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Zoo Locked Down After Hyenas Escape Enclosure


The San Diego Zoo was placed on lockdown Friday night after two striped hyenas escaped from their enclosure, zoo officials confirmed.

A source who wishes to remain anonymous told NBC 7 the incident happened around 5:30 p.m. The tipster believes the hyenas somehow jumped out of their enclosure.

The zoo’s public relations office confirmed the incident Saturday morning and told NBC 7 that two striped hyenas were able to get past one of the barriers inside their enclosure, temporarily escaping.

Worker at the zoo noticed the hyenas were not where they were supposed to be and, at that point, zookeepers came down to the enclosure.

Zoo officials say a lockdown for the zoo was immediately initiated following the escape as keepers worked to contain the animals. In an event like this, zoo officials say a lockdown is standard protocol.

The lockdown lasted approximately 30 minutes, according to zoo officials. Eventually, the two striped hyenas were darted with a sedative and taken to the veterinary care facility.

Zoo officials say the hyenas were never in contact with any humans and there was never any danger to zoo-goers. No injuries were reported.

The anonymous tipster told NBC 7 the zoo remained on lockdown for closer to an hour and half, rather than 30 minutes. The tipster also said a private party was happening on zoo grounds at the time of the incident.

However, zoo officials said the area where this happened was nowhere near the private party.

Officials did not release any further details about how, exactly, the hyenas were able to get over the barrier. It is unknown if the barrier in question is a wall, moat or fence, as the hyena enclosure includes all different types of barriers.

Photo Credit: NBC 7 San Diego

Pedestrians Struck after St. Patrick's Day Parade


Three people were struck by a hit-and-run driver after the St. Patricks's Day Parade in Hartford, Saturday afternoon. Shortly after the accident, State Police apprehended the driver on I-91 in Hartford. 

The incident occurred in the heart of downtown on Trumbull Street around 4:00 p.m.

According to a spokesman from Mayor Pedro Segarra's office, Sandy Hook First responders, who marched in the parade, were first to respond and assisted the victims. All three are transported to a local hospital and are currently in stable condition.

Witnesses say they heard a big bang and saw a red mustang with a convertible top slam into a pole. After the crash, four occupants jumped out of the car. Three of those occupants were also injured from the crash.

Fatal Crash Closes I-84E in Willington


A fatal multi-vehicle crash closed I-84 East in Willington Saturday night, according to state police.

Authorities said a  bus, tractor trailer and car were involved in the crash between exits 71 and 72 around 9 p.m.

First responders at the scene tell NBC Connecticut the man driving the motor vehicle has died. The people on board the traveling bus are not injured. 

State Police said it will be  hours before the scene will be cleared.


Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut/George Colli

3-Year-Old Hit by Car in Canton


Police are investigating a car crash that injured a 3-year-old in Canton on Sunday morning.

The child was hit by a car driven by a family member in the parking lot outside Valley Sports Center, at 310 Albany Turnpike, according to police.

When police arrived at the scene around 10 a.m., a witness had already removed the child from under the car’s front tire.

The child suffered minor injuries to the head and upper body and was conscious and alert.

The toddler was transported to the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.

Police do not expect to file charges at this time.

Masked Man Robs Bristol Whole Donut: Cops


Bristol police are investigating a robbery at a donut shop after a man wearing surgical gloves and a mask stole cash on Sunday night.

Police said the man walked into the Whole Donut, at 2 Burlington Ave. in Bristol at 8:14 p.m. on Sunday and told the female cashier, ”I’m going to rob you!”

As he approached the cashier, she ran out the back door and yelled for help. The robber took cash from the register and left through the front door, police said.

Police said two men saw the robber leave, walking north on Burlington Avenue, which is also Route 69, police said.

Bristol Police officers responded, including a K-9 unit, but could not find the robber. 

Police are looking for a 6-foot tall man in his 40s, who weighs between 160 to 165 pounds. 

Witnesses said he has white facial hair and was wearing a dark jacket or hoodie, blue jeans, a surgical mask and blue surgical gloves.

