Channel: NBC Connecticut
Browsing All 57608 Browse Latest View Live
Mark channel Not-Safe-For-Work? cancel confirm NSFW Votes: (0 votes)
Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel.

Conn. Exchange Offers Four Plans that Don't Cover Abortion


Access Health CT, the state's healthcare marketplace, offers four plans that don't include coverage for elective abortion procedures.

Open enrollment for health insurance started last month and ends Feb. 15.

The Family Institute of Connecticut supports historically socially conservative stances and applauded the exchange for having so many choices for people who have moral objections to the procedure.

“We understand that not everyone shares that opinion but at least not to be forced to subsidize that is a very big deal," said Nicole Stacy, who works on policy for the Family Institute. "Before there were no options.”

The four plans offered on Access Health CT come from two providers, Anthem and HealthyCT.
Anthem offers Gold and Silver HMO Pathway X Enhanced coverage options and Healthy CT offers Gold and Silver CO-Options Preferred PPO Plans.

All four coverage options are also offered in other states.

The state was sued by a family that wanted the health insurance options available immediately on the health insurance exchange. Access Health CT officials say plans were in the works to provide such options, since the federal healthcare law mandated it.

“The Affordable Care Act actually stipulates that the exchanges must offer these types of plans so it’s actually codified in the law," said Jason Madrak, Access Health's Chief Marketing Officer. "The ACA also says that states have until 2017 to go ahead and make these kinds of plans available.”

He added that the Affordable Care Act actually prohibits federally subsidized plans from covering elective abortion procedures.

Madrak said policymakers always had it in mind for people who opposed abortion to have choices in their healthcare coverage.

“If you do have an objection to elective abortive services, these plans do offer you some alternative.”

Teen Weighed Less Than 40 Pounds


A 15-year-old Indiana girl weighed less than 40 pounds when she was taken to the hospital Monday and police reportedly called her case one of the “worst cases of neglect” they’ve ever seen.

The girl was taken to an Indiana hospital Monday. Police said she was so severely malnourished that “her bones were protruding more than her flesh,” according to an affidavit. There were also “feces on her feet.” She was listed in critical condition.

"The best way I can explain her physical condition would be a Holocaust victim," Anderson Police Det. Joel Sandefur told NBC affiliate WTHR.

The girls’ guardian, 58-year-old Steve Sells, was arrested Monday and faces a preliminary charge of child neglect.

Officers who checked the home where the girl lived, in Anderson, northeast of Indianapolis, said they found an upstairs room with clasp lock at the top of the door. Inside was a mattress, a space heater, blankets a bucket and a bowl of oatmeal. Police also found blood.

Police said a 4-year-old child in the home told officers the girl was locked in the room and “would stick her fingers out around the door trying to get out,” according to the affidavit.

Sells, who weighs between 200 and 225 pounds, told officer he locked his daughter in there to protect himself because she was strong and threatened him with a knife. He told officials the girl has a chromosome disorder that keeps her from gaining weight.

"With a 15-year-old girl weighing less than 40 pounds, that's not a very plausible explanation. That's something we're not buying as a police department," said Sandefur.

Sells said the girl fell and her condition grew worse over the last few days.

Sells’ wife, 54-year-old Joetta Sue Sells, was also being questioned in the case. Prosecutors expect formal charges to be filed against Sells by Friday. It was not immediately clear if he had an attorney.

Malloy Says State Won't Have Deficit


Governor Dan Malloy once again said Wednesday that Connecticut won't have a problem balancing its checkbook.

“We won’t end with a deficit" Malloy told NBC Connecticut following an event in New Haven. "We’ll end the year with a surplus.”

Connecticut's Comptroller Kevin Lembo, who essentially functions as the state's business manager, cautioned earlier in the week that the state still faced $45 million in spending shortfalls. He said in the grand scheme of the state's $20 billion spending plan, it's not a huge sum but it's worth keeping an eye on.

Lembo described the issue as "absolutely reasonable" and said, "at a quarter of a percent of the total budget which is what we’re talking about here, that the economy can continue to improve and erase that number but it’s really to keep that number on people’s radar that on the next month and two, that if it doesn’t erase itself, it’ll have to be cut out of the budget.”

