Connecticut State Supreme Court Tosses Conviction, Frees Man Who Raped Woman With Severe Cerebral Palsy – She Can’t Communicate, But Court Said There Was No Evidence She Could Not Communicate

October 5, 2012

CONNECTICUT – The state Supreme Court has thrown out the conviction of a Bridgeport man who was found guilty of sexually assaulting a severely handicapped woman.

Justices ruled, 4-3, that despite evidence that the 26-year-old woman cannot speak and has little body movement, there was no evidence she could not communicate her refusal to have sex with the defendant, Richard Fourtin Jr.

Fourtin’s lawyer, Senior Assistant Public Defender Nicole Donzello, declined to comment on the decision.

Fourtin, 28, was convicted in 2008 of attempted sexual assault and sentenced to six years in prison.

The woman, who was not identified in court, has severe cerebral palsy and cannot verbally communicate, according to court documents.

The ruling centers around the state proving that the victim was physically helpless at the time of the attack, which is defined as ‘‘unconscious or for any other reason is physically unable to communicate
unwillingness to an act.”

However, defense lawyers argued that there was evidence she could communicate by biting, kicking, screaming and gesturing.

“(W)e, like the Appellate Court, ‘’are not persuaded that the state produced any credible evidence that the [victim] was either unconscious or so uncommunicative that she was physically incapable of manifesting to the defendant her lack of consent to sexual intercourse at the time of the alleged sexual assault,’ the opinion states.

State Rep Gerald Fox III (D-Stamford), who serves as House Chair of the Judiciary Committee, said he will push for legislation to clarify state law.

Several local groups that work with victims are outraged by the decision.

“We are incredibly disappointed with the State Supreme Court’s decision in the Fourtin case,” said Anna Doroghazi, director of public policy and communication at Connecticut Sexual Assault Crisis Services said in a statement. “The court’s interpretation of what it means to be ‘physically helpless’ jeopardizes the safety of people with disabilities.”

“By implying that the victim in this case should have bitten or kicked her assailant, this ruling effectively holds people with disabilities to a higher standard than the rest of the population when it comes to proving lack of consent in sexual assault cases,” Doroghazi said. “Failing to bite an assailant is not the same thing as consenting to sexual activity.”

The Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities said the state should be protecting people with disabilities.

“People with disabilities are much more likely to be sexually assaulted than people who do not have disabilities. Our justice system should provide them with protection, not require them to resist their attackers,” James McGaughey, the organization’s executive director said.

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State Of Connecticut Hassles Hoarder, Who Would Rather Die Than Deal With State’s Social Workers – Leaving One Dead And His Sick Mother Seriously Injured

October 2, 2012

GREENWICH, CONNECTICUT – An extreme hoarding situation ended in extreme sadness on Tuesday. It may have been a final act of defiance that killed a man and seriously injured his sick mother.

The run-down home has been an eyesore for years, attracting complaints from neighbors and the city of Greenwich. Now, the woman who owns it is badly burned and her 42-year-old son is dead, CBS 2’s Lou Young reported.

The fire started inside a home jammed with stacks of personal possessions — a hoarder’s den turned death trap.

“Smoke pouring out of the house and we said there’s someone still inside, and about five or six minutes later they took the second person out in an ambulance over there,” neighbor Richard Meehan said.

“The fire department has determined it was intentionally set,” Greenwich Police Lt. Craig Gray said.

An intervention was apparently already underway in connection with the clutter inside. A dumpster on site was supposed to be used to house the many belongings the occupants had amassed. The fire, apparently set by the son, broke out just hours before state social workers were supposed to arrive, police said.

“The lady used to work for the Board of Education in Greenwich and then she got sick and basically her son was taking care of her.

It was a slow decline,” neighbor John Pardo said.

The man of the house — a retired Greenwich cop — died in the 1980s. Things got especially bad in the past five years, neighbors said, but the occupants, Dean Verboven and his 69-year-old mother, Barbara, were well-liked.

“I know this boy since he was 8 years old and they are … they are sweet people, nice people,” Gladys Pardo said.

But he is now dead and she is in critical condition, getting treated at Bridgeport Medical Center for severe burns.

One neighbor said Barbara Verboven spent almost all her time in a single room of the house, eating and sleeping in a room with a television on 24 hours a day.

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Democrats Stiff Westport Connecticut For $15K In Overtimes Costs For President Obama Fundraising Visit

August 21, 2012

WESTPORT, CONNECTICUT — Westport’s first selectman says the town has been informed it will not be reimbursed thousands of dollars for President Barack Obama’s visit for a fundraiser earlier this month.

First Selectman Gordon Joseloff says the Democratic National Committee notified the town it will not pay police and fire overtime costs totaling $14,812.

The town asked the DNC and Obama for America to pay the overtime costs incurred when the president arrived at Sherwood Island State Park on Aug. 6 to attend a fundraiser in Stamford and a $35,800 per person dinner at the Westport home of movie producer Harvey Weinstein.

The New Register reports that an executive of the Democratic National Committee wrote that as a private organization it did not participate in security, traffic control, fire or emergency planning. She referred questions to the Secret Service.

“I didn’t expect that we would get repayment, but it was worthwhile to ask,” Joseloff told the Register.

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North Haven Town Officials Overrule Dickhead Zoning Offical Arthur Hausman And Allow 7 Year Old Girl To Keep Her Rabbit – Moron Claimed Child’s Pet Was “Livestock”

August 19, 2012

NORTH HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – A seven-year-old girl has been told by town authorities in Connecticut that she can keep her 20lb rabbit, putting an end to nights of crying for fear she might have to give him up.

See also: Dickhead North Haven Connecticut Zoning Officer Arthur Hausman Targets 7 Year Old Girl’s Pet Rabbit – Says Parents Must Own At Least 2 Acres For “Livestock”

Kayden Lidsky and her family had been issued a cease-and-desist order by a North Haven town enforcement officer after a neighbour complained that their pet broke zoning laws.

