4, and officers will look out for those using hand-held cell phones and other hand held electronic devices while driving.

The fine for a first offence of drivers using a hand-held cell phone or electronic device will be $150, $300 for a second offense, and $500 for a third offence.

Officers will focus during morning and afternoon peak drive times on heavily traveled roadways, including Berlin Road and West Street, Shunpike Road, and Main Street, according to Cromwell police.

Photo Credit: Image Source

Allergy Season Approaches


There might still be snow on the ground and the buds on the trees are small, but the ills of allergy season will soon be upon us.

Watery, itchy eyes and runny noses are some of the symptoms allergy sufferers know all too well and they will soon be making a return.

Managing those symptoms can be a nightmare for sufferers and those who care for them, like Paula Carroll, of Windsor, whose teenage son has battled outdoor allergies for years.

“They get really itchy and watery and red and it’s not good. It bothers me to see them suffer,” Carroll said.

Experts said that just how bad this allergy season will be is anyone’s guess.

Dr. David Dreyfus, who has been a practicing allergist in Connecticut since 1999 and leads the pediatric allergy clinic at Yale-New Haven Hospital, says because the temperatures have been all over the place in recent seasons, allergy sufferers wanting to manage their symptoms need to pay close attention to the pollen count every day.

“That’s why people need to check the pollen count, and so on, and you can’t really predict when it’s going to hit. Global climate change has made it very unpredictable,” he said.

Dreyfus specializes in a sublingual treatment – applied under the tongue—for people who suffer from allergies to grasses, weeds and dust mites.

He said it’s too far into the season for anyone who wants to start that treatment for this year but it’s never too late to talk to a doctor about what steps you can take to get some relief.

“Some people tend to forget how sick they were the past spring, then it’s suddenly upon them and they wind up going to the emergency room,” Dreyfus said.

Dreyfus also suggests allergy sufferers install air conditioners and never leave their doors or windows open for ventilation because those are easy ways to allow pollen and other allergy irritants into your home.

Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images

State Looks to Include Increase Tourism


The summer travel season is quickly approaching and Connecticut’s Office of Tourism is making another push to attract visitors to the state. 

Tourism officials are encouraging local businesses and towns to become a part of their travel website, which lists popular attractions and businesses that visitors can take advantage of. 

They’re spreading the word through hosting several outreach meetings across the state this week. 

"The Outreach Meetings are yet another great opportunity for us to connect directly with the businesses and organizations that help make tourism a $14.7 billion industry sector in Connecticut," Randy Fiveash, director of the Connecticut Office of Tourism, said. 

Utilizing the website is something Chris Edge, the economic development director for Berlin, thinks would be a good idea. 

He said he is looking to highlight some of the locally-owned businesses on Farmington Avenue, as well as a new brewery opening in the fall. 

“Really looking to find ways with both our history, location and food options in town to get people to come to Berlin and recognize the great things we have here,” Edge said. 

The state’s tourism website has already reached four million people. 

Business owners interested in being featured on the state’s website need to apply here.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut,com

20 Students Become Sick at Music Conference in Hartford


Around 20 students who attended the Connecticut Music Educators All-State Conference at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford over the weekend became ill and the convention center is looking into whether the food served to students contributed to the illnesses. 

"We are aware we had some students become ill over the course of our event. As per our policy, we had a professional nurse on staff. We cared for them and we are cooperating with the appropriate authorities, including the Department of Health to determine what the cause may have been," Barbara Skrebutenas, executive director of the Connecticut Music Educators Association, said in a statement.  

Staff from the Connecticut Convention Center released a statement saying that they are aware of reports of people attending the conference getting ill.

“We are working proactively with the City of Hartford Department of Health and Human Services and CMEA to investigate the situation. The safety of our guests and the integrity of our food service has always been our highest priority and we will remain in full cooperation with the health department,” a statement from the Connecticut Convention Center says.

Around 2,000 people attended the conference.

Convention center staff later said they are looking into the food served to students.

Officials from the state Department of Health said they will be meeting with the City of Hartford Department of Health and Human Services.

The conference ran from March 30 to April 1, according to the Convention Center website

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

New USPS Service Lets You Digitally Preview the Day’s Mail


"You've got mail" is getting a whole new meaning with a new service from the U.S. Postal Service that makes it possible to see what mail will be delivered that day, NBC News reported.

Informed Delivery is a free service provided by the national postal service. Upon signing up, users will get emails sent each morning with actual images of mail that will be dropped off later in the day.

The service has been available in northern Virginia since 2014 and expanded to parts of California, Connecticut, Maryland, New York, Virginia and Washington, D.C., later on. The program's director called feedback "tremendously positive," and a USPS survey found that nine out of 10 people check their Informed Delivery notification every day.

The program will be rolled out nationally in mid-April.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

2 Emaciated Dogs Abandoned in New Britain


New Britain police are investigating after two emaciated dogs were found in the city a week apart. 

Both dogs appear to have been in kennels for most of their life and police said they had very little nutrition and it’s not clear where the dogs were before they were found roaming in New Britain, soaked in their own urine and feces. 

The two dogs, a brindle and one with a yellow coat, were dumped off in New Britain in separate locations, one week apart, police said. 

It’s possible the one with the brindle coat was hit by a vehicle after being dumped, police said.

He will make a full recovery and a veterinary staff member who fell in love with him as he was recovering has already adopted the dog. 

The blonde dog is still recovering. 

Anyone with information should call 860-826-3079 or email pkeller@newbritainct.gov. Police are looking for information on where the dogs were before they were found roaming.

Photo Credit: New Britain Police

Mylan Hit With Racketeering Suit Over Price Hikes of EpiPen


Mylan was slapped Monday with a class-action racketeering lawsuit that claims the company overcharged patients as part of an illegal scheme to secure sales, CNBC reported.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Seattle, alleges the "skyrocketing" list price of EpiPen was the result of the drugmaker's payments of rebates to pharmacy benefit managers — including CVS Caremark, Express Scripts and Optum Rx — which handle prescription drug benefit programs for insurance plans.

The suit noted when EpiPen prices were increasing most dramatically, other companies tried to introduce competing devices. But those companies never succeeded in displacing Epipen's market dominance because Mylan paid pharmacy benefit managers higher rebates, the suit said.

The suit claims violations of consumer protection laws of all U.S. states, as well as a violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act.

A spokeswoman for Mylan had no immediate comment on the lawsuit.

Photo Credit: AP
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