CORNWALL, Conn. (AP) Officials say a New Milford man has died after a canoe capsized in a Connecticut river.
Crews were dispatched to the Housatonic River in Cornwall Sunday for what was initially a missing person report.
The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection said the search turned into a boating accident investigation when officials learned that a canoe capsized with three people on board.
Two people made it to safety and the body of Antonavas Morris was later found. He was 47.
It is not yet known what caused the canoe to capsize.
A Pilot Program taught 20 parents about community services, supports, and events and how to share that information with other parents in their neighborhoods, schools, and workplaces The six week program, run by Danbury’s Promise for Children Partnership included information about how to best share information with other parents about services to help families raise healthy children and support their learning.
The Community Messengers program is based on the premise that most parents learn about community resources by talking with other parents they know and trust. The Partnership hopes that participants will spread the word and refer parents to the services they need. While the six formal weeks of training has ended, the Community Messengers will continue to meet on a monthly basis to keep up to date on resources and opportunities for families.
Each weekly session covered a particular topic including: how to find childcare, how to access health and behavioral health services, finding recreational activities, services for special needs children, and how to find financial resources. Each session featured speakers from various agencies and programs in the City.
This summer, the Community Messengers will be manning tables at family-oriented events sponsored by the Danbury Library, as well as at the Danbury Downtown Farmer’s Market and other venues frequented by parents. They will be distributing information about the Summer Meals program, the free Imagination Library book program, the Help Me Grow program, and other programs that support families with young children.
If funding is available, another six week session will be conducted next year for a new group of parents.
Governor Dannel Malloy has signed a bill into effect that would require each hospital in the state to include training in the symptoms of dementia as part of regularly provided training to staff members. He signed the bill Wednesday. During the legislative session, New Milford Representative Cecilia Buck-Taylor questioned whether there have been complaints that hospitals are not properly training workers in aspects of dementia.
Neither state law nor regulation specifies general training requirements.
Buck-Taylor said there is no doubt there is a need for dementia care and there will be more of a need as the population ages. But she says the language of the bill was vague.
The training must start effective October 1st. In practice, hospitals must comply with clinical training requirements set by certain regulatory and accrediting agencies.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) Aging and broken public works have again plagued the Metro-North Railroad in Connecticut.
The Devon Movable Bridge, built in 1904, carries trains on the New Haven line, Waterbury branch, Amtrak and Shore Line East. It got stuck in the open position Wednesday, forcing officials to use another span, slowing commutes into and out of Grand Central Terminal in New York City.
The state is targeting for replacement four moveable bridges on the New Haven line. They include the Devon bridge and a Norwalk span stuck in the open position twice last year. The Walk Bridge was built in 1896.
A Greenwich bridge over the Mianus River and Saga Bridge over the Saugatuck River also are eyed for replacement.
A state transportation spokesman says more track repairs are required before trains can cross Devon bridge next week.
Costs related to the Walk Bridge are about $400 million, while costs to replace the other bridges have not been detailed. Replacement work is not expected for several years. The state budget approved by the legislature will include a $2.8 billion increase for infrastructure over the next five years, including $1.77 billion for rail, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said.
The failure of the Walk and Devon bridges is a "wake up call" to state transportation officials, said state Sen. Toni Boucher, R-Wilton.
Her constituents are "ballistic," she said. "They have suffered for so long."
A Danbury man who assaulted a State Police Trooper and fled a traffic stop on Interstate 84 this morning has been arrested after a nearly six hour search.
A Trooper was investigating a man passed out behind the wheel of a car at the Exit 1 commuter lot. The man, later determined to be 38-year old Marc D. Debenigno, had narcotics and drug paraphernalia on the passenger seat beside him.
State Police spokeswoman Trooper Kelly Grant says a Trooper was attempting to arrest the suspect around 9:30am, but the Danbury man resisted. The Trooper used his Taser, but missed. Debenigno then fled in his vehicle.