The 50-year-old ordinance that prevents residents from keeping rabbits and livestock on property of less than two acres was labelled ‘ridiculous’ by First Selectman Michael Freda who granted the family keep the bunny.
Relief: Kayden Lidsky (left) with father Josh, sister Madison, and Sandy, her pet bunny, has been told she can keep the rabbit following a zoning dispute in North Haven, CT

Relief: Kayden Lidsky (left) with father Josh, sister Madison, and Sandy, her pet bunny, has been told she can keep the rabbit following a zoning dispute

Since the story first appeared on Wednesday on WTNH-TV, 4,400 people have signed an online petition demanding that the town allow Kayden to keep the three-year-old Flemish giant rabbit she calls Sandy.

First Selectman Michael Freda told Fox News: ‘All along I’ve said that little girl is not losing that rabbit. We have a ridiculous ordinance… and we’re going to change it.’

Kayden told the New Haven Register that she is ‘excited’ about the news, but Josh Lidsky is still upset about the way the situation was handled.

‘I’m happy it’s over,’ he told Fox News. ‘I’m saddened that it had to go as far as it did. It’s very tough for a seven-year-old to understand why people would do something like that. She’s cried nightly.’
Bunny love: A petition has been started to allow Kayden Lidsky to keep the three-year-old Flemish giant rabbit named Sandy, who weights 20lbs

Bunny love: A petition has been started to allow Kayden Lidsky to keep the three-year-old Flemish giant rabbit named Sandy, who weights 20lbs

‘I don’t want the bunny to go,’ his daughter Kayden Lidsky had said before the good news, according to the petition on change.org.

‘She’s not a mean bunny. She doesn’t bite people. She only licks.’

According to Fox News, in May, town officials inspected the property and asked Lidsky to take several actions, including removing the rabbit hutch, replacing missing siding on his house and repairing an unfinished addition.

‘The whole story is about my daughter and the bunny,’ Mr Lidsky told the New Haven Register. ‘That is hitting below the belt. I want the bunny to stay on the property, for my daughter’s sake.’

President of the Hopalong Hollow animal rescue service in Norwalk Linda Thibault, said: ‘The situation with North Haven’s zoning is ridiculous.

‘We’re not talking about a breeder or multiple rabbits. We’re talking about one pet bunny who is obviously beloved and well-cared for.’

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Dickhead North Haven Connecticut Zoning Officer Arthur Hausman Targets 7 Year Old Girl’s Pet Rabbit – Says Parents Must Own At Least 2 Acres For “Livestock”

August 10, 2012

NORTH HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – A 7-year-old Connecticut girl will lose her 20-pound pet rabbit if North Haven officials get their way.

Zoning Enforcement Officer Arthur Hausman issued a cease-and-desist order to the Lidsky family two weeks ago, informing them that they were violating town zoning regulations because their property was smaller than the 2 acres required to keep rabbits and other types of livestock.

More than 1,800 people have signed an online petition demanding that town officials allow Kayden Lidsky to keep the 3-year-old Flemish giant rabbit named Sandy. Kayden’s father, Josh Lidsky, has vowed to appeal the order and is angered that town officials have upset his daughter.

“I don’t want the bunny to go,” Kayden Lidsky said, according to the petition on change.org.

“She’s not a mean bunny,” Kayden told WTIC-TV. “She doesn’t bite people. She only licks.”

North Haven First Selectman Michael Freda said town officials are not trying to take the bunny away from the girl, but are instead trying to get Josh Lidsky to respond to neighbors’ complaints about blighted conditions on his property.

In May, town officials inspected the property and asked Lidsky to take several actions, including removing the rabbit hutch, replacing missing siding on his house and repairing an unfinished addition.

Lidsky says he’s appealing Hausman’s order about the rabbit to the town’s Zoning Board of Appeals, but he’s willing to clean up his yard.

“The whole story is about my daughter and the bunny,” Lidsky told the New Haven Register. “That is hitting below the belt. I want the bunny to stay on the property, for my daughter’s sake.”

Linda Thibault, president of the Hopalong Hollow animal rescue service in Norwalk, started the online petition on change.org.

“The situation with North Haven’s zoning is ridiculous,” she told the Register. “We’re not talking about a breeder or multiple rabbits. We’re talking about one pet bunny who is obviously beloved and well-cared for.”

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Thousands Of Americans Excluded From Connecticut State Beach And Park While Obama Tries To Raise Money For Re-Election Campaign

August 6, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – A popular Connecticut park and its 234 acres of wetlands, woodlands and beach on Long Island Sound will be shut down all day Monday so that President Obama can use the location as a base for fundraising nearby.

The Sherwood Island State Park in Westport, Connecticut will have to turn away thousands of bathers so that Obama can get to and from his events, including a $35,800 per head bash at the 9,000-square-foot, $8.3-million waterfront estate of movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, according to The Connecticut Post.

Here’s a look at what people will be missing:

The Obama incursion is already creating an uproar in the state, according to the Post.

“Could you imagine if a Republican ever did such a thing? They’d be screaming from every corner,” said House Minority Leader Lawrence F. Cafero Jr. ”This is supposed to be the party and the president of the people? To close this state park in August for purely partisan political reasons is outrageous. People are going to be on their one-week vacation and they can’t get into Sherwood Island?”

The state senator representing the area that includes the park, which is set on a peninsula that juts out into the sound, said other less intrusive landing points were available to the president.

Obama’s travel to Connecticut kicks off another heavy week of fundraising and campaigning that will include a two-day trip to Colorado Wednesday and Thursday.

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Stratford Connecticut Police Officer, With Nothing Better To Do Than Harass People (Like All Other Cops In Connecticut), Ticket Man For “Wooing” At People

August 3, 2012

STRATFORD, CONNECTICUT – Deshawn Fields, 18, of 306 Bond St., Bridgeport, was just “being stupid for no reason” according to Stratford police when he proceeded to repeatedly yell “woo” at people along Main Street, Sept. 18. He’ll have to explain his reasoning to a judge on Aug. 3.

Fields was the passenger in a vehicle traveling along Main Street where an officer in an unmarked car first noticed him.

Police said Fields “wooed” at patrons at Blue Point Grill, Acapulco’s and McCoy’s Pub. According to the report, “several people were disturbed over his disturbing behavior.”

It wasn’t until Fields burst out of the car window again, this time startling a cyclist who almost lost control that the officer pulled the vehicle over.

Fields told officers he was simply “being stupid for no reason.” He apologized for his behavior and promised not to do it again.

Fields was issued an infraction for creating a public disturbance with a summons date of Aug. 3.

