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Missing French Tourist in NYC Found


A 21-year-old French tourist who went missing in the city while he was on vacation with his family has been found -- apparently a victim of subway confusion, authorities said Saturday.

Arthur Astie had been in the city for about a week with his parents and sister before he went missing May 4 in the Bronx, police said. Astie, who is a rapper, was trying to catch a train to Harlem, where his family was staying, but hopped on the wrong train and got lost in the Bronx.

Police didn't disclose where Astie was found, but said he's in "good health."

Photo Credit: Handout

Crews Fighting Fire in Meriden


The Meriden Fire Department is responding to a fire at the Crown Village condo complex at 525 Crown St.

They have requested for mutual aid from Berlin and Wallingford to help fight the blaze that started in building 11 of the complex.

The fire was under control around 1 p.m. officials say.

Police say they are also responding to help with traffic in the area.

Two Hospitalized After Double Shooting in Hartford


Two men are in the hospital after being shot early Saturday morning in Hartford.

Police responded to the area of Hillside Ave. and Wilson St at 1:10 a.m. after reports that multiple people had been shot.

When they arrived, they found one victim suffering from a gunshot wound to the abdomen and another victim with a gunshot wound to the right leg.

Both victims told police that they were walking down Hillside Ave. when a black SUV stopped next to them and four black men wearing black exited the vehicle then shot the victims as they ran away.

Both victims were transported to Hartford Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Three 9 millimeter shell casings were removed from the scene. Police are still investigating.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Man in Critical Condition After Hamden Shooting


Hamden police are investigating after a 23-year-old man was shot in the head late Friday night.

Police say in a release they responded around 11:30 p.m. to The Hamden Deli, located at 891 Dixwell Avenue, on reports of a shooting. Before police arrived a friend transported the victim, 23-year-old Melvin Stanley, to Yale-New Haven Hospital. Police say Stanley was shot in the head and is currently listed in critical condition.

Police believe Stanley was standing in the parking lot when he was shot. Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Jomo Crawford at 203 230 4040.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Castro's Daughter Backs Gay Couples


A day before Cuban President Raul Castro visits the Vatican, his daughter has sponsored a blessing ceremony for gay couples in a country where gay marriage remains illegal.

Nearly two dozen gay couples held hands or embraced as American and Canadian Protestant clergyman blessed them Saturday. It was part of official ceremonies leading up to the Global Day Against Homophobia on May 17.

Castro's daughter Mariela heads Cuba's Center for Sex Education, which has been pushing for gay rights in a country with a history of persecuting homosexuals.

Cuba has also been growing closer to the Catholic Church, which had a troubled relationship with the communist government during much of the Cold War. Mariela Castro was careful not to call Saturday's ceremony a wedding.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Explosion at NY Nuclear Power Plant


A transformer exploded at the Indian Point Nuclear Power Facility in Westchester, New York, on Saturday, police said.

There were no reports of injuries in the blast and resulting fire, which Indian Point Energy said was caused by a "transformer failure" that happened around 6 p.m.

"Saw a huge ball of black smoke and then alarms audible across the river," Gustavus Gricius, who witnessed the explosion, said.

The fire started up again after being extinguished but has since been put out, officials said. There are no ongoing emergency threats.

Governor Cuomo said a review of the plant will be done to make sure all safety protocols were followed correctly. The governor has been vocal about his concern over having a nuclear power plant in the area and said no situation at a nuclear plant is minor.

There is now concern that the foam used to extinguish the fire could seep into the nearby Hudson River, Cuomo said. He said crews are working to keep foam out of the storm drains.

Indian Point Energy said there was no danger to employees or the public and that Unit 3 of the facility safely shut down as designed after the transformer failed.

Unit 3, which supplies 5 percent of the power to New York state, sits near the Hudson River, about 300 to 400 feet away from the reactor building, which is reinforced by a 4 to 6 foot wall of steel and concrete.

A spokesperson for Entergy, which owns the plant, said that a sprinkler put out the initial fire with the help of an on-site fire brigade.

Entergy said the fire was an "Unusual Event" -- the lowest of four emergency response classifications.

Dave Lochbaum, who is the director of the Nuclear Safety Project, said the transformer is in the switch yard outside the plant, but within the security perimeter.

He said oil is used to cool the transformers and that an electrical short may have caused the explosion.

"Transformer explosions are not uncommon -- they happen roughly three or four times a year across the industry," Lochbaum said.

He said it's unlikely that such an explosion would cause any harm to the public.

Engineers and inspectors are investigating what caused the transformer to fail.

This is a developing story. Check back here for updates.

