An early morning fire yesterday did some heavy damage to an historic home in Monroe. Firefighters responded to Hammertown Road around 5am Sunday morning. The house dates back to the 1770s. One resident was evaluated for smoke inhalation. Mutual aid was provided to the Monroe Volunteer Fire Department by firefighters from Newtown, Oxford and elsewhere. Two departments also provided coverage at the fire station in case of any other calls that came in.
(Photos Courtesy: Monroe Volunteer Fire Department, Facebook)
New York State Police have conducted an underage drinking enforcement detail and one clerk has been arrested. Police from the Somers Barrack conducted the initiative on Sunday with the help of a youth volunteer. 24-year old Nicolas Lopez of Brewster, who is a clerk at the Mobil gas station on Route 100 in Somers, was charged with a violation of the state Alcohol and Beverage Control Law. Lopez was issued a ticket to appear in court next Monday. An underage operative attempted to purchase alcohol at nine other locations and was denied as a result of his age.
A Carmel man is facing a number of drug charges after Putnam County Sheriff's Deputies saw suspicious activity in a shopping plaza parking lot. The Sheriff's office today said that Deputies were on patrol last Sunday and saw a parked car at Highbridge Plaza on Route 22 in Southeast. When approaching the car deputies could smell marijuana. 50-year old David Dagnone of Carmel had pot and a controlled substance in his possession. Dagnone was charged with two offences and released without bail for a court appearance on December 10th.
7 people were injured in a two car crash that happened Friday night in Brookfield. Police say a car travelling southbound on Whisconier Road made an improper left turn in front of a vehicle headed northbound. The accident happened at the intersection with Obtuse Hill Road shortly after 7pm.
The intersection was closed for about an hour. Mutual aid was provided by the Stony Hill and Danbury Fire Departments.
All 7 patients were transported to Danbury Hospital with minor injuries.
No charges have been filed and the incident remains under investigation.
A tour of the new Innovation Center in Danbury has been taken by Senator Chris Murphy. He visited with people who use the hackerspace as part of an effort by the Small Business Association to promote Small Business Saturday. It's a time that local shops are calling for people to patronize companies that give back to the community, and is sandwiched in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
It's a common work space with 3D printers, prototyping tools, a mockup studio, and other business tools open for use by local entrepreneurs. Small Business Association Resources partner SCORE was also on hand for the tour.
Murphy says the Innovation Center is a great place for entrepreneurs to see how others are succeeding and failing. He notes that trial and error is easier when you're working along side others who are also starting up their own small business.
Murphy says many of the people he talked to are working a full time job during the day and coming to the Hackerspace in the evenings and on the weekends.
GreenWell Financial, Born TM, Attention Holdings, Skyflix.com and Luke's Toy Factory have used the Innovation Center/Hackerspace.
Parking rules have temporarily changed in downtown Ridgefield.
The Ridgefield Parking Authority is working with the Ridgefield Chamber of Commerce to help encourage shopping locally. There will be no enforcement of parking time limits for spaces whose time limits are two hours or longer. The change will stay in place through January 3rd.
Special signs have been designed by Farmingville Elementary School students.
Posted time limits will remain in effect on Main Street and for any spaces whose posted time is less than two hours in the downtown area. The Parking Authority will enforce the shorter times in the Central Business District. That is being done to allow for some parking space turnover in the Central Business District.
The annual police "Stuff a Cruiser" event in Newtown is back today. The Newtown and Redding Police departments are working together to collect donations for local food pantries. They will be set up outside the Newtown Big Y on Queen Street from 9am to noon. The Police Departments say this is a chance for people to do something positive, and pay it forward during a season of giving. Newtown and Redding Police officials say people can also purchase gift cards so the Departments can purchase some items for the food pantries.
The Greater New Milford Chamber of Commerce is hosting their annual Festival of Lights Tree Lighting Ceremony Saturday night. A parade of lights is taking place featuring the volunteer fire departments. This is the 49th year the trees have been put up.
The lighting takes place at 5:30pm on the Village Green.
Members of the New Milford United Methodist Men’s Club and other church members donate their time and effort to cut the trees down, place them on the Green, string the wires and the lights, and take them down shortly after New Years. The Club also sells Christmas Trees at the church during December to raise funds to help support local scholarships, mission projects and local community agencies.
