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State Police Investigate Fatal Crash on Salisbury Racetrack


Connecticut state police are investigating an untimely death at Lime Rock park in Salisbury.

Police say Lee Duran, of Archer Road in Lyme, was driving a vehicle on the racetrack at Lime Rock Park around 2:30 p.m. Saturday when he lost control and crashed. He died of his injuries.

Duran was participating in a sanctioned race at the time, according to police. No other vehicles were involved in the crash.

The case is still under investigation.

Bristol Officer Dragged By Vehicle


Bristol police have arrested a man for dragging an officer with his vehicle.

Police say the situation started when officers arrived at the Hunting Woods Apartment Complex on Blakeslee Street for a report of a violation of a protective order. The suspect, Mussa Mwanilelo of Springfield, Mass., was in his vehicle when police arrived.

Mwanilelo attempted to flee, according to police. When an officer attempted to stop the vehicle, Mwanilelo grabbed the officer’s arm. The officer was dragged as Mwanilelo drove off, but eventually got free and suffered minor injuries.

Bristol police say Mwanilelo was later located with help from Farmington police and Connecticut state police on I-84 in Hartford. He was arrested and returned to Bristol.

He is charged with assault on an officer, interfering with an officer, first-degree reckless endangerment, criminal violation of a restraining order, first-degree criminal trespass, possessing weapons in a motor vehicle, and second-degree breach of peace. He was held on $250,000 bond.

Photo Credit: Bristol Police Department

Family Members Found Dead in Home


Several family members were found dead in a home in west suburban Elmhurst Saturday, police said.

Few details were released surrounding the deaths, but police at a news conference Saturday said officers were conducting a well-being check at a home in the 600 block of Chatam just before 7 p.m. when they discovered "several family members" dead inside the home. 

According to authorities, a death investigation is ongoing.

Police do not believe there is any immediate threat to the community, but further information surrounding the deaths was not immediately available, according to Elmhurst Police Chief Michael Ruth.

The DuPage County Coroner's office confirmed they were called to the scene but could not offer any further details.

Neighbors told NBC Chicago they saw armed police officers approaching the home earlier this evening.

The Detective Section of the Elmhurst Police Department is investigating the incident, police said.

Check back for details on this developing story.

Police Seek Suspects Who Shot Man in Neck: Cops


Bridgeport detectives are looking for at least two suspects in an overnight shooting at a Marina Village housing complex that injured a Bridgeport man.

Police responded to 2:30 a.m. Saturday to 380 Iranistan Avenue near Building 22 to investigate. They found a victim, identified as Eugene Williams, 48, of Bridgeport, with a gunshot wound in his neck, police said.

He was transported to Bridgeport Hospital and underwent surgery there.

Police are still in the early stages of the investigation, but said they are seeking at least two suspects based on witness accounts of the incident.

Police have not released descriptions of the suspects at this time.

More information will be provided when it becomes available.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Road Closures During Newtown Labor Day Parade


If you're traveling in Newtown on Monday, there will be some road closures during the town's 53rd annual Labor Day parade.

The road closures include Route 25 north of Johnnie Cake Lane (Mount Pleasant) to Sugar Street (Route 302), Glover Avenue, Queen Street between Glover and Church Hill Road and Church Hill Road north of Queen Street, according to the parade website.

The roads will be closed between 9:45 a.m. and 1:15 p.m. and there will also be parking bans on some streets.

The parade steps off at 10 a.m. More information is available at www.newtownctlabordayparade.org.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Fewer Lifeguards on Connecticut Beaches Labor Day Weekend


If you're heading to the beach Labor Day weekend, you're going to want to keep a close eye on the water as fewer lifeguards staff Connecticut's beaches now that the summer swimming season is coming to a close.

The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) typically has lifeguard squads at 10 state park beaches from Memorial Day to Labor Day. 

DEEP reminds visitors that Connecticut beaches will have fewer to no lifeguards.

The East Beach of Hammonasset State Park  in Madison already removed the lifeguard chairs as of Sunday morning, but the West Beach has lifeguards. Sherwood Island State Park in Westport only has lifeguards on the East Beach.

