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Man Shot After Answering Knock at Door


A man was shot in the abdomen after answering a knock at the door of his New Haven home around 11 p.m. on Sunday.

Police responded to a home on Sheffield Avenue after a woman reported her son had been shot in the chest.

When officers and EMTs arrived, they found a 36-year-old man who’d been shot once in the abdomen.

He told officers that he opened the door after someone knocked and the man standing at the doorway shot him.

The victim was taken by ambulance to Yale–New Haven Hospital, where he remains in stable condition.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Woman Pistol-Whipped During Violent Purse Snatching


A woman was pistol whipped in New Haven early Sunday morning after refusing to hand her purse over to two armed men, according to police.

Police said they responded to Goffe and Sperry streets to investigate a robbery and assault and spoke with two women who told officers that they were confronted by two men who each had a pistol.

When the men demanded the purse one woman had, she refused and the men hit her with their guns until she gave handed it over, police said.

The assailants left west on Dickerman Street in a black four-door sedan.

Police said the men were thin, around 5-feet-8 and between 18 and 22 years old.

One was wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt and the other, was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt. Each had a silver revolver.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

East Coast Rapist Pleads Guilty in Maryland


The man known as the East Coast Rapist pleaded guilty Monday to three first-degree rape charges in Prince George's County, Maryland.

In March 2013, Aaron Thomas was indicted on a total of 54 charges in the county, including first-degree sex offense, theft, kidnapping and false imprisonment. He is accused of raping and kidnapping six women there between February 1997 and August 2001.

Thomas pleaded guilty at a motions hearing on Monday.

Thomas, of New Haven, Connecticut, previously was sentenced to three terms of life in prison plus 80 years in Prince William County, Virginia, and two life terms in Loudoun County, Virginia. He has admitted to raping several women from Rhode Island and Connecticut to Virginia over the course of two decades and was arrested in Connecticut in March 2011.

In the Prince William County case, Thomas pleaded to two counts of rape and three counts of abduction for a Halloween 2009 attack on three teenage trick-or-treaters after forcing them into the woods and raping two of them over the course of about an hour. He had a cigarette lighter that was a replica of a gun, prosecutors said. One of the victims was able to text her mother, who called police. Thomas fled when he heard sirens, prosecutors said.

Thomas also previously pleaded guilty to rape and abduction charges in Loudoun County for a rape in May 2001 at a Leesburg apartment complex. A woman moving out of her apartment was bound and raped, authorities said.

Photo Credit: Prince William County Police

Pit Bull Attacks 2 Men in Ansonia


Two men need surgery after they were attacked by a roaming pit bull on Monday morning.

Police said a nurse from Griffin Hospital called the department at 6:20 a.m. to report that two people who had been attacked by a dog had arrived at the emergency room.

As police investigated, they found that the two Ansonia men, ages 43 and 41, had been attacked by a dog that was roaming on Arch Street.

One of the men said he heard a disturbance in front of his home around 3 a.m., went to investigate and the dog bit his arm.

He was able to fight the dog off and run away, police said.

The other man said the pit bull attack was unprovoked. He had been bitten on the arm and leg area.

Both men required medical attention and surgery.

The only description they could give was that the dog was a dark color or brown pit bull.

Police do not know who owns the dog and they are investigating.

Anyone with information about the attacks should call the Ansonia Police Department at 203-735-1885.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Paper Woman Fights Off Carjacker


A 62-year-old newspaper deliverywoman refused to relinquish her vehicle to a would-be carjacker, telling the suspect, "No one is taking my car again," authorities say.

The woman, who works for The Jersey Journal, was delivering papers near Lexington and West Side avenues in Jersey City Saturday when she noticed a black car following her, police said.

She got out of her 2011 Hyundai at one point to drop off some papers and waved for the car to drive around her, but the car moved up in front of her vehicle, blocking it. A man jumped out of the black car and told her to step away from her Hyundai, authorities said.

The suspect shoved the woman, but she shoved him back and told him no one was taking her car.

The woman told police a woman wearing a traffic vest who had been sitting on the passenger side of the black car during the confrontation then slid to the driver's side; the man got back into the car and they drove off.

The woman followed the would-be robbers, saw them make a U-turn in front of a Hyundia dealership and flee west across the Lincoln Highway Hackensack River Bridge, she told police.

