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Buffett's $1B NCAA Bracket Over


The billion dollar dream is over.

A second day of upsets ended any chance of someone having a perfect NCAA tournament bracket in Warren Buffett's $1 billion challenge. It was a favorite that provided the first blemish on the final three people's brackets in the Quicken Loans contest on the Yahoo Sports website.

All three had ninth-seeded George Washington beating Memphis. The Tigers won 71-66.

"If Warren Buffett wants to donate the (billion) to our university, we will take it and use it in good company," Memphis coach Josh Pastner said. "We'll find a way."

It only took 25 games for everyone to be eliminated. Then again most of brackets were knocked out on the tournament's first full day. The number of unblemished brackets kept dwindling after third-seed Duke, sixth-seed UMass and seventh-seed New Mexico lost Friday.

Only 16 people remained perfect after 10th-seeded Stanford topped New Mexico. Then Tennessee routed UMass, leaving only six people with a chance of beating the 9.2 quintillion-to-1 odds.

Gonzaga's victory over Oklahoma State cut that down to the final three.

Even though no one won the $1 billion, the top 20 scores will still each get $100,000.

Quicken Loans, which is sponsoring and insuring the Buffett contest, said on its Twitter feed that it wouldn't reveal the number of entrants to the challenge. The pool was supposed to be capped at 15 million entries. It probably wouldn't have mattered if they had let more people join.

At CBSSports.com, only 0.03 percent of entrants were still perfect after Mercer upset Duke. They didn't last much longer as Tennessee's rout of UMass wiped out all the remaining unblemished entries. It took 21 games to end everyone's hope of perfection this year. Last season it took 23 games and 24 in 2012.

A year ago, not a single person of the 11 million who entered on ESPN's website was perfect after a first day filled with upsets. Just four got 15 out of 16 right.

This year people lasted a little longer. After 28 games, all 11 million entries had at least one mistake.

Photo Credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images

3 Kids Found Starving, 1 Chained


Deputies responding to a Salinas, Calif., home on March 14 to investigate child neglect allegations found three starved and abused children, one chained to the floor.

During the investigation, deputies found very little food in the house, which they described as “cluttered and dirty.” 

The deputies found three children - two boys, ages 3 and 5, and an 8-year-old girl - who they said exhibited signs of physical and emotional abuse.

The suspects, Eraca Dawn Craig, 31, and Christian Jessica Deanda, 44, were arrested for numerous child abuse-related cases.

They have pleaded not guilty to the charges against them.

The children were found in a starved condition, deputies said. The girl had been chained to the floor to keep her from obtaining food.

"The little girl was from time-to-time chained to the walls of the house and denied food," Monterey County Sheriff Scott Miller said. "She was extremely emaciated. She's been described as someone who looks like she's been living in a concentration camp."

One of the children was hospitalized and the other two were taken into protective custody by CPS, the sheriff’s office said.

One of the two women arrested is the biological mother of the 3-year-old boy. The girl and the 5-year-old boy were adopted.

The Monterey Herald reported that Craig is a former corrections officer, while Deanda was a businesswoman and counselor in California and New Mexico, according to court filings and LinkedIn profiles.

The Herald also reported that the women are domestic partners and that there were indications that they were preparing to leave the area soon.

Deanda and Craig are scheduled for a preliminary hearing on March 28.

Photo Credit: Monterey County Sheriff's Office

Man Rescues Coyote From Water


A man and animal rescuers saved a coyote that got stuck in high water. Watch the dramatic footage.

1 Dead, 2 Hurt in Fla. Plane Crash


A pilot was killed and two teens were injured after a small single-engine plane from Chicago crashed in the median of a six-lane street in Florida early Saturday morning.

The plane was traveling to St. Pete/Clearwater Airport from Chicago when it crashed around 4 a.m. on McMullen Booth and Enterprise Road in Pinellas County, officials said. It came to rest mostly in the median of the six-lane street.

There were three people on the plane at the time of the crash, according to authorities.

Jeffrey Bronken, a 53-year-old man from north suburban Round Lake, was killed in the crash, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

Two 15-year-old girls, also from Round Lake, were injured. Katherine Bronken and Keyana Linbo were taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Tampa, Fla., but their conditions were not immediately known.

The plane is registered to Glass Man Inc., a company out of Highland Park, according to NBC affiliate WFLA.

Pinellas deputies and officials with the Federal Aviation Administration were on the scene Saturday morning conducting an investigation and the road was closed between Union Street and Enterprise Road.

