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Chihuahua in Freeway Rescue Photo Reunited With Owners


The tiny Chihuahua whose freeway rescue by California Highway Patrol went viral has been reunited with its owners, Contra Costa Animal Services said.

The scared dog was found stranded on a roadway median on Interstate 680 in Walnut Creek last week during rush hour. Contra Costa CHP officers tweeted out a picture after rescuing the dog, and received a slew of thank you messages from around the country.

Nobody knew at the time where the dog came from — whether she had been abandoned or escaped from her owners. Contra Costa Animal Services took the dog into their care at their Martinez shelter, saying that she would be put up for adoption if nobody claimed her.

On Thursday, Contra Costa Animal Services said that "the owners and their small children were tearfully reunited with their lost dog," whose name is "Charm."

"They had been looking for her since she escaped from their backyard," the agency added.

Now that the little Chihuahua's story has had a happy ending, the agency wants to raise awareness about the other homeless shelter dogs waiting for adoption.

"They haven't had the media attention this little Chihuahua has had, but they are just as deserving," the agency said.

For more information on how to adopt a pet from the Contra Costa Animal Services, visit their Facebook page.


"Bottle Bombs" Explode at Theater


Two plastic "bottle bombs" of acid mixed with metals exploded early Sunday in a crowded Northern Virginia theater complex, making sounds loud enough that patrons thought they were gunshots.

No one was hurt, but the sounds led many people to flee the theater and then led to the complete evacuation of about 2,000 people in the theater and a nearby food court.

The two devices exploded shortly after midnight near the entrance of two theaters inside the AMC Theater at Tysons Corner Center in McLean, Virginia. Fire officials believe they were plastic bottles filled with acid and metals, which react with each other and explode.

They may have been mixed on-site, said Deputy Chief Mike Reilly of the Fairfax County fire marshal's office.

"There's a very large sound when that occurs, almost sounds like a gunshot," Reilly said. "So it's easily understandable why, when that device went off, people thought that it was gunfire."

The first calls to police said there was an active shooter at the theater. But emergency squads, including an active shooter team, quickly discovered the devices. They called in a hazardous materials team to check the area and look for any other devices.

The detonations did not cause any injury or damage, though the bottle bombs are capable of spraying acid as far as 30 feet, Reilly said.

"Very fortunately no one was injured," Reilly said. "No one was exposed to the chemical that we are aware of and no one was injured in the evacuation process."

The scene inside was chaotic, Reilly said. One patron captured it on cell phone video.

Fairfax police are asking the public for their help in finding the people who placed the bottle bombs. Anyone with information is asked to call Fairfax County Crime Solvers by phone at 1-866-411-TIPS or by text to 274637.

"We believe this is a very, very serious crime that involves several felonies and maybe even an act of terrorism, based on what their intent is," Reilly said. "While people may think this is a prank or a hoax, we are not taking it that way."

On July 20, 2012, 12 people were killed and 70 people were injured in a movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado during a screening of the movie "The Dark Knight Rises."

In January, a 71-year-old man fatally shot a 43-year-old in a Tampa movie theater after a dispute over texting in the theater.

Friend Dies After 2 Cars Hit Him on I-95


A bizarre series of events left a man dead and his friend hurt along a busy southeast Pennsylvania interstate overnight.

It all began when Daniel Raymond's Suzuki broke down on the left shoulder of northbound Interstate-95 just before Exit 49 in Lower Makefield, Bucks County just after midnight.

Raymond's passenger Benjamin Melendez then called a friend to come and help them. That friend, Maria Nyars arrived a short time later and pulled over on the right shoulder of the northbound lanes, according to Pennsylvania State Police. 

Melendez, 30 of Trenton, N.J., began to cross the road to meet his friend when he was struck by the mirror of a passing Lexus. The force of the crash left Melendez sitting upright in the right-hand lane, according to investigators.

Seeing his friend in the roadway, Raymond, 36 of Levittown, Pa., darted into traffic to try and drag Melendez to safety.