Anyone with information about the robbery should call Officer Osborne at 860-584-3011.

The cashier was unharmed in the theft.

11 Hurt in Drive-By Shooting in D.C.


Eleven people were injured in a drive-by shooting in the nation's capital early Monday.

Authorities said someone in an older blue BMW opened fire on a crowd of people outside an apartment building on N. Capitol Street in Washington, D.C., around 2 a.m.

The majority of victims are being treated for shooting-related injuries, which include both gunshot wounds and grazes, said Metropolitan Police Chief Cathy Lanier.

The most serious injury was in a man who was shot in the back. All victims are expected to survive, NBC Washington TV station News4 reported.

It's also possible some victims were injured by flying glass from a shattered bus shelter or by something else.

Police said the crime scheme was chaotic, and they are still investigating. Authorities had to wait until the sun rose to finish laying down evidence at least 46 markers to record where bullets and fragments landed in a crime scene that stretches nearly a block.


Prepping the Sistine Chapel for Papal Conclave

Final preparations for meetings inside the Sistine Chapel to choose a new pope include laying a temporary floor and placing dozens of tables and chairs where cardinals will meet. Robert Kovacik reports and Tommy Bravo is the photographer for this NBC4 report.

Injuries Reported in Glastonbury Crash


Injuries are reported in a two-car head-on crash at Hebron Avenue and Manchester Road in Glastonbury on Monday morning.

Ambulances were called to the scene.

The road was closed briefly and the cars are being towed from the scene.

No further information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: John Senecal, NBC Connecticut

Waterbury Man Accused of Damaging High School Fields


A 33-year-old Waterbury man accused of causing damage to fields at Wilby High School with an ATV on Sunday appeared in court on Monday and must post a $750 cash bond to get out of prison.

Police said Steve Baldwin, the high school athletic director, saw a man driving an all-terrain vehicle on the fields around noon and called police to report the incident.

Officers arrested Dennis Rowell, 33, as he was leaving the field on a Yamaha Blaster, according to police.

The Waterbury Republican-American reports that Rowell is accused of leaving tire marks throughout the fields, including a trench on the baseball field.

Rowell was charged with second-degree criminal trespass, first-degree criminal mischief and second-degree breach of peace.

Baldwin said the money for public schools is tight and the cash bond amount pales in comparison to the amount it will take to repair the fields, which had just been repaired after years of neglect.

Todd Coelho, a senior pitcher at Wilby, said he's been looking forward to being able to play at home at Wilby instead of at Municipal Stadium, but not now.

"It meant a lot because of a lot of support from the teachers this year, especially who’ve recognized that our program was really good here at Wilby, and then to find out we can go to some games right next to the building. Not any more," he said. "Really disappointing."

Crosby High School, across town, has had to repair its soccer field three times because of damage from ATVs. 

They have installed concrete blocks, which have helped to solve the problem there.



Photo Credit: Waterbury Police

World's Best Dunk? DeAndre Jordan's Dunk Sets Social Media Ablaze


Los Angeles Clippers head coach Vinny Del Negro has been vocal about his team's intensity this season.

He wanted nuts. Well, he got nuts.

If a 129-97 mauling of the Pistons wasn't enough for the Clippers, DeAndre Jordan nailed down a massive dunk on Pistons guard Brandon Knight that demoralized Detroit and set social media ablaze.

With 4:30 left in the second quarter, Clippers point guard Chris Paul found Jordan open in the paint for the monster alley-oop and the foul.

The face Jordan made after the dunk has already inspired memes. The dunk photo has already been called "a crime scene" and "embarrassing." The dunk has even influenced a series of photoshopped pictorials. The havoc extended to Knight's Wikipedia page, which read, "On March 10, 2013, Knight died in a game vs. the Los Angeles Clippers. The cause of death was determined to be DeAndre Jordan."

Check out the video below to see the dunk and "the face":

Hours after the game and into the next morning, the tweets continued.

"Tonight Brandon Knight made me embarrassed to be from Detroit," New York Jets wide receiver Braylon Edwards tweeted. "DeAndre Jordan's dunk was the best other than Vince (Carter) over the 7 footer."

