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Deli Owner Offered Teen Money, Candy for Nude Photo: Cops


A Newington deli owner has been arrested, accused of offering a teenage boy candy and money in exchange for a photo of his genitals, as well as having sexual conversations with several other teenage customers.

Albert Mortensen, 68, of Newington, the owner of Main Street Deli in East Berlin, has been charged with risk of injury to a minor and impairing the morals of children.

Police started investigating on May 17, when the mother of a 15-year-old boy went to police and filed a complaint.

The boy, who was a regular customer at the deli, told a sibling that Mortensen had a sexually explicit conversation with him and offered him “any candy in the store and $100” if he showed Mortensen a nude photo, according to the warrant for Mortensen's arrest. The sibling then relayed that information to the parents.

When police spoke with the teen, he gave officers names of other teens who frequent the deli and might have had similar interactions with Mortensen. Over the next week and a half, police interviewed three other teenage boys about interactions with Mortensen, the warrant says.

A 16-year-old boy told investigators about an incident in March in which Mortensen allegedly said a teenage girl in the neighborhood “dressed like a slut” and thought she was “sexy.”

According to the arrest warrant, a 13-year-old boy also told police that he was “weirded” out when Mortensen started asking personal questions, so he left the store.

Mortensen also asked the boy if he wanted to work in the store when he got older. When he said he did, Mortensen said the teen “would have to work naked,” the teen told police.

Another 16-year-old boy told police he had heard some of the conversations the other teens relayed, according to the warrant.

Police questioned Mortensen about the allegations at his Newington home on June 9.

When police asked if he knew why they wanted to speak to him, he said “the mother of the kid,” according to police.

He did admit to having a conversation with a teen about sex when the boy was buying candy, but said he could bit remember who brought up the topic, according to police. He said he asked the boy if he had any “porn videos” on his cell phone, but didn’t remember anything else they said.

Mortensen then told police that he realizes that it was “probably not a good idea to talk about sex” with someone so young.

Mortensen denied having sexual conversations with other teenage boys, but later said he “may have made some comments,” but was not sure of the exact content of the conversations, according to police. 

He also denied offering money or candy for photos of the boy’s genitals. 

Deli customers said they're surprised by the allegations. Berlin resident Austin Kowaleski said Mortensen often employs young teens, but never thought there might be ulterior motives.

"He always seemed like he was trying to help the younger crowd rather than take advantage," he explained.

Mortensen has been released on $5,000 bond.

No one answered the door at Mortensen's home Wednesday. Information on an attorney for Mortensen was not immediately available.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com and Berlin Police

SoCal Toddler Dies in Hot Car: Cops


A 3-year-old boy died Wednesday after becoming trapped in a hot car in Sylmar, police said.

Officers were called about 3:30 p.m. to a home in the 14400 block of West Foothill Boulevard, where the child had climbed into a Toyota Camry and was unable to get out, the Los Angeles Police Department said.

The child was taken to a hospital in grave condition, police said. He was later pronounced dead.

Investigators believe the child was playing outside while his parents and 14-year-old brother were napping inside. Police say the boy's parents told detectives they all took a nap around noon. 

It was unclear how the child became locked inside the car. Investigators said the father found him around 3 p.m. in the car parked in the family's front yard and called 911.

It was 88 degrees in Sylmar at noon and 98 degrees by 3 p.m. In a car with the windows up, the temperature is exponentially higher.

No arrests have been made in connection with the boy's death, police said.

"Our investigation will determine if this was an accident or something worse, all we have to go on right now are the statements from the parents," LAPD Lt. Paul Vernon said.

Police said they were interviewing the parents at a relative's home Wednesday night. For now, investigators are treating this incident as an accident and awaiting the coroner's autopsy report to determine the exact cause of death.

"They had several kids running around the yard, they were really nice people and seemed to be really good with their kids," neighbor Kim Kesley said.

This is the 19th hot car death this year in the United States, according to San Francisco State University. 

NBC4's Samia Khan and Kate Larsen contributed to this report.

Waterbury Remembers Clerk Fatally Shot During Robbery


Community members lit candles outside Bucks Hill Market in Waterbury Wednesday night to remember the 61-year-old store clerk fatally shot during an armed robbery last week.

David Shand was left paralyzed after being shot in the neck at the store July 20. He later died of his injuries in what police are calling a homicide.

Nineteen-year-old Tony Dupre has been arrested in connection with the robbery, and police said Wednesday he could face additional charges for Shand's death.