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Veteran Massachusetts State Police Trooper Daniel Sheehan Arrested For OUI In Connecticut And Suspended

July 24, 2012

ENFIELD, CONNECTICUT – A Massachusetts state trooper was relieved of duty this weekend after he was charged with operating under the influence in Connecticut early Saturday morning, a department spokesman said.

Police in Enfield, Conn., found Daniel Sheehan, 46, “passed out or sleeping” in the driver’s seat of a Cadillac Escalade that was pulled to the side of the road at 12:51 a.m. Saturday, said the spokesman, David Procopio. Sheehan is assigned to the Russell Barracks and graduated from the State Police Academy in 2002, Procopio said in a statement. He was off-duty at the time of the incident.

He said there was no damage to the vehicle, no signs of a crash, and Sheehan was uninjured. Enfield police officers administered field sobriety tests to Sheehan, Procopio said, and they arrested the trooper after determining he was impaired. He is also charged with a marked lanes violation.

Procopio said Sheehan posted $500 cash bail at the Enfield police station. State Police will hold a duty status hearing for Sheehan this week to determine his future assignment, he said.

Sheehan is scheduled to appear for arraignment in a Connecticut courtroom on the charges on July 30, according to Procopio

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New Haven Connectict Police Officer Lawrence Burns Fired After Shooting His Gun Outside A Bar – One Of Three Officers Charged In Incident

July 11, 2012

NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – One of three police officers arrested after shots were fired outside a New Haven bar in April has lost his job.

The New Haven Register reports Officer Lawrence Burns was fired Tuesday night after a three-hour hearing before the city’s Board of Police Commissioners.

Burns was arrested along with officers Charles Kim and Krzystof Ruszczyk.

Burns and Kim were accused of firing their guns in the air after a night of off-duty drinking on April 1. They face charges of reckless endangerment, unlawful discharge of a firearm and interfering with police

Ruszczyk was charged with interfering with the investigation after all three left the scene of the shooting.

Kim and Ruszczyk agreed to take a leave of absence until their criminal cases are resolved.

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Nutcase Former New Haven Connecticut Police Officer John Kelly, Facing Weapons Charge, Arrested Again And Charged With Burglary And Larceny After Stealing Generator From Man’s Garage

July 2, 2012

MIDDLETOWN, CONNECTICUT — A former New Haven police officer recently arrested on a weapons charge was arrested again over the weekend and charged with burglary and larceny for allegedly stealing a generator, state police report.

John Kelly, 45, 1 Brookside Ave., Old Lyme, was in Middletown Superior Court on Monday and Judge Susan Handy set bond for $25,000 cash or surety, which he posted through a bail bondsman. According to court personnel, Kelly will be held on a suicide watch and is due back in court July 20.

State police responded to call of an accident on June 23 around 10:45 a.m. and found a pickup truck in the middle of the travel lane on New City Street in Essex. The truck came back as registered to Kelly, and the trooper found him a short time later, walking back to the truck.

Kelly told police he had run out of gas and was pouring gas from a Dunkin’ Donuts cup into the truck, police said. He was disheveled and dirty, wearing one shoe and hobbling around, stating he had sprained his ankle, police said.

Kelly was able to start the truck and told police he was going home. Less than two hours later, troopers responded to a call from Kelly’s ex wife, saying Kelly was on Dennison Road limping and “acting strange.”

Troopers reported seeing the truck in the roadway again, and Kelly, “sweating profusely” said he was out of gas again, according to police. While waiting for a tow truck to arrive for Kelly, police were approached by a man who said he lived on the road and said he found a cup of water in his garage.

Police asked Kelly if he had been in the man’s house, and Kelly allegedly said he went into the garage for water and gas. Kelly had a newer Honda generator in the bed of his truck and the man identified it as his generator, police said. Kelly, however, told police he had found it in the bushes behind the man’s house and had tried to get gas from it, then placed it in the back of his truck. After investigating, police determined the generator had been in the back of the man’s garage.

When police arrested Kelly, he became irate and yelled “cops are supposed to take care of each other,” police said, and that “the state police were out to get him.” He tried to minimalize the incident by saying he had only gone into the garage a few feet, police said.

Kelly, who was a New Haven police officer for 21 years and has also served in the U.S. Navy, said he had a stellar career as a police officer in New Haven, according to state police. According to statements made in court, Kelly suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and depression.

While in the cell at the state police barracks, Kelly was yelling, banging on the cell doors and walls, and covering himself in water from the sink, police said. He was unable to post the $5,000 bond and was taken to Hartford Correctional until his arraignment Monday.

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Dumbass New Haven Connecticut Police Officer Sgt. Chris Rubino Arrested Woman Who Videotaped An Arrest, Took Her Phone

June 6, 2012

NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT — New Haven police have launched an internal affairs investigation into the arrest of a woman who had been videotaping an officer take a Bridgeport man into custody outside a bar.

Jennifer Gondola’s arrest, first reported by the New Haven Independent newspaper, occurred early Saturday morning outside the Pulse bar.

Gondola told the newspaper she was charged with interfering with police after stuffing the cell phone she used to tape the arrest inside her bra. The phone was confiscated.

Lt. Anthony Duff says the department is investigating whether police Sgt. Chris Rubino violated the department’s rule that allows bystanders to film arrests.

Officer Arpad Tolnay, president of the police union, told the New Haven Register the sergeant concluded the video was evidence and properly seized the phone.

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Savage Black Beast Bit Chunk Of Flesh From New Haven Connecticut Store Owner And Spit It Back In His Face After Stealing Wig

June 6, 2012

NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – A woman accused of stealing a wig from a beauty shop in New Haven is also accused of biting the store owner as well as the police officers who arrested her.

Police said Lowpel Davis, 38, of New Haven, stole a wig from the Sassy Beauty Supply shop at 800 Chapel Street on Tuesday afternoon.

The shop owner told police he saw Davis come into his store with a juvenile girl and then noticed that a wig was missing from a mannequin.

He went through surveillance system and saw Davis take the wig and hide it, as well as several other items, in her bag, so he told staff to keep Davis from leaving the shop, police said.

It didn’t work and Davis fled with the girl, according to police.

The store owner and his 70-year-old father pursued her, police said, and Davis fought back.

Police said she punched both men in the face and the bit the store owner’s bicep, taking a chunk of flesh from his arm and then spit it in his face, police said.