"DeAndre Jordan!!!! Dayyyuummmm!! Dunk of the year," Lebron James tweeted.

Some journalists were a bit more impartial and gave the much smaller Knight some credit.

"Brandon Knight should have gotten out of the way, but as a rule I'll take the guys who aren't afraid to get dunked on over the guys who are," The National Post's Bruce Arthur tweeted.

After the game, Jordan's teammates were still in shock.

''That was the best dunk of the year and the best I've seen in person,'' Clippers star Blake Griffin said.

Last month, Knight was the victim of another thrashing. The Cavs and reigning rookie of the year Kyrie Irving crossed over during the Rising Stars Challenge in what can only be called ankle shattering.

What are your thoughts? Is Jordan's dunk the best this season? Should Knight be embarrassed?

Photo Credit: AP

Woodward to Speak at ECSU


Award-winning journalist and author Bob Woodward will be at Eastern Connecticut State University this week to be the final speakers at the 2012-13 Arts and Lecture Series.

Woodward, a 1965 Yale graduate, has worked for The Washington Post since 1971, where is he currently an associate editor.

He is most famous for his reporting alongside Carl Bernstein on the Watergate scandal, which resulted in the Pulitzer Prize for in 1973.

The two men wrote the book "All the President's Men" based on the scandal, which was later turned into an Academy Award-winning movie.

Woodward also served as The Post's lead reporter on the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City that won the paper the 2002 National Affairs Pulitzer Prize.

He has authored and co-authored 17 books.

His most recent work, "The Price of Politics," examines how the government tried to restore the economy and improve the fiscal condition.

Woodward will be speaking in the Francis E. Geissler Gymnasium at 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

Tickets are $10 each for the general public and free to all students.

Those interested in attending Woodward's presentation can reserve seats by calling (860) 465-0036 or e-mailing tickets@easternct.edu.

Photo Credit: AP

Deaf Man Beaten and Robbed in West Haven


Police are investigating the robbery of a hearing-impaired man in West Haven early Sunday morning.

The man was walking near the intersection of West Spring Street and Stevens Avenue around 4:15 a.m. when three men approached him with a handgun, pistol-whipped the victim and took his wallet and phone, then fled in a black-and-white Honda sedan, police said.

The victim suffered cuts on his face and was taken to the hospital for treatment.

The victim’s name has not been released.

Thousands of Gun Rights Advocates Voice Concerns


Thousands of gun rights advocates, including the state's gun manufacturers, filled the halls of the Legislative Office Building on Monday in an effort to put pressure on state lawmakers to vote against tougher gun control laws.

Advocates said responsible gun owners will be punished if new laws are passed.
"Everybody here today is all about gun safety," Peter Castonguay, a gun owner from Tolland, said. "Everybody here is trained. They've taken the courses and classes."
Legislative leaders plan to meet again today behind closed doors to discuss new gun laws in the wake of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, where 20 students and six educators lost their lives.
"Every day that we have another meeting is a sign of progress," Republican Leader Rep. Larry Cafero, said Monday while walking into the third meeting. "If there was no progress, we wouldn't be meeting."
Gov. Dannel Malloy has already announced his proposals, including banning assault-style weapons and high capacity magazines.
Despite meetings with the governor's office, many of the state's gun manufacturers have said they would consider leaving Connecticut if tougher gun laws are passed.
"If the legislature's final move ends up being something that doesn't allow me to opperate my business in the state than I'm really left with no choice," Jonathan Scalise, owner of New Britain-based Ammunition Storage Components, said.
Scalise adds that he prefers to stay in the state. He employs about 70 people at his New Britain factory. He said the focus should be on gun locks, more intensive background checks and more training for people looking to purchase firearms.
"The industry is behind the legislature 100 percent when it comes to the issue of safety and common sense solutions," Scalise said.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation, which organized the day, estimated 3,000 people showed up at the LOB on Monday.