Debenigno crossed into New York State. Troopers there became involved in the chase. He then got back on I-84 eastbound, exiting onto Route 7 at 90 miles an hour.
The suspect crashed into a guardrail, and fled on foot. Scanner reports described the man as having handcuffs on at the time. He eventually jumped into a nearby swamp.
State Police received assistance from Connecticut State Police K9 teams, a Dive Team, a Bloodhound team, and Trooper One-helicopter. Danbury Police Department, Ridgefield Police Department, and Redding Police Department also assisted. The Danbury Fire Department responded with a Zodiac boat.
Shortly after 3pm, Debenigno was located in the swamp and taken into custody. He was transported to Danbury Hospital for evaluation.
Debenigno was charged with Possession of Narcotics, Assault on a Police Officer, Escape from Custody, Engaging in Pursuit, Reckless Driving, and Reckless Endangerment. He is due in court on Monday.
There were no Trooper or civilian injuries.
A bill about animal-assisted therapy services is awaiting Governor Malloy's signature. The bill makes several changes to current law, including to add animal assisted activities to therapy. It also expands therapy teams beyond dogs.
Newtown state Representative Mitch Bolinsky says the more government does, the less it does well.
The bill requires these teams get credentials from the state. It does not specify how DCF will credential the organizations and providers. Bolinsky fears this will be turned into a money making operation. He's concerned that many of the care teams are run by volunteers, and would be charged, slowing their response.
Bolinsky says having a state agency run this type of program, rather than letting it work as a community response seems like it would create more red tape and delays.
Bolinsky asked during debate if there were specific, documented complaints from those who rushed to comfort Sandy Hook residents after 12-14. He was told there were problems with everyone who wanted to help, being able to participate in giving assistance. The backer of the bill also said that some people said they would have liked if more Connecticut-based animals were available so there wasn't a gap when those animals had to go back to the states that they came from.
Part of the bill requires the Department of Children and Families Commissioner to identify and mobilize animal-assisted critical incident response teams statewide. He asked during debate who and how the teams would be identified and screened. A national organization, Pet Partners, would oversee the program and the teams themselves would be responsible for any certification fees.
A terrible tax increase, and an uncertain financial future. That's how a local lawmaker summed up the state's new two-year budget. On the day of the Special Session, Danbury Senator Mike McLachlan expressed frustration about budget talks being one-sided. McLachlan was critical of the increased spending. He says Connecticut needs to start living within its means.
The final deficit figure will be determined later this year, after the state's finances are audited. Estimates are there's a $115 million deficit. Any red ink will be covered by the state's Budget Reserve Fund. The so-called Rainy Day Fund has an estimated $519 million saved up.
McLachlan, commercial real estate by trade, says he he got a lot of questions from constituents this session about why the General Assembly is not listening.
WATERTOWN, Conn. (AP) Authorities in western Connecticut have identified a man found dead inside a well after an apparent accident.
Watertown police say the body of 58-year-old James McAdam was found in the well on his property by his brother Thursday morning. He was found upside down about five feet down in the 20-foot well.
McAdam's brother went to check on him and their mother, who lived with McAdam, after not hearing from them for several days.
Authorities also found McAdam's 83-year-old mother lying on the kitchen floor of their home after an apparent fall. She didn't appear to be seriously hurt but was taken to a hospital.
The medical examiner's office hasn't yet ruled how McAdam died.
Police believe he was working on the well and fell in by accident.
The newest member of the Federal Hockey League is going to be known as the Danbury Titans. Owner Bruce Bennett made the announcement yesterday afternoon. The Danbury man owns Bruce Bennett Nissan in Wilton and says he liked the name, but it's a coincidence that the Titan is a new vehicle for Nissan. It's a diesel powered pick up truck.
Bennett has a 6 year lease with Eagle Ice Sports, owner of the Danbury Ice Arena.
Phil Esposito was the head coach of the Danbury Whalers, the last team to play at the Danbury Ice Arena. The team is inactive after Eagle Ice Sports and Whalers ownership could not come to agreement on a new lease for the Danbury Ice Arena. He will be the coach of the new Danbury team.