Officials expect the investigation will take several hours.

Fugitive Found on Boat in Fla.


A Kansas City woman who has been in hiding for 18 years was found Friday in Key West, according to the Monroe County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies said 66-year-old Michelle Singleton was living in a houseboat under a different name almost two decades after she failed to appear in federal court for sentencing on charges of payroll check fraud in March of 1996.

When Monroe County detectives received a photo of Singleton, Sgt. Donald Catala said he had seen this woman several times in Key West. Deputies ran a records check that showed a woman by the name of Catherine Harris was living at an address in Hilton Haven, deputies said. She had a 1994 Honda with a Florida tag and a Florida driver's license that expired in 2012, according to authorities.

A comparison of Singleton's picture with the license photo of Harris confirmed they were the same person, deputies said.

Secret Service and local officials went to the houseboat Singleton was living on, which was moored at a pier at 15 Hilton Haven Drive, and found her there, deputies said. When they asked for her ID, she gave them her expired license. They then asked for a birth certificate, and she pulled it out a file, but when she did other pieces of paper fell out. Those papers turned out to be her real social security card and birth certificate, deputies said.

Singleton told deputies she had obtained a birth certificate with the name Harris on it one month after she fled Kansas City. She said she used that birth certificate to get her Florida Driver's license, but she hadn't renewed it because the rules had changed for applying for a license, according to deputies.

The woman admitted to being Michelle singleton and was taken into federal custody on fugitive charges, deputies said. She also said she was in the process of trying to sell her houseboat and move to the Dominican Republic, according to officials.

Photo Credit: Monroe County Sheriff's Office

Recordings in Wrong Airport Landing


A Southwest Airlines pilot, who landed at the wrong Missouri airport in January, didn’t realize the mistake until he landed the plane and communicated with air traffic control, according to radio transmissions obtained by NBC 5.

Southwest Airlines flight 4013 was traveling from Chicago Midway International Airport to Branson, Mo., and planned to fly on to Dallas Love Field.

Instead, the plane landed at a much smaller airport about six miles from Branson – on a runway about half the size as Branson’s.

The radio tapes sound routine as the jet approached Branson, a resort town in the Ozarks.

“Southwest 4013, clear to land, runway 14,” the pilot calmly repeated to the controller in the Branson tower.

The next transmissions captured the confusion right after the plane landed at Clark Airport in nearby Hollister.

“I assume I’m not at your airport?” the pilot asked the controller.

“Southwest 4013, have you landed?” the controller responded.

The pilot paused and answered, "Yeah."

NBC 5 requested the Jan. 13 radio recordings under the federal open records law. The Federal Aviation Administration released them on Friday.

No one was injured, but passengers reported the plane came to a quick stop and came close to going off the end of the runway -- and a cliff.

"They came on and said, 'Ladies and gentlemen, we've landed at the wrong airport,’” Dallas attorney Scott Schieffer said afterwards. "We smelled burned rubber -- a very distinct smell. And everybody was like, 'Wow.That was a pretty intense landing.'"

Within minutes, the recordings show, the controller in the Branson tower called a colleague at Springfield regional approach.

"Say that again,” the Springfield controller said.

"He says he landed at the wrong airport,” the Branson controller said.

“Are you kidding?” the regional controller asked.

“Yeah -- No I’m not,” he answered.

Southwest Airlines arranged for a bus to take the passengers to Branson and brought in another plane to fly them to Dallas.

At the time, the airline acknowledged the mistake but described it as an "uneventful" landing.

"That's absolutely not true,” Schieffer said. “I've flown hundreds of thousands of miles. That was an eventful landing … It felt like a surreal moment. I can't believe it was that close."

The pilots told investigators from  the National Transportation Safety Board that they had Branson programmed into the plane’s computer but made a visual landing at what they believed was the correct airport, according to an NTSB report.

The pilots also noted the smaller airport had bright lights and the runway was oriented in a similar direction, the NTSB said.

FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford said the investigation continues.

In a short statement, Southwest Airlines said on Friday the pilots remain on paid leave.

The names of the captain and first officer have not been released.

2 Injured in Bicycle Crash in New Milford


Two people are injured following a bicycle crash in New Milford, according to police.

Police said two bicycles were involved in an accident on Cherinske Road in New Milford. It's not clear whether the bicycles collided, but police said no motor vehicles were involved.

One person is being flown by LifeStar to Hartford Hospital with a head injury. The other is being taken by ambulance to New Milford Hospital for treatment of a leg injury, police said.

