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Afghan Taliban 'Happy to Continue' War After Trump Vows Win


The Taliban had called for special prayers prior to President Donald Trump's Monday night speech, hoping he would announce complete withdrawal in Afghanistan, members of the group told NBC News.

Trump ended up taking the opposite path, promising a continued military presence that centered around empowering his generals and squeezing neighboring Pakistan, a U.S. ally that has often been accused of harboring and enabling terror groups.

Monday's speech angered many in Pakistan, with several lawmakers denouncing Trump for calling them out on the world stage. But the Taliban claimed that despite Trump going against their wishes they were happy to keep fighting in America's longest war.

"If we could fight this war for 16 years with limited resources against the world's well-equipped armies, we are happy to continue this fight against the enemy," one of the commanders told NBC News, who, like many of the militants, spoke on condition of anonymity.

Photo Credit: Faridullah Ahmadzai/AFP/Getty Images, File

Suffield Woman Dropped Baby to Attack Boyfriend: Police


A Suffield woman is accused of dropping her baby on the hood of a police cruiser in order to hit her boyfriend while he was speaking to officers who were responding to a 911 hang-up call Monday evening.

The suspect, identified as Jesaida Rodriguez, 33, faces risk of injury and disorderly conduct charges.

Suffield police said that they responded to a home on North Grand Street when dispatch received a hang-up 911 call around 6:22 p.m. When officers arrived they began talking to a male who was standing in the driveway. At that point, Rodriguez walked toward the officers, dropped her 1-and-a-half-year-old daughter on the hood of a police car and tried to hit the male in front of police.

The victim was identified as Rodriguez's boyfriend.

Rodriguez was also wanted on an arrest warrant for failure to appear charges. She was issued a combined $8,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.

The Department of Children and Families has been called in to conduct their own investigation.

Photo Credit: Suffield Police Department

Severe Thunderstorm Watch in Effect


Our team of meteorologists have issued a First Alert for strong to severe thunderstorms tonight.

A severe thunderstorm watch has been issued for Litchfield County until midnight. 

The thunderstorm threat starts after 9 p.m. here in Connecticut. Take a look at First Alert Future Radar at 9 p.m. which shows strong thunderstorms moving into Litchfield county. 

The line of thunderstorms will move east into central portions of the state by 11 p.m. 

Any thunderstorm that does move into the state could become strong to even severe. Severe storms are expected to bring damaging winds, frequent lightning and heavy rain. There is also a slight chance of a small tornado especially for areas of western Connecticut. 

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Man Exposing Himself at Skate Park Causes Disturbance


A belligerent man is accused of starting altercations with multiple people at a skate park in Bristol before exposing himself to a large group of adult and children.

After the man, Anthony Yacino, stood in the middle of the skate park and showed his genitalia, two people got into a fight with him and broke his skateboard, police said. 

According to police, on Aug. 4, the Bristol Police Department received a complaint that said an intoxicated man wearing a neon orange shirt was causing a disturbance at Rockwell Park around 6:22 p.m.

Responding offers located Yacino and he told police that he was randomly attacked by suspects who broke and stole his skateboard. 

An investigation quickly found that Yacino, who appeared intoxicated, was being vulgar and belligerent with several people at the skate park. 

The visitors in the park, including Ian Malaspina and Philip Ramos, yelled at Yacino to leave, which was at the time that Yacino pulled down his shorts in the middle of the skate part to expose himself to a large crowd of people, including juveniles, according to the Bristol police report. 

Yacino continued to be vulgar and witnesses said he was swinging his skateboard around in an unsafe manner. At that point, Yacino, Malaspina and Ramos, in addition to unidentified individuals, broke out into a physical altercation. 

Malaspina admitted to breaking Yacino's skateboard because the man appeared like he was utilizing it as a weapon. Malaspina was charged with creating a disturbance in a park. 

Ramos admitted to throwing punches during the altercation and was also charged with creating a disturbance in a park. 

Police said after arrested Yacino, he was extremely disrespectful and vulgar after being placed under arrest. The report said Yacino explained, "he would make any officer's life he dealt with a 'living hell'." 