Lembo said part of the concern comes from federal grants and reimbursements that haven't been paid to the state even though it has applied for the payments.

“The difficult part about federal revenue is that there’s someone on the other side in Washington approving or disapproving our request for payment.”

Medicaid payments from Washington have been slow to come in. That was an issue described by
Office of Policy and Management Secretary Benjamin Barnes several weeks ago and Lembo echoed that sentiment.

“The department of social services has done the job that they think they were asked to do by the fed and now it’s just making that case and in the meantime there’s a lag on the funding coming in and that means cash flow for Connecticut.”

Gov. Malloy who campaigned on a promise that the state wouldn't have a deficit to end the fiscal year in June and that it would have surplus, said taxpayers have to keep in perspective the budget issues facing the state. He said Connecticut's fiscal picture will be much clearer over the next few months.

“We’re starting to come into really important months, now through April will really tell the story whether we’ll have a sizable surplus whether we’ll break even or whether we’ll have a small deficit.”

Newtown Acquires Lanza Home


The town of Newtown will be the new owners of the property where the former Lanza home stands.

In a meeting on Wednesday, the Legislative Council approved the acquisition of 36 Yogananda Street, which Chairwoman Mary Ann Jacobs said "has been accepted at no cost at all."

That's the home where Sandy Hook Elementary School shooter Adam Lanza lived. It's also where he killed his mother, Nancy, before shooting and killing 20 children and six educators at the elementary school on Dec. 14, 2012.

"There is no exchange of money for the property at 36 Yogananda. Hudson Savings Bank has been wonderfully generous and compassionate in deeding the property to Newtown," First Selectwoman Patricia Llodra said in a statement. "The [Legislative Council] did approve the motion to accept the property, as required by our Town Charter."

The colonial home, built in 1998, was assessed at $366,540 in 2012, according to town property records. It belongs to Nancy Lanza's estate.

Ryan Lanza, the heir to the estate, authorized the deal of deeding the property to town, the Hartford Courant reported. The home has not been lived in since the Sandy Hook tragedy, the newspaper said.

It's unknown what the town plans to do with the property.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Milford Students "Shake It Off" for Spirit Week


Jonathan Law High School students were shaking it off for spirit week with a lip-synced music video to singer Taylor Swift's top-of-the-charts hit from her new record-breaking album "1989."

The video takes us through the halls and classrooms of the Milford high school to "this sick beat," Swift's infectious tune, "Shake it Off." Produced by a second period marketing class at the school, the video reached 4,141 views Wednesday since it was posted on Nov. 25 before Thanksgiving.

It starts out with kids slumped at their desks who have presumably stayed out too late. Or "at least that's what people say. Mmm hmm," so the song on Taylor's first pop album goes.

The faculty and students of the high school show of their spirit, shaking it off in so many ways, including a belly slide across the floor, athletes rocking out on their fields, teachers and students dancing in classrooms and the hallways, people doing back flips and much more. And if that's not enough spirit, they even spell out "Shake It Off" in flames.

Click here to watch the video.

Photo Credit: Taylor Swift / Video

"I Can't Breathe": NYC Protests


Hours after a grand jury cleared an NYPD officer in the chokehold death of Eric Garner, crowds gathered at the site on Staten Island where the 43-year-old father died as others began a silent "lie-down" protest at Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan and still others marched toward Times Square shouting, "I can't breathe!"

Some headed toward Rockefeller Center in an apparent effort to disrupt the tree lighting ceremony, but were unable to get past police. Later, demonstrators marched on the West Side Highway near the 40s and 50s, gridlocking it for blocks at a time. There were also backups at the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge, and a tube on the outbound Lincoln Tunnel was closed.

There were also gatherings at Times Square, Union Square and Foley Square following the grand jury's decision Wednesday not to indict NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo, who was seen on amateur video wrapping his hand around Garner's neck July 17 as the heavyset, asthmatic man gasped for air.

Around 30 people were arrested by late Wednesday night, police said. There have been no reports of injuries. 

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton said earlier in the week that the NYPD was anticipating protests and that the department had been preparing for them for months.

