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US Carrier Strike Group Heads Toward W. Pacific Near Korea


The Pentagon says a Navy carrier strike group is moving toward the western Pacific Ocean to provide a physical presence near the Korean Peninsula.

North Korea's recent ballistic missile tests and continued pursuit of a nuclear program have raised tensions in the region, where U.S. Navy ships are a common presence and serve in part as a show of force.

On Saturday, President Donald Trump and South Korea's leader, Acting President Hwang Kyo-Ahn, spoke by phone. The White House said the two agreed to stay in close contact about North Korea and other issues.

The U.S. Pacific Command directed the carrier group to sail north to the western Pacific after departing Singapore on Saturday, according to a Navy news release. The carrier group includes the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson, with support from several missile destroyers and missile cruisers.

Deployed from San Diego to the western Pacific since Jan. 5, the strike group has participated in numerous exercises with the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force and Republic of Korea Navy, various maritime security initiatives, and routine patrol operations in the South China Sea.

Photo Credit: Kim Hong-Ji/Pool Photo via AP

Stockholm Store Apologizes After Promotion Related to Terror Truck Attack


Ahlens, the Swedish department store that was rammed earlier this week by a stolen truck in an attack that left 4 dead and more than a dozen injured, apologized for announcing it would reopen Sunday to sell damaged goods at a "reduced price."

As NBC News reports, the department store called the announcement "a bad decision" in a statement posted to its Facebook page.

Ahlens said the motivation for the idea originally came from not wanting to allow "evil forces [to] take control of our lives."

Police said on Sunday they had brought in seven people over the apparent terrorist attack outside the department store on Friday, according to Reuters.

Photo Credit: Markus Schreiber, AP

Garage, Cars Destroyed in Beacon Falls Fire; No Injuries


No injuries were reported after fire ripped through a garage at a home in Beacon Falls Sunday morning.

Fire officials said they were called to a home on Blackberry Hill Road around 4:20 a.m. When they arrived the young couple and baby that live in the home were safely outside, and the garage next to the house was fully engulfed in flames.

The homeowners said they heard a big boom and when they looked outside, they saw the orange of the fire. Homeowner Alexandra Zurita described those moments.

"Complete disbelief,” said Zurita. “It was completely engulfed in flames so we just knew we had to get out. There was no time to get our things... just grab our baby and go."

It took firefighters about 15 minutes to get the fire under control. The garage and the vehicles inside it are a total loss. The heat from the fire melted the side of the house, but fire officials said the building is livable.

The fire marshal is investigating the cause of the fire. Initial investigation suggests it may have been electrical.

Photo Credit: Beacon Hose Co. #1

2 Bristol Residents Displaced After House Fire


At least two Bristol residents are displaced after a fire on Lawndale Avenue Saturday night.

The Bristol Fire Department said firefighters were called around 11 p.m. to the home at 19 Lawndale Ave. The fire was quickly knocked down but the home is currently uninhabitable.

No injuries were reported, but one resident and two officers on scene reported minor smoke inhalation.

The American Red Cross was called to assist the residents.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Photo Credit: Bristol Fire Department

Convicted Felon Arrested on Threatening Charge in Hartford


Hartford police arrested a man accused of threatening to kill someone while brandishing a gun.

Stephon Layne, 46, of Hartford, faces charges of first-degree threatening, criminal possession of a firearm, and carrying a pistol without a permit.

Police said that around 9:30 p.m. Saturday they were called to 158 Seymour Street. The victim told police he was visiting a family member when Layne, who was visiting someone in the same apartment, spotted him. The victim said Layne told him to leave, showed a gun, and told him he was going to die tonight.

Layne was found with an H&R Model 929 .22 caliber revolver. Police said Layne is a convicted felon. He will be scheduled for arraignment.

Photo Credit: Hartford Police Department

No Path to Peace in Syria With Assad, Haley Says


The Trump administration does not see a path to peace and stability in Syria with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad still in power, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said Sunday, NBC News reported.

On Sunday's "Meet The Press," Haley told host Chuck Todd, "In no way do we look at peace happening in that area with Iranian influence. In no way do we see peace in that area with Russia covering up for Assad. In no way do we see peace in that area with Assad as the head of the Syrian government."

"We have to make sure that we're pushing that process," she continued. "The political solution has to come together for the good of the people of Syria."

Haley also noted that the United States' first priority is still to defeat ISIS, but that there can be "multiple priorities."

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews

Annual Run Raises Thousands of Dollars for New Haven Charity


Hundreds of people turned out for the 18th annual Julia’s Run for Children at Yale University Sunday.

