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$4.1M Awarded to UCSD Student "Forgotten by DEA"


The U.S. government will pay $4.1 million to avoid a lawsuit against federal agents who forgot about a UC San Diego student left in a holding cell for days without food or water.

Daniel Chong spent five days in a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) holding cell in April 2012.

Taken into custody on a DEA raid, Chong was left in a windowless room without food and water. He was forced to drink his own urine hoping it would help him stay alive.

Chong's attorney, who along with his client threatened a lawsuit against the DEA, announced the $4.1 million settlement Tuesday.

“What happened to Daniel Chong should not happen to any human being,” attorney Gene Iredale said.

Iredale said it was a San Diego Police Department officer by the name of Darin Reis who told Chong on that first day that someone would be right back to get him.

The officer was part of a DEA task force made up of local, state and federal law enforcement.

"It was an accident, a really really bad horrible accident," Chong said Tuesday regarding the officer's alleged mistake.

The UC San Diego student was at a friend’s house in University City celebrating 4/20, a day many marijuana users set aside to smoke, when agents came inside and raided the residence.

Chong was then taken to the DEA office in Kearny Mesa.

“I had to do what I had to do to survive,” Chong told NBC 7 after the incident. “It’s so inconceivable. You keep doubting they would forget you."

When he was eventually found, Chong was incoherent and suffering from kidney failure. He was rushed to the hospital where he spent three days in the ICU.

More than a year later the DEA that put him there is paying the price.

Defense attorney Gretchen Von Helms, who is not representing Chong, previously estimated the settlement could be in the $2-3 million range.

“You break it down into the pain and suffering and how horrible this could have been for the family. They didn't know where he was, all the anguish the family went through and the young man went through,” Von Helms said.

Eventually Chong was discovered and the DEA issued a formal apology.

Since then, Chong has been diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and is being treated by a doctor who normally treats veterans who have returned from battle.

Iredale said the doctor has "never seen stress or trauma as significant" as Chong's situation.

"He really did sustain a near-death experience,” Iredale said.

No criminal action will be taken against any individual officers, Iredale said Tuesday, but they hope there is at least a rebuke of the officer's alleged actions.

Man Leaves Bags at Airport Rather Than Pay $1,400 in Fees


A passenger booked on a Delta flight to New York City left four of his seven bags in Seattle after he was told he'd have to pay $1,400 in baggage fees, according to law enforcement officials.

Law enforcement officers met and questioned the man when the plane landed at Kennedy Airport Tuesday because of the abandoned bags.

Authorities in Seattle closed the ticket counter and called the bomb squad to investigate what appeared to be wires sticking out of some of the luggage. It was later determined the bags contained personal items.

The man was released after he was questioned in New York.

--Jay Blackman contributed to this story

More New York-area stories:

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Shelter Cats Saved in Bridgeport


On Monday, the Bridgeport animal shelter put out a plea to the public to help save the lives of several cats that were in danger of being put down if they did not get homes.

Residents came through and adopted 75 cats in less than 24 hours. 

News 12 reported on Monday that the shelter had about twice as many as the establishment's capacity.

Shelter staff warned that they might have to start euthanizing some of the cats if it could not find homes for them soon.

This afternoon, the animal shelter tells NBC Connecticut that all the cats have been adopted.

Animal control officials said all adoption fees for cats and kittens would be covered by the charitable organization T.A.I.L.S.

Bridgeport Animal Control is still looking for homes for some dogs. The shelter is located at 236 Evergreen Street in Bridgeport.


Black Officers File Complaint Against East Hartford Police Department


Three black police officers have filed a complaint against the East Hartford Police Department, claiming they were subjected to racial discrimination, harassment and retaliation.

Juma Jones, Mark Allen and Kenneth Combs filed the case against the East Hartford Police Department and Police Chief Mark J. Sirois.

Attorney Josephine Miller’s office filed the complaint in Bridgeport Federal Court on July 15.

NBC Connecticut has left a message with the East Hartford Police, but did not get an immediate response.

Illinois Lawmakers Sue Governor Over Paycheck


Two of the state's top lawmakers want their money, and they're suing to get it.

Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan and Senate President John Cullerton on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against Gov. Pat Quinn, alleging the veto power he used earlier this month to suspend lawmakers' pay was unconstitutional.

"Just as the Illinois Constitution of 1970 protects the right of each judge to receive a salary and not have their salary reduced during their term of office, the Constitution also requires that each legislator receive a salary and prohibits 'changes' in the salaries of legislators during their terms of office," the pair said in a lawsuit, filed Tuesday in Cook County Court.

The lawsuit also names Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka as a defendant. She said paychecks to tens of thousands of state employees were ready but couldn't be sent until Quinn signed off on them.

She expressed hope last week that the matter would be resolved "expeditiously" and said government shouldn't be run through threats and blackmail.

Quinn said his move to suspend pay -- even his own -- was a consequence for lawmakers' failure to address the state's $97 billion pension shortfall.

He said Madigan and Cullerton's lawsuit was "just plain wrong," and took issue with the fact that the lawmakers, who have different ideas on how to solve the pension problem, could come together to sue him.

"If legislators had put forth the same effort to draw up a pension reform agreement that they did in crafting this lawsuit, pension reform could have been done by now," he said in a written statement.

But Madigan and Cullerton say Quinn's veto action "threatens the independence of each branch of government."

"By eliminating General Assembly members' salaries, the Governor has chosen to disregard separation of power and its necessity if our government is to work properly and efficiently," they said.

State funds are paying for the lawsuit, a move that's permissable under state law, Cullerton spokeswoman Rikeesha Phelon said via email.

"It's filed in their official capacities so state funds are allowed," she said. "Legal fees/bills are capped for that reason."

Former White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley, who earlier in the day made official his campaign to challenge Quinn, called the governor's action a "side show" that is "doing nothing to end the pension crisis that is hurting our school kids and stands in the way of creating jobs." He added that Quinn's action is "likely unconstitutional."

Lawmakers are paid once per month. The next paychecks were scheduled to go out on Aug. 1. The yearly base pay for lawmakers is $67,836. Stipends range between $10,000 and $27,000.

To solve the pension problem, Madigan has endorsed a plan that would unilaterally impose pension changes on retired state workers, including increasing the retirement age. Cullerton's Senate supports a union-backed plan that would give retirees options over pension benefits. Many argue it would not save the state as much money as the plan Madigan supports. However, advocates for the Senate plan argue it is more likely to survive an expected legal challenge, since negotiated retirement benefits are currently protected by the state constitution.

Photo Credit: AP

Social Media Leads Police To Alleged Assault Victim


A 29-year-old Chicago woman turned to social media after she said her boyfriend showed up at her Lincoln Park apartment unannounced late Monday, sexually assaulted her, and took away her phone.

The woman, whose identity will be kept confidential because of the nature of the alleged crime, said she grabbed her laptop and sent a message into the ether. The alleged victim said she didn't know if people would respond or even read the tweet and Facebook post she sent after the assault she said happened in her condo in the 2700 block of Hampden Court.

"Someone call 911," read the post, which provided her address. "Do not reply, just call PLEASE."

The woman said her boyfriend looked through messages and files on her phone and computer. She said she was able to get out the message using her laptop while her attacker was searching the cell phone in the bedroom.

People quickly responded from all over the world, including someone in Israel. One of her Facebook contacts got in touch with Chicago police, who had officers at her front door within 15 minutes.

"I don't know how many people saw it [or] how many people called, but apparently there were quite a number," the alleged victim said Tuesday.

Police on Tuesday confirmed they were investigating a sexual assault but declined to offer any other details. The boyfriend was taken into custody but it wasn't clear by the afternoon hours if he'd been released. No charges have been filed.

The woman, who has lived in her apartment for about two months, said she is "overcome with gracefulness [sic]."

"Thank you to everyone who read my message," she said.

She was treated at a local hospital and released.

Mosquitoes Test Positive for West Nile in Plainfield


Mosquitoes trapped in Plainfield have tested positive for West Nile Virus, according to the Northeast District Department of Health.