A passing Hyundai Santa Fe then struck both Melendez and Raymond.

The force of the crashes killed Melendez and landed Raymond in St. Mary Medical Center with undisclosed injuries. 

The drivers of both cars stayed on the scene of the accident and were not intoxicated, according to police.

State Police said they would investigate if alcohol use played any role in the victims' actions.

The full cause of the crash remained under investigation Sunday.

Police didn't immediately charge anyone. 

Coast Guard Suspends Search for Missing Boater


A 62-year-old man sailing behind the Charles W. Morgan after the ship’s departure from Groton yesterday has gone missing, and Coast Guard officials suspended the search for him Sunday afternoon.

Daniel Strelczuk, 62, of Thompson, disappeared from Fisher’s Island Sound on Saturday afternoon while exiting the mouth of the Thames River in a procession behind the Charles W. Morgan whaling ship, which embarked on her historic 38th voyage yesterday morning, family members said.

Strelczuk called his son around 1:30 p.m. Saturday to say he was heading back to shore. It was the last time anyone heard from him.

His boat was reported missing at 4:30 p.m. and turned up around 6:45 p.m., still running, three miles south of Fisher's Island. The Coast Guard recovered the boat within 30 minutes.

Family members believe Strelczuk may have fallen overboard. They say he’s an experienced boater and was not wearing a life jacket but can swim.

Strelczuk was alone in the boat, family member said.

He’s described as a white male with salt-and-pepper hair, receding in the front. Family members said he stands about 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighs 185 pounds. Strelczuk speaks English and has a Polish accent.

His sailboat was brought to a marina down the road from Mystic Seaport.

Coast Guard planes, boats and helicopters searched for Strelczuk overnight and into Sunday afternoon but called off the search around 2:45 p.m. Sunday.

Officials with the Coast Guard said they expect Strelczuk could have survived in the water for about 14 hours.

Anyone with information about Strelczuk's whereabouts is urged to contact the Coast Guard at 202-372-2100.

Photo Credit: Adam Strelczuk

Thousands of Dead Fish in Marina Del Rey


Thousands of dead fish have flooded one of seven basins at Marina Del Rey late Saturday evening.

The first report came in just after 9 p.m. at the A-Basin located at 13000 block of Tahiti Way, officials said.

Authorities said upon sheriff’s arrival at the reported location, they discovered thousands of dead fish floating in the water.

It was not immediately known what caused these fish to die and wash up to the basin. California Fish and Game was called to the scene but are not expected to clean up the dead fish until later in the day, officials said.

Authorities said the fish may have died due to a lack of oxygen.

Officials are worried that the foul odor will cause a huge discomfort for both visitors and residents nearby.

Photo Credit: Beth Slepp-Paz

Person Trapped Under Lawnmower in Torrington


LifeStar is responding to Torrington, where a person became trapped underneath a tractor-type lawnmower Sunday afternoon, according to police and fire officials.

It happened around 4 p.m. at a residence on Torringford West Street. LifeStar was called to the scene and is staging on a golf course at the Torrington Country Club in Goshen.

The person's condition is unknown.

Check back for updates. 

Heirlooms, Valuables Stolen From Fire Evacuees


One San Marcos, California, family thought they were in the clear when their home survived the Cocos Fire. But a quick turn of events changed it all.

Randy Calado thought he was doing everything right.

He keeps an emergency preparedness kit in his car stocked with water, food, sleeping bags and other necessities for his family.

So, when Calado's neighbor knocked on his door telling him to evacuate on Wednesday afternoon, he and his family were out of their San Marcos home in about 10 minutes.

Calado and some other relatives who also had to evacuate due to the Cocos Fire stayed at the Staybridge Suites on Mira Mesa Boulevard until they were allowed back home on Saturday afternoon.

But Saturday morning, they woke up to the unthinkable.

The priceless items the Calado family grabbed as they evacuated – including irreplaceable heirlooms – had been stolen.