Dupre is accused of shooting Shand at the market on Boyden Street around 11 a.m. last Sunday. Surveillance footage captured his image, police said.

According to the police case report, Dupre started piling items on the counter as the Shand was sweeping. When the Shand went to ring him up, Dupre shot him "without warning," then reached over Shand to grabbed more items before leaving the store, police said.

A man who went into the store heard Shand calling for help and found him 5-10 minutes after the shooting.

Those who know him are shocked and said they expected him to pull through.

"I actually fell to the ground, I was that devastated about it," said Tammy Perrault, who stopped by the store on her way home from church and told Shand to "have a blessed day" as she walked out.

Perrault said his death is "hitting closed to home" and had no idea that would be their last conversation.

Customer Sabiel Vargas struggled to make sense of what happened.

"The guy didn't have to shoot him. There was no reason to shoot him," Vargas said. "He's truly going to be missed."

Shand's son stopped by the market Wednesday night. He said he's devastated by his father's death and wants justice for the person responsible.

Dupre was initially charged with criminal attempt at murder, first-degree robbery, larceny and interfering with an officer. He appeared in court last week and his bond was set at $1 million.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com/Family Photo

"Tip Bombers" Surprise Subway Artists With Cash, Cheers


A group of do-gooders has started surprising city subway performers with big tips and cheers, swarming their underground performance spots and filling their instrument cases with cash in a practice called “tip bombing.”

Twice this month, groups of people have come out to listen to artists and drop them extra tips in a Facebook-organized act of kindness. Organizers pick a busker to “bomb” and send out a message saying where and when they'll circle the artist and leave the tips.

The practice is similar to a nationwide trend, also called "tip bombing," where diners leave large tips for waitresses at inexpensive restaurants.

Robert Leslie was the first subway artist to get tip bombed. The group surprised him in a lower Manhattan subway station last week. He was tipped $319 in just a few minutes.

“Midway through, I was thinking ‘this is going really well,’” Leslie said in a YouTube video. “But then more and more people kept coming and I was like, ‘Wow, I should play here every day.’ I felt like Jay Z or something.”

On Wednesday, a group surprised an artist known as “Guitaro 5,000” in a subway station in Times Square.

Man Assaults Ex-Wife Who Threw Out His Beer: Police


A Bridgpeort man is charged with assaulting his ex-wife after she threw away his beer, according to police.

Police said the couple still lives together at a home on Park Street and started arguing after 49-year-old Melvin Gonzalez returned home from work Tuesday.

He asked for beer and allegedly struck his ex-wife across the face when she told him she drank them, according to police.

The victim later told authorities she had thrown the beer out because Gonzalez gets violent when he drinks, police said.

Gonzalez was arrested near his house and charged with third-degree assault and disorderly conduct. Bond was set at $2,500.


Photo Credit: Bridgeport Police Department

Reward for Information in 2001 Missing Girl Case


Police and family members are still searching for a girl who disappeared from Bridgeport nearly 13 years ago, and authorities are offering a $62,000 reward in exchange for information on her whereabouts.

Bianca Lebron went missing on Nov. 7, 2001 as she was about to start her day at Elias Howe Elementary on Clinton Avenue. She was 10 years old when she disappeared and is now 23.

"It's the worst feeling ever," her mother, Carmelita Torres, said Wednesday. "It's not like somebody passed away. You know where that person's at. We don't know where my daughter's at. It's very, very, very hard."

Police said the fifth-grader was waiting with other students to enter school that morning when she told classmates she was leaving to accompany an "uncle" on a shopping trip.

She got into his beat-up, older-model van and hasn't been seen since.

"We miss her. We love her. We want her home," said her great aunt, Gertrude Reboira. "She's our family."

The case has stalled, but police and family members are not giving up.

“I believe there are people who have information that can help us,” said Bridgeport police Det. John Burke, the lead investigator in the case, in a news release. “We want to bring her home. The Police Department has not forgotten about Bianca. The community has not forgotten her. We need their help.”

Family members said the city and state is offering $62,000 to anyone who can help them put together the pieces and hopefully bring Bianca home safe.

"Somebody out there has to know something," Reboira said through tears. "Just come through, you know."

Detectives are asking anyone with information to call Burke at 203-581-5183.

Photo Credit: Bridgeport Police

Part of Route 136 Closed in Norwalk After Water Main Break


Route 136 in Norwalk is closed at Gray Rock Road because of a water main break.