Plainfield is the fifth town to have mosquitoes test positive for the virus. Bridgeport, Glastonbury, Greenwich and Norwalk have also had mosquitoes with West Nile Virus.

"News of positive mosquito findings in Plainfield serves as a reminder for residents to take steps to protect themselves from mosquito bites now through September," said Susan Starkey, Health Director for Northeast District Department of Health.

Tips to prevent mosquito bites include:

Minimize time spent outdoors between dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active

Wear shoes, socks, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt when outdoors for long periods of time

Use mosquito repellent

Reduce standing water around your house, where mosquitoes like to breed.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News

Pa. Sues Clerk to Stop Same Sex Marriages


In just one week, Montgomery County has become ground zero in the political fight over same-sex marriages in Pennsylvania, and a little-known county official has become the catalyst for a battle that is now going to the courts.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health is suing D. Bruce Hanes, the county’s Register of Wills, in an effort to stop him from issuing any more marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The suit claims that Hanes is not performing the job he was elected to fulfill.

“Remember, I didn’t start this. This was not an issue with my office until recently, because believe it or not, since I was sworn in as the Register of Wills, not one same-sex couple had come forward and asked for a marriage license,” Hanes said the day before the suit was filed.

In 2007, Hanes became the first Democrat elected to serve as Register of Wills for the county. In addition to his other duties, which include probating wills and petitions for adoption, Hanes grants marriage licenses. The state, acting through the Pennsylvania Department of Health, took the not-so-common route of filing a Writ of Mandamus, asking the court to stop Hanes. Mandamus is a legal procedure, more often used by citizens, to compel a government employee to perform their job to the letter of the law.

“It’s a method that is used procedurally when there is no case between two parties, no adversarial controversy,” said attorney Irwin W. Aronson whose legal expertise includes Public Policy, labor and legislative law. “This is really a political case, not a legal case, that is going to be teed up, if you will, by politicians in a court room.”

Pennsylvania is the only state in the Northeast without same-sex marriages or civil unions. The Pennsylvania Marriage law was enacted in 1990 and amended in 1996 to define marriage as a civil contract in which a man and a woman take each other as husband and wife. It also says that same-sex marriages, even if entered legally elsewhere, are void in Pennsylvania.

In June, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down part of the federal government’s Defense of Marriage Act. The court said that by denying legally wed same-sex couples marital status under federal law, the federal government was usurping the authority of the states to regulate marriage. That ruling has left the legal status of same-sex marriages in Pennsylvania, unclear.

“What we’re dealing with are competing interpretations of what civil rights are. Does the state have, any longer, any remaining rights to litigate this particular question?” Aronson said.

Shortly after the Supreme Court ruling, the American Civil Liberties Union sued to challenge the Pennsylvania Marriage Law and Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane announced that she could not ethically defend the state law in court because she didn’t believe in it. Her interpretation of the new legal landscape was that the Commonwealth’s law was “wholly unconstitutional.”

After Kane’s announcement, Hanes began receiving requests for same-sex marriage licenses.

When he made history by granting the first same-sex marriage license in the state on June 23, he said he did it because he wanted to "come down on the right side of history and the law. In the week since, Hanes’ office has granted 34 same-sex marriage licenses and recognized and recorded six same-sex marriages.

Janet Kelley, a spokeswoman for Governor Tom Corbett, said the Department of Health filed the Mandamus petition because it’s responsible for maintaining marriage license records and therefore has the ability to enforce the law.

“Mandamus is the proper legal action to compel a public official’s compliance with an existing law,” Kelley said.

In addition to suing Hanes, the state also blasted Attorney General Kathleen Kane, accusing her of usurping her duties, betraying the Governor and setting dangerous precedent by refusing to defend the state’s marriage statute on constitutional grounds. James D. Schultz, the state’s General Counsel, said Kane’s interpretation of the Supreme Court ruling’s effect on the state law was “simply wrong.”

“The Court in no way adjudicated the question of whether a state law defining marriage as exclusively between a man and a woman violates due process or equal protection. To the contrary, Windsor clearly leaves for another day the limits that the U.S. Constitution might impose on the State in their regulation of the marital relationship.”