The woman couldn't get the make or model of the vehicle; she said it had tinted windows, a gold shield badge on the windshield and green laundry bins in the backseat. She told police no weapon was shown.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

NYC Teen Beaten in Wine Store


Three men chased a 14-year-old boy into a Chelsea wine store, hit him with bottles of alcohol and threw merchandise at him, causing several hundred dollars worth of damage to the shop, law enforcement sources familiar with the investigation tell NBC 4 New York.

The teenager was walking by the Robert R. Fulton houses on West 16th Street May 29 when the three men approached him, the sources said.

They asked him, "What house?", and the boy answered, "Chelsea," the sources said.

The three men then started beating up the teen and the boy ran into the wine store to try to escape, the sources said.

A 20-year-old man was charged with second-degree gang assault in the attack, and sources say the other two suspects remain on the loose.

The extent of the boy's injuries weren't clear, but they weren't believed to be severe. 

Photo Credit: Valeria Gonzalez

Man Swats Drone Out of Air


A California man apparently fed up with a drone filming on his Orange County street swatted it out of the air, a man-vs.-tech attack seen in a viral video.

The company's owner has filed a report with the Huntington Beach Police Department and said that if the man doesn't pay for the drone, he'll sue in small claims court.

The drone was only two or three feet off the ground when a shirtless man walked up, saying the drone had better not fly over his house, according to the video, which was posted June 3. He smacks the drone with his shirt, knocking it to the ground and causing apparent damage to the propellers.

The people flying the $1,300 drone said they were shooting an instructional video on drone flight for a startup called Lucky 7 Drones.

"All I want is for the guy to bring me over a check that won't bounce or cash so that we can go replace this for our employee and move on with it," said Mike Luzansky, of Lucky 7 Drones.

The man seen in the video declined a request to speak with NBC4. He has not been charged with any crime, police said.

Huntington Beach Police Lt. John Domingo told The Orange County Register that the man, who did not identify himself to reporters, told police he feared the drone would be used to spy on his home.

The case has been forwarded to the Orange County District Attorney for review, Domingo said.

In California, hobby use of drones is legal, as long as they're not used to look inside people's homes or fly in restricted airspace.

Photo Credit: Still from YouTube

Man Exposed Himself to Jogger in Hamden: Police


Police are investigating after a man exposed himself to a 19-year-old jogger on the Farmington Canal Line on Saturday morning.

The woman used an emergency call box to call police at 8:45 a.m. and said she was jogging when a man in his 50s came out of a wooded area, exposed himself and ran back into the woods.

He was described as 5-feet-7 with gray hair.

Officer Kelley Groleau and her K-9 partner “Sar” searched for the man, but did not find anyone.

Anyone with information should call Officer John Glass at (203) 230-4000.

Hastert Hires Top Chicago Attorney


Former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert has hired a lawyer from the Chicago-based firm Sidley Austin to represent him ahead of his arraignment on federal charges Tuesday.  

Thomas Green, a white-collar defense lawyer at Sidley Austin, will serve as Hastert's lawyer, Carter Phillips, a partner at the firm's Washington, D.C., office, confirmed Monday. 

Green, who is also based in the law firm's D.C., office, has represented several high-profile members of Congress and other public officials, including clients involved in Iran-Contra, Watergate and the Clinton pardon scandal. He also previously managed the firm's white collar defense practice group and has been widely recognized as a top white collar defense lawyer. 

Hastert was indicted on May 28 for making regular withdrawals from his bank accounts below a limit that would require reporting and then lying to federal officials when asked about those withdrawals. 

A federal law enforcement officials told NBC News that Hastert withdrew the money to cover up a sexual relationship he had with a man who was a student at Yorkville High School in Illinois at the time. Hastert was a teacher and wrestling coach at the high school from 1965 to 1981. 

The Department of Justice and IRS allege Hastert, 73, withdrew $1.7 million from various banks between 2010 to 2014 and provided the funds to an unnamed person "to compensate for and conceal his prior misconduct." He is accused of promising a total of $3.5 million to that person.  

Hastert left Congress in 2008 and then worked as a lobbyist at Dickstein Shapiro. After news broke of his indictment, he resigned from his lobbying position, according to a spokesperson from the firm. 

If convicted of the charges against him, Hastert faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla, Getty Images

Some Hospitals Charge 10 Times Medicare Rates: Study


Dozens of U.S. hospitals are hiking up healthcare costs more than 1,000 percent – over 10 times the costs allowed by Medicare – and for the same medical services, new findings indicate.

