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Item in Bag Prompts Checkpoint Closure at Bradley Airport


A TSA security checkpoint at Bradley International Airport was temporarily closed Tuesday afternoon after something concerning came up on an x-ray during screening, according to TSA officials. The checkpoint has since reopened.

A TSA spokesman said that the checkpoint was closed because of a suspicious x-ray image during screening. The carry-on bag was examined and cleared after several minutes. They did not specify what was in the bag that prompted the response.

TSA estimates that the checkpoint was closed for about eight minutes.

Witness video shows a TSA officer asking travelers to back away from the TSA security checkpoint.

“You guys, I’m going to ask you to move away from the front of the checkpoint. Please go to the far side, don’t stay right in front of it,” the officer can be heard saying in the video.

Travelers at the checkpoint told NBC Connecticut they saw several state troopers and airport managers in the area, but the situation seemed under control.

Screening has reopened as usual.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

CT Lawmakers Pass Bill to Allow Testing of Self-Driving Cars


The Connecticut General Assembly has passed legislation to create a pilot program that would allow testing of self-driving vehicles in the state and it will now go to the governor. 

The bill calls for establishing a pilot program for the testing of autonomous vehicles. It also includes establishing a task force to study autonomous vehicles. 

“This legislation will help put Connecticut at the forefront of this innovative, burgeoning industry,” Gov. Dannel Malloy said in a statement. “Autonomous vehicles are already being tested in several states throughout the country, and we cannot allow our state to be outpaced as this technology grows.” 

He said the final language of this legislation includes specific qualifications through limited and controlled testing areas. 

“By adopting this legislation, we will show this growing industry and those around the country that we embrace and promote innovation in Connecticut,” Malloy said. 

AAA released a statement applauding the legislation. 

“AAA research indicates that consumers want to embrace new technology but they have reservations around safety and security. Testing of these vehicles will help address those concerns,” Amy Parmenter, spokesperson for AAA in Greater Hartford, said in a statement. “It’s critical that the consumer’s voice be heard and our lawmakers have acknowledged as much.” 

Inside a Ghost Town: Johnsonville on Market for $1.9 Million


Photo Credit: William Raveis/Sherri Milkie

Police Investigating Death of Toddler in Torrington


Torrington police are investigating the death of a 15-month-old baby boy and the initial report was that the child was unresponsive in the bathtub. 

Police said they baby’s mother called 911 call at 10:54 a.m. and said her son was unresponsive and she needed help. 

Torrington police, the fire department and Campion Ambulance responded to the home in the 400 block of South Main Street and the child was transported to Charlotte Hungerford Hospital, where he later died. 

Witnesses reported the little boy had on a breathing mask or respirator on when he was taken to the ambulance and that a man was taken from the home in handcuffs.

Police have not said anything about detaining anyone or taking anyone into custody. 

Detectives will be at the scene for several hours as they continue to process the scene and conduct interviews.

An autopsy will be performed on the toddler tomorrow.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Man, 57, Arrested for Hiking Naked at Sleeping Giant: DEEP


A 57-year-old man is accused of exposing himself and hiking naked at Sleeping Giant Park in Hamden, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) said. 

Witnesses said Anthony E. Ingraham exposed himself and was hiking naked at the state park in Hamden on on April 1 and April 9, according to DEEP. 

Ingraham turned himself into Connecticut State Police on Tuesday. 

The Wallingford man faces two counts of public indecency. His bond was set at $10,000 and he is expected to appear in court on June 19. 

Photo Credit: CT DEEP

Get Ready for a Major Warm-Up


The weather over the past few days has been quite unsettled. If you're sick of the cool and dreary weather just wait until this weekend. The weather pattern is going to shift and much warmer air will work into the state. 

High temperatures Tuesday afternoon only reached the upper 40s and low 50s. This makes it the coldest day on record and the 4th coldest June day on record. 

Milder air works in for Wednesday with high temperatures in the upper 60s and low 70s. High temperatures will work into the low to middle 70s for Thursday and Friday.

Much warmer air works in for the weekend and especially by early next week.

We're forecasting high temperatures in the low to middle 80s for Saturday and upper 80s to near 90 by Sunday.

Temperatures will climb into the low 90s early next week. 

Take a look at the temperature trend over the next seven days. Temperatures along the shoreline will run around 5 to 8 degrees cooler.