Extra patrols were deployed at Rockefeller Plaza, and to the site of the chokehold in Tompkinsville, Staten Island, where several protesters rallied outside a store chanting, "No justice, no peace." A police spokesman said mobile units were in place to respond to protests developing across the city.

City officials and business owners pleaded for calm, "constructive" demonstrations.

"We all agree that demonstrations and free speech are valuable contributions to debate, and that violence and disorder are not only wrong -- but hurt the critically important goals we are trying to achieve together," Mayor de Blasio said shortly after the grand jury decision was announced.

Protesters like Doug Brinson said they were shocked by the lack of indictment.

“Not to indict the man is like a double slap in your face,” Brinson said. “It’s like stomping you down on the ground.”

Operators of some local businesses said they were more worried about outsiders causing trouble than Staten Island residents.

“If you worry about people coming from outside Staten Island, like agitators, that could be bad,” said Ed Varoulo of Hypno-Tronic comics on Stuyvesant Place. “I think it’s good as long as we don’t have to pull the gates down and close early.”

"I'm doing this for my ancestors and for all of the blood that has shed in America," said Talibah Newman, who joined the lie-down protest at Grand Central. "As a black woman in America, I feel numb."

Eric Garner's mother Gwen Carr asked supporters Wednesday to "make a statement, but make it in peace." 

The protests were reminiscent of the ones that shut down major highways and bridges last week after a grand jury in Ferguson decided not to indict the police officer who shot and killed unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown. 

Protests against the Staten Island grand jurors' decision were planned in other cities across the country, including in Washington, D.C., and Ferguson, Missouri.

The Rev. Al Sharpton announced Wednesday he and the Garners, along with the families of Michael Brown and Akai Gurley, will lead a national march in Washington, D.C. on Dec. 13. 

Photo Credit: NBC 4 New York

Teacher Charged With DUI in Willimantic Crash


A Columbia elementary school teacher was under the influence when she was involved a crash in Willimantic on Wednesday afternoon that sent two people to the hospital, including a 78-year-old pedestrian, according to police.

Jessica Duers, 44, of Mansfield, was charged with driving under the influence and second-degree assault with a motor vehicle after a crash on West Main Street around noon. Duers has two prior driving under the influence convictions on her record, according to the state judicial website. Her husband, Chris confirmed the prior arrests, saying his wife has struggled with the issue in the past and that she's had past incidents in East Hampton.

"She's a very good person but obviously has done some regrettable things," he said.

Two cars were involved in the crash and a female passenger in the other vehicle, as well as a 78-year-old man who was walking on the sidewalk, were taken to Windham Hospital for treatment. Route 32 was closed between Route 66 and Capitol Avenue as police responded, but the road has since reopened.

Duers taught one class at Horace W. Porter School Wednesday before going home sick late morning, according to Columbia Superintendent Laurence Fearon. He said that there was no indication that she was under the influence of anything at school. Duers is a part-time life skills teacher, a subject similar to home economics, and has been at the school since September.

Duers has not been placed on leave at this time and Fearon said that the district is working to get all the facts before proceeding.

She was charged with driving under the influence incident after an incident on Sept. 29, 2009 and again nearly three months later on Dec. 22, 2009. She was sentenced to brief jailtime for both convictions.

Duers is being held on $50,000 and is due in Danielson Superior Court on Dec. 4

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut/Willimantic Police

Healthcare Worker in Critical Condition After Dog Attack


A 56-year-old healthcare worker is in critical condition after being attacked by dogs in Plainfeld on Wednesday morning.

Police said Lynne Denning, 56, of Canterbury, was viciously attacked by two to four dogs at 379 Putnam Road, in the Wauregan Village, of Plainfield at 11 a.m., while she was caring for an elderly patient at the home.

The dogs attacked her face, chest, arms and legs, police said, and Dennings was rushed to William W. Backus Hospital in Norwich, then immediately transferred to Hartford Hospital, where she remains in critical condition.

The woman who owns the dog and a man were able to secure the dogs so medical personnel could treat Denning, police said.

"I was just in shock. I think all of us were in shock for a very long time," said Brittany Allen.