Beaches without lifeguards on Sunday include Burr Pond State Park in Torrington, Wadsworth Falls State Park in Middletown and Wharton Brook State Park in Wallingford.

Lifeguarding is a seasonal job, so many lifeguards have returned to school at this point.

So, if you do go to the beach this Labor Day weekend, stay within designated swimming areas, know your limits, be aware of weather conditions and keep your children in sight.

"You gotta stay vigilant, it's a little wavy today, so you know kids get close to the water, they're little, the water can knock them over easily," Hammonassett beachgoer Tyler Wilson, of Farmington, said. "So, if you stay vigilant and keep close eye contact with the kids, you should be all set."

After Labor Day on Monday, there will be no lifeguards on duty at any Connecticut swimming areas.

"The one thing with the lifeguards not here is that the parents have to take full responsibility and not just let the lifeguards take care of their kids for them, so it’s definitely lifeguards and parents together," Robert Melanson, of Bloomfield, said.

You can follow @CTDEPoutdoorrec on Twitter for the latest on beach closures.

Photo Credit: Amanda Raus, NBC Connecticut

State Police Make 26 DUI Arrests Labor Day Weekend


State Police have made 26 drunken driving arrests so far over the Labor Day weekend as troopers increase traffic enforcement for the holiday weekend.

More than 1,000 drivers have gotten speeding tickets across the state and State Police pulled 111 motorists over who weren't wearing seatbelts.

State Police have also doled out more than 2,300 tickets for unsafe driving.

There have been 200 accidents so far Labor Day weekend, including 21 with injuries. State Police are not including the Lime Rock racetrack fatal crash in the stats and said that it is categorized as an untimely death.

By comparison, in 2013, State Police ticketed 1,513 people for speeding and 231 people for seatbelt violations on Labor Day weekend and made 60 DUI arrests. In 2013, there were 259 crashes, including 44 with injuries and three fatalities.

The increased traffic patrols will continue through Labor Day on Monday.

Coast Guard Band to Play Tchaikovsky's '1812 Overture' at Concert


The United States Coast Guard is tuning their trumpets and warming up the woodwinds for a concert in New London later Sunday afternoon.

The band will perform Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture," highlighted by a live canon firing.

The concert is free and starts at 3 p.m. at Fort Trumbull State Park in New London.

Burglars Remove Air Conditioners to Break Into 3 Homes


South Windsor police are investigating three burglaries that happened within the span of a few hours Quarryback and Sally drives on Saturday morning.

The burglars got into the homes by pushing in the air conditioners and climbing through the window in each of the three incidents, police said.

Police did not say how many burglars they are looking for, but no arrests have been made at this time. The burglaries remain under investigation.

Police are reminding residents to make sure any window air conditioning units are properly secured and to call police if you notice suspicious activity.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Decision 2014: The Education Show


In their first debate of this election cycle, Democratic incumbent Gov. Dan Malloy and his GOP challenger Tom Foley picked up where they left off in 2010.

The debate, sponsored by The Norwich Bulletin, was a feisty affair.

Veteran political reporter Mark Pazniokas, of the CT Mirror, joins George Colli to analyze who won, who lost and what we should expect going forward.

Also on this week's episode, outgoing Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor speaks with new NBC Connecticut political reporter Max Reiss on what's gone right and what's gone wrong in his time as the state's top educator.

And Todd Piro discusses special education needs with two advocates and mothers.

Episode 8 - The Education Show

WATCH: CT Mirror's Mark Pazniokas wraps up the first debate of the general election season with George Colli.

WATCH: Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor talks with Max Reiss.

WATCH: Two advocates and mothers talk with Todd Piro about special needs education issues.

Homeless Man Beaten to Death


A homeless man in Chicago was beaten to death on the city’s Northwest Side Saturday night, police said.

The man was in an alley in the 1900 block of North Ridgeway Avenue in the city’s Logan Square neighborhood when two men exited a vehicle and began beating him, police said.

The men beat the victim’s head and body with their hands and feet, according to Chicago Police News Affairs Officer Jose Estrada.

The man was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital where he was pronounced dead, police said.

The Cook County Medical Examiner's office identified the man as 57-year-old Ernesto Garcia.