In a letter responding to Schultz late Tuesday, Deputy Attorney General Adrian King defended Kane’s actions, saying, “As you know, Governor Corbett is a steadfast supporter of the Marriage Law. It is reasonable to assume that the Governor seeks to have his position vigorously represented before the court. Given the Attorney General’s fundamental disagreement with the Governor on this issue – in her capacity as his attorney – the Rules of Professional Conduct clearly require her withdrawal.”

“Furthermore, it is not your job to tell the Office of the Attorney General – an independent agency – what its duties and obligations are,” King wrote.

For the case against Hanes, standards for the state will be higher than the burden of proof in a trial, according to Aronson.

“There will be a requirement that there be a demonstration that the harm of not limiting Hanes’ conduct is greater than the harm that would befall the citizens of the Commonwealth if he’s not restrained,” Aronson said.

The Mandamus petition says, “there is no limit to legal and administrative chaos that is likely to flow” from Hanes’ actions. One consequence, the petition predicts, is that same-sex couples who “falsely believe” they are legally married will apply for state benefits or treatment they “erroneously” believe they are entitled to.

Aronson believes the State’s fight against Kane will take a long time and involve an extraordinary investment of time, intellect and money. But the state says no additional help is being brought in to handle the cases.

“Attorneys already on the staff of the Office of General Counsel (including attorneys assigned to the Department of Health) are representing the Commonwealth parties in litigation involving the Pennsylvania Marriage Law,” Kelley said.

“From my perspective, I’m just a little bit shocked that we have the funds to do this, when we don’t have the funds to educate our kids or fix our roads,” Aronson said.

“It’s getting comical, except for the victims,” he said.

State Representative Brian Sims, the first openly gay candidate to be elected to the state legislature, said he did not find today's actions by the state surprising, but rather a part of the process that was expected. Sims, also an attorney, says the fight for same-sex marriages to be recognized in Pennsylvania has its best chance in the courts.

"I'm very fond of reminding people that we have three branches of government," Sims said. "Here in Pennsylvania, two are very hostile."

Tonight at 5, the DelcoTimes.com tackles the same-sex marriage issues with a conversation, streamed live. Editor Phil Heron will be joined by the Delaware County Register of Wills, Hugh Donaghue, who has said he will uphold the state's marriage law and by state Senator Daylin Leach of Haverford. Leach is one of the state's leading gay rights advocates. You can watch that debate in the discussion in the embedded window below: :

Live streaming video by Ustream

Photo Credit: Getty Images

New Haven Officers Hit Hot Spots


A simple gesture of a “Hello” and “How are you?” is showing the Newhallville neighborhood that New Haven Police officers are on their streets.

However, the officers aren't part of the normal community policing efforts.

They're extra duty officers out walking for four hours at a time to target the trouble spots where the most crime is reported.

It's part of a $75,000 Smart Policing grant from the Department of Justice.

“As long as officers walk through those areas once or twice every hour, it will push the crime away, it will suppress the crime, either by in the sense that the criminals will leave the area because they always see the police officers in the area, or they just won't do crime,” said New Haven Police Lt. Ken Blanchard, who supervises the Newhallville district.

The program started last week. In just one four-hour shift, officers were able to connect with about 66 people in the area.

They report their interactions back to analysts.

For the next 12 weeks, those analysts will collect data to see if the program is working. It's already getting some good feedback in the community.

“I think that's a good thing because of lot of crime is going on in this city, and we need these extra policemen out here to help with the community,” said Arlenda Briggs, who lives in Newhallville.

Some of the specific areas officers will be walking are up Dixwell Avenue, Winchester Avenue and Newhall Street. People say those areas need extra vigilance.

“I'm hoping to see the crime in this area decrease so there's a comfort level for people who need to come out of their homes,” said Laura Weston, who lives in Newhallville.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Senate to Focus on Energy Drink Danger


Health experts from Connecticut will go head-to-head with the top energy-drink companies.

Both sides will take part in a hearing on Capitol Hill on Wednesday.

