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Newtown Police are investigating an armed robbery at a gas station.  Police responded to 151 South Main Street shortly after 10:30pm Friday.  The suspects are described as one white man and one black man.  Both were armed with handguns.  No injuries were reported.   The suspects fled with an undisclosed amount of cash from the register.  Anyone with information is asked to contact Newtown Police at 203-426-5841.



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A Patterson man who tried to free his crashed vehicle with another car then got into a fight with family members, injuring two.  New York State Police from the Brewster Barracks responded to a 911 call late Wednesday night about a dispute. 

 

An investigation revealed that 29-year old Christopher Scully crashed on South Lake Drive.  He tried to remove the vehicle from a ditch with another car, but failed.  He then got into a physical altercation with family members. 

 

One of the two people who sustained minor injuries called 911 requesting police assistance.  Scully fled before police arrived.  He was located early the next morning and taken into custody. 

 

Scully was charged with felony aggravated unlicensed operation, driving while intoxicate with a previous conviction and misdemeanor assault.  He was previously convicted in 2013 for a DWI.  Scully was arraigned and ordered held in Putnam County Jail on $50,000 bond.  He is scheduled to appear in Patterson Court on February 14th.



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5th District Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty is striking an optimistic tone in her thoughts this Inauguration Day.  Esty says this is so much good and important work that the American people are counting on all their elected officials to do together, and it's time to put country first.

 

She called it an awe inspiring and solemn occasion, and found the sight very inspiring.

 

Esty says it was nice to not have it be as cold as it has been in the past, but noted that it did start to rain as soon as President Trump started speaking.  She was sitting with a Democratic colleague, in front some Republicans she entered Congress with.  There was some good natured joking about the rain, with some saying that it represented crying.  Others said it was tears of joy.  Esty says how you view it, depends on what you bring to the table.  But she says at the end of the day, everyone hopes for the best for this country.

 

Esty says her mission is to find solutions to the problems families in northwestern Connecticut are facing.  When fulfilling that mission means working with President Trump, Esty says she will work with him. When fulfilling that mission means opposing President Trump, she says she will be as loud and forceful as she needs to be.

 

She offered some advice for the new President, calling for today to be the day that President Trump swears off Twitter feuds and personal attacks and starts reaching out to Americans from all walks of life in search of common ground.  She also called on him to follow through on his pledge to work together to revitalize infrastructure, improve care for veterans, and promote American manufacturing.



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The Women's Center has been presented with a $3,500 donation from The Ridgefield Chorale.  The Chorale raised the money at their annual “Holiday Pops Concert”, held at the Ridgefield Playhouse in December.  Each year, the Chorale chooses an area nonprofit as the beneficiary of their show.  Women’s Center officials said they are grateful to have been graciously chosen to receive this year’s proceeds.

The Ridgefield Chorale is a contemporary music singing group whose more than 70 members hail from Fairfield County Connecticut and Westchester County New York.  They perform two major concerts a year and a holiday concert.

The Women’s Center provides free and confidential services to prevent or lessen the trauma associated with domestic violence, sexual assault and other major life transitions to thousands of women, children and men annually.  The programs serve Bethel, Bridgewater, Brookfield, Danbury, Kent, New Fairfield, New Milford, Newtown, Redding, Ridgefield, Roxbury, Sherman, and Washington.



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Ridgefield state Representative John Frey is in Washington, D.C. for the Presidential Inauguration, ending a visit to the capital for a meeting of the Republican National Committee.  Frey also attended one of President George W Bush's inauguration. 

 

He told the Ridgefield Press that he attended yesterday afternoon's concert, today's swearing in, the parade and will attend the Freedom Ball, one of three official balls this weekend.  Frey said the campaign is over and now Connecticut's all Democratic Congressional delegation put politics aside for the day by attending.

 

Senator Richard Blumenthal attended this afternoon's Presidential inauguration ceremony.  He released a statement shortly after Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States.  Blumenthal says the peaceful transition of power today is the hallmark of this country's democracy.  He said that a dedication to such core Constitutional principles commits him to continue to fight for what is right and necessary in the days ahead. 

 

Blumenthal will attend the Women’s March on Washington tomorrow.



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A Southbury man was killed in a motorcycle accident in Newtown yesterday afternoon.  42-year old Michael Defusco was declared dead at the scene.  Newtown Police received a 911 call around 3pm about the accident on Route 25 near Reservoir Road.  Emergency responders found a heavily damaged motorcycle in the southbound lane, and the operator located down the embankment.  Newtown Police say the accident investigation is still very active and police are asking anyone that might have witness this accident to contact the Newtown Police Department at 203-426- 5841.



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The new Northern Fairfield County Probate Court Judge is holding a question and answer session for residents.  The court serves about 80,000 people in Bethel, Newtown, Redding and Ridgefield.  Former Bethel Probate Court Judge Daniel O'Grady won election in November to the post.  The court deals with wills and administration of estates, appointing guardians for persons of intellectual disability, and other matters.  The session on Wednesday will be held at 7pm at the Bethel Municipal Center.