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Wallingford Attorney Buys Heroin From Client: Police


A Wallingford criminal defense attorney is accused of purchasing heroin from his client, police said. 

Police received multiple reports that narcotics were allegedly being sold at 20 Mountain View Road in Wallingford over the last several months. 

Heather McKee was identified as the resident of the home, according to Wallingford Police.

On Tuesday, McKee was seen by narcotic detectives making a hand-to-hand transaction with a 68-year-old attorney in her driveway, Wallingford Police said. 

Both McKee and the criminal defense attorney, James McCann, were taken into custody. 

Wallingford Police discovered that McCann had previously represented McKee in criminal proceedings. 

The investigation found that McCann had purchased forty bags of heroin from McKee.

During a search of McKee's home, police found one hundred bags of heroin, along with a bag containing 2.5 grams of powder heroin, packaging materials and a digital scale. Police seized $3,000 in cash, in addition to a small quantity of Suboxone and Xanex, which McKee does not have a prescription for, police said.

McKee was charged with operating a drug factory, sale of narcotics, possession of narcotics with intent to sell, possession of narcotics, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. Her bond was set at $50,000.

McKee's attorney, McCann, was charged with possession of narcotics and possession of drug paraphernalia. His bond was set at $5,000.

McCann and McKee are expected to appear in court on June 20. 

Photo Credit: Wallingford Police Department
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Consider Trump's Tweets 'Official Statements,' Spicer Says


It's official — the president's tweets, that is.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said Tuesday that Trump's tweets should be taken as official statements, NBC News reported. This contradicts other White House officials who have recently dialed back on this importance of the tweets.

"The president is president of the United States," Spicer said. "So they are considered official statements by the president of the United States."

Trump's Twitter usage has been a cornerstone of his presidency, offering a window into his thinking, sometimes at the expense of his administration's messaging. Despite bipartisan complaints about his continued 140-character habit, Trump has persisted in making his views known on social media.

Photo Credit: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Milford Cracks Down on Unsafe Bike Riding With New Rules


An ordinance approved by the City of Milford Board of Alderman prohibits bicycle zigzagging in and out of traffic, and allows police to confiscate bikes from those caught breaking the rules.

The new law comes in response to a number of complaints about teens performing tricks on their bikes that put drivers, pedestrians and themselves in danger.

"I have encountered bicyclists speeding down the sidewalk and as I’m exiting a store almost hit," Debbie Sargent, who works in downtown Milfordl, said.

A number of close calls have been reported to police about middle and high school aged children trying out tricks that interfere with pedestrians on sidewalks and cars on the roads.

"They can’t be weaving in and out of traffic," Milford Police Officer Mike DeVito said.

The new cycling rules in Milford that model state statues come with an added level of enforcement.

"Not only can we issue them a citation," DeVito said. "We can also cease their bike now and bring it back to the impound."

"It’s harsh, maybe some people will think that," Sargent said. "But safety for the people on the street is important."

Police hope this teaches young people a lesson because anyone under 18 will need a parent to pick up a confiscated bike, DeVito said.

"Our optimum goal is that it will just discourage the young parties that are operating the bikes from the continuing the behavior they’ve had in the past and just follow the rules and we’ll be fine with that," DeVito said.

The owner of Tony’s Bikes and Sports shop on Broad Street said he has a number of young customers.

“We get a lot of kids in the shop and I tell them you know find a parking lot or find a cul-de-sac, somewhere where it’s safer,” Mike Macisco said.

While Macisco said only certain groups of teens take it too far, he supports the new city rules for the sake of public safety.

“Even though they know how to do what they’re doing it doesn’t mean there can’t be a mechanical issue with the bike that causes a big accident or someone runs over a kid and has to live with that,” he said.

One mom told NBC Connecticut off-camera that parents need to play an important role in making sure their children aren’t riding their bikes recklessly. Police say they’ve had those talks with some students in school after identifying them in social media videos or photos.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

A Look Inside the Senate Room Where James Comey Will Testify


Room 216 of the Hart Senate Office Building is where several Supreme Court justices have faced confirmation hearings, where members of the 9/11 Commission analyzed the terror attacks and where federal judges have been grilled before impeachment.

On Thursday, former FBI director James Comey will appear there to give public testimony that is expected to shed light on the federal investigation into Russia's election meddling and whether President Donald Trump demanded Comey's loyalty as reports suggested.