New research out of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Washington & Lee University revealed that the 50 U.S. hospitals with the highest price markups are inflating health care costs far above actual prices by charging uninsured and out-of-network patients over 10 times the amount permitted by Medicare. The report was published in the June issue of Health Affairs.

“We as consumers are paying for this when hospitals charge 10 times what they should,” Gerard F. Anderson, professor at the Bloomberg School’s Department of Health Policy and Management at Johns Hopkins and coauthor of the study said, according to a press release. “What other industry can you think of that marks up the price of their product by 1,000 percent and remains in business?” he said.

Forty-nine of the 50 hospitals with the highest price markups are for-profit. Twenty of the hospitals in the report are located in Florida.

The report indicated that on the whole, hospitals with high markups are not exclusively located in high-cost cities. The priciest hospital, the study says, is North Okaloosa Medical Center, about an hour outside of Pensacola, Florida, where patients are charged 12.6 times more than costs allowed by Medicare.

In the report, Anderson and Ge Bai of Washington & Lee University, revealed that poor oversight of hospital charges as well as a lack of market competition are causing the severe price gouging. Consumers both with and without insurance are bearing the exorbitant costs.

“There is no justification for these outrageous rates but no one tells hospitals they can’t charge them,” said Anderson. “For the most part, there is no regulation of hospital rates and there are no market forces that force hospitals to lower their rates. They charge these prices simply because they can,” he said.

Anderson said price transparency could help to an extent, but currently most hospitals are not required to publicly share costs for procedures.

“This system has the effect of charging the highest prices to the most vulnerable patients and those with the least market power,” Anderson says. “The result is a market failure.” 

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Ex-Rikers Teen Inmate Held in Solitary, Never Convicted, Commits Suicide: Report


The New York City man who was held at Rikers Island for three years as a teenager and spent more than a year in solitary confinement despite never being tried for or convicted of a crime has committed suicide, according to published reports.

The New Yorker reports that Kalief Browder, 21, hanged himself with an air conditioner at his home in the Bronx on Saturday, nearly two years after he was released from Rikers. He was discovered by his mother, who heard a loud thumping noise from his second-story bedroom and later saw him hanging from the sleeve normally occupied by the air conditioner.

He told his mother the night before his death, “Ma, I can’t take it anymore,” the New Yorker reports.

Browder was arrested in May 2010 after he was accused of stealing another teen’s backpack. His family couldn't raise the $10,000 bail to have him released, so Browder remained incarcerated.

The then-teen spent more than 1,000 days in jail, with nearly 400 days in solitary confinement. The charges against him were dropped in Nov. 2013, but Browder attempted to commit suicide several times during and following his jail stint.

A New Yorker profile on Browder published last October, along with surveillance videos of the teen being assaulted by an officer and beaten by a large group of fellow inmates, sparked outrage over practices at Rikers and led to attempts to reform the prison.

Browder’s case was “bigger than Michael Brown,” the family’s attorney, Paul Prestia told the New Yorker.

“When you go over the three years that he spent [in jail] and all the horrific details he endured, it’s unbelievable that this could happen to a teenager in New York City. He didn't get tortured in some prison camp in another country. It was right here,” he said.

Photo Credit: AP

Residents Make Noise Over Oakdale Dome Concert Ban


Wallingford area residents are gathering again Monday to make some noise about a noise ordinance placing sound restrictions at the Oakdale Theatre dome as the Planning & Zoning Board meets to address any potential violations to a cease and desist order on the venue.

The cease and desist order was filed against the theater in December 2014 due to noise complaints from residents.

After rallying in support of music at "The Dome" last weekend on the Wallingford town green in a Save the Dome event organized through Facebook, the organizers decided to hold another rally ahead of the planning and zoning hearing. About 75 attended.

"Part II - a follow up to our successful Save the Dome event. Let's make our, the voters, the taxpayers, voices heard about the Oakdale "No Noise" ordinance debate," the Facebook event states.

Members of the public also sounded off at the hearing.

"It belongs to Wallingford; it belongs to the people of Connecticut," Maggie Smith, of Meriden, said. "Can they take it away just because some people don't like the noise? It's been there."

Wallingford resident Thomas Knight said that "between Live Nation and the town of Wallingford, there should be a reasonable attempt to agree on the amount of noise that emanates from the theater."

The cease and desist order in place requires the Oakdale to stop hosting concerts in the dome and imposes a "no noise" condition.

The Oakdale Theatre has hosted concerts and other performances since 1957, but some neighbors have complained about increasing noise levels of many of the shows that have been held both inside and outside on the property.