The family had parked their car in the hotel parking lot and thieves broke the window to the vehicle and stole many of their valuables.

"You know, my heart dropped to the floor," Calado told NBC 7. "You know, this whole week has been very stressful to say the least. That was kind of like a one-two punch.”

Among the stolen items were two safes filled with money and personal documents like birth certificates and social security cards.

But Calado says his family is most saddened by a set of jewelry his wife wore on their wedding day.

The bracelet, necklace and earrings are family heirlooms passed down for generations.

Calado describes the jewelry as a "24-carat gold necklace and a 24-carat gold bracelet, and also some diamond earrings."

He says he wanted to share his story with NBC 7 because he doesn't want something like this to happen to someone else. He said he made a mistake leaving his valuables in his car overnight.

Calado says in stressful situations, sometimes you can't think about all of the possibilities, especially when you're not sure if you will even have a home after something as devastating as the Cocos Fire.

"It's devastating and I just don't want it to happen to any other family."

Calado suggests keeping the things that are important to you close to you at all times.

Especially during vulnerable times like the May Firestorm when thieves are looking for crimes of opportunity.

Photo Credit: NBC 7 San Diego

Person Shot at Rural Stafford Home


Authorities are investigating after a person was shot at a rural home in Stafford and taken to the hospital via LifeStar, according to police and the helicopter service.

LifeStar was called to Old Springfield Road in Stafford just before 5 p.m. Saturday following reports of a shooting. The victim was taken to the hospital in unknown condition.

State police and fire officials also responded to the scene.

No additional information was immediately available.

Check back for updates.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

81-Year-Old Man Missing From Plainfield


Police are searching for 81-year-old Benjamin Wedderman, who went missing from Plainfield on Sunday afternoon.

Plainfield police said Wedderman disappeared around 1 or 1:30 p.m. Sunday and has dementia but has always appeared to be lucid. A Silver Alert for Wedderman was issued around 4:40 p.m. Sunday.

Police said Wedderman has contested the diagnosis and has asked to speak with an attorney. It's not clear if this is connected to his disappearance.

Wedderman is described as a white male with white hair and blue eyes. Police said he's 5 feet 6 inches tall and weighs 165 pounds.

He was last seen wearing a blue-and-black checkered long-sleeved flannel shirt, black slacks and black shoes with Velcro.

Anyone with information regarding his whereabouts is asked to call Plainfield police at 860-564-0804.

Photo Credit: Plainfield Police Department

2 Dead, 19 Hurt in Chicago Violence


At least two people have been killed and 19 others wounded in weekend Chicago shootings.

Both of the weekend’s fatal shootings happened Saturday on the city’s West Side.

The first homicide took place just before 4:30 p.m. in the 200 block of North Pine Avenue in the city’s Austin neighborhood. Police said a 32-year-old man was seated in a parked vehicle when offenders in a passing vehicle opened fire at him.

The man attempted to flee the scene in his car but crashed nearby.
He suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the right side of his body and was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital where he was later pronounced.

Around 11:30 p.m., a 20-year-old man was shot in the 3400 block of West Madison Street. The man was outside when shots were fired from a white minivan, striking the 20-year-old man in the head and body.

The man was transported to Mount Sinai Hospital and was pronounced dead, police said.

At least 14 others were wounded in shootings Saturday afternoon and into Sunday morning.