News4 got an exclusive look at the grand hearing room on Tuesday, as staffers prepared for Comey's appearance before the Senate Intelligence Committee.


Comey will sit at a witness table facing an imposing wall of pale marble.

Members of the committee will sit before him, on an elevated dais. The United States Senate seal will hang over their heads.

The hearing room was built for high-publicity events that draw large numbers of spectators and reporters, U.S. Senate historian Katherine Scott said.

"Media boxes" where news organizations will set up cameras are tucked into the movable walls on a mezzanine level.

The hearing room was first used in 1988 for hearings between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. on nuclear forces, according to press coverage from the time.

Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Samuel Alito, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Neil Gorsuch and Sonia Sotomayor, among others, were held there, as well as 9/11 Commission hearings. Federal judge Walter Louis Nixon Jr. faced impeachment hearings there in 1989, as did judge Alcee Hastings.

Comey will give public testimony on Thursday, followed by a closed-door session to discuss classified matters.

A reporter asked Trump on Tuesday what message he would have for Comey ahead of his testimony.

"I wish him luck," he said.


Photo Credit: NBC Washington

1st Amendment Lawyers Tell Trump to Un-block Twitter Users


A group of First Amendment lawyers sent President Donald Trump a letter on Tuesday asking him to unblock Twitter users he shunned after they disagreed with him, NBC News reported.

The Knight First Amendment Institute, a non-profit representing several Twitter users blocked by @realDonaldTrump, argues that Trump's Twitter space is a "public forum," adding that "the viewpoint-based blocking of our clients is unconstitutional."

The White House did not immediately comment on the letter.

The Institute's efforts come after press secretary Sean Spicer confirmed Monday that the president's tweets should be taken as official statements, which legal experts say bolsters the lawyers' arguments.

Photo Credit: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

VFW Post Gets Bill for TV Service They Did Not Receive


The Wheeler-Young Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) post in Waterbury was charged more than $1,200 after canceling their services with a television provider.

The veterans of the VFW post in Waterbury are a close-knit family, getting together almost daily to share memories and stories. The post, which recently relocated to a new building they designed and built themselves, is proud of their mission to support local and national veterans organizations and the active military through fundraisers, hall rentals, and food and beverage sales at their canteen.

In an effort to increase sales and boost camaraderie, the post’s leadership looked for ways to accommodate more of their customers'

wishes. According to the quartermaster, Larry Valletta, clientele made it clear that they wanted to be able to watch New York Yankees games at the canteen.

The post contacted their television provider, DISH Network, and learned they do not carry the YES Network, the regional sports network which broadcasts Yankees games and programming. Intent on getting the channel through a different provider, the post canceled their DISH service, however, charges for DISH kept coming through the post’s phone and internet bill with Frontier Communications, which had originally bundled DISH service into a package deal.

With charges adding up to nearly $1,300 being added month after month, the post was still unable to get the problem fixed after nearly a year of trying.

“It’s ridiculous to be put on hold and wait and wait and wait and do this numerous times and they get nowhere,” Valletta told NBC Connecticut Responds.

NBC Connecticut reached out to DISH and Frontier Commutations.

A Frontier spokesperson recognized the post should not have been charged for DISH and said in a statement, “We apologize for the inconvenience the customer experienced because of this situation. We are pleased to report we found the cause of the mistake, worked with DISH and have corrected the VFWs account to make this right.”

DISH acknowledged the post followed correct procedure when they canceled their account, but declined to comment on why it took more than a year to resolve the problem, explaining, “We can’t share specifics about an account, but we are pleased to have resolved this for the customer.”

Valletta confirmed that $1286.31 in charges and fees have been waived from their Frontier account and they continue to be happy customers of Frontier phone and internet services. Meanwhile, the post was able to get the YES Network from a different television provider in time for Yankees fans to enjoy the season at the post.

With the team currently ranked first in the American league, Valletta said, “Everybody’s enjoying it, or the ones that watch Yankees. The Yankee fans are!”

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Obama, in Canada, Warns Against Isolationism


Former President Obama on Tuesday said Western values are still the envy of the world, and cautioned against embracing isolationism in the face of economic uncertainty, NBC News reported.

Obama, speaking in Montreal at a Chamber of Commerce event, said the world must do more to combat income inequality, noting that the concentration of wealth fans fears that governments exist solely to benefit the powerful.

"That's a recipe for more cynicism and more polarization, less trust in our institutions and less trust in each other. And it’s part of what leads people to turn to populist alternatives that may not actually deliver," Obama said.

