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1 Dead, 5 Hurt in Miami Accident


One person is dead and five others were injured after an accident involving two SUVs in Miami on Sunday.

Miami Fire Rescue responded to the scene at NW 22nd Avenue and 33rd Street just before 11 a.m.

A black Chevrolet Trailblazer somehow lost control and crashed into a Chevrolet Suburban, according to Captain Ignatius Carroll. Rescue workers arrived to find two people had been ejected from the Trailblazer. Both were unconscious and not breathing.

The passenger of the Trailblazer was pronounced dead on the scene. The driver was rushed to Jackson Memorial Hospital's Ryder Trauma Center in critical condition.

Three children and their father who was driving the Suburban were treated for minor injuries on the scene. The children's mother was transported to Ryder Trauma, and has since been discharged from the hospital.

The accident happened right in front of a MTA bus traveling northbound on 22nd Avenue. No one on the bus was injured.

Photo Credit: Miami Fire Rescue

Cop Charged in Police Brutality Case on Trial


A Bridgeport police officer accused of police brutality is heading to federal court on Monday.

If convicted, Officer Clive Higgins, who is charged with violating the civil right of suspect Orlando Lopez-Soto in 2011, could see as many as 10 years in prison.

He is one of three Bridgeport officers at the center of an internal investigation after a video shot during a 2011 arrest at Beardsley Park shows an officer apparently using a stun gun on suspect Lopez-Soto. The video shows Lopez-Soto on the ground, motionless as two officer kicked and stomped on him.

It was two years before the video was uploaded to YouTube, but it wasn't long before it went viral.

Two of the three officers captured in the video pleaded guilty in June to depriving Lopez-Soto of his civil rights.

But Higgins, the third officer, is going on trial in federal court in Bridgeport.

Meanwhile, Lopez-Soto is serving five years in prison after pleading guilty to drug and gun-related charges in 2012.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Teen Charged in Ponzi Scheme Speaks Out


Most 19-year-olds are concerned with school and friends, but Danbury resident Ian Bick has big business plans as the owner of a popular music venue in town.

That's if he doesn't end up in federal prison as he faces charges of running a nearly $500,000 Ponzi scheme. In a recent 11-page federal indictment that a "federal grand jury sitting in New Haven returned," Bick was charged with 15 counts including wire fraud, money laundering and making a false statement, according to the U.S. attorney's office in Connecticut.

Bick said that things are going well at his business, Tuxedo Junction on Ives Street in Danbury.

"There’s no better feeling in the world than standing on stage and seeing 800 kids having the best time of their life and not having a care in the world," Bick said in an exclusive interview with NBC Connecticut on Saturday at his club.

But things are not so carefree for the club owner. While he says things are going well at Tuxedo Junction, Bick who is just 19 years old is now facing federal charges in connection with other businesses he runs.

"The past couple days have been pretty crazy," Bick said. "I don’t think any 19-year-old, not that I know of, has experienced what I’ve experienced."

However, prosecutors said that the teen convinced more than 15 people to invest nearly a $500,000-dollar Ponzi scheme.

He is also accused of falsely telling U.S. Postal Inspection Service agents in June that 70 to 80 percent of the money from one of the investors was used on "artist deposits," according to the U.S. attorney's office. Prosecutors said that very little of the money actually went toward that.

"Bick solicited investment funds from his friends, former classmates, acquaintances, and their parents by promising high investment returns over relatively short periods of time," federal prosecutors said in a news release.

Prosecutors said Bick promised he could do that by reselling electronics and organizing and promoting shows, but that he instead spent money on himself, including for hotels and jet skis.

When NBC Connecticut asked Bick in-person about whether he ran a Ponzi scheme, he declined to comment on the pending case.

“At this time, I can’t say anything in regards to the case," Bick said.

For now, Bick said he’s letting his attorney, Jonathan Einhorn handle the legal issues. Einhorn denied Bick ran a Ponzi scheme and said there was no crime or criminal intent. He said Bick has all intentions of paying back all the investors, who were family and friends, and that no one will lose money.