  • A 15-year-old boy was shot around 3 p.m. in the 4600 block of South Cottage Grove Avenue. Police said the teen suffered wounds to his back and abdomen and was listed in serious condition at Comer Children's Hospital.
  • Around 6 a.m. Sunday, police said a 24-year-old woman was shot while sitting in a car with an acquaintance in the 900 block of North Lavergne Avenue. The woman told police she heard shots and felt pain, before realizing she had been shot in the left hand. Her acquaintance drove her to Loretto Hospital for treatment.
  • About two hours earlier, a 23-year-old man was shot in the 4600 block of West Diversey Avenue. He was taken to Our Lady of Resurrection Medical Center with multiple gunshot wounds. He was last listed in stable condition, police said.
  • Just before 3:30 a.m. a 19-year-old man was the victim of a shooting near 81st Street and Drexel Avenue. The teen was sitting in a parked car when someone walked up and opened fire at his vehicle. Police said the teen fled the scene in his vehicle but crashed into a parked car. He then fled on foot to 79th and Ingleside where he called police. He was taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in stable condition.
  • Less than an hour earlier, a man was shot in the Washington Park neighborhood. Police responded to a call of a person shot in the 5600 block of South Wabash Avenue and found a man, believed to be 20-30 years old, on the sidewalk with multiple gunshot wounds to his body. He was taken in critical condition John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital of Cook County, according to authorities.
  • On Saturday, a 16-year-old boy was shot around 11:30 p.m. in the 2100 block of North Lawndale Avenue. Police said the boy was walking on the block when someone fired at him from a passing dark-colored vehicle. The teen fled on foot to the 1900 block of North Central Park to notify police. He suffered wounds to his thigh and a hip and was taken to Illinois Masonic Medical Center in stable condition.
  • Around 8:30 p.m. a 19-year-old man was shot in the 7000 block of South Vernon Avenue. The teen was shot when someone fired at him from behind. He was taken to an area hospital in unknown condition.
  • A little over an hour earlier, three people were shot in the 1600 block of West 70th Street. Police said someone opened fire on three people from an alley. An 18-year-old man and 20-year-old man were both shot in the leg and taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in stable condition. A 15-year-old boy was also shot in the foot and taken to Holy Cross Hospital in stable condition. Police said the victims knew the offender who shot them and Area South detectives are investigating.
  • Just after 4:30 p.m. a 50-year-old man was shot during an attempted robbery in the 7100 block of South May Street. The man was approached by two men, one of which held a gun to him while the other took items from his pockets, police said. The victim was shot in the left leg during the robbery and taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in stable condition.
  • About 10 minutes earlier, a 24-year-old man was self-transported to Holy Cross Hospital in critical condition. Police said the man had a wound to the neck and was in critical condition, but noted the shooting took place in the 7200 block of South Artesian Avenue.
  • Around 12:45 pm. an 18-year-old man was shot in the 8600 block of South Exchange Avenue. The teen had a wound to his inner thigh and was in good condition at an area hospital, police said. Details surrounding the shooting were not immediately available.
  • At about noon, a 17-year-old man was shot in the 7400 block of South Vernon Avenue. The teen was struck in the right leg and taken to St. Bernard Hospital in stable condition.

At least five others were wounded in shootings since Friday afternoon.

Suspect in Police Custody after Bomb Threat at Quinnipiac University


Hamden police have taken a woman into custody in connection with a bomb threat that was called into Quinnipiac University on Sunday, forcing the school to relocate graduation ceremonies scheduled for earlier in the evening.

Police would not provide the woman's identity but said that she was being questioned at the police department after being taken into custody shortly after 8:00 p.m.

Hamden police confirmed that officers were sweeping the campus after a bomb threat was made, but said no additional personnel were called and a bomb squad was not responding.

Sunday's ceremony was Quinnipiac University's third commencement on the Mount Carmel Campus for the College of Arts and Sciences.  The commencement was moved to the TD Bank Sports Center at the York Hill Campus about a half mile down the road.  It was delayed until 7:30 p.m.

Many students participating in the graduation tweeted photos and comments expressing that the scene was hectic but they were handling it well.

Check back for updates to this developing story.

Photo Credit: Peter Casolino/New Haven Register

Robbers Steal Cash, Calzone from Delivery Man


Two robbers stole not only cash from a food delivery man in New Haven, but also the calzone he was trying to deliver.

Police responded to the 100 block of Spring Street in New Haven at 10:20 p.m. on Thursday after the 26-year-old restaurant delivery driver reported being robbed, police said.