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Some Greater Danbury area residents are in Washington D.C.  Among them are Danbury City attorney Bob Yamin and his wife, Probate Court Judge Dianne Yamin.  This is the 3rd inauguration they have attended.  Bob Yamin was a delegate to the GOP convention.  The couple attended the concert on the National Mall by the Lincoln Memorial.  They will be among the crowds this afternoon attending the swearing in ceremony and the inaugural parade.  The Yamins have been invited to the Freedom Ball, one of two official dances tonight.  Dianne Yamin says as they've been walking around this week, seeing a lot of American Flags.  She says there's a positive and upbeat mood, noting that it feels very patriotic and jubilant.  Yamin added that there's a lot of visible security.



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A Redding woman has been sentenced for embezzling from her employer.  48-year old Lisa Landman of Redding has been sentenced to three months in prison for embezzling nearly half a million dollars.  She was also ordered Thursday to serve three years of supervised release, the first six months in home confinement. 

 

Landman was a bookkeeper for a Connecticut company when she authorized and initiated at least 33 wire transfers from the company’s business bank account into her own personal credit card account.  Landman transferred $410,410 in total between November 2010 and November 2013.  She used the funds for personal purchases including jewelry, clothing, vacations, spa treatments, fitness equipment and entertainment tickets. 

 

Landman pleaded guilty to a wire fraud charge last September.



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Brookfield is making radon testing kits available to residents during this, National Radon Awareness month.  Radon gas is colorless, odorless and tasteless.  It can seep into a home through cracks in the foundation, loose fitting vents and pipes which penetrate the foundation and through gaps between basement walls and floors. 

 

In cooperation with the Radon Program of the Connecticut Department of Public Health, the Brookfield Health Department is making free Home Testing kits available, for use by Brookfield residents in their homes.  They are being offered on a first-come first-serve basis at the Health Department office in Brookfield Town Hall. 

 

Radon gas is a leading cause of Lung Cancer in the United States, second only to smoking and second-hand smoke. It accounts for approximately 20% of lung cancers detected annually.



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The Monroe Police K9 is retiring.  K-9 Gunner signed off for the last time at 11pm Wednesday.  Gunner was with the Monroe Police Department for five and a half years. He has been with his handler, Officer Jeffrey Loomis, since June 15th, 2011 and he's worked on many noteworthy cases.  Last year Gunner was rushed to the veterinary hospital with a life threatening illness and he was able to return to work just weeks later.  Monroe Police say Gunner will be sorely missed by the men and women of the department and they wished him a happy and long retirement.



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There was a fatal motorcycle accident in Newtown Thursday afternoon.  The name of the man is not being released until the next of kin has been notified.  The accident happened around 3pm on Route 25 near Reservoir Road. 

 

Police, Newtown Hook & Ladder and Newtown Ambulance all responded to the scene.  Officers found the heavily damaged motorcycle in the southbound lane.  The operator of the motorcycle was located down the embankment. 

 

Paramedics pronounced the man dead on the scene. 

 

The Newtown Police Accident Reconstruction Team is investigating.  Police are asking anyone that might have witness this accident to contact the Newtown Police at 203-426- 5841.



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MONTVILLE, Conn. (AP) Connecticut State Police have launched an internal affairs investigation into a trooper over Facebook postings with graphic language about the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.

State police spokeswoman Kelly Grant on Thursday confirmed the investigation into Trooper Jeffrey Rogers, a 17-year veteran of the force based at Troop E in Montville.

Rogers did not immediately return phone and email messages seeking comment.

The Hartford Courant reports that postings on Rogers' Facebook page earlier this week said he responded to the Newtown school where 20 children and six educators were shot to death in 2012.

The newspaper reports the postings said Rogers watched as children were removed from the school ``stacked like cord wood'' and as the medical examiner walked through the school ``like a butcher through a slaughter house.''



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Former Senator Rob Kane, whose district includes Southbury, is being questioned today by the legislative Executive and Legislative Nominations Committee for the position of Republican State Auditor.  Some concerns were raised recently about outstanding court-ordered divorce payments for his children's expenses. 

 

The Hartford Courant reports that Kane owed his ex-wife $4,862 for school tuition, medical expenses and extracurricular activities.  When asked by the House Republican Leader if he was up to date on alimony and child support, he said yes.  Senator Len Fasano told the Courant this payment was different from those items. 

 

Kane called the outstanding month a misunderstanding with his ex-wife, different interpretations of the divorce settlement.  In the published report, Kane said he doesn't believe the issue his qualifications or ability to serve as a watchdog for state funds.



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An armed robbery suspect turned himself in to Danbury Police early this morning. 

 

The man, later determined to be 36-year old Michael Zemsky of Brewster, handed over a note to a teller at Union Savings Bank on North Street Wednesday saying he had a weapon, though no weapon was displayed. 