Photo Credit: NBC Connecticut

Harriet Beecher Stowe House Named a National Landmark


Harriet Beecher Stowe’s best-known work is her anti-slavery novel “Uncle  Tom’s Cabin,” but the prolific author is of national importance because she was a significant reformer for a wide variety of causes.

It is for this that her home in Hartford has been designated a national historic landmark. 

The house is associated with Stowe’s later career as a reformer on issues relating to the family and women’s roles, according to a news release from the U.S. Department of the Interior announcing that 13 new sites have received the acclaimed distinction.

“Today’s designations include significant sites that help tell the story of America and the contributions that all people from all walks of life have made as we strive for a more perfect union,” Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar said in a statement.

Stowe was born in Connecticut, moved away with her family, and later built her dream house, Oakholm, in the Nook Farm section Hartford, after her husband retired.

But, she had to sell it because of maintenance costs and the encroachment of factories, according to the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center.

In 1873, she moved to the Gothic style house on Forest Street, now known as the Harriet Beecher Stowe House, and lived there until her death in 1893.

The house has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1963.

"This honor from the Department of the Interior and the National Park Service recognizes and celebrates  Stowe's impact on America.  Her most famous work, the best-selling anti-slavery novel Uncle Tom's Cabin, galvanized the abolition movement before the Civil War, was fueled by her passion for justice and empathy for those enslaved.   We appreciate the support of Connecticut's federal delegation, Governor Malloy and the CT State Historic Preservation Office. We are grateful for the testimony of the offices of Congressman Larson, Senator Blumenthal and former Senator Lieberman, " Katherine Kane, executive director of the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center, said in a statement.

At the house, you can find books, manuscripts, memorabilia and more.

You can visit the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center at 77 Forest St., Hartford.

For information, call 860-522-9258.

The other sites to be designated national historic landmarks are:

  • Camden Amphitheatre and Public Library, Camden, Maine. 
  • Camp Nelson Historic and Archeological District, Jessamine County, Kentucky, one of the nation’s largest recruitment and training centers for African American soldiers during the American Civil War.
  • Casa Dra. Concha Meléndez Ramírez, San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Edmund Pettus Bridge, Selma, Alabama, where civil rights marchers drawing attention to the need for voting rights legislation were attacked by law enforcement officials on March 7, 1965. The attack, known as “Bloody Sunday,” contributed to the introduction and passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
  • The Epic of American Civilization Murals, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire
  • George T. Stagg Distillery, Franklin County, Kentucky, a rare, intact example of an operating distillery before, during and after Prohibition. 
  • Hinchliffe Stadium, Paterson, New .Jersey, which he institutionalized practice of “separate but equal” facilities.
  • Honey Springs Battlefield, McIntosh and Muskogee Counties, Oklahoma, the site of the largest battle in Indian Territory in which Native Americans fought as members of both Union and Confederate armies. 
  • Old San Juan Historic District/Distrito Histórico del Viejo San Juan, San Juan, Puerto Rico
  • Pear Valley, Eastville, Virginia, a 1740 house and surviving example of the type of architecture that developed in the Chesapeake Bay region, illustrating how early settlers in the colonies adapted to their new environment.
  • Second Presbyterian Church, Chicago, which represents the visual and philosophical precepts of the turn of the century Arts and Crafts design movement.
  • Yaddo, Saratoga Springs, New York one of the country’s oldest artists’ retreats.  Among the notable artists who have worked at Yaddo are Aaron Copland, Truman Capote, Leonard Bernstein, Flannery O’Connor, Sylvia Plath and Langston Hughes. 

Photo Credit: Time & Life Pictures/Getty Image

Betting Site Intrade Shuts Down


Online betting site Intrade announced late Sunday that it has stopped trading on its website after the company said it had discovered "financial irregularities."

"With sincere regret we must inform you that due to circumstances recently discovered we must immediately cease trading activity on www.intrade.com," according to a statement on Intrade's website.

Intrade -- based in Dublin, Ireland, and known for its offbeat bets on world pope culture events like the Oscars and the pending papacy vote -- was recently embroiled in controversy after regulators filed a complaint last year that accused the company of taking bets from from the U.S. without regulatory approval, according to The New York Times.  The company said it would no longer accept bets from the U.S. hours after the complaint was lobbed, The Wall Street Journal reported.