Crews are at the scene. Police did not have any information on how long the road will be closed.

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Photo Credit: Google Maps

Cabins on Fire at Club Getaway in Kent


Firefighters are responded to Club Getaway in Kent because two cabins are reported to be on fire, according to Litchfield County dispatchers.

Ambulances have been sent and several fire departments are responding.

Club Getaway, a 300-acre property on a lake, is located at 59 South Kent Road.

NBC Connecticut attempted to contact the club, but there was no answer.

NBC Connecticut has a crew on the way and we'll update this story with more information as soon as it's available.  As this story is developing, elements might change.


Photo Credit: Monica Garske

LED Lights to Make New Haven a Safer City


New Haven is hoping its bright idea pays off – the city is replacing its street lights with LED bulbs.

"I sometimes don't even need have to turn on my front porch light," said New Haven resident Evelyn Wilcox of New Haven.

Wilcox said she doesn't have to leave that porch light on for her husband anymore, thanks to LED lights across the street from her Lexington Avenue home.

"When I get up in the morning at 3, it's brighter for me to come out to my car and I'm less afraid," Cox added.

New Haven wants to give more residents that peace of mind through a new initiative to install LED lights across the city. Fair Haven Heights was the latest stop.

"We will save 30-40 percent on our energy bill by converting to LED," said the city's chief administrative officer, Mike Carter.

Carter said it's not just about saving energy. The new lights also serve as a crime deterrent.

"The streets become brighter, there's no dark spots, it's easier for pedestrians to walk," he said.

Johnny Estrada, whose parents live in Fair Haven Heights, explained that he's already noticed the difference.

"[The lights] are a lot brighter now so it makes it a lot harder for people to break into cars," he said.

The project kicked off two years ago in Newhallville. Since then, the city already substituted 3,000 of its 10,000 bulbs for LEDs. Now officials are focused on finishing the entire downtown grid.

"My dad works at night so it's a lot better," Estrada said.

The difference in Fair Haven Heights was clear Wednesday night from one side of East Grand Avenue to the other.

"There's a lot less crime in the area with these lights because they're a lot brighter," Wilcox said.

City officials said they hope to have LED lights throughout the downtown area by September.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Attempted Carjacking, Officer-Involved Shooting in Hartford


Hartford police are investigating an attempted carjacking and officer-invoked this morning.

A victim told police that someone tried to carjack him around 4 a.m. on Broad Street, fired a shot and fled, police said.

When officers and K9s found the suspect behind a house on Adelaide Street, he pulled out a gun, according to police.

A police officer fired two shots and did not hit the suspect.

The man is in the hospital and is believed to have overdosed on drugs. Police are still trying to identify him.

Police continue to investigate.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Zoo Gets Fruit From Flipped Truck


Talk about not letting roadkill go to waste.

The elephants, giraffes and bears at the Oakland Zoo got to nosh on African jackfruit and bananas Wednesday thanks to a overturned big rig that dumped 60,000 pounds of fruit in Livermore near the Altamont Pass earlier in the week.

"The elephants loved it," Brian Deering, president of the nonprofit F.A.I.R. Foundation, told NBC Bay Area. He masterminded the transfer – taking the lightly squished fruit from the side of Interstate Highway 580 and getting about 15,000 pounds of it to the animals at the zoo.

About 35,000 pounds fed humans at the Alameda County Food Bank, and the rest was too badly bruised to be eaten.

The truck is owned by All Seasons Produce in Oakland, which grows fruit in Mexico. Deering knows the owners, who contacted him after the truck tipped early Monday morning to say they didn't want the food to go to waste. He also knows the owners of Save Tow, who schlepped the tropical fruit to the zoo.

Deering's agency, which has roots in Sunnyvale but now is headquarted in Elk Grove, is a nonprofit that connects families in custody battles with material goods, such as cars, dishwashers, computers and food.

Zoo spokeswoman Nicky Mora said there is enough donated fruit for the elephants and bears to dine on all week.

Photo Credit: Erin Harrison/Oakland Zoo

Fire Breaks Out at Vacant Home in Waterbury


Firefighters battled a working a fire at an abandoned home at 52 Laurel Street in Waterbury.

The fire was reported at 11:30 a.m. and crews had to cut their way into the house, which was boarded up.

Residents in the area said homeless people have been known to hand out at the house.