“People aren't drinking these for nutrition, they're using them as a drug,” Dr. Mary Scheimann, of Guilford, said.

She said she doesn’t let her four children consume these drinks.

“I think they can be used in very dangerous ways and I do very much feel they should be scrutinized,” Scheimann said.

She is not alone.

These drinks will be the focus of a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on Wednesday in Washington organized by Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal.

A panel of nutrition experts and doctors will question executives from Rockstar, Monster and Red Bull about the potential health risks energy drinks pose to kids.

“Are they harmful to kids?,” asked Dr. Deb Kennedy, a Guilford based nutritional biochemist. “They're a cocktail of stimulants in their growing bodies where they're not supposed to have caffeine.”

Dr. Kennedy has already been a part of the conversation, saying in a newsletter recently that children have died from energy drinks.

Monster threatened to sue her. She won’t be a part of the panel but said the marketing to children is unacceptable and hopes something positive will come from this.

“I'm hoping that this is the beginning of perhaps creating a law that says this prohibited to the sale of minors just like alcohol,” Dr. Kennedy said.

Neither Monster nor Red Bull responded to NBC Connecticut Tuesday for comment.

In the past, the companies have said they do not market to children, who they define as younger than 12.

Dr. Scheimann said she worries how much the energy drinks market to her four kids.

“They have this crowd enthralled to this whole energy drink culture,” Scheimann said.

A beverage industry lobbying group says doctors have not been able to find a definite link between a child’s health and energy drinks.

Next month, the Institute of Medicine plans to take a closer look at the possible effects.

Photo Credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images

Doctor Accused of Sex Assault Says He Was the Victim


The East Hartford doctor charged with sexually assaulting some of his patients told a jury on Tuesday that he was the victim.

Dr. Edwin Njoku took the stand for the second day in his trial in Hartford Superior Court. His testimony focused on a woman who claimed Njoku forcibly raped her during an exam in his office.

Njoku told jurors that the woman assaulted him by rubbing against him and grabbing his genitals.

"I was shocked. I was incredibly embarrassed," Njoku said.

When prosecutors asked the doctor why he didn't report the incident to police, he said the woman was disturbed and he didn't want to cause her more problems.

Prosecutors also questioned Njoku about allegations that he asked a pastor to pressure the woman's family to keep quiet. Njoku denied the allegations.

Two other women have accused Njoku of sexual assault during an examination. He denied those allegations as well.

The defense rested Tuesday afternoon and closing arguments are expected to begin Wednesday morning.

Former Hartford Chief of Staff Drove Car 1,200 Miles: Warrant


Jared Kupiec, the former chief of staff to Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra, was arrested by the Hartford Police Department and accused of driving a city vehicle more than 1,000 miles after his city job ended.

Kupiec was arrested and charged with using a Ford Explorer without owner's permission and interfering with police. Kupiec turned himself in and was released on a written promise to appear.

According to a police report, an officer responded to a report of damaged vehicles on Capitol Avenue on Monday, July 8 and found several cars with broken windows and other damage.

As police checked vehicle files to locate the owners, they noticed that a silver Ford Explorer was registered to the City of Hartford and had previously been assigned to Kupiec, who left his post with the city on June 21. The car was outside Kupiec's apartment, police said.

Police called his cell phone.

Kupiec first denied having possession of the car or knowing how the car ended up outside his apartment, police said.

He then told police he had turned the vehicle over to city hall, kept the keys because he was uncomfortable leaving them in the car and never heard back from city officials requesting the keys, police said.

When police interviewed city officials, they said they didn't recall Kupiec saying he had the keys.

Kupiec also told investigators he was never told he could no longer use the vehicle and admitted to using it about 12 times since leaving his job with the mayor's office, according to the warrant.

City officials denied the claim and said Kupiec had been told he could no longer  use city property.

Kupiec admitted to police that he used the car on July 7 to transport baseball players he coaches to and from playing, according to the arrest warrant, and wanted to apologize to the officer for misleading him during his investigation.

Police said the car had been driven 1,202 miles between June 13 and July 7, including a trip to Dunkin' Donuts.