Yacino was charged with impairing the morals of a child and breach of peace. His bond was set at $2,500.

New Haven Barber Offers Haircuts Out Of Mobile Shop


What once was a shuttle for senior citizens is now a one-of-a-kind barber shop on wheels in New Haven.

"He built this truck, little by little, paycheck by paycheck," Amarilis Lopez, the barber’s girlfriend, said.

Luis Gonzalez credits his son with coming up with the idea of starting the mobile barber shop.

"He said, 'Do the barber shop in a truck'," Gonzalez recalled his son telling him a few years back.

For years since his arrival from Puerto Rico, Gonzalez worked in traditional New Haven neighborhood barber shops.

"He already (has a) 20 years career," Lopez said. "He brought all his clients in here. They like it. They support him."

Gonzalez rents his parking space from a Fair Haven church and pays an electricity bill to United Illuminating.

It cost $1,500 to buy the truck and another $3,000 for the renovations, Gonzalez told NBC Connecticut. More than six years later, he said between 50 and 60 customers sit down each week for a haircut in his unique space.

"He can be here or he can be mobile," Lopez said. "He can go to your house if he wants. He hasn’t started that yet."

Eventually, Gonzalez said he hopes to set up shop next to the more familiar mobile food vendors in the Elm City.

"My dream is to park here in Long Wharf,” he said, “people see something different," Gonzalez said. 

His aspirations don’t stop there.

"One of the dreams is to be a bigger truck for more barbers," Lopez said.

Gonzalez is in the process of expanding his business. He is working on transforming a full-size school bus he purchased into a barbershop with three hair cutting stations.

The Mobile Barber Shop can be found at the corner of Lloyd and Chapel Streets. The usual hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Only 1 County Remains Without an Obamacare Insurer for 2018


The entire United States, with the exception of a single small county in Ohio, is now on track to have at least one insurer offering Obamacare health coverage next year, CNBC reported. 

That's a big change from earlier this summer, when at different times a total of 82 counties lacked commitments from insurers who sell individual health plans for 2018.

And the continued decline in "bare counties" provides more ammunition for Obamacare advocates arguing against Trump administration claims that the health-care program is failing and needs to be replaced immediately.

Insurance regulators in Ohio are trying to get an insurer to step in and offer individual health plans in the lone "bare" area, Paulding County.

Photo Credit: AP/File

Milford School to Start School Year 3 Days Later


School officials at West Shore Middle School in Milford announced Tuesday that it will open three days later than expected due to construction. 

Classes will begin on Aug. 31, while other Milford Public Schools will begin on Aug. 28.

The school's principal, Paul Cavanna, said the delay is needed to "insure that all of the classrooms to be occupied by our students will be completely ready to receive them. The extra time will give teachers the ability to prepare their classrooms properly and for secretaries and custodians to complete their final tasks before students arrive on Thursday. Finally, the extra days will provide the necessary time to insure that all inspections have occurred and the building is approved for occupancy."

There will be a "sneak peek" of the school on Wednesday, Aug. 30 for parents and students between 5:30 and 7:30 p.m.

Construction at the school began in March 2017 and more work is expected to be done throughout the year. 

Cavanna said the construction will mostly be on the other side of the building from classrooms. Work is underway at the main entrance, front pickup and drop-off loop, main office, gym and media center. 

"While this work continues, we will use the alternative pickup and drop-off procedure that was implemented in the spring of last year," Cavanna said.

Windows are also being replaced and 10 classrooms have plywood where new windows have yet to be installed. 

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Old Lyme Woman Takes Legal Action to Rid of Fence


One woman is taking legal action to knock down a fence closing in Sound View Beach in Old Lyme.

The fence is the length of Hartford Avenue in town. Just to the right of the beach is a now a chain link fence blocking off the privately-owned Miami Beach.

That fence was recently put up by the Miami Beach Association. They also instituted a Clean Beach Pass Program where they charge an access fee to all beachgoers who are not Miami Beach Association, Sound View Beach, or Town of Old Lyme property owners or residents, according to documents.