Photo Credit: @GustavusHimself/Twitter
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Firefighters in Branford Extinguish Brush Fire


Firefighters in Branford ditched their fire trucks today and found another way to reach a remote brush fire.

Firefighters say a small brush fire broke out in the area of Farm River Road Saturday afternoon. There is a trolley from the Shore Line Trolley museum in that area, which normally takes visitors on a short, scenic ride between East Haven and Branford. Firefighters hopped a ride to reach the fire, which was quickly extinguished.

No injuries were reported. The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection reports the forest fire danger level for Saturday was high.

Photo Credit: Branford Fire Department

Cafe Owner Sues Brother Over Menu


The owner of a popular restaurant in Evanston, Illinois, has filed a lawsuit against her brother, who owns another restaurant in Highland Park, claiming he stole her menu.

The Chicago Tribune reports that Marla Cramin, owner of Sarkis Cafe, is suing her brother, Scott Jaffe, as well as his wife, Debra Jaffe. The Jaffes own Uptown Diner in Highland Park. In the lawsuit, Cramin alleges that her brother, who used to manage Sarkis Cafe, copied the restaurant's complete menu. She also claims he is misrepresenting Uptown Diner by trying to affiliate it with her restaurant.

The menu at Sarkis Cafe shows typical diner fare, including omelets, French toast, hashbrowns and sandwiches, but there are a few specialty items, such as the "Original Sarkis Sandwiches." These sandwiches are all served on French bread and topped with white cheese, mayo, green peppers, tomatoes and onions.

Uptown Diner's menu also features typical diner food as well as "Uptown Sandwiches" that use similar ingredients to the "Sarkis Sandwiches," namely French bread, cheese, mayo, green peppers, tomatoes and onions. The menu is, however, more extensive than Sarkis Cafe's menu, including salads and other dishes that don't appear on Cramin's menu.

Jaffe told the Tribune that he rejects the idea that he serves the same food as Cramin.

The brother and sister were entangled in a previous lawsuit that was settled in December in which Cramin claimed her brother was affiliating himself and his restaurant with Sarkis Cafe against her will, according to the Tribune.

Glastonbury Police Investigate Untimely Death


Glastonbury police are investigating after a body was pulled from the Connecticut River Saturday night.

Police say they received a call just before 7 p.m. reporting a body in the water in the area of 252 Welles St. Crews responded and removed the body. There is no word how the victim got into the river at this time.

Detectives are on scene investigating. The incident is being considered an untimely death.

More information was not immediately available. Check back for updates.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Motorcycle Part Slams Windshield


A driver on Highway 101 in Redwood City, California, had their car windshield impaled by a motorcycle sprocket, firefighters said Friday.

The Redwood City Fire Department said the motorcycle part embedded itself in the roof of the vehicle and narrowly missed hitting the driver when it went through the window.

No other information was immediately available.

Photo Credit: Redwood City Fire Department
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Taxi Hits, Kills Woman in NYC


A 76-year-old Florida woman died Saturday after being struck by a taxi as she walked in a crosswalk in Manhattan, emergency officials said.

The accident happened as the taxi was making a left turn off Madison Avenue onto East 60th Street on the Upper East Side.

The woman, identified as Amelia Sterental of Miami, was transported to New York-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center in critical condition. She was pronounced dead there, emergency officials said.

The driver hadn't been cited or arrested as of Saturday evening, police said.

The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission said the driver has been licensed since at least 1989, when the agency's records were computerized. His license has been suspended pending an investigation by the NYPD's Collision Investigation Squad, the TLC said.

Baby Dies After Thrown Into River


A Pennsylvania baby boy died from his injuries nearly a week after his own mother allegedly threw him from an Allentown bridge 52 feet above the banks of the Lehigh River.

Zymeir Perry, 1, of Allentown, was pronounced dead at 11:51 a.m. Saturday at the Lehigh Valley Hospital, Cedar Crest.

Witnesses told police Zymeir's 19-year-old mother, identified as Johnesha Perry, was pushing the baby across the Hamilton Street Bridge in a stroller around 1:45 p.m. on May 3 when she stopped mid-span, took the child from the carriage and tossed him into the water, investigators said.

She then climbed over the railing and jumped in after him, officials said.

Neighbors said Perry often made the trip across the river but she never did anything like that before.

Police arrived moments later. They found Perry conscious on the river bank, according to reports.

In 911 calls obtained by NBC10, dispatchers can be heard giving locations on the mother and child.

"Be advised... they have recovered the child.

Two officers — identified as Joseph Iannetta and John Leonard — spotted the baby about 700 yards downstream, pulled him from the river and performed CPR.