The calculated the cost of operating the vehicle during the time frame is $508.50, according to police.


Kupiec is scheduled to appear in court on August 8.

Traffic Issues in Westbrook and Milford


There were traffic issues in Milford and Westbrook this morning.

Only one lane of Interstate 95 North was getting by at exits 64 and 65 in Westbrook for awhile after the center of tractor-trailer collapsed.

In Milford, it appears a car overturned on I-95 South.

Only one lane was getting by between exits 34 and 32. That scene has since cleared.

Photo Credit: Connecticut DOT Traffic Cameras

Caught on Cam: Shark Chomps Down on Dolphin


Experts are trying to identify a shark caught on video eating a dead dolphin off the Jersey Shore.

Anthony Cortes and his father-in-law David Hermann were flounder fishing Tuesday seven miles off the coast of Atlantic City. Suddenly, the two men spotted a shark eating the carcass of a bottlenose dolphin.

The men estimated the shark to be around 12 to 13 feet in length.

"It was the biggest shark I've ever seen out there," said Hermann. "It was amazing. I think it was a Great White."

"I've never seen a shark that big up close in my life," said Cortes, who recorded the video. "It had to have been a Great White. The shark would grab the bottlenose dolphin, shake it up a little bit in the air, go around, take a circle and come back around to it. He actually came up, looked at our boat, just swam to the back of our boat and then swam right back to the carcass and started eating the carcass again. It was pretty hideous."

Officials with the Marine Mammal Stranding Center are analyzing the video to determine the species of shark.

Those same officials are also investigating a recent spike in dolphin deaths at the Jersey Shore this month.

Since July 9, a total of 17 dead dolphins have washed up on beaches along the Shore. According to officials, four of those deaths were caused by viral pneumonia.

Also on NBC10.com:

Officials Investigate Jersey Shore Dolphin Deaths

No More Poker at Revel

Woman Claims $131M Powerball Jackpot Sold in Philadelphia

Photo Credit: NBC40.net

Sex Behavior Expert: Mayor Filner's 2-Week Treatment Unrealistic


The idea that San Diego Mayor Bob Filner can cure himself of alleged inappropriate sexual behavior with two weeks of intense behavioral therapy is unrealistic, according to one expert in the field.

Special Section: Mayor Under Fire

The mayor plans to enter a behavior counseling clinic Aug. 5 to undergo two weeks of intensive therapy following allegations that he groped women, made crude comments and made unwanted sexual advances.

“The behavior I have engaged in over many years is wrong,” Filner announced Friday without going into specifics. “My failure to respect women and the intimidating contact I engage in at times is inexcusable.”

The mayor’s office has not discussed what disorder Filner suffers from or what type of behavior counseling he will seek.

James A. Reavis, Psy.D., the director of the Treatment Program for Compulsive Sexual Behavior at the Relationship Training Institute in San Diego, works with men who engage in problem or illegal sexual behavior, as well as men who are struggling with compulsive sexual thoughts.

He sees a high-degree of unhealthy narcissism at the root of the behavior described by alleged victims in the Filner scandal.

While admitting he cannot diagnose the mayor without treating him, Reavis said Filner appears to engage in “light humiliation, devaluing these women to make himself feel more valuable.”

Making crude comments and the so-called headlock – both alleged by seven women over the course of one week – is behavior that helped Filner in “furthering his own sense of grandiosity.”

Unfortunately, Reavis said that personality trait is not something that can be treated by what he called “a two-week sleep-away camp.”

If, as Filner has publicly admitted, he’s been engaging in his behavior for years it’s an absurd notion he will be able to resolve the problem in two weeks, he said.

At RTI, counselors see men dealing with similar problems for as many as five years. Often the patients don’t begin the process for months.

“It’s very cynical on the part of his team to suggest that any kind of two-week program is going to do an iota of difference,” he said.

Instead it may be the public humiliation that has the most success.

Public rebuke is the one thing narcissists try to avoid at all costs, according to the psychologist.

“The slap on the hand may have a tremendous affect on him,” Reavis said.