“Oakdale has the right to appeal this to the Superior Court if they choose to," Joan Molloy, the attorney representing the owners of Oakdale Theatre, previously said. "The town has to make the decision whether it’s going to bring any enforcement action for the Oakdale’s failure to comply with the cease and desist." 

Lawyers for the Oakdale said that the theater is trying to tone acts down by improving sound buffers and cutting music off earlier in the night.

Supporters of the Oakdale said it's an important part of their town from culture to business it brings in. They hope town officials will change their mind.

But the town's legal department has advised the town that it can't let the Oakdale make more noise because Wallingford's noise limit is also the state's noise limit.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Instagram Posts Lead Police to Graffiti Suspects


Two men are facing criminal charges after leaving their marks around the city of Waterbury in the form of graffiti and posting their handiwork on Instagram where authorities could see it, police said.

"Dock," seen on many a wall in Waterbury, is allegedly is the signature for the tag work of Luis "Dock" Rodriguez. 305, also visible from end to end of Waterbury, is allegedly the signature of Manuel "305" Melendez.

One blank wall that turned into a canvas for graffiti is the backside of Precision Auto Body. When the leaves were off the trees, it was visible from Route 8 and generated a lot of complaints.

"It's a lot of work," owner Alex Fernandez said. "We do get questioned about the vandalism on the building and we have to, naturally, restore it."

One or both of the suspects took their time at the vandalized site, returning every month to put up a fresh display after Precision got rid of their graffiti.

Fernandez said the cost of repairs adds up pretty quickly.

"The latest estimate - we had a company come out to clean up the graffiti and restore the building and it's over $12,000. "I'm glad they were caught and they're gonna have to answer to authorities about it," Fernandez said.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Veteran, 90, Wants Names Spelled Right on Memorial


For two blocks on Broad Street in Meriden, memorials mark the median. On many of them are names. The one for soldiers and sailors of World War II has the most. It's the roll of honor William Godburn was heading for, to check for misspellings.

"Yeah there's not many of us left, you know? I don't know how many thousands are dying every day. I think there's less than a million World War II veterans left now.... That's my brother, he's dead. And that's me," Godburn said, pointing to the names.

Not every 90-year-old can make the trip across the busy street to the memorials. But Godburn was heading to a meeting with city officials who are planning to fix the misspelled names and put up some new plaques.

On the World War I Memorial, his Uncle Killian Faeth's name is spelled correctly.

"He was fluent in German and when he was in the trenches, he could hear what the Germans were saying," Godburn said.

But his Uncle Leonard fought in the Spanish American War and on that plaque, Faith is spelled like an English word.

"And I'd like to see the 'I' turned to 'E' to make it proper, and it should be," he said. "I want to see every veteran honored in the proper way. And if it means correcting their names, obviously, I'd like to see it done."

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

3 Disabled Students, Monitor Injured in Bus Crash


Three disabled students and a bus monitor sustained non-life-threatening injuries after a small school bus crashed on the northbound side of Todd Road in Wolcott Monday afternoon.

The bus had just left Tyrrell Middle School when the driver said he veered right to avoid an oncoming car and struck a tree near Route 307 at about 3:30 p.m, according to police.

"Again, we’re going to check everything and see if that was in fact what happened," Wolcott Police Chief Ed Stephens said.

Five people were on the bus, including the driver, a monitor and students in sixth, seventh and eighth grade. The monitor and one student were seriously injured and the two other students were also hurt, so all four were rushed to the hospital. The bus driver wasn't hurt.

The students were all wearing seat belts.

One student has been released and another student and the monitor are expected to be let out of the hospital soon. The third student was transferred by a LifeStar helicopter to Connecticut Children's Medical Center, but there is no word on his condition.

“Before your child is home, you’re living in Wolcott you hear a school bus accident coming from Tyrrell school you’re going to be alarmed," Chief Ed Stephens said. "You hear something like that you’re going to be worried and upset. We’re tried to get the word out to the parents right away whose children were involved.”

While  neighbors in Wolcott did not see what led to this frightening scene, they at least heard the school bus hitting a tree.

“Just a loud explosion and the next thing the bus stopping right in front of the house here," John Yashenko, of Wolcott, said.

People on Todd Road dropped what they were doing and a paramedic who just happened to be driving behind the bus raced to help.

“I took off my shirt applied pressure to the first fella in the first seat here and just tried to keep him calm," Larry Bennett, of Wolcott, said.