One of the robbers had a gun and demanded money, so the victim handed over the small amount of cash he had on him, as well as the calzone he was trying to deliver, police said.

With cash and dinner in hand, the robbers ran toward Howard Avenue.

Detectives said they don't believe this robbery was set up because they spoke with the person who placed the order and he was patiently waiting for his delivery when detectives knocked at his door.

Police are looking for the robbers, who are both thin, around 5-feet-10, and appeared to be in their teens.

One of them wore khaki shorts and a black T-shirt with a design on the front. The other wore black pants and a black hooded sweatshirt.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Florida Man Charged With Threatening Ex-Wife in Middletown


Middletown police have arrested a 73-year-old Florida man accused of invading his ex-wife’s home and threatening her.

James Cyr is accused of making the threats on the morning of April 25.

Police said he walked into his ex-wife’s Middletown home, sat down at the breakfast table and said he wanted to “talk” to her about their 25-year marriage. He then pulled out a handgun, pointed it at her and said he wanted to harm her, police said.

Cyr’s 18-year-old son was home and came to his mother's rescue. 

He managed to talk his father into putting the gun down, get him out of the house and continued to talk to him, police said. 

Inside Cyr's car, there was a suicide note, according to police.

His ex-wife called police when he left.

Officers applied for an arrest warrant and Cyr was taken into custody on April 28 with help from the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Department in Florida. Middletown police took him into custody on Thursday.

Cyr has been charged with home invasion, threatening and carrying a pistol without a permit.

Bond was set at $250,000. He is due in court on Friday.

It is not clear if he has an attorney.

Photo Credit: Middletown Police

Police Arrest Six Suspected of Dealing Drugs from Bar


North Haven police have arrested six people suspected of dealing drugs out of a North Haven bar.

Sean Moore, 38, of New Haven, William Guy, 36, of North Haven,  James Palumbo, 43, of Wallingford, and Hamden residents Deborah Kelly, 62, Steve Rosello, 49, and Justin Wilson, 38, sold narcotics from a Quinnipiac Avenue bar for several years, according to police.

Police suspected drug deals were happening at the bar and began a two-month long investigation. Undercover investigators bought cocaine powder, crack cocaine, heroin and prescription pills off of four of the people arrested.

Police arrested two others leaving the bar with a pound of marijuana and cocaine.

Stamford Pedestrian Dies After Car Hits Him


A 65-year-old Stamford man died Friday morning after a car pulling out of a driveway in town hit him.

Carmine Passero was walking along a Strawberry Hill Avenue sidewalk in Stamford as Peter Parashkevov, 50, was pulling out of his driveway. Parashkevov struck him with his 2013 Mercedes-Benz C300 sedan, knocking Passero to the ground.

An ambulance transported Passero to Stamford Hospital to be treated in the Critical Care unit for severe head injuries from the impact with the ground.

Parashkevov stayed at the scened to talk to police.

Stamford police continue to investigate the fatal collision. No arrests have been made at this time.

Police ask anyone who witnessed the incident to contact the Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Squad at 203-977-4712.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News

Bear Kicks Back in Hammock


A black bear took a much-needed break in a backyard hammock after spending the night knocking over trash cans and scaring residents in a Daytona Beach neighborhood Thursday.

Photographer Rafael Torres caught the bear climbing into a hammock and lying down, according to NBC affiliate WESH.

Torres told WESH he was about 60 feet away when he took the photos and it didn't seem bothered by his presence. He said it stayed in the hammock for 20 minutes before heading back into the woods at about 8:15 p.m.

The black bear is the first Torres said he's seen in the area by that hammock.

Photo Credit: Courtesy Rafael Torres

Groton Police Investigate Stabbing


A 46-year-old man was stabbed multiple times in Groton.

Groton police received reports of the stabbing at 2 p.m.

The man, who police have not identified, was treated for multiple stab wounds in his back at Pequot Health Center. Police said a Good Samaritan drove him to the emergency department there.