When police responded around 3:30 p.m. Davis was “crazed,” in front of the Giaimo Federal Building at 150 Court St., struggled with four federal protective service officers and kicked and swore at New Haven police, police said.

When officers handcuffed Davis, she tried to kick out the window of a police car and was eventually transferred to a windowless prisoner transportation van.

Officers were taken to area hospitals to be evaluated for bites and other injuries sustained during the struggle.

The store owner was taken by ambulance to Yale-New Haven Hospital, where he received treatment for his bite wound and facial injury.

Davis was charged with sixth-degree larceny, breach of peace in the second degree, criminal mischief in the first degree, assault in the second degree and two counts of assault on police officers.

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Greenwich Connecticut Police Officer Donnell Fludd, Charged With Stalking And Harassing Ex-Lover Faces More Charges

May 19, 2012

BRIDGEPORT, CONNECTICUT – The Greenwich police officer charged with stalking and harassment in February now faces a first-degree unlawful restraint charge in connection with the same case, according to a state prosecutor.

Donnell Fludd, 44, made a brief appearance in Courtroom B in state Superior Court Friday afternoon alongside attorney Michael Thomas, a colleague of Fludd’s attorney Darnell D. Crosland, who did not make the appearance.

Wearing a blue striped shirt tucked into khaki pants, Fludd listened quietly and with little reaction during a five-minute court appearance in which Assistant State’s Attorney Kevin Dunn explained why he had levied the new charge.

Fludd, who remains on paid administrative leave from the Greenwich Police Department, was initially charged with second-degree harassment, second-degree stalking and disorderly conduct, all misdemeanors, in connection with his continuing contact with a former girlfriend.

Dunn confirmed the unlawful restraint charge is the result of an incident that the alleged victim in the case, a 32-year-old Greenwich woman, reported to have occurred in her apartment building elevator.

After she filed a complaint in November, the woman provided police with photographs of the injuries she claimed to have sustained, according to a 19-page affidavit filed in state Superior Court in Stamford.

Thomas said a discussion of Fludd’s family violence program application, which Fludd and Crosland filed earlier this month, was scheduled to occur at Friday’s court appearance, but Crosland could not attend because he was delayed at state Superior Court in Stamford, where a bomb scare forced the evacuation of the 123 Hoyt St. building and held up court proceedings.

Multiple messages seeking comment were left with Crosland.

Fludd, the co-founder of the popular Greenwich Flag Football League, is next scheduled to appear in Bridgeport May 31.

In the affidavit, the woman described various ways in which Fludd allegedly stalked and harassed her, despite her requests to stop, and told police there were several instances in which Fludd used his position as a police officer, his large size and his knowledge of firearms to intimidate her.

The department subsequently launched an internal affairs investigation, which is ongoing.

Crosland said in a previous statement to Greenwich Time that the allegations against Fludd do not reflect the way he has conducted himself throughout his life

Fludd, who acknowledged he had a relationship with the woman, said he never physically harmed her, tried to intimidate her, or took his gun out in front of her in a threatening manner, according to the affidavit.

Greenwich police have said they will not comment further on the case at this time.

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Trial To Begin For Former Windsor Locks Connecticut Police Officer Michael Koistinen – Killed Bicyclist In 70 MPH Drunken Wreck – Father, Police Officer Robert Koistinen, Also Faces Trial For Hindering Investigation

May 19, 2012

HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT – Nineteen months after teenager Henry Dang was struck and killed while riding his bicycle in Windsor Locks, jury selection is set to begin for the trial of a former police officer accused of crashing into the high school sophomore.

The prosecution and defense in the case of Michael Koistinen of Suffield are scheduled to start picking jurors Monday in Hartford Superior Court. The trial is slated to begin June 19.

The former police officer is charged with first-degree manslaughter, misconduct with a motor vehicle and tampering with evidence in the Oct. 30, 2010, accident that killed the 15-year-old Dang. Koistinen, 26, faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted of all three charges.

Police say Koistinen had been drinking beer and other alcoholic beverages for several hours, including outside a University of Connecticut football game and at a Suffield bar, before he struck Dang at more than 70 mph in a 35 mph zone. One of the Windsor Locks officers who responded to the scene was Koistinen’s father, Sgt. Robert Koistinen.

A state police investigation found that Robert Koistinen drove his son away from the crash site to the police station and back as many as three times, and later prevented an investigating officer from interviewing and getting a blood sample from Michael Koistinen when he was treated at a hospital.

Robert Koistinen was charged with hindering the investigation and awaits trial. Both father and son were fired from the police department.

An 82-page independent investigation report found a series of problems with the way police responded to the accident, including officials’ failure to question Michael Koistinen about possible alcohol consumption at the scene and their failure to test his blood-alcohol level. The report found no evidence of a cover-up, but faulted department officials for a lack of leadership and poor management.

Troopers said authorities found an unopened 30-pack of beer, several other unopened beer containers and many bottle caps in Michael Koistinen’s car. They also said a beer glass was found near the scene and officials believe Koistinen threw it from his car, which resulted in the tampering with evidence charge. Police and paramedics at the scene said they didn’t notice any signs of Koistinen being intoxicated.

Because a blood test wasn’t done, authorities said they couldn’t charge Koistinen with drunken driving. Court records show that hospital officials destroyed a urine sample from Koistinen under hospital policy before police obtained a search warrant for Koistinen’s medical records.

Michael Koistinen’s former lawyer had denied allegations that Koistinen was drunk, and blamed the accident on the night’s darkness.

Dang’s family settled its wrongful death suit against Michael Koistinen and a former tavern owner last year for $420,000.

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Veteran Suffield Connecticut Police Officer Jeremy C. DePietro Arrested And Fired After Drug Bust Evidence Goes Missing

May 18, 2012

SUFFIELD, CONNECTICUT – A veteran police officer who was arrested last week on larceny and evidence tampering charges related to evidence missing after a 2011 drug bust has been fired, Chief Mike Manzi said on Thursday.

Jeremy C. DePietro was arrested on Friday by Suffield police following a lengthy investigation that led the department to get a warrant earlier in the week, Manzi said. He was charged with sixth-degree larceny and tampering with evidence, Manzi said.

He was fired as a result of a police commission meeting on May 9, Manzi said.