No one was in the house when the fire started and no injuries are reported.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Special Needs Children Learn Water Sports


The waves were big at Freedom Splash on Thursday, said Oliver Brock of Danbury, but that just means bigger accomplishments for the 15 disabled and special needs children trying their hand at water sports on Lake Zoar.

The program, sponsored by Sandy Hook-based "Leap of Faith," debuted earlier this month, offering an aqua-thusiast’s dream of waterskiing, wakeboarding, aquaplaning, and tubing. Many of the kids were trying the activities for the first time.

Another participant, Mason Ortoleva, explained that he was a bit apprehensive in the days leading up to Freedom Splash.

“But then, when I actually got here and tried it, I found out it was really fun," he said. "All you need to do is believe, and you can accomplish your goals.”

His sentiments are widely echoed.

“I realy liked how I, like, did, like, float over the water,” said an excited Matt Noome, of Redding.

Many of Thursday’s participants are afflicted by autism, but one has cerebral palsy, and another – a boy who glided across Lake Zoar on one ski as if he’d been doing it all his life – is blind.

Joel Zeisler, who founded the non-profit Leap of Faith in 1991 to offer children, adults and wounded veterans with disabilities a chance for life changing adaptive sports experiences and meaningful connections, puts his vision in simple terms.

“The main thing is to develop a few skills with our individuals today,” said Zeisler.

The original inspiration to launch Leap of Faith came back when he was a competitive skier himself. A man came to him and asked him for guidance in trying his first ski jump.

Only after Zeisler agreed did the man mentioned he was blind. The fruits of what has ensued the last 23 years are most evident in the words and faces of participants and their families.

“It just gives these kids confidence, you know, that they can have a sport that they can talk about with their friends, and that they can, you know, enjoy,” said Vicki Celan of Danbury, whose son enjoyed his turn on the water.

“I have no upper-body strength,” explained A.J. Ceylan, “but the skiing helps me.”

Participant Jenna Ortoleva said she's proud of her progress.

“It keeps on building up, and then it’s like, right in there,” she said, pointing to her head, “and you can totally do it, like an expert.”

Freedom Splash and other programs offered by Leap of Faith are free. You can sign up, donate or volunteer online.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Drought Spreads in Parched Calif.


Exceptional drought conditions expanded this week to include more than half of California, marking a significant increase over just one week for a state in the middle of a third-consecutive dry year.

The most severe drought rating expanded to more than 58 percent of California, a 22 percent increase over last week's U.S. Drought Monitor report. At the start of the year, no part of the state was under the "exceptional" category. But that figure increased steadily after the state completed its warmest and third-driest winter on record.

The dire appraisal of current conditions comes as new, tougher restrictions on water use take effect across the parched state. Wasting water by overwatering laws, for example, could result in fines of up to $500 a day under the new rules.

"We are in a drought of historic proportions," State Water Resources Control Board Chairwoman Felicia Marcus told The Associated Press earlier this month. "Many urban water users don't realize how bad this drought is. They're not seeing the communities that are actually running out of water. ... They don't see the streams and creeks running dry."

Exceptional drought spread significantly in the northern part of the state over the past week. Previously, the most severe conditions were confined to the a large swath of the Central Coast and Central Valley. The weekly report categorizes drought severity into abnormally Dry (D0), Moderate (D1), Severe (D2), Extreme (D3) and Exceptional (D4).

"Drought indicators point to the fact that conditions are not appreciably better in northern California than in central and southern sections of the state," according to the U.S. Drought Monitor report. "In addition, mounting evidence from reservoir levels, river gauges, ground water observations, and socio-economic impacts warrant a further expansion of exceptional drought (D4) into northern California."

Storage in California's 154 intrastate reservoirs -- those that are entirely within the state -- was at 60 percent of the historical average at the end of June. The record low is 41 percent of average, which occurred in June 1977.

The new statewide regulations approved earlier this month by the state water resources board include a $500-per-day fine for residents who waste water. The rules make it illegal for people to hose down driveways and sidewalks, waste water on their lawns or wash vehicles using a hose without a shut-off nozzle.

Gov. Jerry Brown, who declared a statewide drought emergency earlier this year, has asked Californians to reduce water use by 20 percent.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story stated that the new water use rules would go into effect Aug. 1. The regulations took effect July 29.

Photo Credit: US Drought Monitor

Inside LA's Vast Water Supply


There are many ways to conceal the signs of age in Los Angeles. But when it comes to the city's water line system, the effects of aging are more difficult to hide.