There will be six teams in the Federal Hockey League including the recently announced Stateline Whalers in Brewster.
Danbury police are investigating a fatal accident last night in Danbury. Shortly before 9:30 Thursday night, a tan Hyundai Elantra travelling westbound on Lake Avenue hit two pedestrians crossing from Stop & Shop toward Stanziatos pizza.
Police said in a press release that 23-year old Krista Consalva of Brookfield struck the 17 year olds.
Each teen was transported to Danbury Hospital via ambulance. Rebecca Draper Townsend of Brookfield was pronounced dead at Danbury Hospital. Benjamin Arne of New Fairfield is listed in serious but stable condition.
The accident remains under investigation. Any witness is asked to contact Danbury Police Traffic Unit Officers Lance Brevard or Marcel Kruijs at 203-797-2156.
Lake Waramaug State Park in Kent remains closed to swimming due to increased bacteria in the water. The area was closed Thursday. Water retesting by the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection showed results that still had elevated levels today.
Another round of testing is scheduled for Monday to determine when it is safe to reopen. Results are expected on Tuesday.
After heavy rain, storm water runoff can increase the amount of bacteria in the water.
Danbury Police have arrested two teens for breaking into a house. Police say a neighbor called 911 around 5am Tuesday to say that people were seen entering the Whaley Street house, which is under construction. Police arrived before the 18-year olds had a chance to take anything.
Joshua Castillo and Eric Nunez, both of Danbury, have been charged with felony burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary, criminal mischief and criminal trespass. They made a court appearance Thursday and remain held on bond.
There were also two outstanding warrants for Castillo's arrest. One for carrying weapons in a motor vehicle, the other for interfering with an officer.
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) A former Mount Vernon police officer has been indicted on charges he used forged prescriptions to obtain painkillers.
Joseph Russo, of Patterson, was arraigned Thursday in Westchester County. His attorney, Andrew Quinn, said he's optimistic that all of the charges will be dismissed.
Prosecutors say that between March 2011 and March 2012, Russo used prescriptions bearing a forged doctor's signature to get at least 1,470 hydrocodone pills from five pharmacies.
They say he covered some of the cost by filing insurance claims. The insurer contacted police.
He is charged with 18 counts of possession of a forged instrument.
WATERTOWN, Conn. (AP) Authorities say a man looking for his missing brother found his body inside a well in western Connecticut.
Police say the man searched his brother's property in Watertown on Thursday after not hearing from him for several days and discovered the body.
Officials say it appears the 58-year-old victim was working on the well when he fell in and became trapped about five feet down. There were no signs of foul play.
The name of the man who died hasn't been released. Authorities say it appears his body was in the well for several days. An autopsy will be performed.
Police say the man lived with his 83-year-old mother, who was found lying on the kitchen floor and brought to a hospital. Her condition hasn't been released.
The Danbury Fire Marshal tipped off state police on Tuesday to illegal fireworks at a Danbury home. An investigation was launched, and search and seizure warrants were carried out yesterday. State Police spokeswoman Trooper Kelly Grant says the search of the home and a storage barn in Danbury uncovered possession, storage and sales of an extraordinary amount of illegal fireworks, explosives and IEDs, including M-Class devices.
Thousands of illegal product items were seized. Narcotics and cash in excess of $3,600 were also seized.
Four trailer loads of product were transported from the home in Danbury by Bomb Squad personnel.
It is estimated that the street value of the illegal fireworks and explosives is nearly $250,000.
Several felony arrests of multiple suspects are anticipated as the investigation continues. Grant says the address of the home will not be released until arrests are made.
The Danbury Fire Marshal’s Office, the Danbury Police Department, FBI–New Haven, the Connecticut State Police Emergency Services Unit Bomb Squad, and Detectives from the State Police Western District Major Crime Squad each played a role in the investigation.