Photo Credit: AP, File

Juvenile in Stolen Car Strikes Officer in Hebron: Police


A juvenile driving in a stolen car struck a Manchester police officer in Hebron on Tuesday night, police said. 

A Hebron Resident Trooper was assisting Manchester officers take a juvenile into custody in the area of East Street in Hebron, state police said. 

The juvenile appeared on East Street driving a 2001 Mercedes E320, which was reported stolen in Manchester. 

A Manchester officer tried to box the car in a private driveway, but the juvenile backed the vehicle up, then drove forward, striking the officer's door and causing minor injury to the officer, state troopers said. 

The officer was in uniform and standing between the open car door and the driver's compartment of the unmarked police vehicle, police said. 

The juvenile took off at a high rate of speed onto I-384 west, police said. 

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of the vehicle involved, a 2001 Mercedes E320 color black bearing CT AH98067 plates, is asked to contact Troop K at (860) 465-5400. 

'I Hear Her Screams': Man Recalls Crash 2 Years Later


It's been a long, tough battle for Randy Ruelle, who was hit while riding his motorcycle nearly two years ago. 

Sitting in his wheelchair inside St. Francis Hospital after visiting with his doctor, he knows it is still far from over.

"I don't sleep at night because of it. Because of the trauma of the accident. I hear her screams," Ruelle said.

Ruelle and his fiancee, Caroline Mcallister, were on a motorcycle heading back home on I-91 in Enfield when they were hit on June 13, 2016.

"He drove over the back of our bike. He killed Caroline instantly. I tried grabbing her to pull her in front of the bike because I heard her scream. I turned around, and when I tried to grab her, that's when she was thrown off the bike. I guess the SUV hit me, and he threw me 100 yards down the highway. And he drove down the highway with my bike stuck under the car and ran me over and dragged me a mile down the highway with me holding on to the front bumper while I was stuck underneath the car. He broke my face, my ribs, pretty much every bone in my body," Ruelle said.

When Ruelle came to, he was at St. Francis Hospital with his mom by his side, holding his hand. He said he had no memory of what happened.

"They told me Caroline died two weeks later and I didn't believe them. I didn't -- I didn't know," Ruelle said.

X-Rays showing broken bones and metal plates reveal just some of the pain Ruelle has had to endure. He said he flatlined four times, had a stroke, ended up in a coma for more than 30 days and has dealt with 27 surgeries with at least two more to go. He said he's lost the ability to smell or taste and has short-term memory loss.

"Thank God for St. Francis Hospital. They saved my life," Ruelle said. "I want to meet everybody in the trauma room that saved my life. It means a lot to me. It does mean a lot to me."

The person police said is responsible for the crash, 27-year-old Brett Verona, faces several charges including operating under the influence of drugs/alcohol, second degree manslaughter, evading responsibility and second degree assault.

Ruelle said he believes the charges are far from enough, especially when learning Verona already made bond.

"He shouldn't be out of jail. He should be sitting in jail. He killed somebody. He killed someone. He almost killed me. He put me in this wheelchair," Ruelle said.

Despite his anger, Ruelle said he's continuing to focus on the future. Three weeks ago he took a major step forward and walked for the first time since the accident.

"It felt great. It felt really good. Real good. I felt free for a little while," Ruelle said.

As the recovery continues, he's making plans to work with Mothers Against Drunk Driving. He hopes that his story can help save the life of someone else.

"I don't want nobody to get killed for drinking and driving," Ruelle said.

Regarding his recovery, Ruelle said, "It's a long, rough road, and I have a long road ahead of me. But I'm going to do it. I'm going to do it."

Ruelle said he doesn't think he'll be able to go back to his former job at a construction company. He hopes to one day go back to school and get a job counseling those with drug and alcohol addiction.

Regarding the suspect, Brett Verona, he has pled not guilty to driving under the influence. He has not yet been arraigned for the other charges.

Photo Credit: Randy Ruelle

DEA Issues New Guideline for Dealing With Dangerous Fentanyl


The Drug Enforcement Agency released a new set of guidelines Tuesday to help first responders know how to handle the deadly drug fentanyl in the battle against the national opioid epidemic, NBC News reported.

"Assume the worst," DEA acting chief Chuck Rosenberg says in a video accompanying the guideline. "Don't touch this stuff or the wrappings that it comes in without the proper personal protective equipment."