Meanwhile, Bick's focus is on what he considers the main stage of his business ventures, Tuxedo Junction.

“I’ve been through a lot in my life and I’ve learned a lot through those experiences and every one of those bad experiences and good experiences has brought me to this point," Bick said. "So, it feels right in my heart this is what I should be doing and it’s going to become very successful.”

Bick also owns and manages other entertainment venues and companies, including This is Where It's At Entertainment, Planet Youth Entertainment, W&B Wholesale and W&B Investments.

Bick has pleaded not guilty to the 15 counts against him, including 11 counts of wire fraud, three counts of money laundering and one count of making a false statement. If convicted, he faces a maximum of 20 years in prison for each count of wire fraud, 10 years for each count of money laundering and five years for the charge of making a false statement, according to the U.S. attorney's office.

He was release on a $250,000 bond on the condition that he doesn't contact any of the victims or witnesses named in the case or use social media.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Internal Revenue Service's criminal investigation division and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service are investigating the case with the help of Danbury police and the Connecticut Department of Banking. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael S. McGarry is prosecuting the case, which U.S. District Judge Jeffrey A. Meyer is presiding over in Bridgeport.

The U.S. attorney's office asks anyone with information on the case to contact the FBI at 203-777-6311.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Slippery Conditions Cause Delays


Slippery conditions are causing some problems on the roads Monday morning.

Some sleet, freezing rain and rain could create some wet and icy spots on the roads, with a winter weather advisory in effect until 4 p.m. Monday.

A minor crash on Route 8 south near exit 11 is causing delays back to exit 12, according to NBC Connecticut Traffic Reporter Heidi Voight.

Warren Street is closed at Lockwood Avenue in Stamford due to a fiery multi-vehicle crash involving three to four cars. Motorists can take Myrtle Avenue as a detour.

There are some delays on Interstate 95 south as traffic picks up.

Tune into NBC Connecticut for the latest on traffic, weather and school closings and delays. You can also sign up for text and email alerts about closings and delays.

Photo Credit: DOT

One Dead After Truck Crashes into Tree in Bristol


One person is dead after a truck crashed into a tree and burst into flames in Bristol on Sunday evening.

The green Ford Ranger pickup was traveling north on Stafford Avenue around 6:20 p.m. when it went off the right side of the road just north of Jewel Street, traveled 30 feet off the road and hit a tree, police said. 

Neighbors tried to remove the driver from the vehicle when it caught fire, but they were not able to because of the flames, police said.

Bristol firefighters put out the fire and the driver was pronounced dead at the scene, police said. 

Officials have not yet identified the driver or determined the person's gender or age.

Police are working with the medical examiner to identify the driver. 

Officials said gasoline leaked from the truck and entered a nearby storm drain.

The Department of Energy & Environmental Protection was notified and responded to the scene. A private contractor was contacted and responded to contain the spill. Fire and DEEP officials determined there was no danger to the immediate neighborhood. 

The police department's Serious Traffic Accident Reconstruction Team is investigating. 

Anyone with information about this crash should contact the BPD Traffic Division at (860) 584-3030. 

No passengers were in the vehicle, according to police.


Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Man Injured in Sledgehammer Attack After Stopping Domestic Assaults


A 57-year-old Bristol resident attacked a guest at his home with a sledgehammer when he tried to intervene in a domestic violence situation, police said.

David Buchelli, of Tulip Street in Bristol, was assaulting two members of his family when a 47-year-old man visiting them tried to stop him, police said. Buchelli then hit the man with a sledgehammer and "patio block," causing visual injuries on his face, police said.

Buchelli also damaged a vehicle in the incident, causing about $3,000 in damage, police said.

An ambulance transported the victim to Bristol Hospital.

Buchelli refused to be fingerprinted while in custody at the Bristol Police Department, police said.

Police was charged Buchelli with third-degree assault, first-degree criminal mischief, second-degree breach of peace and refusal to be fingerprinted.

Buchelli was held in custody on a $100,000 bond and is due in court in Bristol Superior Court on Monday.