A second expert, San Diego-based addiction & forensic psychiatrist Clark Smith, MD, believes compulsive sexual behaviors are treatable if the patient is willing to change.

“Often these kinds of behavioral disorders, people don’t seek treatment unless they are coerced. The person may say to themselves ‘I’m tired of getting in trouble, tired of having all these problems, then I really want to change,’” Smith said. “Then they will benefit from treatment.”

Smith said he cannot discuss Mayor Filner’s diagnosis since he hasn’t examined him but said the behaviors alleged in the scandal describe someone who may put people down or put people in their place to feel more powerful.

When a patient is in their 70s, Smith said dementia could also be a cause of sudden changes in behavior.

“One of the things that happens with dementia, you lose your social inhibitions,” he explained.

A person with dementia may begin inappropriate sexual touching or just making inappropriate comments, according to Smith.

Another possibility would be Frotteurism which is a paraphilia or sexual impulse disorder that involves inappropriate sexual touching of a stranger.

Most people with the disorder are male. Frotteurism is defined as gaining sexual gratification from rubbing a person in a public place where the victim cannot easily get away.

If this were to be the case, a two-week stay in an inpatient treatment center is not usually sufficient, Smith said.

Photo Credit: NBC 7 News/Getty Images

Missing Mother, 22-Month-Old Son Found Safe


Police said they have found a 22-month-old Hartford boy and his non-custodial mother who were reported missing late last night, according to Hartford police.

Keyara McGhee, 22, was missing with her biological son, Harlan McGhee, police said.

Police said just before 9:30 a.m. that they were found and are safe.

Keyara is not Harlan's custodial parent. according to police. His father has court-appointed custody as of July 30.

Photo Credit: Hartford Police

Bus Driver on Phone Hit Pole That Fell on Baby, Killing Her


An 8-month-old baby girl in a stroller was killed Tuesday when an out-of-control bus driver who police said was on the phone slammed into several cars and two light poles, causing one to fall onto the child.

The mother of the baby was pushing the stroller on the sidewalk along East Boulevard in West New York, N.J., when it was hit.

A spokesman for the parents of Angelie Paredes said the mother and child were "as far as you can be from the curb" when the toddler was struck.

As the mother "was walking with the baby carriage and the dog, all she heard was two loud sounds -- and then blood and disaster," Julio Morenco, a family friend, said in a press conference held in a park where Angelie often played with her parents.

Angelie's parents were not at the news conference. 

The bus driver, identified by the sheriff's office as 48-year-old Idowu Daramola of Thornwood, N.Y., was arrested on charges of reckless driving, using a cell phone while operating a vehicle and death by auto. He was set to be arraigned Wednesday, but the appearance was postponed until Thursday.

"We don't know if he was texting or talking," said Hudson County Sheriff Frank Schillari. "This is what distracted him, we feel. And he lost control of the bus." 

The sheriff's office said there are two open warrants in Hudson for Daramola's arrest, both for picking up or dropping off passengers outside of official bus stops in North Bergen.

Daramola also has numerous other violations on his driving record from over the past two years, according to the sheriff's office. In August 2011, he was cited for speeding in Weekhaawken; in September 2011, he went through a stop sign, and in June 2012, he was caught on camera going through a red light. It wasn't immediately clear where in Hudson County the last two violations occurred. 

On the phone Wednesday, company owner Magdy Abdallah told NBC 4 New York he was never aware of any open warrants for Daramola, who had been employed there two years and had a valid drivers license when he was hired. 

"I feel very sorry for the child. I feel really bad," said Abdallah. "I couldn't sleep. I don't know how the accident happened."

"I wish I could see the family to say I'm sorry." 

Witnesses described chaos after the crash.

"Traffic stopped, people running to the bus," said Johanner Romero.

Police officer Michael Stetson gave CPR to the injured child, but it was too late.

"He tried so hard, so hard to save this little baby's life," said an onlooker.

Stetson told NBC 4 New York it was difficult to lose the little girl after trying to save her.

"It is hard, but it is part of the job," he said. "Things we have to deal with. It's what we are here for."

Morenco said Angelie had reached a milestone just weeks ago on a family trip in Florida, captured on home video that Angelie's parents now replay with broken hearts. 