The scene has been cleared and the road is open.

No additional information was immediately available.

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5K Honors 6-Year-Old Sandy Hook Victim


They were running to remember in Milford, Conn., on Saturday.

More than 1,000 runners took part in a 5K to honor James Mattioli, a 6-year-old killed in the tragedy at Sandy Hook, and the money the runners raised went to a playground built in his memory.

The Sandy Ground Project: Where Angels Play Foundation is working to build a playground in honor of each of the 26 victims. The one for Mattioli in Milford is the 17th one they have completed.

“It’s unbelievable,” said organizer Ron Wetmore. “We do it for the families and we thank the families for letting us do it for them.”

There were plenty of people in the crowd who were affected by the tragedy. They say the playgrounds are a way of helping them heal.

“They were all together when this happened, and I like to believe that in heaven they’re all together so I feel like as a family, as a community of 26 victims, that we need to stick together,” said Jillian Soto, whose sister, Vicki, was killed at Sandy Hook.

Several fundraisers have been held to cover the costs of the playgrounds.

The playground for Mattioli costs roughly $70,000, and with the help of Sandy Ground 5K runners, the Sandy Ground Project has raised more than enough money.

They plan on giving the extra funds to the next playground the foundation is building in Mystic.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

I-84 West Reopens in Waterbury After Crash


Interstate 84 westbound has reopened between exits 25A and 25 in Waterbury following a rollover crash, according to state police.

State Police said  two people are trapped in the car and suffered minor injuries,

The highway was shut down while authorities worked to clear the scene. It has since reopened but police cautioned drivers of residual delays.

No additional information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: Claudia Krzos

Woman Killed in I-395 Crash in South Killingly


A 67-year-old woman was killed after a rollover crash on I-395 southbound near exit 91 in South Killingly Saturday afternoon.

According to state police, Janis Sniger, of Worcester, Mass., died from injuries sustained in the crash.

Police said the crash happened just after 3 p.m. Sniger's car hit a metal guardrail on the shoulder, hit the embankment, and then rolled on its roof.

The accident remains under investigation.

Anyone with any information regarding this accident is asked to contact Trooper Adam Litwin at Troop D in Danielson at 860-779-4900.


Girl Inspires Nationwide Support


A fundraiser is set to take place next month for a Levittown, Pa. baby girl who captured the hearts of thousands nationwide and even inspired the proposal of a state law.

JoJo’s Ice Cream & Water Ice will host an event raising money for Hannah Ginion, a 1-year-old girl suffering from a rare genetic disorder known as Krabbe Disease.

The young girl, who was born on January 15, 2013, seemed healthy at first, according to her mother Vicki Pizzullo.

"She was progressing like a normal baby," Pizzullo said. "She was perfectly healthy."

By the time Hannah turned 4-months however, the family noticed that something was wrong.

"It came on really slow," Pizzullo said. "She started crying all the time. She hated eating out of a bottle, she was choking and she was losing her swallowing ability. She would suck on a bottle and she would start choking. When we went to go feed her again, she was scared to eat."

The family then took her to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia where they learned the devastating news. On June 17, 2013, Hannah was diagnosed with Krabbe Disease, a rare degenerative disorder that affects the myelin sheath of the nervous system. Damage to the sheath slows down messages between the brain and the rest of the body, leading to problems with mental and physical development.

Krabbe Disease is so rare that it only affects 1 in 100,000 people, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

Symptoms of the disease, including feeding difficulties, fever, vomiting, limb stiffness and seizures, normally begin to show when the child is between 3 to 6 months old. Infants who suffer from the disease generally have a life-expectancy of 2 years at the most. There is currently no cure.

After being told by doctors at CHOP that they weren't familiar enough with the disease to properly treat it, the family took Hannah to Dr. Maria Escolar, a specialist in the study of Neurodevelopment in rare disorders at the Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. By then however, it was too late to get a transplant that could have alleviated some of the symptoms.

"Once symptoms start, it's too late to go back to a transplant," Pizzullo said. "That's why it's so important to have it when they're born."

According to the family, Hannah could have received more effective treatment if doctors knew she had the disease immediately after her birth, a message that they ultimately took to Pennsylvania lawmakers.

"We went to Harrisburg in October and went in front of the House and had a press conference," she said.

The press conference led to the introduction of a bill known as Hannah’s Law, which would add Krabbe disease and five other disorders to the list of conditions Pennsylvania hospitals must screen for newborns.