3.3 Magnitude Quake in Eastern Connecticut


A 3.3 magnitude earthquake shook eastern Connecticut this morning and it’s the third earthquake since last Thursday.

The U.S. Geological Survey has confirmed that this was a 3.3 magnitude quake and Plainfield police said they have received several reports from all over town, but none of damage.

We have received several reports of booms and shaking from Danielson, Moosup, Woodstock and Brooklyn, similar to what residents reported feeling in previous earthquakes.

"Wow that was scary," Cindy, from Sterling said in an e-mail. She said the entire house shook. "Not just a little either."

Kathy, of Brooklyn, said she felt two big booms and a few other smaller booms.

A Moosup resident said the earthquake shook her house for four to five seconds.

The Plainfield Police Department and the Quinebaug Valley Communications have been inundated with calls from eastern Connecticut since 6:30 a.m., including Plainfield, Killingly, Brooklyn, and Sterling, police said in a news release.

Residents reported another loud explosion, then ground shaking. 

Did you feel it? You can let the U.S.G.S. know online here.

On Thursday, a small earthquake rattled the area and the U.S. Geological Survey said it was a magnitude 2.3. Last Friday, there was a .4 magnitude quake.

Plainfield Police said they have sent several officers out throughout the town to ensure everyone’s safety and they are working with the Plainfield fire marshal’s office to keep the public updated throughout these incidents.  

Anyone who has structural damage should call the local building inspector. 

Photo Credit: Weston Observatory

Drunken Driver Hits Police Cruiser: PD


Police arrested a drunken driver and his passenger after he rammed into a New Haven police cruiser and officers found drugs and an unregistered gun, police said.

Det. Shayna Kendall and Det. Lucile Roach were in a city police car when Victor Santiago, 58, of West Haven, struck the vehicle in the Mazda he was driving. The car belonged to his passenger, Tina Deleeuw, 60, of New Haven.

Police found multiple 25-ounce cans of Budweiser Natural Light in the car, including an opened one sitting in the cup holder. When asked what time he started drinking it, Santiago told police he just opened it.

He failed a field sobriety test and police confiscated his "crack pipe" before taking him to the New Haven Police Department to give him a breathalyzer test, police said. At the police department, officers also seized oxycodone found in his pocket that he denied was his.

Santiago told police he took methadone three hours before he crashed into the police cruiser.

Officers were about to drive Deleeuw home because it was cold and she was wearing a cast on her broken arm, police said. A silver handgun fell from her cast when an officer was helping her to the car.

She told police, "It's not mine...I didn't know it was in there."

The Davis Industries P380 gun was "untraceable" and Deleeuw told police it was likely Santiago's firearm, police said. She doesn't have a pistol permit.

Police charged Santiago with traveling too fast for road conditions, drinking and driving, operating an unregistered and uninsured vehicle, operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs, possession of narcotics, possession of drug paraphernalia, failure to keep narcotics in a proper container, criminal possession of a pistol, illegal possession of a weapon in a motor vehicle.

Police also charged Deleeuw with multiple weapons violations.

Photo Credit: New Haven Police Department

Man Stabs Girlfriend's Ex Over Hat Incident: Police


A New Haven man was arrested after stabbing his girlfriend's ex, according to police.

Eddie Tirado, 53, of New Haven, is facing charges including assault.

Luis Trajeski, 46, was being treated at the Yale-New Haven Hospital St. Raphael's campus when police were alerted to the stabbing at 5:28 p.m. on Saturday. He told police that two men stabbed him near the bus stop at Whalley and Sherman avenues and that he had lacerations and wounds to the chest and forearms as a result.

However, his daughter's story was different. She told police that she witnessed her mother's boyfriend, Tirado stabbed him at 46 Barnett Street "after he'd knocked his hat off his head for being disrespectful."

Trajeski's injuries aren't life-threatening.

Police arrested Tirado, charging him with first-degree assault and breach of peace.

Photo Credit: New Haven Police Department

Police Use Stun Gun on Man Who Threatened Patrons, Cops: PD


A man is under arrest after police received reports that someone was threatening Sam's Food Mart customers with a gun in New Haven, police said.