The state Department of Agriculture says there are 18 indoor farmers markets across the state this winter.
Winter farmers markets provide an opportunity for Connecticut residents to buy locally grown products year round. The Department's Commissioner says this allows farmers to stay in touch with their customers. They offer a variety of Connecticut Grown products including fresh produce, cheeses, maple syrup and eggs.
There are three indoor markets in Litchfield County including the New Milford Farmers' Market at The Maxx on Railroad Street. The market at The Maxx on Railroad Street is open on certain Saturdays over the next three months. December 5th and 19th; January 2nd, 16 and 30th; February 13th and 27th from 9am to 1pm.
Other nearby markets are the Goshen Farmers Market and Litchfield Hills Farmers Market.
Weston's new First Selectman has led her first Board of Selectman meeting. Nina Daniel declined an 18.5-percent salary increase approved by the board in February, instead keeping the salary of nearly $44,000. The Board of Selectmen also dealt with several resignations and appointments. Daniel resigned from the Commission on Aging. Former First Selectman Gayle Weinstein had won enough votes earlier this month to be a Selectman, but decided to resign instead. The Board accepted her resignation and appointed Chris Spaulding to the position. His term will expire in two years.
An update has been given to the Newtown Public Building and Site Commission on renovations to the Newtown High School Auditorium. At their meeting this week, the group was told that some demolition work should be done in March with construction starting in July, after the school year ends. The scope of the work involves accessibility and acoustic redesigns and relocating the HVAC system. Panels will also be installed that could create the feel of a smaller Black Box Theater, but are retractable for larger scale productions.
A high speed highway crash could have ended far more tragically than it did this morning. Two people involved in a minor accident were standing outside their car and had a hair-raising experience on Interstate 95 in Fairfield, escaping without injury when a car crashed into a vehicle next to them. State Police are highlighting the accident as the prime reason there is a "Move Over" law. Troopers are also stressing the dangers of being stopped on the highway, even in the shoulder of the road.
State Troopers responded to a two car crash around 1am today north of exit 19 in Fairfield. The two cars involved in the crash, and the state police cruiser, were parked in the right shoulder of the highway. A second Trooper responding saw a Nissan Maxima speeding directly in front of him in the left lane. The Nissan veered right, within inches of the cruiser in the shoulder and plowed into one of the vehicles involved in the original accident.
21-year old Yoni Rojas of Bridgeport was charged with reckless endangerment, misuse of plates, failure to meet minimum insurance coverage and failure to maintain lane. Rojas was held on $2,500 bond for a court appearance this morning.
Neither Troopers were injured. Rojas suffered minor injuries.
NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) Four people have met for the first time since a pair of kidney swaps at a Connecticut hospital.
The Hartford Courant reports the family of 3-year-old Jeremy Orellana, as well as Fred Ferris, Beth Mix, and Julissa Canales, had an emotional meeting for the first time on Wednesday following the Nov. 10 surgeries.
Orellana, of Bridgeport, and Ferris, of Newtown, were both diagnosed with kidney disease and had been undergoing dialysis.
Canales, of West Haven, decided to help her friend Ferris. The two were incompatible for the transplant, though, so they entered into Yale-New Haven Hospital's kidney-pairing program. Ferris received Mix's kidney, while Canales donated hers to Orellana.
Mix volunteered to become an altruistic organ donor, meaning she donated without knowing any of the participants.
An arrest has been made for a false report of a violent attack at a group home in the town of Southeast last Friday. 30-year old Christopher Lopez of Southeast has also been charged with assaulting a hospital nurse in a separate case.
Investigators allege that Lopez called ambulance services to say an attack by an armed assailant was taking place at the group home for disabled persons on Simpson Road. The call prompted a large scale police response and forced the road to be closed for 3 hours, snarling rush hour traffic.
The attack turned out to be a hoax.
In an unrelated incident, investigators allege Lopez kicked a female nurse at Putnam Hospital Center and knocked her to the floor. The incident reportedly took place on Friday, just hours after the false report about the group home was placed.
Lopez was arraigned and ordered held on $1,000 bond. His next court appearance is scheduled for December 12.
Don't have firefighters be unexpected guests at your home for Thanksgiving dinner by practicing safe cooking habits this Thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving is the peak day for kitchen fire around the country. State Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection Commissioner Dora Schriro says it's roughly three times the average number of fires than any other day.