Police said the man appeared to be homeless.

"Regardless of whether he was homeless or not he's still human," said community activist Andrew Holmes. "A lot of these assaults that been taking place beating the homeless go unreported and the reason they go unreported is because they figure nobody cares, but we care, I care and we're just trying to find the individuals that beat this guy to death."

Holmes was patrolling the area Sunday afternoon hoping to find witnesses or see if surveillance cameras may have captured footage of the suspects.

"Each and every day someone is always picking on the homeless," Holmes said. "If they try to defend themselves they get jumped on, they get beat, they get assaulted... it shouldn't have gone this far."

Area residents say the attack was surprising for the community.

"It was so close to home," said Enrique Ruiz. "I thought nothing like this would happen around here."

Many in the area said Garcia frequently slept in the alley and was friendly those who lived nearby.

"People around here liked him," said resident George Bermudez. "He was really nice. I was shocked. I just said hi to him in the a.m., I didn't know someone I knew was going to die."

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Connecticut

3 Hurt by Lightning at NYC Beach


Three people are hospitalized in New York City with injuries from a lightning strike as heavy thunderstorms swept the tri-state, authorities say. 

The men were hurt at Orchard Beach on Pelham Bay in the Bronx at about 5 p.m., and were being treated at Jacobi Medical Center, according to the FDNY. They did not appear to be seriously injured or physically burned. 

Telemundo identifies two of the victims as a father and son, 49 and 19 years old, who sought shelter under a tree during the storm. A friend of the family told the news station that the lightning hit the tree, then sent the men flying at least 10 feet. 

The friend showed the station photos of the victims' clothing that appeared to be shredded in parts from the lightning strike.

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Visitors at Orchard Beach said they weren't seriously concerned about the rain until they heard the thunder. 

"That crack of thunder and lightning came, and that's when everybody started to run away," said Cheryl Greenidge. 

Edgar Ayalla said he saw lightning hit either the beach or the water "like an explosion," and that debris was sent flying from that lightning strike. 

Elsewhere in the city, torrential rain, thunder and lightning interrupted Labor Day weekend celebrations, halted play at the U.S. Open tennis tournament in Queens and forced the early end to the Electric Zoo musical festival on Randall's Island. 

Traffic crawled on the Garden State Parkway in East Orange, where roads were flooded and emergency responders had to attend to a stranded driver, a traffic camera showed. 

Flooding on the Cross Bronx Expressway also caused long delays onto the George Washington Bridge. 

Kennedy, LaGuardia and Newark airports all reported long delays as a result of the storm.

Another round of thunderstorms is expected in the area by Monday. Labor Day will be otherwise hot and humid. 

The last area thunderstorm broke records on Long Island, where the town of Islip saw more than 13 inches of rain fall in a matter of hours on Aug. 14. 

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Connecticut

Photo Credit: Telemundo/NBC 4 New York

Florida Man Stabs Roommate 25 Times


A Pompano Beach man has been charged with second-degree murder after stabbing his roommate to death Saturday night, police said.

Broward Sheriff's Office deputies responded to a disturbance call at 3208 Marine Drive just after 9 p.m. Deputies said 22-year-old Samuel Dulavoix was covered in blood when he answered the door. Officers spotted a pile of bloody blankets on top of a body.

BSO has identified the victim as 39-year-old Rahmil Alexander. Dulavoix told homicide investigators that he and Alexander had been living together for about a year. He said they argued over money when Dulavoix stabbed the victim more than 25 times, police said. He later attempted to clean up the scene and conceal the body.

The Broward County Medical Examiner ruled the case a homicide at the scene and said Alexander died of multiple stab wounds.

Dulavoix was transported to a nearby hospital for treatment to superficial cuts on his hands before being released to authorities. He is being held without bond and faces a charge of second-degree murder. It is unknown if Dulavoix has an attorney.

Photo Credit: Broward Sheriff's Office

Bristol Police Investigate Bank Robbery


Bristol police are investigating a bank robbery that occurred early Sunday morning.

Police say they were called to the TD Bank North at 414 Broad Street for an armed robbery just after midnight. Bank workers reported that a man handed a teller a note demanding money and stating that he had a gun. No weapon was actually shown.