Their efforts revived the boy, who was rushed to Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest where he died from his injuries Saturday.

Perry was also rushed to the same hospital with minor injuries. She was guarded by Lehigh County Sheriffs, police confirmed.

Attempted homicide charges against the young mom were filed late Sunday night. She was also charged with two counts of aggravated assault and reckless endangerment, officials said.

Officials have not yet revealed whether the charges against her will be upgraded in light of the baby's death.

Photo Credit: NBC10

Video of Officer Kicking Man


Police in Delaware have released video of a corporal kicking a man in the head in Dover during an arrest in 2013 — an action that now has the officer facing an assault charge.

The video, recorded by a patrol cruiser's dashcam, shows Cpl. Tom Webster and another officer placing Lateef Dickerson under arrest following a large fight at the Hess Gas Station along North DuPont Highway on Aug. 24, 2013.

A federal judge ruled the video could not be considered confidential any longer and it was released.

Dickerson fled the gas station, along with several others, and appeared to be cooperating with police when they ordered him to the ground. But as he was on his knees, Webster swiftly kicks Dickerson in the head, the video shows.

The man immediately drops to the ground. Dover police said the kick broke Dickerson's jaw and knocked him out cold. 

An internal investigation was launched in November 2013 and Webster was placed on administrative leave. A grand jury heard the case in March 2014, but did not return an indictment. Webster did violate department policy and was disciplined, however. He returned to the force in June.

The U.S. Attorney's Office also reviewed the arrest and concluded the man's civil rights were not violated. The ACLU stepped in sued the Dover Police Department on Dickerson's behalf.

Then last month, Delaware Attorney General Matt Denn brought the case before a second grand jury and Webster was incited on 2nd degree Assault charges on May 4, officials said. He turned himself in the same day and was placed on administrative leave without pay.

Webster's attorney, Jim Liguori, blasted the indictment last week. "The evidence presented before the first grand jury and the second grand jury hasn’t changed. The atmosphere has changed," the attorney said in a statement.

"The coincidence of presenting this ancient matter to a new grand jury, while settlement negotiations between the parties have begun, is awful suspect as to the motives behind this indictment," he went on to say.

Liguori said Webster is innocent and was protecting the community from Dickerson, who is a gang member and armed robber. Denn denies those characterizations.

Webster is out on $5,000 bail.

Photo Credit: Dover Police Department

Girl Saves Her Mother's Life


A quick-thinking 6-year-old Southern California girl was being credited with saving her mother's life the day before Mother's Day by calling 911 when the woman apparently went into a diabetic coma.

The girl called for help just after 10:30 a.m. Saturday when her mother, Jovanna Nunez, became unresponsive.

"We pull up in front of the home and the little girl comes out with her iPhone in her hand and said that she was speaking to her mom and her mom became frozen," Hemet paramedic Chris Galletta said. "I think it's great, right before Mother's Day, too. When her mom came to, we told her that she called 911 for her mom and mom had a big smile on her face."

The mother was in good spirits after the medical episode.

"For Mother's Day I'm going to be pretty much cherishing her," she said. "She saved my life."

Photo Credit: KNBC

Explosion at NY Nuclear Power Plant


Engineers and inspectors are examining damage caused by a transformer fire at the Indian Point nuclear power plant that forced an temporary shutdown of a reactor, officials said Sunday.

The fire, which started at about 6 p.m. Saturday at the suburban New York facility was quickly extinguished by the plant's sprinkler system and utility managers declared the reactor safe and stable. No one at the plant was injured.

Entergy Corp. owner of the facility, deemed the fire an "unusual event" -- the lowest of four emergency response classifications.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo was briefed on the failure at the site and said officials would review how the emergency was handled to determine if anything could have been done better. Cuomo said the fire had caused oil to leak and could possibly spill into the Hudson River, but crews were working containing it.

"These situations we take very seriously. Luckily this was not a major situation. But the emergency protocols are very important," he said. "I take nothing lightly when it comes to this plant specifically."

The incident also raised concerns that foam used to extinguish the fire could pose an environmental hazard if it leaks into the nearby Hudson River, the governor said.

The transformer at Indian Point 3 takes energy created by the plant and changes the voltage for the grid supplying power to the state.

The blaze sent black smoke billowing into the sky.

"Saw a huge ball of black smoke and then alarms audible across the river," said Gustavus Gricius, who witnessed the explosion.

Entergy spokesman Jerry Nappi said Westchester County police and fire were on site as a precaution.