"As she's crawling, she finally stands up," he said, describing the video. "And she's chasing the very same heartbroken mom around the room." 

Attorney information for Daramola wasn't immediately available. He's being held at the Hudson County Jail on $250,000 cash bail. 

Police Investigating Fairfield Road Rage Incidents


Fairfield Police are investigating a road rage incident after a man driving a Mercedes confronted a school bus driver and yelled about the time it took to get a special needs child safely into the vehicle, police said.

Police said this was the second similar incident in two months.

A woman was in the process of buckling her 5-year-old daughter, who has special needs, into her car seat on a First Student bus on Merwins Lane by Redding Road around 7:30 a.m. on July 10 when a well-dressed man with gray hair got out of his newer black Mercedes and confronted the bus driver, police said.

The man repeatedly yelled about the delay and got into the bus driver's face, police said.

Another mother with a special needs child said she experienced a similar incident at Congress Street and Joan Drive around 3 p.m. on a day in June.

In that incident, the man got out of his car to physically block the woman’s path and later passed several cars to catch up to her as she fled in her own vehicle, police said.

Police are looking for a man in his late 60s who drives a newer back Mercedes and lives on upper Merwins Lane or a side street.

Police said all tips will be kept confidential and anyone with information should call the Fairfield police department at (203) 254-4800.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Actors With Prop Guns Cause Fright at Shopping Center


Boca Raton police ordered to the ground at gunpoint five people wearing military-style garb and carrying what looked like weapons, but it turned out they were actors taking action videos of themselves as superheroes and terrorists.

On Saturday night, two Boca Raton officers were approached by a "very concerned citizens," who told them about the five people on the top floor of a parking garage who were seen putting on body armor and taking guns from the trunk of a car at Mizner Park, Police Chief Dan Alexander said on his blog.

"We are naturally concerned about possible active shooter and/or terrorist incidents, so our officers hotfooted their way to the scene, located on the top floor of a parking garage," he said.

The officers found five men dressed in military-style outfits with guns at the upscale shopping area. One of them had Samurai swords strapped to his back.

"We quickly learned that the “guns” were actually stage props or airsoft type guns," the blog said.

They were shooting action videos of themselves as two superheroes and two terrorists.

The people who had initially complained didn't want to get further involved, but the actors, all in their 20s, were issued trespass warnings.

"Some folks are getting carried away in their quest for the next great social media post. Someone is going to get hurt," the chief said. "Parents should have discussions with their kids about the potential risks associated with these stunts. Adults need to consider the appropriate, time, place and manner in regards to acting out their superhero fantasies."

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Photo Credit: Boca Chief Blog

NTSB to Hold Hearings on Metro-North Crashes in October


The National Transportation Safety Board plans to hold hearings on two recent Connecticut Metro-North Railroad accidents in October.

The hearings will look into the May 17 derailment in Bridgeport and the crash that killed a foreman in West Haven on May 28.

On the evening of May 17, a Metro-North passenger train traveling eastbound derailed and was struck by a westbound Metro-North passenger train. Seventy-three passengers, two engineers and a conductor were injured.

Then, on May 28, 2013, a Metro-North track foreman was struck and killed by a Metro-North passenger train in West Haven.

The foreman had requested that the section of track he was working on be taken out of service for maintenance.

Two Metro-North rail traffic controllers, including a student controller, had placed the section out of service with an electronic block, but the student controller removed the electronic block a little more than an hour later without the knowledge of the qualified controller or the track foreman, according to NTSB.

A consolidated investigative hearing will be held on October 22 and 23 in Washington, DC and NTSB will receive testimony from parties to the investigation on several issues, including track inspection and maintenance, passenger car safety standards, crashworthiness, policy and practice of roadway worker protection and organizational safety culture.

Both investigations are ongoing and the determination of a probable cause for each of the accidents will be released when the investigations are complete.

Last month, the NTSB issued an urgent safety recommendation to Metro-North Railroad to provide redundant protection for track maintenance crews who depend on rail traffic controllers to provide signal protection.

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