Allen says her family can't explain why their dogs attacked a healthcare worker Wednesday morning. Five Rottweiler's and one Labrador were in the Putnam Road Home at the time.

"There was only two upstairs with [the healthcare workers] when she was caring for my grandmother. She was playing with the dogs, and it happened very suddenly. It was very quick," said Allen, who owns one of the Rottweilers and whose older sister owns the other four.

Allen says what the animals did is completely out of character. She describes them as friendly show dogs, but not all neighbors agree.

"They say they're show dogs, but they are very aggressive as far as I'm concerned," said neighbor Vincent Longo.

Longo says the Rottweilers occasionally get loose and have attacked animals, one time going after his own dog.

"They attacked him, and we had to take him to the vet and stitch him up," said Longo.

Back in September neighbors say they called police after hearing screaming outside.

"We've been there when [the Allen's] dog attacked another dog, but it's not a consistent problem that we are going out there to. According to the owner they're not that vicious, but clearly they were today," said Plainfield Police Captain Mario Arriaga.

Allen says the victim has been caring for her grandmother for several months at the home and has encountered the dogs previously with no issue. They say they're hoping Denning makes a full recovery.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Lynne, and that's our concern, is everything is okay with her. There's no excuse for what happened here today," said Allen.

Six dogs were seized from the home, including five Rottweilers and one Labrador.

They are being quarantined at the Plainfield Animal Shelter and will remain there for the next 14 days, pending an investigation. At this time no charges have been filed.

The Plainfield Police Department and the Plainfield Animal Control as this investigation continues.

Photo Credit: Family Photo

Baltic Staffer, Students Honored for Saving Kid's Life


A school staffer and two students were honored in Baltic Wednesday for their heroic efforts to save a child's life.

Para-professional Samantha Ross was working at the Sayles School last month when special needs student Tommy Smith started choking on a piece of ham.

Ross and two other students, Amber Discolo and Madison Gifford, jumped into action and saved the boy.

The fire department was on hand to give Ross and the two students awards for their quick thinking.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com.

CDC: Flu Shots Less Effective


Your flu shot may not be as effective as it should be this flu season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

An advisory issued to doctors Wednesday noted that less than half of the flu samples tested by the CDC from Oct. 1 through Nov. 22 were a good match for the current strain of the influenza, a component in the flu shots developed for the current flu season, according to a report by the Reuters news agency.

That could result in people getting sick with the flu even though they have already been given the flu shot.

The staff at Doctors Express Urgent Care in Southlake is already seeing sick people who shouldn't be.

"We're getting a lot of false-negative results. I'm not gonna say that they don't have the flu. But they definitely have the symptoms," said nurse Tiffanie Hurst. "Which means if they did get the flu shot there's a possibility in there that it wasn't 100-percent effective."

The chief concern of Dr. Seema Yasmin, medical expert for The Dallas Morning News, is that people will opt to not get a flu shot now.

"That would be a disaster," Yasmin said.

"You should definitely get the flu shot," Hurst added. "It will definitely still work for your immune system and build it up to par in case you do come into contact with [the flu]."

The CDC is stressing that doctors should be prepared to use antiviral medications when needed.

These include Roche's Tamiflu and GlaxoSmithKline's Relenza, Reuters noted.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News

1 Killed, 3 Hurt in New Hartford Crash


Police are investigating a crash on Town Hill Road (Route 219) in New Hartford early Thursday morning that killed one person and sent three others to the hospital.

Life Star responded to the crash, which happened just before 2 a.m., to airlift Jessica Ann Morse, 23, of New Hartford, to the hospital and three others were taken to an area hospital. One of them, Marissa Offsay, 23, of Avon, died in the crash.

James Laboy, 28, of Winsted, was driving south in a 2000 Toyota Camry on Town Hill Road and veered across the oncoming lane to the shoulder of the road, hitting a mailbox and then a tree, state police said. The impact of the collision propelled the car in the opposite direction and into the woods, causing it to hit a second tree.

Officials extricated Offsay from the car, but she was pronounced head at Charlotte Hungerford Hospital.