The annual event is a fundraiser for the Julia Rusinek Memorial Fund and benefits the Leadership Education Athletics in Partnership (LEAP), a New Haven organization that offers year-round academic and social programs for youth from high poverty neighborhoods in the city. Over the years Julia’s Run for Children has raised over $199,000 for LEAP, and organizers expected to raise another $15,000 Sunday.

Julia Rusinek was a 21-year-old Yale student when she collapsed while jogging and died on July 15, 1999. Her death was attributed to a previously undetected heart condition. Her family began hosting this four-mile run in her memory, to turn their tragedy into something positive for the community.

Rusinek’s family said she loved children and often volunteered with local organizations, which was why the decided to partner with LEAP.

LEAP Executive Director Henry Fernandez said the money raised through the run goes to local programming that covers everything from literacy to computer science to swimming to cooking classes. LEAP serves about 1,000 children in New Haven.

Fernandez said they do discuss Julia Rusinek’s memory with the children so they understand everyone can have a positive impact on the community.

“We want kids to understand that they too can give back and make a difference in their community, and she’s a wonderful example of that,” Fernandez said.

Adults and children are all welcome to the Run for Children. For more information about Julia Rusinek and the run, visit the website. 

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut/Family Photo

Police Seize Over 2 Pounds of Marijuana During Traffic Stop


Connecticut State Police seized over two pounds of marijuana and arrested an East Hartford man during a traffic stop Friday evening.

Karriem Holness, 34, faces charges of possession of marijuana and illegal sale of a controlled substance.

Police said they pulled over Holness on Market Street in Hartford, near Interstate 84, around 5:10 p.m. Friday because troopers spotted him talking on a cell phone. During the stop they discovered that Holness did not have a valid license, and that there were narcotics inside the car.

Police found 2.2 pounds of marijuana during a search of the car.

Holness was arrested and later released after posting a $15,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in court on April 25.

Photo Credit: Connecticut State Police

Wind Blows Inflatable Bounce House Into Air, Injures 5 Kids


Five children were injured after a gust of wind blew a bouncy house into the air at a church carnival in Greenville, South Carolina, NBC News reported.

Four of the injured children were taken to the hospital and two of those suffered serious injuries after falling out of the bounce house while it was airborne, police said.

An unoccupied inflatable slide also flew into the air, bringing down two power lines and blowing 25 feet into a nearby road.

"It looked like a mini-tornado," said Fire Chief Ricky Reed, who described the scene Saturday at Springwell Church's annual Spring Carnival as "chaotic."

Photo Credit: AFP/Getty Images
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Father Kills Son in Shootout Over Who Would Walk Dog: Police


A man shot and killed his 22-year-old son after an argument over who would walk a dog escalated into a shootout Sunday morning on Chicago's Far South Side, police said.

Officers responded to a call of a person shot at a home in the 9100 block of S. Woodlawn Ave. at about 8:20 a.m. in the city's Burnside neighborhood.

There they found two men, ages 43 and 22, who had shot each other after a "verbal altercation," authorities said.

Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi tweeted that the fight between the father and son was over "who was going to walk the dog" and both men opened fire. [[418761594, C]]

They each sustained multiple gunshot wounds and were taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center, where the 22-year-old man was pronounced dead. The older man was listed in critical condition, authorities said.

Two weapons were recovered from the scene, according to police, who continue to investigate.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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Route 44 in Norfolk Closed After Serious Crash


Route 44 in Norfolk is closed because of a serious crash, according to public safety officials.

Norfolk Public Information Officer Jon Barbagallo tweeted that the road is closed between Ashpotagh Road and the North Canaan line. Drivers are advised to avoid the area.

State police said two cars were involved and serious injuries had been reported. At least one person needed extrication and two LifeStar helicopters were requested, police said.

More details of the crash were not immediately available.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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Immigration Protesters Flood Streets of Dallas


Thousands marched through downtown towards City Hall Sunday as part of the Dallas Mega March.

Most streets closed for the march have reopened as participants have gathered at city hall to hear from various speakers, including Martin Luther King III.

While Dallas police said an attendance estimate wouldn't be given until after the event had ended, the crowd appeared noticeably smaller than the last march in 2006.

Police said the march was peaceful, and there were no immediate reports of arrests or other incidents. A few counter-protesters were on hand for the march, and at least one held a flag supporting President Donald Trump. 

Organizers of the Dallas Mega March held a news conference in Oak Cliff Friday to discuss plans for Sunday's march for immigration reform and racial equality.

Live video from Texas Sky Ranger will appear in the player above. From time to time the signal may go black -- this is normal and the video should return soon.