DePietro posted a $24,000 bond and is due to be arraigned in Superior Court in Enfield on Tuesday. The Hartford State’s Attorney’s office also involved in the investigation, Manzi said.

“Unfortunately … this internal investigation resulted in the dismissal of this officer,” Manzi said.

DePietro was with the Suffield Police Department for more than six years, and before that he was a police officer in Bridgeport, Manzi said.

The Suffield investigation followed a drug bust on March 3, 2011, at an apartment on Mountain Road. Suffield police responding to a medical call seized illegal narcotics and $332 in cash, and DePietro arrested a suspect, Manzi said.

The evidence seized was tagged and kept in the police department’s temporary evidence room, and after the suspect’s criminal case is adjudicated on Nov. 2, 2011, the court ordered the narcotics destroyed and the money that was seized returned to go into the court’s general fund, Manzi said.

When a detective went to bring the money back, he determined that $120 was missing from the original total, which set off the internal investigation, Manzi said.

The investigation led police to seek an arrest warrant for DePietro that was signed last week and served on Friday.

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Connecticut Passes Anti-Profiling Law After East Haven Police Repeatedly Target Drivers, Businesses, And Employees

May 8, 2012

CONNECTICUT – A few months after four East Haven police officers were arrested for allegedly targeting and harassing Latinos, Connecticut’s state legislature passed a bill Monday to beef up safeguards against racial profiling.

Titled “An Act Concerning Traffic Stop Information,” SB 364 mandates that local and state law enforcement agencies adopt their own “written policy that prohibits the stopping, detention or search of any person when such action is solely motivated by considerations of race, color, ethnicity, age, gender or sexual orientation, and the action would constitute a violation of the civil rights of the person.”

In addition, the legislation sets up reporting requirements for police whenever they conduct traffic stop, as well as a system for citizen complaints or for state authorities to collect and assess pertinent data from municipal departments.

Initially passed by the state Senate on April 19, the legislation made it through the House of Representatives on Monday and is now expected to be signed by Gov. Dannel Malloy.

“I will continue to insist that every effort is taken to protect individual rights in every community and that racial profiling is eliminated,” Malloy said Monday in a statement. “This is a real problem that deserves a real solution, and my administration is committed to carrying out the spirit and letter of this law.”

If and when the bill goes into affect, those pulled over after January 1, 2013, would get a copy of the “standardized form” filled out by police containing details about the driver and circumstances of their case. Those who feel they were profiled due to their race, color, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation can file a complaint, which must be reviewed by the local police department and be passed on to a state agency.

The bill doesn’t mention any locality or case specifically. But it follows the arrests, in January, of an East Haven police sergeant and three officers following a federal investigation into racial profiling. They all pleaded not guilty.

A civil lawsuit has also been filed related to that case.

According to a federal indictment, the four allegedly conspired to “injure, oppress, threaten and intimidate various members of the East Haven community” by profiling Latino residents during traffic stops, performing illegal searches and harassing Latino business owners and their advocates.

The men allegedly threatened and assaulted detainees, made false arrests — including a local clergy member — and later conspired to cover up evidence of their conduct by falsifying reports and blocking an investigation, prosecutors said.

The men also thwarted a police commission inquiry into their alleged misconduct, authorities said, calling on the support of local union leaders to block and intimidate municipal investigators.

“They behaved like bullies with badges,” said Janice Fedarcyk, assistant FBI director in New York.

Many Latino residents of East Haven — who make up about 10.3% of the town’s roughly 29,000 people — say that, for years, they have had to contend with an overly aggressive police force.

“They always come by and bother us,” said Esdras Marin, a manager at La Bamba, a Latino-owned bar and restaurant named in the indictment.

“Police come in two or three times a month and ask everyone in the restaurant for their identification,” he said. “And if you don’t have it, they threaten us and say they’re going to call the immigration office.”

The Rev. James Manship of St. Rose of Lima Church, a plaintiff in the civil suit , has accused since retired police Chief Leonard Gallo of fostering “a racist and dishonest police force” in East Haven.

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Connecticut Prison Officals Want Inmates Who Masturbate To Be Labeled As Sex Offenders And Spend 5 More Years In Prison

April 28, 2012

HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT – Connecticut prison officials are asking for a new law that would label inmates who commit lewd acts in their cells as sex offenders.

Department officials say it’s an ongoing problem at prisons such as the high security Northern Correctional Institution in Somers, where some inmates purposefully masturbate in front of staff, often female guards, counselors or other prison workers.

“If they were on the outside and they did something like this, they would be arrested and held accountable as a sex offender,” said Brian Garnett, a department spokesman. “And frankly, the same thing should hold true on the inside.”

Lisamarie Fontano, president of AFSCME Local 387, which represents prison workers, says about 500 such instances were written up at Northern last year. She said the problem involves a relatively small group of inmates, and has very little to do with sex.

“It’s about power,” she said. “If you can demoralize somebody, and some of the acts that women have described to me are absolutely horrific, then by all means the inmates feel more powerful over them.”

The legislation would make public indecency in a correctional institution a class D felony, punishable by up to five years in prison, a sentence that would be mandated to be tacked on to any current sentence. It also would designate the convict as a sex offender.

The bill would only apply to inmates who are deemed to be targeting staff with their activity, and would not be used when someone inadvertently walks in on an inmate in a private moment, Garnett said.

Garnett said it has proven difficult to charge inmates under current sexual assault statutes for behavior that happens in their cells.

Fontano said that internal discipline hasn’t deterred the behavior, but that inmates may stop if they know they will be labeled as a sex offender when they leave prison.

“This would be something that would be with them for the rest of their lives,” she said. “This isn’t something where you lose commissary privileges within the walls of the facility. Typically, a male prisoner does not want to be labeled as a sex offender.”

The bill has passed out of committee and is awaiting action by the full Legislature, which adjourns on May 9.

The move to pass legislation comes at the same time that the department is removing all pornography, material that contains “pictorial depictions of sexual activity or nudity,” from the prisons. Inmates were given a year to get rid of all their porn and the total ban takes effect in July.

The ban is intended to improve the work environment for prison staffers who might be inadvertently exposed to the material.