Morse,  a back-seat passenger, was thrown from the back window in the crash. A Life-Star helicopter airlifted her to Hartford Hospital to be treated for internal injuries.

Laboy and the front passenger, John M. Auclair, 27, of New Hartford, were transported to Charlotte Hungerford Hospital in Torrington to be treated for minor injuries.

The families have been notified. No information is available on the conditions of the survivors.

The Camry was towed to State Police Troop B in Canaan as evidence.

Town Hill Road, or Route 219, was closed between Hoppen Road and Litchfield Lane, but has since reopened.

Police are investigating. The State Police C.A.R.S. responded to analyze the crash scene.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Stamford Man Set His Own House on Fire: Cops


Stamford police have arrested a man accused of setting fire to his own home on Wednesday.

Firefighters responded to 52 Highland Road at 12:40 p.m. after receiving a report that a man poured gasoline into the back hall of the multifamily home.

Police responded soon after and Sgt Russell Gladwin spotted Anthony Manousos, 33, walking out of a vacant lot on Highland Avenue.

Manousos was detained and identified as the man seen running from 52 Highland Road, police said. They later determined that he owns the house.

No one was hurt during the fire, but the house sustained heat and smoke damage.
Police said the resident who was home at the time escaped through the front of the house and crews extinguished the fire before it spread from the back of the house.

Manousos was charged with first-degree arson and bond was set a $500,000.

Online assessor’s records list the house as a four-family home worth $617,650.

Photo Credit: Stamford Police

Police ID Woman Struck and Killed By Truck on I-84 in Danbury


State police have identified the woman struck and killed by a truck on Interstate 84 west in Danbury on Tuesday night as Gayle Difalco, 58, of Danbury.

Police said Difalco was struck half-a-mile before exit 6 around 7:30 p.m. and taken to Danbury Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Difalco had been in her car, which was parked on the right shoulder of the highway, but got out of the vehicle as the truck approached and was struck, according to a news release from police.

The truck driver who hit Difalco stopped at the scene, police said.

Police are continuing to investigate.

Evictions at Largest Homeless Camp


Police and city crews on Thursday began dismantling the nation's largest homeless encampment, notoriously named "The Jungle," in a controversial move that aims to move hundreds of transients from the center of San Jose and find them affordable housing.

Streams of homeless people wheeled their lives out of the encampment on Story Road, their shopping carts full of their belongings. Some cried they didn't have time or the ability to move everything they own out in time.

Earlier, before the sun had come up, officers had set up road blockades, hoping to create a clear path to move the estimated 200 homeless people left in the encampment without any fuss. Teams in white suits and orange hats moved in about 8 a.m. to clear all the trash from the site. 

At least 130 people voluntarily left the sprawling makeshift community, a short drive from some of Silicon Valley's wealthiest tech giants. City homeless advocates said those people have already been helped with either permanent housing, subsidies or housing vouchers, though social workers have not been able to find homes for everyone.

San Jose's homelessness response team project manager Ray Bramson said that increased violence, wet weather and unsanitary conditions had made it imperative the camp that the camp be cleared.

In the last month, one resident tried to strangle someone with a cord of wire, he said. Another was nearly beaten to death with a hammer. And the State Water Resources Control Board has been demanding that polluted Coyote Creek, which cuts through the middle, get cleaned out.

He also has stressed that the closure of "The Jungle, " one of 247 homeless encampments within the city limits, coincides with the opening of the county's cold-weather homeless shelters.

"People who live in this encampment are in jeopardy every day and we need to do better,” Bramson said Thursday morning.

The eviction had the backing of at least one man who had once been homeless.

"How is this controversial?" asked Michael Photopoulous, 45, of San Jose, who has lived on the streets and worked for homeless organizations and now lives in Section 8 housing, less than $200 a month for a one-bedroom apartment with his wife.

He has several friends who live in The Jungle, and he feels they should move out of what he described as a toxic wasteland, like he did.

Photopoulous, who worked as a janitor until his wife needed his fulltime care because she's on dialysis, said he believes the city is right in cleaning up the camp. But he knows that many homeless people will choose to live outdoors "so that they can do dope under a bridge" and "party like rock stars."