The organizers of the march said they are, "calling for real immigration reform and an end to aggressive deportation efforts that have separated families, targeted DACA students and left our communities in fear. We are calling for an end to executive orders that have discriminated against our Muslim brothers and sisters based on their faith.  We are calling for an end to hate crimes and hate speech that have increased since the election, and we want to join together and send a message that hate has no place in our nation."

"The 2017 Dallas Mega March is centered on the themes of family, unity and empowerment. Participants are asked to carry American flags and wear red, white and blue in solidarity," organizers said.

A number of politicians, celebrities and activists are expected to speak at the event including Martin Luther King III, actors Danny Glover and Jamie Foxx, Texas Congressmen Marc Veasey, Beto O'Rourke and Joaquin Castro, and a host of others. A comprehensive list can be found here.

“We’ve been, for almost two months, planning with the Dallas Police Department to make sure that our security concerns are addressed. We want to make sure we have a peaceful, non-violent march that’s positive,” said organizer Domingo Garcia.

Garcia said Friday there will be approximately 1,000 officers from Dallas Police Department and Dallas County Sheriff’s Office on hand. Garcia also said they have spoken with Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials and they have been assured ICE will not be at or near the march on Sunday.

Sunday's march started at the Cathedral Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Ross Avenue and Pearl Street and moved westbound to N. Griffin Street. It then proceeded southbound on Griffin Street to eastbound Young Street.

The march ended at City Hall Plaza, where a rally was held. 

DART is adding additional cars to the Green, Orange and Blue lines to accommodate the anticipated crowds. For more information about riding DART to the march, click here.

Check back and refresh this page for the latest update. As this story is developing, elements may change.

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Two Motorcyclists Charged with Reckless Driving on I-95


Connecticut State Police have arrested two men after receiving multiple 911 calls reporting motorcyclists driving recklessly on Interstate 95 Sunday.

Jakub Ruminski, 39, of Norwalk, and Evron Trim, 31, of Milford, are suspected of being part of a group of motorcyclists who were driving dangerously on I-95.

Police said that around 10 a.m., Troop G received multiple reports of a group of about 18 motorcycles driving recklessly on I-95 in Stamford. Callers reported that the riders were weaving in and out of traffic and passing other vehicles. The callers reported the group was traveling north.

According to police, one trooper approached a group of about five motorcycles at the Fairfield rest stop, but the group sped off. Troopers did not actively pursue the bikes, but they did continue to drive along I-95 looking for them.

Troopers spotted the group again getting on Route 8 and signaled for the motorcycles to pull over, but the riders drove off, police said.

Eventually troopers caught up with two of the riders, identified as Ruminski and Trim, on Route 8 south near exit 5 in Bridgeport.

Ruminski and Trim are each charged with reckless endangerment, disobeying the signal of an officer, and reckless driving. They were each released on a $2,500 bond and are scheduled to appear in court on April 17.

Photo Credit: Connecticut State Police

Hamden Police Investigate Assault and Shooting Outside Bar


One person was shot and another assaulted outside of a bar in Hamden early Sunday morning, according to Hamden police.

According to Hamden police, around 2:20 a.m. a fight started inside Slyce Pizza Bar, 141 Arch St., and escalated into the parking lot where one victim, a 26-year-old man, was shot in the back.

Police say after the victim was shot, he drove himself about three blocks to Pine Rock Road and then called 9-1-1.

His car was last seen sitting in the middle of the roadway, outside of Southern Connecticut State University. The car has several bullet holes in one side.

Police believe the victim will survive his injuries.

A second victim, a 28-year-old male, was assaulted, police said. It is possible the second victim was also struck by a car, though the exact circumstances are still under investigation.

Police did not elaborate on the relationship, if any, between the victims.

This is not the first time the bar has come under police scrutiny. In September 2016, Hamden Police Chief Thomas Wydra sent a letter to the Department of Consumer Protection urging the liquor commission not to extend Slyce Pizza Bar’s liquor license.

At the time, more than 200 residents signed a petition agreeing with the chief.

The petition and letter followed a April 2016 murder in the back parking lot of the pizza restaurant.

This most recent incident is under investigation by the The Hamden Police Department Detective Division and Crime Scene Unit. Anyone with information should contact police at 203-230-4040.

One Dead After Motorcycle Accident in West Haven


A motorcyclist is dead after an accident in West Haven Sunday afternoon, according to police.

West Haven police said the accident occurred on Campbell Avenue and Blohm Street. The operator of the motorcycle and a passenger were taken to the hospital with serious injuries. The operator, who was not identified, was pronounced dead.