In that paperwork, the association said it’s because there’s been a boost in inappropriate behavior and people aren’t following the rules.

But one Sound View Beach resident is looking to change the fence and fees. Kathleen Tracy is working to put her name on 1953 case where a Superior Court judge issued an injunction that said the beach association cannot interfere with the public’s free entry, use and enjoyment of the length of both beaches.

She retained the legal services of attorney William McCoy, who said because the original plaintiffs appear to be deceased or cannot be located, Tracy is looking to add her name on as a plaintiff.

According to documents, the developer of the land, Harry J. Hillard decided the beach was to be used and enjoyed by the public.

But some beachgoers understand why the fence is there.

"It’s their community, they pay their taxes, I’m sure they pay a premium for their houses on the beach and they should be able to have their own private beach," Janny Tripler of Middlefield said.

Two members of the Beach Association, who didn’t want to be identified, said there have been thefts, lude behavior, trash and an oversaturation of people on the beach. They said the fence is a means of protection.

Beachgoers Linda Hunt and Bonnie Schneider, both of Newington, have been going to Sound View Beach in Old Lyme since they were teens and were shocked to find the fence up this summer.

"It’s like (Sound View Beach) is getting smaller and smaller," Schneider said.

"Today is Tuesday. Can you imagine what this place is going to be like on a Saturday or Sunday?" Hunt added.

They say it could change theirs, and many other people’s, summer plans.

"We’re already thinking right now, there’s no room," Schneider said.

NBC Connecticut reached out to Miami Beach Association’s President Mark Mongillo by phone and email for comment and did not hear back.

Old Lyme First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder said the town’s attorney advised against taking legal action since Miami Beach is private, not public, property.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Supporters and Protesters Gather Outside President Trump's Rally in Phoenix


Streets in downtown Phoenix were filled with both supporters and protesters of President Trump ahead of his scheduled appearance.

Family of Suffield Man Assigned to Damaged Warship Waits


The family of a Suffield man who was assigned to the USS John S. McCain said they are waiting to hear from the U.S. Navy. 

Dustin Doyon is an Electronics Technician Third Party Petty Officer with the U.S. Navy. 

He was assigned to the McCain warship, which collided just before dawn on Monday near Singapore with an oil tanker. 

The collision tore a gaping hole in the McCain's left rear hull and flooded adjacent compartments, including crews berths, machinery and communication rooms

On Tuesday, Navy divers searching a flooded compartment of the ship found remains of some of the 10 sailors who went missing in a collision.

Doyon's family put out the following statement via the Suffield Police Department:

On behalf of the entire Doyon family, we want to thank all those who have expressed concern and offered prayers and support as we await word from the US Navy on our son and brother Dustin who is assigned to the USS John S. McCain (DDG 56).

We appreciate the courageous work of the crew in the aftermath of the collision and the continuing rescue efforts.

As you can imagine, this is a very difficult time for our family and we respectfully request that you honor our privacy.

Photo Credit: AP

Navy to Relieve Vice Admiral of Command After Collisions


The commander of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet will be relieved of command following the deadly collision of two warships in separate incidents in a little more than two months, two officials said Tuesday.

As NBC News reports, Navy Vice Admiral Joseph P. Aucoin will be relieved of command by Pacific Fleet Admiral Scott Swift, the officials said.

Swift announced he is traveling to Yokosuka Japan at a press conference in Singapore Tuesday and he is expected to meet with Aucoin there.

Photo Credit: AP, File

Key Moments From President Trump's Phoenix Rally


President Donald Trump spoke to the crowd at his campaign-style rally in Phoenix, Arizona, for over an hour Tuesday night. Here are the key moments from his speech.

East Windsor Police Seek Attempted Robbery Suspect


East Windsor police are looking for the suspect in an attempted robbery at the Dunkin’ Donuts on North Road.

Police said that on Tuesday evening a female suspect entered the business and handed the worker a note demanding money. The note implied the suspect had a weapon.