Not everyone is a drug user, he said, but he's not quite sure why the homeless people didn't choose to work with the band of social workers sent to help them over the last several months.

Added Carlos Balencia, who lives nearby: “I think it’s a great idea. I mean, look at how dirty it is. Think about the poor people who live around here.”

But the move angered many in the homeless community, who have made this garbage-strewn outdoor area their home.

Homeless advocate Robert Aguirre, who lost his own job in the tech sector and who still "hasn't recovered," told NBC Bay Area early Thursday that the city's eviction of "The Jungle" likely won't work.

"It's a game of 'Whack-a-Mole,''' he said.

Aguirre said some homeless people either won't find traditional housing, or don't want to find traditional housing, and will look to set up their lives in another non-sanctioned spot.

"And if the police find it," he said, "they'll come and run you out of there. They're scattering people around the city. They'll just cause them to go further and further away from traditional housing. And they'll end up in people's neighborhoods."

He also said that homeless people already have an "economy" in "The Jungle," and when they're forced to move, they'll have to work on creating another one. The same problems and issues will still exist — just somewhere else.

"I don't see this as (making this) a safer city," Aguirre said. "They're going to be angry. They have homes now. Now, you're really going to make them homeless."

Sandy Perry, of the Affordable Housing Network of Santa Clara County, said there just isn't enough housing to place everyone. More than 7,600 homeless residents of Santa Clara County were counted in a census last year.

"They’re making a lot of publicity about the 144 they’ve housed," Perry said. "I think that’s excellent. I’ll give them credit for that. But since then, 200 to 300 people became homeless. So they’re going backwards.”

But the city is committed to finding residents of "The Jungle" — about 68 acres near Coyote Creek in the center of San Jose — suitable housing in a pilot project.

Closing the encampment has been a hot political issue in the city as well. Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese, who lost his bid for mayor last month, wanted to find $10 million in county funds to pay for affordable housing. But Mayor-Elect Sam Liccardo said that housing developers should pay for it, as they do in other cities.

In the past 18 months, the city of San Jose has spent more than $4 million trying to solve the problems at the encampment. The last camp clean-out was in May 2012 when about 150 people were moved out of The Jungle. Many returned and others, swept from other encampments in San Jose, joined them.

The encampment is in stark contrast to its surrounding area in the heart of the Silicon Valley, a region leading the country for job growth, income, innovation and venture capital.

Tech giants Google, Apple, Yahoo, eBay, Facebook, Intel and many more call the 1,850-square-mile stretch of business parks, small cities and suburbs south of San Francisco home. But as tech roars back from the recession, housing costs have soared, and more than 5,000 now people sleep outside in streets, parks and under freeways there.

Aguirre is well aware of this dichotomy.

"This is the wealthiest county in the U.S.," he said. "And this is the largest homeless encampment in the U.S... This is a tale of two cities."

NBC Bay Area's Robert Handa, Damian Trujillo and Martha Mendoza from the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Photo Credit: Nannette Miranda
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.

Investigators Hold Forum on Unsolved Suzanne Jovin Murder


Sixteen years and investigators are still searching for someone who can help them find the person who killed Suzanne Jovin.

The Yale student was found stabbed to death in New Haven on December 4, 1998. No one was ever arrested.

Jovin, 21, was found dead near a tree at Edgehill and East Rock roads. She had been stabbed 17 times in the head, neck and back. That was a half an hour after she left Phelps gate on the College Street side of the Yale campus, according to Kevin Kane, chief state's attorney.

The Jovin Investigative Team held a public forum Thursday evening at Wilbur Cross High School in New Haven hoping to learn new details that might help them with the case.

"We tried to get the word out. We were looking to solicit information from anybody who lived in the neighborhood, visited in the neighborhood or worked in the neighborhood 16 years ago tonight," Kane said of the meeting.

Specifically, the team is asking people who were in the area of Whitney Avenue and East Rock Road that Dec. 4 and remember any unusual details like an argument or a raised voice.

Investigators know she was last seen leaving Phelps Gate on Yale's campus around 9:30 that December evening

"Between 9:25 when Suzanne drove and left Phelps gate on College Street on the campus of Yale and at 9:55, a half hour later when she was found lying at the intersection of East rock and Edgehill Roads," Kane said.