Garnett said the two issues are not related, but said both are expected to have a positive impact on the work environment in the prisons

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Video Catches Brutal Beating Of Subdued Man By Meriden Connecticut Police Officer Evan Cossette – Police Chief’s Sun – Faces At Least Two Other Brutality Complaints

April 25, 2012

MERIDIAN, CONNECTICUT – A Connecticut police officer has been captured on video throwing several punches at a subdued man on the floor and then proceeding to Taser him while another officer holds him.

The officer, Evan Cossette, who works in Meriden, is being sued by the man, Joey Bryans, after the 30-year old claimed that the video evidence showed police brutality.

The grainy and out of focus video-tape from the early morning of January 23 of this year shows Bryans leaving MidSate Medical Centre for a cigarette.

According to police reports, the hospital staff were worried Bryans might injure himself because he was drunk and contacted Cossette and another Meriden police officer, Mark Nowak

The pair were already at the hospital as part of an unrelated call.

Walking out into the hospital car-lot wearing only a white T-shirt, Bryans is seen to be followed by Cossette and Nowak.

Unfortunately, the camera goes out of focus and moves away from the scene for around 10-12 seconds.

When it returns, Cossette’s right arm can be viewed hitting Bryans at least five times while Nowak holds his legs.

The video then features Cosette reaching into his belt for a Taser and shocking Bryans twice, the first for nine seconds and the second time for four seconds according to police records.

However, the official report of the incident differs from the account seen on the video.
Watched by the hospital security guards the police officers continue to work to subdue Bryan allegedly using excessive force

Watched by the hospital security guards the police officers continue to work to subdue Bryan allegedly using excessive force

Cossette wrote that Bryans was running away from the hospital when he is clearly walking and says that both he and Nowak shouted several verbal commands to Bryans to stop running.

In addition, Cossette reported that Bryans ‘tensed his arms and body up, forming fists maintaining an aggressive fighting posture.’

He also claims that Bryans ‘spun around and engaged him in a physical altercation’ which meant that the pair were ‘forced to bring him to the ground’.

The gap in the grainy and inconclusive video between Nowak first grabbing Bryans to when Cossette is clearly punching him is 12 seconds.

Meaning that the ‘aggressive fighting posture’ by Bryans must have occurred during that time period.

Cossette wrote in his report that the punches had ‘little to no effect’, which forced him to use the Taser

Already under investigation by a federal grand jury, Officer Evan Cossette has had three police brutality complaints made against him in just over a year and received a written warning for one.

However, in this case the Internal Affairs investigator at Meriden police ruled that Cossette had not violated any police procedures.

Bryans’ attorney, Sally A. Roberts, declined to comment at length, saying only that the video ‘speaks for itself.’

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Meridian Connecticut Police Kill Man Who Had Scissors

April 21, 2012

MERIDEN, CONNECTICUT – A scissor-wielding man died after being shot by police with a Taser and then a gun Saturday morning.

Neighbors who spoke with News 8 at the scene say the man scared them. He was outside the home yelling with scissors in his hand. The next thing they knew police were there and the man was dead.

“Next thing I know they’re bringing him down handcuffed, oxygen, CPR, he was covered in blood,” said Lali Rios.

The incident occurred around 2:30 a.m., at a home located at 10 Maple Branch.

Upon responding to the home, Meriden police officers found a male suspect on the second floor creating a violent disturbance.

The man then moved to the third floor. Police said he was armed with scissors and was making verbal threats.

When the suspect suddenly charged at officers with the scissors, one of the officers deployed his Taser at the man. However, the Taser did not stop the suspect and he continued to attack the officers.

At that time, an officer was forced to use his weapon, striking the suspect.

He was taken to the Mid State Medical Center Emergency Department where he was pronounced dead.

No other injuries were reported.

As per department policy, the officer involved in the shooting will be assigned to administrative duties.

“You want to use the least amount of force possible in any incident, and certainly in a life threatening incident,” said Lt. Paul Vance, “and the last resort is to utilize deadly physical force.”

State Police will be investigating the shooting.

State Police are also investigating an incident in which a Meriden man died after police used a Taser on him during a reported disturbance Saturday morning.

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Meridian Connecticut Police Officer Uses Taser Weapon To Kill Man With Hammer

April 21, 2012

MERIDIAN, CONNECTICUT – A Meriden man died after police used a Taser on him during a reported disturbance Saturday morning.

The incident occurred just before 2 a.m., at 10 Grove Court.

According to State Police, a female homeowner called police saying that a man was breaking items in the home.

The woman told police that the man, identified as Angel Hiraldo, 48, of 10 Grove Court, was armed with a hammer.

When police arrived they found Hiraldo on the front porch of the home, with a hammer in his hand. When police told him to drop the hammer, he denied the requests and approached them in a threatening manner.

An officer then drew his Taser, striking Hiraldo in attempt to gain control.

Hiraldo then began to experience difficulty breathing and was taken to Mid State Hospital Emergency Department.

Hiraldo was pronounced dead just after 2:30 a.m.

As per department policy, the officers involved in the incident will be assigned to administrative duties.

State Police are investigating.

State Police are also investigating an incident in which a scissor-wielding man died after being shot by police with a Taser and then a gun Saturday morning.

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RIP: Mike Wallace, 93 – 1918 To 2012

April 8, 2012

Mike Wallace – 1918 To 2012

CONNECTICUT – Mike Wallace, who spent four decades as a hard-hitting, provocative news correspondent on “60 Minutes,” has died, CBS reported Sunday. He was 93.

Wallace died Saturday night “peacefully surrounded by family members at Waveny Care Center in New Caanan, Connecticut, where he spent the past few years,” CBS said in a statement.

“For half a century, he took on corrupt politicians, scam artists and bureaucratic bumblers,” CBS News said on its website. “… Wallace took to heart the old reporter’s pledge to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. He characterized himself as ‘nosy and insistent.'”

“It is with tremendous sadness that we mark the passing of Mike Wallace,” said Leslie Moonves, president and CEO of CBS Corporation. “His extraordinary contribution as a broadcaster is immeasurable and he has been a force within the television industry throughout its existence. His loss will be felt by all of us at CBS.”

“Mike was an unbelievable journalist,” said Scott Bronstein, CNN senior investigative producer, who worked with Wallace as a “60 Minutes” staff producer during the late 1990s. “He was inspiring. He made you want to do your best work. He always demanded you to report more and more. He was such a marvel, the way he could do an interview.”
Veteran newsman Mike Wallace dies

Wallace in recent years had suffered from dementia, said Larry King, longtime host of CNN’s “Larry King Live.”