The attack, which police said was not random, happened near Midway Oval and Vergennes Court, according to the initial police investigation. The victim was targeted, police said.

The victim's injuries are not life-threatening, police said.

Groton police ask anyone with information to contact the department at 860-411-6712.

NBA Will Vote on Ballmer Deal


The NBA has canceled its hearing to consider Donald Sterling's ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers, saying the team will be sold to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

That announcement Friday afternoon came just after Sterling's lawyer filed an antitrust suit against the league, seeking $1 billion plus treble damages.

The league said in its statement that it has resolved its dispute over the franchise's ownership with Donald Sterling's estranged wife Shelly and the Sterling Family Trust, who agreed Thursday to sell the franchise to Ballmer for $2 billion.

Shelly Sterling and the trust "also agreed not to sue the NBA and to indemnify the NBA against lawsuits from others, including from Donald Sterling," the league said in its statement Friday.

With that, "the NBA will withdraw its pending charge to terminate the Sterlings' ownership of the team."

The NBA had charged Donald Sterling with damaging the league by making racist comments and planned the hearing for Tuesday, where league owners could have terminated his ownership — and Shelly's as well.

On Thursday, Ballmer announced he had agreed to buy the team for $2 billion, after Donald Sterling had handed control of the team over to Shelly Sterling last week, allowing her to negotiate a deal.

NBA owners had been scheduled to vote Tuesday on whether to force a sale of the team. Instead, the board of governors will vote on the deal to sell the team to Ballmer.

Sterling's attorney told NBC News that he has not agreed to sell the Clippers.

Sterling was recorded last month telling girlfriend V. Stiviano not to bring black friends to Clippers games, specifically mentioning Hall of Famer Magic Johnson.

Sterling's comments prompted widespread criticism, including from Johnson and other prominent NBA players, the NAACP and President Barack Obama.

Longtime sponsors and advertisers with the Clippers ended their relationships and suspended ads.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver imposed on Sterling a lifetime league ban, fined him $2.5 million and vowed to force a sale of the team.

Two weeks after the announcement, Sterling made his first public statements in an interview in which he called the remarks a terrible mistake and asked for forgiveness.

In the same interview, he also blasted Magic Johnson, saying the Lakers great was not a good role model for children and had done nothing for black people.

The Sterling family bought the LA Clippers in 1981 for $12 million.


East Hampton Residents Await Seawall Repairs


The seawall along Lake Pocotapaug at Sears Park in East Hampton is cordoned off from the beach and the playground, awaiting repairs.

The town government still has to approve its plan but this week the Town Council approved spending $35,000 for the repairs, to be done as soon as possible.

The ice of winter broke and warped the wood that makes up the wall, and heavy rain recently left its mark as well.

The mother of a girl playing on the slide at the park said keeping the seawall and the sand above it closed off is costing the town.

"East Hampton's gonna lose a little bit of money from the people who come to the beach and come on the weekends," said Amanda Arnold.

The cost to a resident of a day pass is $5.

Roy Cavanaugh Sr, longtime town resident, said, "The wall was alright before. Somebody wanted to raise it up. Now the sand's going to the far end. What are you gonna do?"

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Hartford Plans New Incentives to Collect Unpaid Tickets


Some people owe Hartford for 30, 40, even 50 unpaid parking tickets, according to the Hartford Parking Authority, but as the agency prepares to put a "boot" on cars with unpaid citations, it's offering a 20 % discount to people who make good on up to 5 of them.

"We're changing policy to give people a chance to come clean," said the executive director, Eric Boone, "and if they have 5 tickets, they can pay their tickets before they get booted."

The booting doesn't start til July 23. The discounts end July 18.

Towing is the current approach to vehicles with unpaid tickets. Once booting begins, tow trucks won't lower their hooks for 24 hours after a boot is clamped on, so that gives scofflaws a chance to "pay up and move on".

That's the slogan on a marked car the parking authority is placing around Hartford to get the word out.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com
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