The student Bennett helped was the most seriously hurt, according to police.

“Good Samaritanship is all I did. You see somebody in need, you help out," Bennett said.

An accident reconstruction team responded.

Police said the bus company, All-Star Transportation, is cooperating and they are interviewing witnesses to help figure out what happened.

The other two students and the bus monitor are expected to be back home Monday night.

The road was blocked off at Garrigus Court and Central Avenue in the northbound direction as police responded.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

7th Victim of Suspected Serial Killer ID'd


New Britain, Connecticut, police said they have identified a seventh victim of a suspected serial killer.

The state forensic lab and the office of the chief medical examiner have identified Marilyn Gonzalez, of Hillside Avenue in Waterbury, as the seventh victim whose remains were found in a wooded area in New Britain behind the 593 Hartford Road shopping plaza, police said.

Gonzalez left her home on May 16, 2003 and never came home, so her mother reported her missing on May 29 that year, police said.  She was then 26 and had two daughters, 11 and 7, at the time of  her disappearance.

"Today Marilyn Gonzalez would be a grandmother to an 8-month-old little girl if Marilyn had not fallen victim to an apparent serial murderer," New Britain Police Chief James Wardwell said in a news conference. "Our sincerest condolence goes out to the family of Marilyn Gonzalez. She was a sister, a daughter and a mother. She would now be a grandmother. Marilyn has family who loves her and misses her."

Her sister, Sandra Martinez said "we're all saddened by the news that just came out and hopefully we will get closure soon."

Police have identified the remains of at least seven individuals that were found buried in the wooded area since 2007. The six previously identified victims disappeared in 2003.

Investigators have previously named other victims, including Diane Cusack, 55, of New Britain, Mary Jane Menard, 40, of New Britain, Joyvaline Martinez, 24, of East Hartford, Danny Lee Whistnant, of New Britain, and Nilsa Arizmendi, 33, of Wethersfield, and Melanie Camilini, 29,of Waterbury,

Multiple sources have told NBC Connecticut the lone suspected serial killer is 45-year-old William Devin Howell, who is currently serving a 15-year sentence in connection with Arizmendi's death. Howell was initially charged with her murder but pleaded down to manslaughter under the Alford doctrine. He has not been charged in the other deaths of the six others at this time.

Police have not publicly identified Howell as a suspect or named any suspects yet in the case and declined to release any information on any suspects when asked at the press conference.

Wardwell said that identifying victims is "critical to any investigation," including this one in piecing together what happened. After an extensive search of the wooded area where the seven bodies were found and using a "highly specialized" cadaver dog, police said they are confident there are no more victims in suspected serial killings.

The case remains under investigation and could take months to reach conclusion and charges are filed, police said.

Photo Credit: NAMUS Missing Persons Database

2,200 Baby Pigs Escape as Truck Flips on Highway


A whopping 2,200 baby pigs escaped onto an Ohio highway Monday evening when a tractor-trailer carrying them flipped over, NBC affiliate WDTN reported.

The big rig flipped around on U.S. Route 35 in Xenia around 7 p.m., sending the piglets squealing across the highway southeast of Dayton, officials said.

Multiple fire departments, paramedics, police officers and nearby citizens attempted to wrangle the baby pigs and take them to the county fairgrounds, where volunteers and fire crews helped cool off hundreds of pigs.

The company shipping the pigs was sending another rig to pick the piglets up, WDTN reported.

Photo Credit: WDTN
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CTfastrak to Expand East of the Connecticut River


The CTfastrak bus system will soon have access east of the Connecticut River a $10 billion investment made by the state.

This expansion is happening just three months after the bus service launched. In a few months, riders will be able to hop on the bus in East Hartford and Manchester.

“That’s why today I’m announcing that our budget will expand Connecticut Fastrak Service all the way to Manchester,” Said Gov. Dannell Malloy.

The newest additions to Fastrak – stops in East Hartford, Manchester and maybe even beyond.

They join nine other towns in central Connecticut Governor Malloy says will benefit from the transit service.

“East of the river service would extend access to those employed at Pratt, Whitney and Goodwin college in addition to many large and small employers in those two towns,” Said Malloy.

Fastrak makes nearly 15,000 trips a day.

And with ridership volume at nearly 500,000 people already Manchester Mayor, Jay Moran, said he is glad the buses will reach people in his community.