“They didn’t come any better,” King said. “He was a glorious human being, a wonderful raconteur, a great journalist, a great host, an interviewer with his own style … Mike Wallace was a guy, when he’s on, you can’t hit the clicker.”

Wallace was already a veteran of the “CBS Morning News with Mike Wallace” and had covered most of the 1960s’ major news stories, including several assignments to Vietnam, when he was hired as a correspondent for the new television show “60 Minutes.”

The show debuted in September 1968. During Wallace’s four-decade career on “60 Minutes,” he “sealed his reputation as a hard-charging, no-holds-barred interviewer,” according to the Knight-Wallace Foundation at the University of Michigan, of which Wallace was a supporter.

“His most memorable moments at ’60 Minutes’ have often been news-making events in their own rights.”

“There were very few 20th century icons who didn’t submit to a Mike Wallace interview,” CBS said. “He lectured Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, on corruption. He lectured Yasser Arafat on violence. He asked the Ayatollah Khomeini if he were crazy.”

Read a list of highlights of Wallace’s life and career

Wallace’s 2005 interview with Jose Canseco “broke the Major League Baseball scandal wide open,” according to the Knight-Wallace Foundation. He also interviewed baseball’s Roger Clemens in 2008, Wallace’s last sit-down interview, CBS said.

In 2006, Wallace became a correspondent emeritus for “60 Minutes” and stopped appearing regularly. In 2008, he underwent successful triple-bypass heart surgery.

“I’ve often replied, when asked, ‘I’ll retire when my toes turn up,'” he said in a statement at the time. “Well, they’re just beginning to curl a little, which means that as I approach my 88th birthday, it’s become apparent to me that my eyes and ears, among other appurtenances, aren’t quite what they used to be.”

The prospect of long flights to cover news was not as appealing, he said at the time.

“But CBS is not pushing me. I’ll be in a comfortable office on the same floor — just around the corner from where I’ve holed up for the past 43 years — available, when asked, for whatever chore CBS News, ’60 Minutes,’ the ‘CBS Evening News,’ have in mind for me.”

“All of us at CBS News and particularly at ’60 Minutes’ owe so much to Mike,” said Jeff Fager, chairman of CBS News and executive producer of “60 Minutes.” “Without him and his iconic style, there probably wouldn’t be a ’60 Minutes.’ There simply hasn’t been another broadcast journalist with that much talent. It almost didn’t matter what stories he was covering, you just wanted to hear what he would ask next.

“Around CBS he was the same infectious, funny and ferocious person as he was on TV,” Fager said. “We loved him and we will miss him very much.”

“60 Minutes” will dedicate a special program to Wallace on April 15, CBS said.

Wallace “was as tough with everyone as he was with himself,” Bronstein said. He recalled seeing Wallace, then in his 80s, get “white-knuckled” in the tracking booth as he was putting his voice on a piece, growling, “Come on, Mike!” at himself.

“He was an inspiration,” Bronstein said. “I have to say I learned everything I know about journalism from him. I’m very thankful and appreciative to have known him, and known him well.”

Former first lady Nancy Reagan said, “My heart is broken today over the death of my dear friend Mike Wallace. My parents introduced me to Mike more than 75 years ago and we’ve been fast friends ever since. It’s hard to believe that he won’t be on television another Sunday night, or at the end of the telephone line to talk through the stories of the week.”

“Mike was an old school journalist and one of the most astute people I’ve ever met,” she said in a statement. “The news business will be a different place now, and our lives will be forever changed for having known him. My heart goes out to his family.”

Former CBS News anchor Dan Rather said, “Mike Wallace was from from the beginning and for many years the heart and soul of ’60 Minutes.’ In that role, he helped change American television news. Among the ways that this change was for the better: TV news became more investigative, more aggressive and relevant. Mike was sharp and quick of mind, a fierce competitor and a master interviewer.”

Myron Wallace was born on May 9, 1918, in Brookline, Massachusetts. His immigrant father ran a wholesale grocery business before becoming an insurance broker.

Wallace, who later traded Myron for the name Mike, liked sports and music. He reportedly fell in love with broadcast news at the campus radio station of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where he studied broadcast news.

After graduating in 1939, Wallace launched his career at radio stations in Ann Arbor and Detroit, where he was as an announcer, and did talk and quiz shows, commercials and news readings.

The newsman was a communications officer in the U.S. Navy during World War II before landing a series of television jobs in Chicago, and trying his hand at acting. He and his then-wife, Buff, starred in the interview programs “Mike and Buff” and “All Around the Town.”

Wallace moved to New York and joined CBS in 1951. After leaving the network in 1955, he found success with the television series “Night Beat” and “The Mike Wallace Interview,” in which he challenged his guests with probing, confrontational questions. Wallace also narrated the documentary series “Biography.”

The 1962 death of Wallace’s son, Peter, in a hiking accident in Greece changed the course of his life, Wallace said. He decided to drop other projects and stick to news.

He interviewed presidents including George H.W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford, Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy.

He also sat down with deposed Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega; the Shah of Iran, former Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov and comedian Johnny Carson.

“He got the stoic Ayatollah Khomenei to smile during the Iranian hostage crisis in 1979 when he asked him what he thought about being called ‘a lunatic’ by Egyptian President Anwar Sadat,” CBS said. “The ayatollah answered by correctly predicting that Sadat would be assassinated.”

Carson, according to CBS, called Wallace “cruel” during an interview after Wallace asked, “It takes one to know one?” regarding Carson’s taking pity on an alcoholic newsmaker.

Fans of Barbra Streisand protested after the singer grew emotional in a 1991 interview when Wallace revealed that Streisand’s own mother had told him she was “too busy to get close to anyone.”

Sometimes Wallace himself became the story, CBS said. He was arrested in Chicago in 1968 on the floor of the Democratic Convention and also 36 years later, at the age of 86, after he had words with a New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission officer.

Wallace won his 21st Emmy for a 2006 interview with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and in 2007, he got the first interview with euthanasia advocate Dr. Jack Kevorkian following Kevorkian’s release from prison.