The massive Sunset Boulevard water main break Tuesday in Westwood illustrated in spectacular style -- geysers of water, a sinkhole, flooding on the UCLA campus -- the risks that come with expansive water line systems installed decades ago.

The failure also led to a familiar "Band-Aid approach" that experts say is common when pipes in an aging system fail.

"In the United States the basic approach to infrastructure is what many people call the Band-Aid approach," said Harvey Gobas, a civil engineer who worked on a report by the American Society of Civil Engineers on California's drinking water systems. "You fix, and it lasts a few more years. Maybe in some cases it will last 10 or 20 more years, but you still don't have a new pipe."

Tuesday afternoon's break occurred at the meeting point under Sunset Boulevard of a 30-inch pipe installed in 1921 and a 36-inch pipe installed in 1956. Pipes typically last 50 to 75 years, and in a city like Los Angeles many -- like the main line trunk that broke near the UCLA campus -- are actually older, said Gobas.

A 2012 report on LA County's water system, also by the American Society of Civil Engineers, rated it as a C overall and a C- for condition. According to the study, the grade was primarily based on the age of the systems and their need for replacement.

Both city officials and infrastructure experts agree that improvements to the city's water pipeline system need to be made, but the improvements cost billions which officials say the city doesn't have.

"A lot of the agencies that really need to be spending money to upgrade their infrastructure just don't have the money," Gobas said.

L.A. City Councilman Paul Koretz said if the city was working at 100-year replacement rate fixing the pipe system would cost about $4 billion, a huge increase that would be passed on to ratepayers.

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power was scheduled to replace 130,000 feet of main line and five large valves in the city's 7,200 mile pipe system, but it said the project has fallen behind schedule. The department said the delay was due in part to budget constraints that caused a $380 million reduction in the previous annual plan.

In response to budget shortfalls, water agencies have implemented piecemeal solutions to patch up, instead of replace, the miles and miles of pipe that run water underground

By Thursday, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power crews had stopped the flow of water to the Westwood site and started the repair process. The break, which sent about 20 million gallons of water onto the UCLA campus and surround area, flooding buildings and parking structures, involved two trunk lines.

"We have two trunk lines involved and where they connected required special fittings," said Jeff Bray, LADWP general superintendent for water distribution. "It isn't where we can just cut out a straight piece of pipe and put in a straight piece, which is a pretty simple repair. This a very complex repair. We're basically having to realign or reroute some of the pipes -- the direction on how they came together before they're going to come together in a different way now."

Los Angeles typically experiences an increase in pipe breaks during winter months, when colder water enters the system. Authorities have not determined what caused Tuesday's rupture.

The flooding created a spectacular mess, but no utility customers were without water. No injuries were reported. The rupture occurred about five years after a 62-inch pipe burst in the San Fernando Valley, sending water into a Studio City neighborhood.

To prioritize what repairs need to be made, the LADWP has an asset management system that includes strategies like periodically examining the water network and sometimes waiting for problems, or leaks, to spring up before fixing them.

Last year, however, the department took the first steps in a proactive approach toward its water infrastructure system. It began a pilot program to replace old pipes with earthquake resistant ones. The pipes, which are developed and used in Japan have no recorded leaks in 40 years of use.

Ellen Hanak, an economist who leads water research at the Public Policy Institute of California, said that the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power was making investments in its infrastructure both for maintenance and upgrades, as well as in new storage, recycling waste water and capturing storm water.

"So they're doing all of that as well as managing the existing assets that they have, some of which are old," she said. "My understanding is that they have a pretty modern and sophisticated asset management program to try to basically make strategic decisions on what you replace when."

Researchers documented the urban water supply situation around the state in a March report titled, "Paying for Water in California."

"We found in general that the state's urban water suppliers and water agencies were doing a pretty good job in terms of planning for their capital needs and investing in it, if you compare estimates of needs with what their spending," Hanak said. "That doesn't mean that everything is perfect but it does mean we're not seriously off track."

NBC4's Lolita Lopez and Jonathan Lloyd contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: KNBC-TV, Toni Guinyard

Firefighters Rescue Dog From Ledge


Jersey City firefighters rescued a frightened dog from a second-story ledge on Martin Luther King Drive Thursday afternoon.

Neighbors noticed the dog on the ledge after it climbed out of a window of a second-story apartment, according to animal control officials. The owner wasn't home at the time. 

Video captured by resident Raul Mercado shows one firefighter climbing a ladder and trying to coax the scared dog into his arms. When the animal wouldn't budge, a second firefighter climbed up to help bring it down.