 

Zemsky allegedly fled on foot around 3pm with an undisclosed amount of cash.  Police released surveillance photos, asking for the public's help in identifying the man. 

 

Police say Zemsky turned himself in at 2:30am Thursday.  He was charged with robbery and larceny.



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The nation's chief railroad regulator is using technology to make rail crossings safer as she prepares to leave office.  Sarah Feinberg says technology companies are beginning to add crossing warnings to their GPS devices and mapping applications.

Feinberg has spent her two years in office pressing the railroad industry to hasten the installation of automatic speed controls and recently urged railroads to test engineers for sleep apnea.

 

Her tenure ends Friday.

She had been on the job for just three weeks when a Metro North train slammed into an SUV stopped on tracks in Valhalla, killing six people.  The train was headed from Grand Central Terminal to the Brewster area.  One of the passengers killed in the crash was 41-year old Aditya Tomar, of Danbury.

 

It was not the first deadly crash at the site: A truck driver died after a Metro-North train struck the vehicle at the same Commerce Street crossing in 1984, according to Federal Railroad Administration records. The driver didn't stop before the collision.

The February 2015 crash highlighted a problem that has plagued the railroad industry since the invention of the automobile: the potential for danger wherever tracks and roads meet.



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Two families have been displaced by a fire in Danbury.  Firefighters initially received a report of smoke and flames coming from a second story window of 8 Cook Street, near Triangle Street.  Assistant Fire Chief Mark Omasta says there were two residents at the Cook Street home at the time. 

 

 

One resident was evaluated at the scene, but did not require hospitalization. 

 

Omasta says one room and its contents were destroyed by the blaze.  There is heavy smoke damage to that area of the house. 

 

Omasta says 6 to 8 tenants live in the two family wood-framed home.  The house in uninhabitable at this time because the electricity was cut. 

 

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

 



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Senator Chris Murphy, a member of the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, on Tuesday questioned President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos. Among the questions that Murphy asked during his five minute allotment of time was whether she supports President-elect Trump’s pledge to ban gun-free zones in schools.

 

DeVos responded: "I will refer back to Senator Enzi and the school he was talking about in Wapiti, Wyoming. I think probably there, I would imagine that there’s probably a gun in the school to protect from potential grizzlies."

 

 

Murphy said he was dumbfounded to hear her support Trump’s rollback of gun-free zones in schools and fail to say anything at all about the danger of having guns in classrooms.  He said that he was shaken to the core by her answer, and so should every American parent.  Murphy later said it's not enough to think school shootings are sad, because everyone thinks that. 

 

This part of his line of questioning was picked up by the late night shows, including The Daily Show.  Host Trevor Noah said that he called the school she referenced.  They responded that they have a fence and bear spray, and that works fine.



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The next step in a property assessment appeal process starts tomorrow in Brookfield.  Last November, Brookfield property owners received a notice of their new property assessment. At that time, anyone with questions concerning the revaluation process or the data collected on their property had an opportunity to discuss their property value with the Town's revaluation contractor, Vision Government Solutions.

The informal hearings which took place in late November and during December were the first step in the appeal process if a property owner felt their assessment was inaccurate.  A follow-up notice was mailed in late December to those owners, showing any change to the assessment.

The October revaluation was done to equalize property values throughout Brookfield. Current assessments represent 70% of October 1, 2016 Fair Market Value.  All assessment appeals information must be supported by 2016 market data.  That data is available on lists at the Assessor's Office in Town Hall.

The next round of appeals, to the Board of Assessment Appeals, is a formal process undertaken annually by state statute.  The Board will meet during March to hear formal appeals on the revalued Grand List.  Appeal forms will be available at the Assessor's Office in Brookfield Town Hall starting January 20.  All appeal forms must be received by the Assessor's Office by the close of business on February 17th.  Petitioners will be notified of the time and date of their hearing by the Assessor's Office.



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A lawsuit has been field against New Milford Mayor David Gronbach and the town's finance director.  The suit filed Friday by Republican Town Chairman Michael Barnes claims the pair misappropriated $225,000 for renovations to the former John Pettibone School.  Barnes filed the suit on his own behalf, not in his official capacity. 

 

A hearing on a court injunction being sought by Barnes is scheduled for February 6th.  The injunction would prevent the town from using any more money from the Management Landfill Settlement Fund. 

 

Barnes claims using the money violates Town Charter requirements that any appropriations be approved by the Board of Finance.  Barnes said in a statement yesterday that the Mayor and Finance Director have "marginalized the Board of Finance to the point that its existence is immaterial on important town financial matters." 

 

Mayor David Gronbach wrote in a statement on Facebook that Barnes has omitted that the money was approved by the Town Council.  He called the lawsuit an attempt to intimidate and bully, and that he will defend efforts to make Pettibone a Town and Community Center.