An NBC Connecticut crew on scene reported a car on scene also had damage. Police have not released any information on the condition of the occupant(s) of the car.

The accident reconstruction team is on scene investigating. Drivers should expect delays in the area.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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Police ID Man Killed, 2 Injured in Fiery Crash on Route 9 in New Britain


A 52-year-old Bristol man is dead and two other people were injured in a fiery crash on Route 9 in New Britain Sunday night.

Connecticut State Police said a Porsche Boxster crossed Route 9 from the southbound side to the northbound side and crashed into a Toyota Camry near exit 25 around 9:30 p.m.  

Police said Nicholas Fomica, 52, of Bristol, was driving the Porsche and going south on Route 9 in New Britain when he crossed over the media to the north side of the highway and struck a Camry driven by 23-year-old Daniel Conolly, of Farmington.

Both cars caught fire after the crash and Fomloa was trapped inside.

People at the scene pulled Conolly and his passenger, 24-year-old Danielle Huscher, from the Camry and ambulances transported them from the scene to be treated for serious injuries. 

Formloa was pronounced dead at the scene, according to state police.

The highway was closed for several hours but has since reopened.

Anyone who witnessed this crash or the moments before it is asked to contact state police Trooper Cistulli at 860-534-1000 ext. 6038. Tips can remain confidential.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Vernon Police Uncover Variety of Drugs During Traffic Stop


Police in Vernon seized a variety of drugs from marijuana to crack cocaine and arrested a driver during a traffic stop Saturday evening.

Steven Martinchek faces various charges related to the possession and intent to sell drugs, and speeding charges.

According to police, Martinchek was pulled over around 5:30 p.m. Saturday on Talcottville Road in Vernon because he was speeding. During the stop, police thought Martinchek was acting suspiciously and requested a search for the vehicle.

Upon searching, the officer found 213 grams of marijuana in bud and wax form, nine bags of MDMA – often known as Molly, 120 tabs of suspected LSD, 1.53 grams of suspected crack cocaine, and a large amount of cash.

Martinchek was arrested and later released on a $10,000 surety bond.

Driver Fled Scene of Fatal Accident: East Windsor Police


A Michigan man faces charges after fleeing the scene of a fatal accident in East Windsor on Thursday.

Hans Geise, 33, of Brooklyn, Mich., currently faces charges of evading responsibility and failure to drive right.

East Windsor police allege that Geise was driving a red Dodge pickup that was involved in an accident with a white Mazda Millenia on North Road near Melrose Road in East Windsor around 12:45 p.m. Thursday. When police arrived on scene they found the Mazda off the road in the area of North Road and Yosky Street. The pickup had already left the scene.

The driver of the Mazda, identified as Troy Michaud, 53, of Enfield, died of his injuries.

The investigation into this crash is ongoing. Anyone who witnessed the accident is asked to contact Officer David Simoes at (860) 292-8240 ext. 5203.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

How Gorsuch Will Have Immediate Supreme Court Impact


The newest Supreme Court justice, Neil Gorsuch, is likely to have an immediate effect on one of the court's most important cases after he's sworn in Monday, NBC News reported.

He'll bring the court back to full strength for the first time since Antonin Scalia died 14 months ago, and will be on the bench to hear the final 13 cases of the term.

Freedom of religion is the focus of a case to be heard April 19, a challenge to laws in more than half of U.S. states that prohibit tax dollars from going to support churches.

Challengers argue that's discrimination, though the states say the prohibition prevents government from meddling in religious affairs.

Photo Credit: Stephen Crowley-Pool/Getty Images

New Haven Animal Shelter Secures Grant for Renovations


The Friends of New Haven Animal Shelter have secured a grant to make major improvements to the facility.

The city shelter, which takes in about 1,400 dogs and cats each year, received a $95,000 grant from the John T. and Jane A. Weiderhold Foundation. The money will pay for supplies to improve the welcome care, relocate and expand the cat area, and install new sound-absorbing panels on the dog kennels.

The work is already in motion.

"We have done all the design work, all the prep work is done so it's just a question of getting everything actually finished," said Debby Wan, who is the president of the Friends of the New Haven Animal Shelter President.

Shelter officials said the last major renovation happened in the 1980s. This renovation is expected to wrap up in May.

"Our whole reception area, and our whole front lobby will just be more inviting and better for the animals, and better for the guests and also better for the staff," said Joseph Manganiello, the New Haven municipal animal control officer.

The New Haven Animal Shelter is the second largest city animal shelter in the state. Those interested in adopting a pet or supporting the shelter can learn more here.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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