The employee refused to give the suspect any money, and the suspect fled.

The suspect was described as around 5-foot, 140 pounds, with blonde hair, wearing a black tank top, black shorts, and with a blue scarf over her face.

Anyone with information on this crime is asked to contact East Windsor police.

Photo Credit: East Windsor Police Department

Excerpts Released From Hillary Clinton's Upcoming Memoir


Hillary Clinton feels she let down the millions of people who supported her in the 2016 presidential election, she says in her new book, according to two excerpts of the audio book obtained by "Morning Joe."

Clinton says the book, "What Happened," is about moments from the campaign she wishes she could do over, including her reaction to now-President Donald Trump tracking Clinton around the stage at her second debate with him, days after a tape was released in which Trump bragged about being able to grope women.

The book is set to be released on Sept. 12 by Simon & Schuster. The excerpts obtained by "Morning Joe" are the first from the book to be made public.

"Writing this wasn't easy," Clinton writes in the author's note. "Every day that I was a candidate for president I knew that millions of people were counting on me and I couldn't bear the idea of letting them down. But I did. I couldn't get the job done. And I’ll have to live with that for the rest of my life."

In another section, Clinton says she wonders whether she should have reacted differently to Trump following her around on stage during their second debate on Oct. 9. An "Access Hollywood" tape from 2005 had just been released in which Trump bragged that women let famous men do whatever they want to them, including "grab them by the pussy," prompting widespread outrage and an eventual apology from Trump.

Shortly after the debate, Clinton accused Trump of "menacingly stalking" her around the stage — earning a reprimand from some on social media and in a New York Daily News cover — and now she says it made her skin crawl.

But she ultimately did not address it on-stage, and Clinton now writes that she wonders if she would have been better off saying, "Back up, you creep, get away from me. I know you love to intimidate women, but you can't intimidate me, so back off."

She adds, "Maybe I have overlearned the lesson of staying calm."

Photo Credit: Patrick Semansky/AP, File

Man Shot at Travel Inn Motel on Weston Street in Hartford


A 23-year-old man is recovering after being shot at the Travel Inn Motel in Hartford Wednesday morning.

Police said the victim was found in room 217 of the motel, located at 100 Weston Street, around 3:45 a.m. He was alert and conscious and taken to Hartford Hospital for treatment of a non-life threatening wound.

Witnesses said the shooter shot through the room’s window at the victim. Witnesses also reported that a man ran from the scene and that there had been a female in the room.

The Hartford Police Department Major Crimes Division is investigating. Anyone with information should contact police.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Penn Station Derailment Cleared But Subways Are a Mess


A non-passenger New Jersey Transit train derailed inside New York Penn Station early Wednesday, but no one was hurt and service was running on or close to schedule by the time the peak morning commute got underway, officials said.

An NJ Transit spokesperson said an Amtrak crew was operating the train out of the yard around 4:25 a.m. when the engine came off the tracks at Track 4. The train cars were blocking tracks 1 through 5, which are not the ones already subject to closure for Amtrak's summer-long infrastructure overhaul.

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Service on the Northeast Corridor, North Jersey Coast, Morris & Essex and Montclair-Boonton lines was subject to about 20-minute delays for a time. Officials had cautioned delays and cancellations were possible for the morning rush, but NJ Transit said around 6:30 a.m. that the engine had been re-railed and service in and out of Penn was operating on or close to schedule. Get real-time transit updates here. 

The Long Island Railroad said it was not affected by the derailment. 

Amtrak, which owns and maintains the tracks at Penn, did not immediately comment on the mishap.

Trains have been operating under revised schedules since July while Amtrak conducts extensive repairs at the aging Manhattan transit hub. At least three tracks have been subject to closure at any given time; work is focusing on six. Before the work began, Gov. Cuomo warned that commuters could be in for a "summer of hell," but his ominous prediction has fallen short of expectations.

Amtrak's repair work is expected to be completed by Labor Day. Work has been on or ahead of schedule. It wasn't immediately clear if the derailment would delay the project.