A New Milford man has been charged with larceny and unemployment compensation fraud. Authorities say 46-year old Louis Hollister was arrested Wednesday for allegedly illegally collecting almost $13,000 in unemployment compensation benefits. According to court documents, Hollister was employed, and collected the benefits he was not entitled to between November 2013, and April of the following year.
The New Milford man was released on $10,000 bond for a court appearance on Tuesday.
The case was investigated by the Unemployment Compensation Fraud Unit of the Office of the Chief State's Attorney following a complaint from the Connecticut Department of Labor.
Putnam County Sheriff's Deputies will be conducting periodic security checks of religious facilities, train stations, commuter parking lots, bus routes, shopping centers, and public parks. Sheriff Donald Smith says the increased uniform presence is not because of a renewed safety threat, but rather part of the department's counter-terrorism strategy of continued vigilance. Putnam County Sheriff's deputies will be out in force starting tomorrow morning, and ending Sunday night.
Comments from Governor Dannel Malloy on Tuesday after signing a new two-year state budget into law, has drawn the ire of a local lawmaker. Malloy said that hospitals had their best year in Connecticut history last year, with more people who are appearing at hospitals with a level of health care coverage.
Bethel state Representative Dan Carter disagreed. He says the hospitals have worked to reduce costs, including consolidation. But he says the state has increased their property taxes, decreased Medicaid funding for them, and reduced reimbursements they get for uncompensated care. Carter says for Malloy to say that is irresponsible at best.
Carter also cited the newly adopted budget including the second largest tax increase in Connecticut's history. It's behind only the increases included in the previous budget Governor Malloy signed into law. Carter says a lot of companies will decide in the next three to four years if they're going to stay in Connecticut.
He called Malloy "out of touch with reality". Carter also accused the Governor and others of playing chicken with major corporations in the state who threatened to relocated because of proposed business tax increases. Carter says these companies didn't issue statements lightly during budget negotiations.
Carter says the administration will have to answer that next year, and come up with something to help people keep their jobs.
The start of the new fiscal year has ushered in new taxes and new laws in Connecticut.
Car washes will now collect a sales tax. The cigarette tax has gone up 25 cents, and in 2017 that will rise again. Clothes and footwear costing less than 50 dollars used to be exempt from sales tax, but that’s no longer the case. The state’s corporate tax structure is also changing.
A three year rolling capital improvement plan for the state's technical high school system is being put in place. That's an update from the current five year rolling plan mandate. Renovations and repairs that each technical high school is expected to need, including to, athletic fields, heating and ventilation systems, and roofs are to be taken into account. The state Board of Education must make recommendations for energy efficiency improvements to each school, and the specific equipment each technical high school is expected to need, based on the useful life of existing equipment and projections of changing technology.
The cost of textbooks for college students could soon be lowered. The Board of Regents for Higher Education and The University of Connecticut are being ordered to establish an open-source textbook pilot program. Digital open source textbooks are books made available on a web site to be used by students, faculty and members of the public on an unlimited basis at minimal or no cost. The measure was approved by both the House and Senate unanimously.
People who were born and adopted in Connecticut and are at least 18 will now have a chance to see their birth certificate. To be eligible, the adoption has to have been finalized after October 1st 1983. The bill was voted on in 2014. There were five votes opposed in the Senate , including Mike McLachlan of Danbury, Toni Boucher of Wilton and then-state Senator John McKinney.
A Danbury man who was supposed to have an ignition interlock device on his car because of a DUI charge, has been arrested for drunk driving again. Danbury Police say an officer on patrol Sunday night saw a vehicle without its headlines on and tried to pull the driver over.
The car eventually stopped a short distance away and officers could smell alcohol on the breath of the driver, later determined to be 57-year old Juan Galeas-Garcia.
The Danbury man was released on an earlier written promise to appear in court, provided he didn't drive without an ignition interlock device. Galeas-Garcia was charged Sunday with DUI, driving with a foreign license, failure to drive right, failure to have lights illuminated, and illegal operation of a motor vehicle without an interlock device.