Robert Dwayne Robinson Jr., 22, of New Haven, matched the man's description and ran when he saw police arrive at the 285 Whalley Avenue store, police said. He broke free after a struggle with police who grabbed him, according to police. Pulling up his sagging pants and raising his fists, he told police that he "didn't like it when people put their hands on him" and advanced toward the officers,  police said.

Police used a stun gun on him and handcuffed him.

Witnesses told police that Robinson Jr. implied he had a gun and threatened to bring his friends to an altercation after a driver beeped at him in the parking lot, police said. Another witness told officers she saw him with a gun.

While police didn't find a weapon at the scene, officers arrested him, charging him with second-degree threatening and second-degree breach of peace.

Photo Credit: New Haven Police Department

Teen Was in Car as Couple Shot Heroin: Cops


Middletown police arrested a couple accused of shooting up heroin while driving from New York to Middletown with a teenager in the car, police said.

Police responded to 594 Main Street in Middletown at 2:44 p.m. on Sunday and spoke with a teen who said his father, Lawrence Massey, 40, of Gloversville, New York, and Massey’s girlfriend, Adrienne Leonard, 22, also of Gloversville, made several stops along the trip from New York to Connecticut to “shoot up heroin,” according to the arraignment report.

When police asked Massey if there were drugs in the car, he said “Yes, there are drugs in the car,” and allowed police to search the vehicle, but said “whatever you find isn’t mine,” police said.

The search revealed nine bundles of heroin in a red tool box in the bed of the truck as well as a fake Pepsi can with a false bottom that held marijuana. Police said. There were also needles on the passenger seat of the car.

Massey and Leonard were charged with risk of injury, narcotics possession and additional charges.
They are due in court today.

Photo Credit: Middletown Police

Armed Bank Robbery Suspect Held on $5M Bond


Police arrested a man Saturday suspected of robbing the Nutmeg State Federal Credit Union in East Windsor in July.

David Johnson, 27, of Enfield, is facing multiple charges involving robbery and kidnapping with the use of a firearm.

A man brandishing a gun and concealing his face with a ski mask and wearing a hooded sweatshirt entered the bank on July 21 at 1:32 p.m. He pointed the gun at the bank teller and stole cash, police said.

Several agencies investigating identified Johnson as the suspect. East Windsor, Enfield and Windsor police, FBI agents and a Capital Region Emergency Services Team served him an arrest warrant on Saturday. He cooperated with police when they took him into custody.

Police charged Johnson with first-degree robbery, first-degree larceny with a firearm, first-degree kidnapping with a firearm, criminal use of a firearm, first-degree reckless endangerment, second-degree threatening and carrying a hand gun without a permit.

Police held him in custody on a $5 million court-set bond. He is scheduled to appear in Enfield Superior Court on Monday.

Body Discovered in Car During Missing Person Investigation


New London police found a man's body in a car at the Clarion Inn parking lot while assisting Fairfield police with a missing person investigation on Sunday.

Police tell the Connecticut Post that Kelly Wright traveled to Niantic and by ferry to Montauk, Long Island, to look at a boat. Wright's wife told police he called her at about 3:15 p.m. Saturday and said he might go to one of the nearby casinos.

There was no further communication from Wright and his family reported him missing to local police at about 5 p.m. Sunday.

Fairfield police alerted New London officers that they were looking for a missing person whose OnStar car system indicated was off North Frontage Road in New London near the inn, police said.

When New London police responded at 6:43 p.m. on Sunday, they found a man who was slumped at the wheel of a car parked in the inn parking lot and unresponsive. Medical personnel who responded pronounced him dead at the scene. He had been dead for several hours according to the Associated Press.

The Associated Press reported that police don't believe there was foul play.

The Office of the State's Medical Examiner also responded to the inn.

Police have not released the cause of death. Police did not release the name of the person or say whether the death is being deemed suspicious.

Wright had heart and kidney disease, police said, according to The Associated Press.