While the Penn Station situation cleared up rather quickly, New York City subways faced a litany of issues during Wednesday's morning rush. A train with mechanical issues caused sweeping service changes before 8 a.m. The MTA said southbound B trains were running on the D line from Atlantic Avenue to Coney Island, then via the Q to Brighton Beach. Some southbound B and D trains were running on the F line from West Fourth to Second Avenue. Service on the N and Q lines were also affected and the MTA advised customers to expect delays on the B, D, F, N, Q and R trains.  

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York
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More US Troops in Afghanistan Than Pentagon Admits: Officals


There are several thousand more American troops serving in Afghanistan, on average, than the Pentagon officially acknowledges, three U.S. defense officials told NBC News.

The official Pentagon count puts 8,400 troops on the ground in Afghanistan — the maximum number of service members authorized to be there is 8,448 — but the officials said that the number actually hovers between 11,000 and 12,000.

That's because of people in-country on temporary duty shorter than 120 days and overlap between units as service members transition in and out.

President Donald Trump's new Afghanistan strategy involves expanded authority for American armed forces to operate in the nation, but neither he nor Defense Secretary James Mattis have said how many additional troops will be sent there. Pentagon plans from June called for 3,900 more troops to go to Afghanistan, Vice President Mike Pence said Tuesday.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Mom, Children Missing Overnight Are Safe at Home


An Oxford mother, her two young children and their dog, who were missing after going for a walk in the Naugatuck State Forest, are safe at home after finding their way out of the forest.

Police said the woman’s husband reported his wife, their 8-year-old daughter, 4-year-old son and the family dog missing after they went for a walk Tuesday evening and did not return. Crews began searching for them around 11:45 p.m. when the husband reported them missing. It was raining heavily at that time.

According to Sgt. Tate Begley State Environmental Police, Wednesday morning the woman, children and dog made it out of the forest and flagged down a driver on Chestnut Tree Hill Road for help. Everyone was in good condition, with just minor cuts and scrapes.

“It just happened we got lucky that she had a good sense of direction - heading in the direction of Chestnut Hill Tree Road, and you know, came out to a passerby,” Begley said.

The woman told authorities they took shelter in the woods overnight after they got lost and her cell phone died. At one point the family could hear the search crews looking for them, but because of the dense forest, they could not hear the woman’s calls for help.

Search crews were out for about seven hours searching.

Begley said crews were "very relieved" with the happy ending.

Photo Credit: NBCConnectcut.com

Police Investigate Untimely Death of Home Health Care Aide


Milford police are investigating an untimely death of a home health care aide.

Early Tuesday morning police were outside a home at 212 East Rutland Road. The crime scene van was on scene.

On Wednesday, police said that the deceased person was a home health care aide. She has not been identified.

The medical examiner will perform an autopsy.

Police said it appears to be an isolated incident. 

No other information was immediately available. NBC Connecticut will provide updates as they come into the newsroom.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

UConn Holds Grand Opening at Downtown Hartford Campus


UConn has returned to Hartford. 

The campus, which was moved from West Hartford, includes the renovated and expanded historic former Hartford Times building, classroom and office space at 38 Prospect St. and shared space in the Hartford Public Library.

UConn had a campus in Hartford from 1939 until 1970, when it moved to West Hartford.

Classes start Monday at the downtown campus, which will educate about 2,300 undergraduate and graduate students and provide work for almost 300 full- and part-time employees.

Between the new Hartford campus and the Graduate Business Learning Center, UConn will be bringing more than 3,100 students to downtown Hartford.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, UConn President Susan Herbst, Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin, UConn Hartford students, U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal and Christopher Murphy, U.S. Rep. John Larson and several state and local officials will participate in the celebration.

Barnes & Noble has also opened the new UConn Bookstore on Front Street and will offer textbooks and general interest books, a Starbucks café, indoor and outdoor seating, a grab-and-go style food market, and a selection of UConn apparel and other merchandise.

Several downtown businesses, including nearly a dozen restaurants and other locations, have signed on to accept Husky Bucks, a debit-style card UConn issues for its students’ use.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com
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