In its latest chapter, Intrade said it has "closed and settled all open contracts at fair market value as of the close of business on March 10, 2013," but it cannot make payments to members until the investigation is over.

The exchange, founded in 1999 by Irish businessman John Delaney, was a popular place for people to bet on everything from the outcome of the U.S. presidential election to Israel's airstrikes against Iran.

The website shot to fame after users correctly predicted the outcome of the 2008 U.S. presidential election, according to Time.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Shelton Police Investigating Death of 2-Month Old


Shelton police are investigating the death of a 2-month-old baby boy.

Police said the infant’s mother called 911 at 7:30 a.m. to report that her son was not breathing.

Police responded to the Howe Avenue residence and the baby was taken to the hospital, where he was subsequently pronounced dead.

Police and the detective bureau responded to investigate the death and detectives are continuing to investigate with assistance from the state medical examiner’s office and the state Department of Children and Families.

No further information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Google Doodle Celebrates Douglas Adams' 61st Birthday


English "Hitchhiker's Guide" series author Douglas Adams was immortalized in a Google Doodle on Monday that celebrates his 61st birthday.

The writer is most famous for "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy," which started out in 1978 as a show on BBC Radio 4. It later evolved into a cult-phenomenon science fiction "trilogy" that actually consists of five novels.

The Google Doodle includes elements from Adams' work: Marvin the Paranoid Android, a towel, which Adams wrote "is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have," and Arthur Dent's tea in "Hitchhiker's Guide."

Users can also click on the tablet resting on spaceship dashboard to reveal Easter eggs like the Babel fish language translator and the number 42, which served as a joke in the book as "the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything."

Adams died on May 11, 2001, at 49 years old.


America's Cardinals

America has sent 11 cardinals to cast votes in the papal conclave. Chances are slim that any will become pope, but the numbers reflect the U.S. contingent's rising influence. Click for a closer look at who they are.

Mail Carrier Pleads Guilty to Child Porn Charge


A Danbury letter carrier who was charged with possession and distribution of child porn in August has pleaded guilty to one count of receipt and distribution of child pornography.

According to the U.S. Attorney from Connecticut, an investigation into Paul D'Ambrosio began Aug. 8 when a detective assigned to the Connecticut Computer Crimes Task Force logged into a publicly available file sharing program and downloaded 50 images and 10 videos depicting child pornography from directories maintained by D'Ambrosio.

Agents arrested Paul D'Ambrosio, 49, of Waterbury, at a U.S. Postal Service facility in Danbury where he worked as a mail carrier and authorities also seized a computer and other components from D'Ambrosio's home in Waterbury.

According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, investigators found more than 600 images and videos of child pornography, including images of children under the age of 12 engaged in sexually explicit conduct and images of children engaging in sadistic or masochistic conduct.

D'Ambrosio has been under electronic monitoring since he was arrested on Aug. 30, 2012. Sentencing is scheduled for June 3.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

National Shooting Sports Foundation to Donate 2,500 Gun Safety Locks


The National Shooting Sports Foundation, based in Newtown, will donate 2,500 gun safety locks to Bridgeport, Stratford, Fairfield and Waterbury to be distributed to residents, free of charge.
“During the last three months, we have taken more than 700 guns off the street through our gun buyback program,” Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch said in a statement. “Now, Bridgeport, Fairfield and Stratford can help make thousands of guns that remain in people’s homes safer.”
National Shooting Sports Foundation is the administrator of Project ChildSafe and has distributed 36 million firearm safety kits nationwide. The kits include a cable lock that, when installed, makes a gun impossible to fire, safety brochures and information about safe storage options.
Officials from Bridgeport, Fairfield and Stratford, as well as executives from the National Shooting Sports Foundation, will hold a news conference on Tuesday, March 12 at 4 p.m. in the mayor’s conference room, Margaret E. Morton Government Center, 999 Broad St. in Bridgeport.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
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