The suspect was given an undetermined amount of cash and left before police arrived on scene. No one was injured.

The suspect is described as a male in his early 20’s, wearing a baseball cap, long dark shorts and a long-sleeved shirt. It is unclear if a vehicle was involved.

The incident is under investigation.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

1 Dead, 9 Injured in SoCal Crash


A woman was killed and nine other people were injured a crash involving an overturned truck on the 5 Freeway in Castaic on Sunday.

The crash on the northbound 5 Freeway near Lake Hughes Road was reported around 2 p.m., according to the California Highway Patrol.

All northbound lanes were reopened after the crash shut down two lanes for hours.

Details of the crash were not being released.

The woman was pronounced dead at the scene.

An overturned truck blocked lanes after the collision involving three other vehicles.

A SigAlert was issued and the two right lanes of the freeway were expected to be closed for at least three hours for the crash investigation.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Connecticut

Suspended UConn Sorority Can Stay


One of three Greek life organizations appealing suspensions after UConn sanctioned a fraternity and two sororities amid hazing allegations and student code violations will stay in Husky Village this year.

The Sigma Chi Fraternity and the Delta Gamma and Delta Zeta sororities lost their recognition at UConn early August following a months-long investigation, but the university has modified its decision for Delta Gamma's fate in response to its appeal, UConn spokesperson Stephanie Reitz confirmed.

Depending on the outcome of the appeals, all three organizations were in danger of losing their housing in Husky Village starting Jan. 1, 2015 and also be banned from “interest housing” in the nearby Towers residence halls. But now UConn will allow Delta Gamma to register to be recognized as an on-campus organization effective this fall and the sorority can stay in Husky Village.

The sanctions early August came just months after two other Greek organizations were removed from campus for similar allegations.

UConn initially found Sigma Chi and Delta Gamma responsible for three student code violations in connection with a Feb. 28 incident. Letters sent to both organizations say men affiliated with Sigma Chi where forced to bob for "nips" in a toilet and eat cat food. Some were also allegedly struck with wooden paddles.

Members of Delta Zeta were accused of feeding dog treats to fraternity men and forcing them to drink and paint their bodies, according to a letter from the UConn associate director of community standards sent to the chapter.

"UConn takes a zero-tolerance approach to hazing and harmful treatment of students by anyone, under any circumstances. Our mission is to provide a first-rate learning environment, and we take this duty really seriously," UConn officials said in a statement obtained Aug. 12. "Greek Life has played a vital role in the life of this university for decades and will continue to do so. UConn values the commitment of the many students who promote philanthropy, community service and responsible citizenry through their participation in these groups."

The initial sanctions, which took effect immediately, would last three years for Sigma Chi, two years for Delta Zeta and one year for Delta Gamma, pending appeals, according to the university. But Delta Gamma's status was modified as a result of its appeal, though the university has not released further details on the decision and the reason behind it.

All three organizations have appealed the rulings and will hear back within the next couple weeks, university officials said.

"Delta Gamma Fraternity values the heritage of our Epsilon Pi chapter, but knows there must be a desire and commitment from our current collegians to promote and live by the values of our Fraternity," said Delta Gamma national president Stacia Rudge Skook, in a statement earlier in August. "We believe the current collegiate members in our Epsilon Pi chapter understand Delta Gamma Fraternity's values and are ready and willing to lead the change. Our members do not condone this behavior and are sorrowed that the actions of a few have impacted so many."

Delta Zeta also released a statement in response to the decision, which reads, in part:

"The Sorority fosters the respect and worth of self and of others, and does not condone hazing. Delta Zeta is committed to its eradication. Delta Zeta Sorority members are expected to conduct themselves in alignment with the Sorority values that exemplify integrity, good citizenship and leadership."

A statement posted to the international Sigma Chi Fraternity Web site said leadership is "extremely disappointed in the decisions that several individuals of its Gamma Omega Chapter made to participate in the activities referenced by the University of Connecticut" but challenged the allegations.

According to the statement, the incidents don’t fall into the category of hazing since everyone involved was already a member of the organization.