Fairfield police notified the family.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Hamden High Student Charged in Attempted Robbery


Police have arrested a 17-year-old Hamden High School student who is accused of trying to rob a “Legend Pizza” delivery driver last month.

The robbery happened on Manila Avenue in Hamden around 8 p.m. on Dec. 16 as the driver was trying to make a delivery.

Sanan Abdullayev, the delivery driver, was in his car when two people approached him.

"A teenager, he came behind the house and approached my car," Abdullayev said. "I was preparing to go out from my car but suddenly another guy [appeared] from behind that house. I didn't see his face. His face was covered totally."

One man pulled a gun, pointed it at Abdullayev's head and threatened to shoot him if he didn’t give up his car, according to police.

"He put his gun like that to my head and said, 'Leave the car. I will kill you. Leave the car,'" Abdullayev said. "He repeated it a lot of times. 'I will shoot you; I will kill you.'"

Abdullayev tried to grab the gun and was able to get away without being hurt.

"I was struggling with him. The second one was trying to open my driver door, but they kept repeating, 'I have a gun. Leave the car, otherwise I kill you,'" said Abdullayev, who held the driver's side door shut and hit the gas to get away.

Around 11:30 a.m., Hamden Police School Resource Officers arrested a 17 year-old Hamden resident, who was transported to police headquarters.

The teen was charged with conspiracy to commit robbery in the first degree and criminal attempt to commit robbery in the first degree.

He is due to appear in Juvenile Court in New Haven on Jan 22.

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Chimney Catches Fire in Westport


Westport firefighters responded to a structure fire that started in a chimney on Jackie Lane in town late Sunday afternoon.

Firefighters observed smoke rising from the roof near the chimney when they arrived at 4:19 p.m. after receiving a call from a neighbor reporting it and more crews were called in, police said.

The flames were contained to the chimney and roof and firefighters extinguished the blaze quickly. the fire didn't spread further into the home.

The Westport fire marshal is investigating the fire.

Fairfield firefighters manned the Westport station while crews were on scene.

Westport fire officials remind residents to make sure their chimneys are cleaned and inspected annually.

Firefighters left the scene by 6:05 p.m. on Sunday.

Photo Credit: Westport Fire Department

Man Shot Victim in Groin in Hamden: Police


Hamden police are looking for the man who shot another man in the groin early Saturday morning.

The 24 year-old victim and his girlfriend were walking on Dixwell Avenue just after midnight when a man approached them and they got into an argument, police said.

Moments later, the victim and the other man went behind a bar at Dixwell Avenue and Morse Street to fight and the victim was shot once in the groin, police said. The shooter ran southbound on the Farmington Canal Trail, police said.

The victim’s injuries are not life-threatening, police said, and he was taken to Yale-New Haven Hospital to be treated.

Police are looking for the shooter, who is around 6-feet-tall and 25 to 30 years old. He has a medium build and a mustache.

Anyone with information is asked to call Hamden Police Detective Jomo Crawford at (203) 230-4040.


Photo Credit: Hamden Police

Fourth Robbery Suspect Remains At Large After 3 Arrests


Willimantic police arrested three men Friday involved in a stabbing and robbery at the Ivy Gardens apartment complex a couple months ago and are still looking for another suspect.

Eric Aponte, 24, of Willimantic, Daniel Omar Aponte, 22, of Willimantic, and Daniel Rivera, 18, of Windham, were charged with first-degree robbery and second-degree criminal attempt in the robbery at the apartment building on Oct. 27.

Police said Samuel Rivera, 22, who most recently lived at 49 Park Street, Willimantic, is a fourth suspect wanted in the crime. He's still at large.

Eric Aponte also faces a third-degree assault charge and Rivera was additionally charged with second-degree assault.

Willimantic police held all three men in custody on $250,000 cash/surety bonds and they were scheduled to appear in court on Monday.

Police ask anyone who knows where Samuel Rivera is to contact the department at 860-465-3135. Calls will remain confidential.

Photo Credit: Willimantic Police Department

State Approves $5.75M in Funding to Expand Rail Lines


The governor has announced $5.75 million in funding to revamp the 62-mile rail line spanning from New Haven to Springfield and build new stations along the Metro-North New Haven Line.