State authorities have multiple reports of an argument in front of this Whitney Avenue apartment building where Jovin lived. There was also a report of a man running away

"It’s a jigsaw puzzle with a small pieces and people may not recognize the significance of any one of those pieces all by itself," Kane said.

Retired Connecticut state police detectives started independently investigating the murder in June 2007 at the request of New Haven State's Attorney Michael Dearington, reviewing past "inquiries into the murder" and searching for new information to help authorities crack the case, according to the state's cold case website.

Then, in 2009, Jovin's family learned that DNA evidence collected in the case was contaminated by a former worker at the state forensic lab.

Now, a team known as the Jovin Investigative Team, continues to volunteer time "as unpaid consultants" in the investigation.

The Division of Criminal Justice Cold Case Unit is handling the investigation of the reopened case with the help of the Jovin Investigative Team and the state is offering a $50,000 reward for any information that leads to the arrest and conviction of Jovin's killer, the state cold case website states. Yale University is also offering a $100,000 reward.

Information about the case can be reported to the Cold Case Unit at 1-866-623-8058 or jovin.case@ct.gov or mailed to the Cold Case Unit at P.O. Box 962 in Rocky Hill, CT 06067.

This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story on our mobile site.

Police Respond to Medical Call at Groton School


The fire department has responded to Northeast Academy Elementary School in Groton for a medical call.

No additional information was immediately available.

The school is located at 115 Oslo St. in Mystic.

Check back for updates.

Accomplice in Glastonbury Golf Club Thefts Arrested


Police have arrested a suspected accomplice to a well-dressed thief in Glastonbury who stole golf clubs from open garages.

The person who stole the clubs appeared to be dressed for the country club, in a polo shirt, dark windbreaker, khaki pants and dress shoes, when he took golf clubs from six homes in the south and southeastern part of town, then left in a brick-red colored 2000 Acura and Lexus with stock wheels, according to police.

Police said Justin Scalise, 22, of West Hartford, is suspected of being an accomplice to the man who stole the clubs.

He turned himself in to police on Dec. 3, when he learned there were seven active warrants for his arrest.

Police said Scalise participated in the burglaries and then sold many of the stolen clubs at a golf outlet in

He was not able to post his court-set bond and was held to appear in court.

Anyone with information on the thefts is urged to call Glastonbury police at 860-652-4269.

Life Star Responding to Crash in East Hampton That Has Closed Route 66


Life Star is responding to a crash in East Hampton that has shut down Route 66.

The emergency helicopter is on its way to land at St. Clements Castle at 1931 Portland-Cobalt Road in Portland near a stretch of Route 66.

Route 66 is closed in East Hampton near Route 196.

East Hampton and Portland police are responding.

Further information wasn't immediately available.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Union Defends Chokehold Officer


The attorney for Daniel Pantaleo, the NYPD officer who was cleared in the chokehold death of Eric Garner, tells NBC 4 New York the cop is “cautiously optimistic” about his future after clearing a major legal hurdle this week, though many challenges remain ahead.

Attorney Stuart London spoke to NBC 4 New York Thursday shortly before the union that represents NYPD officers came to his client's defense in a fiery press conference amid ongoing citywide fallout over Wednesday's grand jury decision.

“He is relieved but understands that phase one is over and he needs to go through the scrutiny of an internal affairs investigation as well as a federal probe,” London said. “So he’s cautiously optimistic going forward.”

In delivering a vote of "no true bill," the Staten Island grand jury determined there was not probable cause that a crime was committed by Pantaleo, who was seen on a widely watched amateur video wrapping his arm around Garner's neck as the heavyset, asthmatic 43-year-old yelled, "I can't breathe!", nearly a dozen times while gasping for air during the July 17 confrontation.

Garner's family has said that amateur video, along with the medical examiner's autopsy report, which ruled the man's death a homicide, should have been sufficient evidence to indict. But London says the video is just a snapshot of the altercation and "doesn’t show everything."