“Connecticut Fastrak coming across through East Hartford possibly to Buckland Hills area, Manchester out to Vernon, and further so that more people can live work and play east of the river,” Said Moran.

Nick Tamiso has been riding the bus and says once the Fastrak is available in Manchester he’ll be riding there, too.

“I think that’s good because I’ve got a lot of friends over there so I want to be able to get there pretty quickly,” Said Tamiso.

Fastrak also launched it’s reward program, which offers a variety of local business discounts to transit riders.

Department of Transportation officials say it’s a tool for business owners to attract more attention and customers.

“I love it its cut my travel time by half, I’m happy with it,” Said Salemo.

Governor Malloy says he hopes there will be access east of the river in a year.

Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

Tenant Considers Lawsuit Against Bristol Landlord


One of many Bristol residents evicted from a home owned by a landlord under fire for buildings he owns in town not kept up to code is considering filing a lawsuit against him.

Last week, tenants who lived in a home on Ingraham Place were evicted by the city because the back porch was deemed unsafe. As repairs are being made to it the tenants were all placed in hotels. But one tenant, Samantha Lamb said Cammererie won’t place her and her son in an appropriate hotel room – one recommended by the hospital after the infant came out of surgery.

That is why she is considering filing a lawsuit against him.

Lamb and her son Joshua were released from Connecticut Children’s Medical Center after the 3-month-old came out from having surgery on his head. Lamb hoped to have her son’s recovery at her home on Ingraham Place only to find out she’d be evicted the next day and placed in a hotel for at least a month.

“I would be able to solely focus on my son right now if it wasn’t for Anthony[Cammererie] and his lack of taking responsibility as a property manager,” Said Lamb.

Cammeriere is Lamb’s landlord. He’s facing criminal charges related to not fixing some of his properties.

Lamb says an e-mail was sent to Cammererie from Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. The Social Worker’s statement reads: “Your landlord needs to house your family in a hotel room that is not only large enough for your son’s crib, but also clean enough for him to heal properly post-operatively.”

“My son’s crib will not fit in this room we took the measurements and if we tried to stuff my son’s crib in this room, we wouldn’t even be able to walk around in it.” Said Lamb.

With Joshua’s recovery on the line, she’s asking Cammererie to stop ignoring calls from her and the hospital.

"And I have to fight with him just to get him to provide bare necessities," she said. "It’s pathetic."

Calls made to Cammererie were unsuccessful.

Photo Credit: Bristol Police Department

More Heavy Rain Events for Connecticut


On Sunday, May 31, Berlin and Southington experienced a deluge. 4.88 inches fell in Southington, while 5.25 inches fell in Berlin in about the span of only two hours. That’s a month’s worth of rain!

So, should Connecticut expect more of these intense episodes of rain in the future, as the earth’s atmosphere continues to warm?

Climate change can be a complex topic to understand. Some components aren’t fully understood and are controversial, while other areas are accepted across the science community. Two topics that most agree on are heavy rain and hurricanes.

Climate Central, a non-profit and non-advocacy organization funded through a variety of sources, aims to help communicate climate change facts.

Dr. Alyson Kenward, research director for Climate Central, led the analysis for its recent report, When It Rains, It Pours.

“As temperatures increase, the atmosphere is able to hold more moisture. So, as more moisture evaporates off the earth’s surface, from particularly say off lakes and the oceans, there is more moisture in the atmosphere” according to Kenward.

It’s important not to associate any one weather event with the changing climate, but sometimes record-shattering weather events are representative of the expectations in a changing world, like the devastating floods in the southern Plains last month.

According to Climate Central data analysis, 37 climate sites experienced the rainiest May ever recorded. Eight of those sites achieved the status of wettest month in history.

Kenward says while climate models project the frequency and volume of the heaviest rain events to increase, it’s not just a projection; it’s already documented to have occurred.

“We’re not talking just about what happens in a single year, or how many records were broken in a single couple weeks. We can look at decades of rainfall records and see that the heaviest downpours are happening more frequently now, than they did say in the 1950s.”

That should catch Connecticut’s attention, because the northeast has seen the greatest increase in the amount of rain falling in the heaviest of rain storms.

“The northeast is a region that we observed to have seen the greatest increase in these heavy downpours since 1950. The majority of states in the country have seen this increase, but the region where this is the most predominate is the northeast, obviously which includes Connecticut,” says Kenward.

Even though heavy rain events are projected to increase, the worst local floods occurred in the past century, including the infamous floods of 1936, 1938, 1955 and 1982.

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