House Bill 1654, introduced by State Rep. Angel Cruz, passed the state house last January. Despite this, Pizzullo says the Senate still hasn't placed it on their agenda.

"We don't think they did it intentionally," she said. "We just don't know if they know the importance of it."

That's why Pizzullo says she and her followers have worked so hard to raise greater awareness.

"We're trying to get the word out there and let them know they need to get this on the agenda as soon as possible," Pizzullo said. "We're trying to get this law passed so that all babies born in Pennsylvania will be tested for this disease as part of their screening."

Pizzullo quit her job of 15 years to be with her daughter and dedicated her life to raising awareness for the disease. Along the way, the family gained support from the community and followers nationwide, after they created a website and Facebook page as well as a support page for the bill.

"We just love all of her followers," Pizzullo said. "They're just amazing. People are so supportive, especially our community."

As Pizzullo continues the fight to bring awareness, she's also dealing with her daughter's deteriorating health.

"She's tube fed and she's on oxygen 24/7," Pizzullo said. "She should be walking around right now and living her life. She can't because she was never tested at birth. The disease deteriorates her brain, that's why she doesn't smile or laugh. She hasn't laughed in five months."

Despite her situation, Pizzullo says she takes solace in the fact that her daughter has proven to be an inspiration and major factor in a movement that could ultimately save the lives of other children.

"If we could help other families and have her name be forever known, it would just be amazing," Pizzullo said.

A fundraiser for Hannah will take place at JoJo’s Ice Cream & Water Ice on 8801 New Falls Road, in Levittown, Pa. on April 15 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The event will include a raffle and music. You can also email the family at hopeforhannahbear@gmail.com for more information.

Photo Credit: Facebook.com

Husband of Former Gov. Jodi Rell Dies


Lou Rell, husband of former Gov. Jodi Rell, died at the age of 73 after a long battle with cancer.

Jodi Rell was the Governor of Connecticut from 2004-2011. Lou was often by her side for many milestones in her career.

He was a retired Navy and Airline pilot who served his hometown of Brookfield as a volunteer firefighter and as a police commissioner.

Their son Michael issued a statement today stating Lou Rell passed away this afternoon at a Florida hospital with family members by his side.

In a statement, Governor Dannel Malloy said:

"Lou was devoted to his family, and their loss is felt by countless people throughout our state.  Governor Rell, her family, and the Brookfield community will remain in our thoughts and prayers in the coming days."

The Rell family said funeral arrangements are currently being finalized. Services will be held in Connecticut.


Photo Credit: Brian A. Pounds

Man Charged After Apparent Domestic Murder in Bridgeport


Police have arrested the man accused of killing a woman in a domestic murder last night.

It's Bridgeport's first homicide of the year.

The victim, who has not been identified, was found stabbed to death in a bathroom at 525 Palisade Avenue around 10:15 p.m. Saturday.

Police said the suspect, 37-year-old Alejandro Velez, of Howard Avenue in Bridgeport, was barricaded inside the apartment and officers had to force the door open to get to him.

Velez, who was also seriously injured, was taken to Bridgeport Hospital, where he's listed in critical but stable condition.

Police obtained an arrest warrant charging Velez with murder. His bond is set at $1 million.

Velez has an extensive criminal record including arson and assault on an officer.

The apartment where the murder took place is rented by Velez's mother, who lives in Florida, police said.

Police said this is believed to be an isolated incident and there is no danger to the community.

Photo Credit: Bridgeport Police Department

1 Injured in Southington Shooting


One person is in the hospital following a shooting in Southington overnight, police said.

Authorities said the victim was shot in a parking lot off Center Street just after 1:30 a.m. Sunday.

The victim has not been identified. The extent of injuries are unknown.

No additional information was immediately available.

Authorities are actively investigating.

West Hartford Water Main Break Repaired


Crews have repaired a water main break at the intersection of Grissom Drive and Chaffee Road in West Hartford, according to police.

The four-inch water main broke Sunday morning, affecting water service to five homes. Water service was restored around 1:45 p.m., according to MDC.

No road closures were in effect.

MDC said the main was installed in 1968.

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Norwich Man Found With 200 Bags of Heroin: Police


A Norwich man is facing drug charges after officers stopped his car Saturday and found heroin inside, police said.

Investigators pulled over 42-year-old Jose Rivera, of Fountain Street, while he was driving through downtown Norwich yesterday. Authorities found Rivera with more than 200 bags of heroin and an unspecified amount of cash.