The dog got down safely and wagged its tail as its paws hit the ground. The crowd on the sidewalk clapped and cheered. 

The dog was taken into the care of Jersey City's animal control department. It's not clear whether the owner will face charges.

Replica Gun Found in Carry-On at Bradley


A Waterbury man was arrested at Bradley Airport on Monday after TSA agents found a replica gun in his carry-on luggage, according to police and the Transportation Security Administration.

A news release from Transportation Security Administration said screeners found an 8mm Bruni firearm in the carry-on luggage of Angel Santiago, 32, of Waterbury, who was flying from Bradley International Airport to Charlotte Douglas International Airport, according to TSA.

State police said it was a facsimile handgun. This type of gun fires blanks, according to a Web site dedicated to replica guns.

Agents notified local law enforcement. State police charged Santiago with tampering with airports and carrying a facsimile firearm.

He was released after posting $500 bond and is due in court on August 11. 

TSA said this was the third weapon found in carry-on luggage at Bradley this year.

Photo Credit: TSA

Cheshire Residents Tried to Sell Stolen Guitars: Police


Police in New York have arrested two young men from Cheshire who were allegedly trying to sell guitars stolen from a shop in Hamden earlier this week.

Nassau County police encountered 19-year-old Sean Victory and 21-year-old Brett Harrison, both of Cheshire, at a music store in Carle Place, New York, Monday evening, where police say they were trying to sell two of the stolen guitars.

Investigators subsequently found Victory and Harrison with more than $11,000 worth of instruments stolen from Brian’s Guitars in Hamden early Monday morning, police said.

According to police, Harrison also had a gravity knife, which is illegal in New York.

Harrison and Victory are both charged with third-degree criminal possession of stolen property. Victory is additionally charged with fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon. They were due in court in New York today.

Hamden police said after the burglary that surveillance video indicates at least three people wearing masks had broken into the store at 3000 Whitney Avenue. The store’s front door was shattered.

Anyone with information on the burglary should call Hamden police at 203-230-4040.

Photo Credit: Nassau County Police

Hebron Native Gave Teens Liquor Before Fatal Crash: Police


A 21-year-old Hebron native is accused of giving liquor to two teens in Maine before they died in a crash that police say was caused in part by alcohol, according to NBC affiliate WCSH.

Police said William Gerardi, of Hebron, provided alcohol to 19-year-old Casey Dalton and a 17-year-old boy. The two were killed when Dalton’s SUV veered off the roadway in Boothbay, Maine, early Wednesday morning and struck a cluster of trees, WCSH reports. The teens were pronounced dead at the scene.

Alcohol and speed contributed to the crash, police told WCSH. Dalton was not wearing a seatbelt.

Gerardi was arrested in Maine and charged with one felony count of furnishing liquor to a minor. He’ll appear in court tomorrow, and police said additional charges may be filed, according to WCSH.

Photo Credit: Lincoln County Sheriff's Office

City Steps in to Fix Dismal Conditions at Waterbury Condos


"For rent" and "for auction" signs outside Bradley Gardens condominiums in Waterbury reveal all is not well in the complex.

Inside some of the apartments and condos, residents report mold and damaged walls, missing emergency lights and gaping holes in the ceilings of common areas.

A tour of one apartment revealed missing ceiling panels and a disconnected toilet, and an in-ground pool at the complex is filled with garbage.

Last week, city government officials went into the Bradley Avenue condo complex to document evidence of neglect and now they're bringing in a judge.

"The city of Waterbury is in the process of going to Superior Court to try and bring forth some action on the numerous building code violations, life, safety and fire code violations," Waterbury Chief of Staff Joe Geary said Thursday.

Geary said the city has received countless complaints, and attempts by police and fire officials to take action were unsuccessful.

Now the pressure is on G&W Property Maintenance, the property management company at Bradley Gardens, to make some changes or face the consequences.

"Possibly the management company in place will be removed or certainly they will be subject to fines and penatlies," Geary explained.

Dee Vigeant, a 26-year resident of Bradley Gardens, said she's relieved the city is stepping in.

"I'm elated. I'm so thrilled that they are taking time to pay attention," she said Thursday. Vigeant said last week that the property management company has been "collecting a lot of money every month" and she's never seen it pay off.

The city hopes to make progress on the complex within the next week to 10 days.

G&W Property Maintenance have not returned multiple requests for comment, but has previously blamed conditions at the complex on an unresolved insurance settlement.

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