Rosenberg said the guideline, produced with help from police officers in Ohio, New Jersey, Connecticut, Maryland and Georgia, should be required reading for first responders

The DEA recently moved to declare the designer drug Acryl fentanyl a controlled substance and make it illegal to buy online.

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Marijuana Debate Starts in CT General Assembly


For the first time, the Connecticut General Assembly is seriously considering regulating the recreational use of marijuana.

The plan Tuesday was to bring the bill up for debate, but then not hold a vote.

The Speaker of the Connecticut House, Rep. Joe Aresimowicz conceded that the bill was about 12 votes short of passage.

“I think it’s important to have the debate if it’s going to be considered at all through the budgetary process," Aresimowicz said.

The bill would place limits on how many plants could be owned by an individual or a family, create a licensing structure for dispensaries, and set taxing guidelines for all cannabis products.

Republican Rep. Melissa Ziobron has been one of the most vocal supporters of the legislation since the start of the session.

“That’s the libertarian streak in me," Ziobron said during an interview. "I believe strongly that people have a right to their personal freedoms but I think it’s the eventuality of this topic when you look at all of the New England states now.”

The consensus among supporters is that they feel that if Connecticut doesn't act soon on the legalization of the recreational use of marijuana, then the state could miss out and be behind other states in the region. Maine and Massachusetts are a year away from coming online with their programs, and Vermont could be next in line.

“I think there is this general feeling that this is going to happen," said Rep. Josh Elliott. "We are going to legalize recreational marijuana and the question is this: do we want to this year, next year, or five years from now, and every year that we delay, we’re getting less revenue into the state.”

Governor Dan Malloy has not supported the issue from the start but wouldn't say he'd veto a budget that included projections of $50 million to $100 million in revenues.

“I’m not saying never but it’s not something I’ve advocated and it’s not part of my policy plans," he said.

Opponents to the marijuana legislation, which includes both Democrats and Republicans, are worried about the social consequences of such a bill, and add that passing it just to raise money, isn't a good reason.

“While it may have had lukewarm support, a lot of members have backed off and don’t support the concept," Rep. Vincent Candelora said.

Wednesday is the last day of the legislative session, but the legislation could end up in what's known as the legislation to implement the state budget later in June.

Intel. Director Facing Senate Amid Claims of Trump Pressure


The director of national intelligence, Dan Coats, is set to testify before Congress on Wednesday morning as new reports surface that President Donald Trump may have tried to quash the FBI's probe into Michael Flynn, NBC News reported.

Coats, along with acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, National Security Agency Director Michael Rogers and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, is scheduled to appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee.

The Washington Post had reported Tuesday that Coats told associates in March that Trump asked him to intervene with former FBI Director James Comey and cool the investigation into Flynn.

However, Coats' spokesman told NBC News Tuesday night that Coats "has never felt pressured by the president or anyone else in the administration to influence any intelligence matters or ongoing investigations."

Photo Credit: Jacquelyn Martin/AP, File

Texas Congressman Planning to Start Impeachment Process


Rep. Al Green, D-Texas, said he is planning to draft articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump on Wednesday, NBC News reported.

Green, who said he has received multiple death threats since he's discussed impeachment, argues that Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey on May 9 was obstruction of justice.

"The facts are simple and indisputable," Green said in a statement Tuesday. "The president fired the FBI director because the director was investigating the president's campaign connections to Russian interference in the presidential election."

Green has been among the leading voices calling for Trump's impeachment since he proposed it on May 15.

Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images, File

Public Meeting to Discuss Railroad Expansion Along Shoreline


Guilford residents concerned about a Federal Highway Administration proposal to double the amount of railroad track between their town and Branford will have a chance to speak up at a community meeting tonight.

"We're afraid that it could change the character of the shoreline, and not just from Branford to Guilford but really from Old Lyme all the way to Greenwich, that it could fundamentally change coastal Connecticut," said Gregory Stroud of the Connecticut Trust for Preservation.

The plan includes adding four more tracks between Branford and Guilford in an attempt to increase the amount of high-speed rail track in the northeast corridor.

Residents who spoke with NBC Connecticut said that because they haven’t been consulted by the rail authority, they don’t know what the plans could mean for everything from property values to the impact on water wells.

The community meeting to discuss the plans is Wednesday night at the Nathaneal B. Greene Community Center at 7 p.m.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut
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