Danbury Fire Marshal Jim Russell says any electric fry pans, and electric knives should be inspected for frayed cords and bad connections before use.
The use of turkey fryers can lead to devastating burns and other injuries, and the destruction of property due to the large amount and high temperature of oil used. If you have a cooking fire, keep a lid nearby when cooking to smother a small grease fire. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stovetop. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
Russell says anything that can catch fire such as oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging and towels should be kept away from the stovetop.
If you're sleepy or have consumed alcohol, do not use the stove or any cooking appliance or accessory.
When there are large crowds of train riders, Metro North has gate collection for tickets. Thanksgiving Day is one of those times where customers at Grand Central Terminal will have to show a Metro North ticket before boarding the train.
On Friday, Metro-North will operate on a Saturday schedule with additional inbound service in the morning and outbound service in the afternoon to accommodate the Friday workforce and Black Friday shoppers. Metro-North will round out the holiday weekend schedule with extra trains and additional cars on existing trains Saturday and Sunday.
The ticket can be used by more than one person, even when you are traveling together. The Family Fare costs $1 per ticket for up to four children (ages 5 to 11) when they are traveling with a fare-paying adult.
Thanksgiving Day, Metro-North will provide additional inbound morning service for customers heading to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, which kicks off at 9:00 a.m. at 81st Street and Central Park West and ends in front of Macy’s at Herald Square (34th Street). There is also expanded outbound service starting in the late morning and continuing through mid-afternoon. There will be extra trains in the evening for customers returning to New York City after their Thanksgiving dinners.
Metro-North will round out the holiday weekend schedule with extra trains and additional cars on existing trains Saturday and Sunday.
A Danbury man charged with running a Ponzi scheme has been found guilty on some of the 15 counts in a federal indictment.
The downtown club owner allegedly defrauding 15 people out of nearly $500,000. Ian Bick was arrested in January, when he was 19-year old, for fraud, money laundering and making false statements.
A jury today found Bick guilty on six counts of wire fraud and one count of money laundering. He will be sentenced in March.
The jury found Bick not guilty on two counts of wire fraud and one count of making a false statement to federal law enforcement, and could not reach a verdict on three counts of wire fraud and one count of money laundering. The government dismissed one count of money laundering prior to the trial.
U.S. Attorney spokesman Tom Carson says Bick solicited investments from friends, former classmates and their parents by promising high returns in a short time. He told some victim investors that he would use their money to buy electronics to resell on the internet or to organize and promote various concerts.
The indictment alleges that Bick instead used the money for hotel stays and jet skis. During an interview last summer with U.S. Postal Inspection Service agents , Bick allegedly falsely stated that "70 to 80 percent of the money had been on 'artist deposits'," when only a minimal portion, at most, of the invested funds that one person made with Planet Youth Entertainment LLC had been used in any way connected with any artist deposits.
Bick was a principal and/or managing member of various Danbury-based entities, including This Is Where It’s At Entertainment, LLC, Planet Youth Entertainment, W&B Wholesale, LLC, and W&B Investments, LLC.
Bick pleaded not guilty and was released on $250,000 bond. He was ordered not to have any contact with his victims and not to use social media.
Each of the 11 wire fraud counts carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years. The three counts of money laundering carry a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years on each count, and the false statement charge carries a maximum term of imprisonment of five years.
A New York man has been charged with rape for assaulting an unconscious Connecticut woman. New York State Police say 23-year old Christopher Talbot of Pine Plains New York was charged yesterday with felony counts of rape and sexual abuse.
An investigation revealed that Talbot performed a sexual act and had intercourse with the unconscious Connecticut woman while she was at his home last month. Talbot was arraigned and ordered held on $20,000 bond.
A local lawmaker is calling for the vetting of Syrian refugees coming into the state. Wilton Representative Gail Lavielle, who once lived in Paris, said if the state can't refuse entry to the refugees, it's the responsibility of the governor to make very clear what the vetting process is.
Following the deadly terrorist attacks in Paris earlier this month, Lavielle said in an interview with The Hour that the federal government decides whether people can enter the country, and once here can travel freely from state to state.
Some other Republican lawmakers have questioned if extensive background checks will be conducted and who will be responsible for the related costs.