According to Gov. Dannel Malloy’s office, the State Bond Commission approved the funding Monday morning. The money will be combined with a previously approved sum of $4 million.

Funding will allow the state to build new stations along the New Haven-Hartford-Springfield Rail, now called the CTrail Hartford Line, and improve existing stations in Windsor and Windsor Locks. The money will also allow plans to move forward for the design of a potential station in Hamden, the governor’s office said.

According to the NHHS Rail website, when all is said and done, trains are expected to run at speeds of up to 110 mph, cutting travel time from New Haven to Springfield to 73 minutes. The corridor will include stations in New Haven, Wallingford, Meriden, Hartford, Berlin, Windsor, Windsor Locks and Springfield, with trains running every 30 minutes during peak travel times. It will also provide service to New York City, Boston and Vermont.

The state Department of Transportation is seeking a service provider to help operate and maintain the CTrail Hartford Line beginning at the end of 2016.

As for the Metro-North New Haven Line, funding will allow the state to build a new station in Orange and construct the long-discussed Barnum Station in Bridgeport. The state also expects to make improvements to the existing Merritt Seven Station along the Danbury Branch, the governor’s office said.

"Creating a commuter rail line along the I-91 corridor is part of our transformative transportation vision for Connecticut,” Malloy said in a statement Monday. “This bond authorization will give this important project needed momentum. Completing environmental work and design is what will propel the projects toward reality. This $365 million project will improve the quality of intercity service along the corridor and enhance regional rail connections."

Republicans, however, fear that using bonds to pay for large-scale projects like this one could create lingering debt in the future.

"You're creating money by creating a bigger obligation going down the road for future generations," said State Sen. Scott Frantz, of Greenwich.

Photo Credit: NBC10.com

Suspect in Armed Robbery of East Windsor Bank Held on $5 Million


Police have arrested the man accused of robbing an East Windsor bank at gunpoint over the summer and stealing a large sum of money.

David McLennon Johnson, 27, was arrested Saturday night at his home in Enfield.

East Windsor police said Johnson, clad in a ski mask and dark clothing, stole a significant amount of money from the Nutmeg State Federal Credit Union at 127 Prospect Hill Road on July 21. Johnson was armed with a semi-automatic handgun and ran from the scene.

Johnson has been charged with first-degree robbery, first-degree larceny with a firearm, first-degree kidnapping with a firearm, criminal use of a firearm, first-degree reckless endangerment, second-degree threatening and carrying a handgun without a permit.

He was held on $5 million bond and was due in court Monday.

The FBI helped East Windsor police crack the case and a $5,000 reward was issued for information leading to an arrest.

East Windsor police said authorities in Windsor are still investigating.

Photo Credit: Nutmeg State Federal Credit Union/East Windsor Police Department

Man Holds Down Father-in-Law Who Tried to Stab Wife: Cops


Police are crediting a West Hartford resident with helping to save his mother-in-law from her 74-year-old husband, who they say tried to stab his wife repeatedly during an argument over the way they raised their children.

According to police, Bajran Skenderi, 74, got into a fight with his wife just after midnight Sunday while staying with their daughter and her family on Walden Street in West Hartford. The couple lives in Kosovo.

Police said Skenderi pulled out a knife and tried repeatedly to stab his wife, whose hands were slashed as she defended herself.

The couple's son-in-law heard the woman screaming and ran over to help. According to police, he managed to take the knife from Skenderi and hold him back until police arrived.

The woman was taken to Hartford Hospital for treatment of chest pain and stab wounds on her hands. Police said Skenderi is currently in custody at John Dempsey Hospital and will face charges when he is released.

Skenderi will be charged with criminal attempt at murder; third-degree assault of an elderly, blind, mentally disabled or pregnant person; second-degree unlawful restraint; second-degree threatening and disorderly conduct, according to his booking sheet.

Information on an attorney for Skenderi was not immediately available.

Photo Credit: West Hartford Police Department
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