It was not immediately clear what caused the failure, or whether the transformer would be repaired or replaced. Nappi said there were no health or safety risks. It's unclear how long the 1,000-megawatt reactor will be down. Entergy is investigating the failure.

Unit 3 had been shut down Thursday morning for an unrelated issue, a water leak on the non-nuclear side of the plant. It was repaired and there was no radioactive release, Nappi said. In March, Unit 3 was shut down for a planned refueling that took about a month.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokeswoman Diane Screnci said there was no impact on the public. She said it was not out of the ordinary for a transformer to have a problem, and noted that it was on the non-nuclear side of the plant.

An NRC inspector assigned to the plant will be monitoring Entergy's response to the incident, she said.

The plant, located 35 miles up the Hudson River from midtown Manhattan, supplies electricity for millions of homes, businesses and public facilities in New York City and Westchester County.

Photo Credit: @GustavusHimself/Twitter
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Red Cross Aids 3 Displaced by Hartford Fire


The American Red Cross is providing emergency housing and other aid to a family of three adults displaced after a fire on Webster Street in Hartford on Saturday night.

The organization is also giving them food and clothing, as well as comfort kits with basic necessities like toothbrushes, deodorant and shaving supplies, as well as information on recovering after a fire and important contacts.

The Red Cross said it has a campaign underway to reduce fire-related deaths and injuries by 25 percent in five years time.

Two ways to prepare yourselves for a fire and reduce the risk of getting hurt or killed are installing smoke detectors and practicing fire drills, according to the Red Cross.

More information on smoke alarms and formulating a fire escape plan, as well as the fire prevention campaign, are available of the Red Cross website.

Man Airlifted to Hospital After Two-Motorcycle Crash


A Life Flight helicopter airlifted one person to the hospital and another was hospitalized after a motorcycle crash on Route 190 in Stafford Saturday afternoon, according to state police.

Timothy G. Hood, 55, of Enfield, was riding his motorcycle east in the travel lane on West Stafford Road (Route 190) when Peter W. Black, 54, of Rockville, coming from the eastbound shoulder in another motorcycle, turned left in front of Hood and the two vehicles collided.

Police responded to the crash site near Orcuttville Road (Route 319) around 3:24 p.m. after receiving reports of a motorcycle accident with injuries. A Life Flight helicopter was called in to transport Black, who is listed in stable condition. Hood sustained minor injuries.

Route 190 was closed for a little over an hour and was reopened as of 5 p.m. Saturday.

The crash remains under investigation. State police ask anyone with information to contact Troop C barracks in Tolland at 860-896-3200, extension 8045.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Police to Release "Major Update" in Serial Homicides Case


New Britain police said they plan to release a major update Monday regarding a serial homicide investigation after finding more human remains behind a New Britain shopping center about two weeks ago, nearly a decade after the remains of three women were discovered there.

Eight years ago, the remains of three women -- Diane Cusak, Mary Jane Menard and Joyvaline Martinez -- were found near 593 Hartford Road in New Britain in 2007. Their deaths were ruled a homicide, but their killer has not been caught.

Police said they search the area every year in the hopes of finding more evidence.

Nearly two weeks ago, investigators found more remains and they have been guarding and searching the wooded area ever since.

It's not yet known whether the remains found are from the original three women or from additional bodies.

"It's unknown at this time if they're identified from the previous identified three victims," New Britain police spokesman Cpt. Thomas Steck previously said.

Police noted that they have only recovered partial remains of the three murdered women.

The medical examiner is evaluating the remains in an effort to identify them.

The Greater New Britain Serial Killer Task Force continues to investigate the deaths of the three women.

Police said they have "significant information" to share about the investigation and plan on addressing the update in the case late Monday afternoon.

Man Injured in Hammer Attack During Home Invasion: PD


Gun shots were fired and a resident on Boston Post Road in West Haven was injured in the head after being struck with a hammer during a home invasion late Saturday night.

West Haven police responded to 109 Boston Post Road at 11:54 p.m. after gunshots were fired outside the home, police said. A man in his 20s was hit with a hammer and his door had been forced open, police said.

The resident was transported to an area hospital to be treated for a head injury and has since been released.

Police are looking for more than one person who forced their way into the home and the case remains under investigation.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Person Airlifted to Hospital in Stafford Motorcycle Crash


A LifeStar helicopter airlifted one person to the hospital after a crash involving a motorcycle on Route 19 in Stafford on Sunday.

A vehicle and motorcyle collided near Grant Avenue. The Department of Transportation was notified about the crash at 10:09 a.m.

LifeStar brought a patient to Hartford Hospital from the accident.

The road closed for several hours and has since reopened.

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