London said the widely circulated video doesn’t show the full conversation between Pantaleo and the other officers who responded after Garner was caught selling loose, untaxed cigarettes outside a Tompkinsville store. The video also doesn't show, London said, that Pantaleo waited for reinforcements before using a police tactic the officer and the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association have said is not a chokehold, which is forbidden under NYPD policy, but a legal takedown move taught by the police department.

London said the grand jury reviewed two other videos in addition to the amateur clip that Pantaleo explained in great detail.

“He was able to explain every inch of the video and they went through it in excruciating detail,” London said. “The grand jurors were able to have any confusion in their minds answered by him.”

In New York, the grand jury does not hear opening or closing statements from the district attorney, who simply presents evidence and instructs them on the relevant principles of the law they need to make their decision on whether charges should be filed. To formally charge a person with a crime, at least 12 grand jurors who have heard all the evidence and the legal instructions must agree that there is sufficient evidence and reasonable cause to believe a crime was committed.

Staten Island District Attorney Daniel Donovan submitted an application to the court Wednesday seeking authorization to publicly release specific elements of the grand jury proceedings, which are otherwise sealed by law.

In a ruling released Thursday, Supreme Court Justice Stephen Rooney found in Donovan's favor, writing that, "It is from this vantage point that a limited incursion into the sacrosanct principle of grand jury secrecy is deemed necessary to serve overarching public interest."

The information released to the public, however -- that the grand jury sat for nine weeks, heard from 50 witnesses, including 22 civilians, saw 60 exhibits, including four videos, Garner's medical records, scene and autopsy photographs and documents pertaining to NYPD training and policy -- provides little additional insight into the proceedings.

It wasn't clear if Donovan had asked for the release of other information, and Rooney's decision indicated the application he had submitted to the court would remain sealed "until further order."

Patrolmen's Benevolent Association President Pat Lynch defended Pantaleo's handling of the arrest at a press conference Thursday, accusing Mayor de Blasio and other public figures of not supporting the NYPD. He said that Pantaleo is a good cop and "literally an Eagle Scout."

"He's not being portrayed as a good man, but he is a good man and a professional police officer," Lynch said. "Mr. Garner made a choice to resist arrest. It was not a good choice."

"If you're speaking you can breathe," Lynch added, referring to Garner's cries as he struggled for air.

Later Thursday, de Blasio reiterated the NYPD's commitment to reforms outlined in the near-immediate aftermath of Garner's death, including a top-to-bottom re-training for the department's 35,000 officers relating to the use of force, tactics like stop-frisk and other procedures. New programs like one that calls for NYPD officers on certain assignments to wear body cameras, which goes into effect this week, are designed to promote accountability and transparency between police and the communities they serve, the mayor said.

"A lot of people felt pain and frustration. My message -- take that and work for change," de Blasio said Thursday. "The way we go about policing has to change in the city and country. People want to believe they will be treated like their neighbor or anyone in a different neighborhood."

"People need to know black and brown matter just as much as white lives," the mayor continued. "Our generation has to resolve it."

Pantaleo has been on modified desk duty and crime analysis duty since Garner's death. The NYPD said it's internal review of the case is ongoing, and the U.S. Department of Justice said it also is investigating.  

Meanwhile, more demonstrations are planned to protest the grand jury's decision across the five boroughs and in other cities along the East Coast. More than 80 people were arrested in New York protests Wednesday, primarily during the course of rallies that jammed traffic and clogged streets in Manhattan and on Staten Island. The protests were largely peaceful. 

Photo Credit: AP

Pedestrian Injured in Parallel Parking Mishap: Branford Police


A pedestrian was injured when a driver attempting to parallel park accidentally backed into her on Harrison Avenue in Branford, police said.

Robert McCarthy, 86, of Northford, was trying to parallel park when he stepped on the gas pedal instead of breaking and accelerated backward, police said. He ran into Rosemary Romano, of East Haven, with his car as a result, hit a metal railing and came to a stop against a building, police said.

Branford Fire Department paramedics treated Romano at the scene and she was transported to Yale-New Haven hospital for evaluation.

McCarthy was cited with unsafe backing, an infraction.

Photo Credit: Branford Police Department
Browsing All 57608 Browse Latest View Live