He was arrested and charged with possession of heroin and possession with intent to sell.

Rivera was released on a $10,000 bond and is due in court April 4.

1 Dead, 16 Hurt in Va. Bus Crash


A shuttle bus overturned on Interstate 95 near Lorton, Va., early Sunday morning, killing one person and injuring 16 others. One man has been arrested and faces charges for allegedly causing the accident.

Virginia State Police said the small bus, operated by America Transportation, was traveling south on I-95 shortly before 3:30 a.m. Witnesses said a speeding, white, four-door passenger vehicle swerved into the bus’s path, colliding with the bus causing it to run off the road, hit a guardrail, and overturn.

The incident occurred just south of Exit 163 for Lorton. The 16 passengers and the driver were transported to nearby hospitals.

Two of the injured were flown to Inova Fairfax Hospital for treatment of more serious injuries, but one of those victims, David Alberto Sanchez, 24, of Woodbridge, Va., died at the hospital. The second person is still being treated for life-threatening injuries.

The driver of the bus and one other passenger are being treated for serious, but non-life-threatening injuries. The remaining 13 passengers suffered minor injuries.

All passengers are in their early 20s and from Prince William County in Virginia.

Sanchez's father, Federico Hernandez, said in a telephone conversation Sunday with The Associated Press that his son, who worked in the office of an auto body shop in Virginia, was attending a birthday party for a co-worker. He said he believed his son had left around 11 p.m. Saturday for a trip into Washington to celebrate.

He told the AP he believed the bus was returning when it crashed. Hernandez said his son worked during the day but was also studying computers at a community college.

Thanks to witness help, police were able to track down the white car to a home in Dumfries. Raphael Manuel Barrientos, 31, of Dumfries, Va. was taken into custody. He has been charged with one count of felony hit-and-run and is being held at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center.

The crash remains under investigation.

Crews Respond to Water Main Leak on Silas Deane in Wethersfield


Crews are responding to a water main leak in the area of 1290 Silas Deane Highway in Wethersfield.

Water company officials said they're investigating a service leak at a commercial building there.

Service to the fire hydrants was shut down so the owner could begin making repairs. The 12-inch water main did not need to be turned off, MDC said.

Only the commercial property has been affected by the shut off, according to MDC.

Check back for updates.

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Stolen War Memorial Plaques Found


Three war memorial plaques stolen from a San Diego County park have been recovered in San Ysidro, police say.

The more than 60-year-old plaques were taken from National City’s Kimball Park Stadium Monday.

But Saturday evening around 7:15 p.m., TSA worker Elvino Bascon said he walked outside his home in the 200 block of Willow Road in San Ysidro and discovered the plaques leaning up against a fence in the apartment complex’s parking lot.

Bascon told police he researched the plaques online and found out they had been stolen. He called National City Police officers, who picked them up.

One of the three plaques seemed to be damaged, NCPD officials said.

The investigation will continue until a suspect or suspects have been identified.

The brass plaques honor U.S. military service members who died during World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

Two of them measure 3 feet by 4 feet, and the third plaque is 4 feet by 5 feet.

One of the plaques says, “In memoriam of the men of National City who made the supreme sacrifice for their country in World War II, 1941-1945.”

Another plaque, which lists names of late, local U.S. servicemen, says, “In honor and memory of the citizens of National City who gave their lives in the service of their country during the Korean War and the Vietnam Conflict.”

Similar thefts have been reported at Greenwood Memorial Park in San Diego, where the general manager said someone is stealing bronze vases that hold flowers atop some veterans’ gravesites.

Staff there believes the vases are being stolen and melted down for money.

Photo Credit: NCPD

Suspect Offers Handshake, Stabs Man


A man was stabbed by a stranger while sitting on his Mission Beach patio, according to San Diego Police.

Early Sunday morning around 3:45 a.m., the victim was hanging out with a few friends on his patio in the 3300 block of Ocean Front Walk.

Two men in their early 20s walked into the private patio, asking to join them.

Police said the victim was not comfortable with strangers letting themselves into his area, so he asked them to leave.

Appearing apologetic, one of the suspects offered to shake the victim’s hand.

When the victim agreed and grabbed his hand, the suspect pulled him close and stabbed him four times in his wrist, shoulder and back, police said.

The suspects then walked away on Ocean Front Walk, while the victim was taken to the hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

The stabbing suspect was wearing a baseball cap and gold jacket, witnesses told police.

SDPD detectives will continue the investigation.

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