"By its own definition, the University of Connecticut considers hazing as activities where participation is a precursor for some form of membership in an organization," said Sigma Chi International President Michael Greenberg, in a statement. "In this particular case, we reject the notion that hazing was connected to this incident because the individuals who participated in the activities were already initiated and did so voluntarily, with no connection to their continued membership as a condition for participation."

The Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority and Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity lost their appeals after being suspended in March.

UConn will have 2,300 students participating in 34 recognized fraternities and sororities at the start of the school year in the fall, including those recently sanctioned.

Two additional Greek organizations are colonizing at UConn as well, including Sigma Phi Epsilon, a fraternity that lost its recognition at UConn in 2008, and new sorority, Alpha Chi Omega.

Racing Community Mourns Driver Killed in Crash


The racing community remains in shock after a 73-year-old driver was killed at the track in Lime Rock Park.

"There's no words," said Rick Roso, PR and Editorial Director for Lime Rock Park. "What do you say to the family or wife or husband of someone who dies in a racing accident?"

It's a tragedy that's hit close to home for many racers and fans at the Lime Rock Park Historic Festival in Salisbury. Shortly after two Saturday afternoon park officials say Lee Duran was driving his 1934 MG PA race car when it left the track and he lost control.

"I could see the car on its side at the exit of turn seven. That's the last corner of the race track," said Roso.

"To see it happen and to see him on the track was really frightening because we know that it could happen to us," said racer Leonard McCue.

Duran was taken to the hospital where he died from his injuries.

Witnesses tell us they saw the vehicle roll several times, and state police say no other cars were involved. It's the first fatality in the festival's 32 years and has left many drivers shaken.

"It's a terrible tragedy for the family. We all feel really badly for him. He's my age. I feel terrible," said McCue.

We're told Duran was a prominent architect, well-known, and very involved in the Town of Lyme's community. Roso says he spoke with the victim's wife at the hospital.

"Even in utter sorrow she told me how much he loved racing, how much he loved this car," said Roso.

As fellow drivers and fans get ready for another day of vintage car racing Monday they say they know the risks they take entering track and that their thoughts and prayers are with the victim's family.

"It's a sad thing, and all we can do is feel for the family," said Roso.

Roso says Duran leaves behind his wife of nearly 52 years.

Roso tells us there are safety requirements for all vehicles that race including roll cages, safety belts, and helmets.

Connecticut State Police continue their investigation into the crash.

Photo Credit: Christine Matthews

Storms Dump Heavy Rain Across the State


Storms dumped heavy rains on the state tonight, causing minor flooding in some communities.

West Hartford police said they had several incidents of tree branches down on roadways, but they were quickly cleared.

Severe thunderstorm warnings were issued for Hartford and Tolland counties until 7:15p.m. tonight.  A severe thunderstorm warning was issued until 5:45 p.m. for Fairfield County.

Storms are in the forecast throughout late afternoon and evening on Sunday.

There is a potential for severe storms, according to NBC Connecticut Meteorologist Monica Cryan. Rain is expected to last until Monday and the storms could bring gusty winds and flooding, she said.

Check our interactive radar to track the possible storms and download our weather app for the latest updates.

Tune in throughout the evening for the latest forecast.

2 Teens Hurt in Carnival Ride Fall


Two teens were sent to a hospital after falling off a carnival ride at a church festival in El Paso Sunday night.

The two teens fell more than 12 feet from the ride at the Bazaar at Saint Anthony's Seminary after it became stuck, officials said.

Responders had to rescue another person from the ride.

Check back here for updates.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News

Car Plows Into Subway Sandwich Shop


A car plowed through a sandwich shop early Sunday morning, critically injuring the driver and causing major damage to the building.

A driver ran a red light and crashed into Subway in the 1700 block of Euclid Avenue around 1:10 a.m., according to officials.

Police and paramedics found a red Honda Civic completely inside the restaurant. The wall was blown out, and shattered glass covered the sidewalk.

An ambulance rushed the driver to Scripps Mercy Hospital. At last update, he was in critical condition. The restaurant was empty at the time of the accident, and no one else was injured.

Officials tell NBC 7 alcohol was not a factor in the crash.

There is no word on how much the damage will cost to repair.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Connecticut

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