In a 1998 interview with Kevorkian, “Wallace and ’60 Minutes’ took heat for broadcasting Kevorkian’s own tape showing him lethally injecting a man suffering from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis,” CBS said.

In 1995, Wallace’s interview with Jeffrey Wigand, a high-ranking tobacco executive turned whistle-blower, was held back “for fear of a multi-billion-dollar lawsuit that could have bankrupted CBS,” the network said. “The interview, in which Wigand revealed tobacco executives knew and covered up the fact that tobacco caused disease, was eventually broadcast on ’60 Minutes’ in February 1996. The incident became the subject of the film ‘The Insider.'”

Bronstein recalled that often, Wallace would come into an interview after only a discussion with producers and a briefing book put together for him.

“You’d be asking yourself, ‘How in the world is he going to pull this off?'” Bronstein said. But when he did, “You’d just be sitting there in awe.”

“Mike Wallace is a legend in the news business,” said CNN’s Anderson Cooper, a contributor to “60 Minutes.”

“Tough, hardworking, he’d go anywhere to get the story,” Cooper said. “If I could have half the career Mike Wallace had, I would consider myself a very lucky man.”

In 1997, Wallace — to the surprise of his audience — described in a documentary his paralyzing bouts of depression that began in the early 1980s. He revealed that he was taking medication. The news seemed to contradict his energetic and focused work ethic.

He also told CBS’ Morley Safer that he once attempted suicide with an overdose of sleeping pills, according to CBS News.

Wallace was honored with a slew of awards. In 1991, he was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame. He also authored several books.

“Part of his rich legacy includes the Knight-Wallace Fellowship and Mike and Mary Wallace House at his alma mater, the University of Michigan,” CBS said. “Wallace’s donations support this in-residence study program begun in 1994 for professional journalists seeking to improve their knowledge in a desired field or issue.”

Wallace is survived by his wife, Mary; son Chris, host of “Fox News Sunday”; a stepdaughter, Pauline Dora; two stepsons, Eames and Angus Yates; seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren, CBS said.

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New Haven Connecticut Police Officer Lawrence Burns, Charles Kim, And Krzystof Ruszczyk Arrested After Firing Guns Outside Bar And Interfering With A Police Officer

April 6, 2012

NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – Three police officers were arrested on charges of interfering with a police officer, and two of them were charged with unlawfully discharging their guns.

The arrests followed an investigation into a claim that one or more off-duty officers illegally fired guns early Sunday outside a bar. No injuries were reported.

Police said Friday that Officers Lawrence Burns and Charles Kim were charged with interfering with a police officer, unlawful discharge of a firearm and reckless endangerment, while Officer Krzystof Ruszczyk was charged with interfering with a police officer. They were placed on administrative leave and were ordered to surrender their weapons.

The interfering charge was because the officers left the scene after they were told by a responding officer to remain, police spokesman Officer David Hartman said. The officers were not firing their guns at anyone, he said.

Police say they voluntarily surrendered and are due in court April 20 for arraignment.

It was unclear if the officers had attorneys. A message was left with the police union.

Mayor John DeStefano called the officers’ behavior “unacceptable.”

“It is not representative of the hard work and commitment of the men and women of the police department,” he said. “The police department’s action is appropriate.”

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Connecticut State Police Memo Encouraged Ticket Writing To Meet Quota Based On Tickets Written By Another State Police Barracks – Another Memo Offers Free Pizza For Shift With Most Tickets

March 31, 2012

CONNECTICUT – An eye-opening state police internal memorandum obtained by News 8 challenges state troopers in one barracks to out-perform their trooper colleagues by writing hundreds of tickets on Friday.

The memo, distributed at Troop I in Bethany and obtained exclusively by News 8, basically lays down the gauntlet and any driver on a state highway is fair game.

According to this document, starting tonight at midnight, patrols will be stepped up. The memo from Lt. Anthony Schirillo says in part;

“…we have to issue at least 60 infractions / Misdemeanors each shift for a total of 180 infractions in order to outperform both Troop F and Troop G.

“…One day Troop F issued 301 tickets. Troop G responded by issuing 345 in one day. We can do better…

“I am asking that everyone, myself included, contribute to this effort…

“NOTE if we happen to issue 350 tickets in one day that would be stellar.”

News 8 spoke at length with Lt. Paul Vance, spokesman for the Connecticut state police. In response to the allegation that this is a quota system, which the state police union alleges, Lt. Vance said no one is given a quota, this is not a game, they don’t do that, and have never done that.

Another memo obtained by News 8 says “The master sergeant and I will buy pizza for the shift with the highest total.”

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Danbury Connecticut Police Jailed Homeless Couple For Having Sex Outdoors

March 7, 2012

DANBURY, CONNECTICUT – Onlookers in Danbury got quite a show yesterday.

A homeless couple was arrested Tuesday for having sex on an outdoor pavilion stage on the Danbury Green, according to police.

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Jonathan Price, 41, and Shannon McClung, 38, were charged with breach of peace and public indecency after police received several complaints and an officer found them having sex on the stage shortly after 2 p.m.

The couple unknowingly drew an audience. Police say a bunch of women were watching the couple conduct their “business”.

Price and McClung were detained on $500 bonds.

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Man Beat Son Who Wouldn’t Watch Obama’s State Of The Union Address

February 24, 2012

STAMFORD, CONNECTICUT – A North Stamford father trying to make his pre-teenaged son listen to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech last month was arrested on a warrant Wednesday and accused of striking his son with a coffee mug when the youth would not pay attention.

Mohamed Shohan, 49, of 55 Mather Road, Stamford, was charged with third-degree assault, disorderly conduct and risk of injury to a child. He was released after posting $5,000 bond and will be arraigned on the charges at state Superior Court in Stamford Thursday.

Youth Bureau Sgt. Joseph Kennedy said police were made aware of the assault Jan. 27 when the youth was brought to Stamford Hospital for treatment of an injury to his face. When police interviewed the 11-year-old boy, he told them the two sat down at home to watch the address the day after his father recorded it, Kennedy said.

When the boy kept acting out, the father lost his temper and grabbed a coffee mug his son was holding and hit him in the face with it, causing a bruise to the bridge of his nose, it is alleged.

When interviewed, Shohan could not explain how his son was injured, police said. Police then obtained an arrest warrant for Shohan.

“The father ended up overreacting quite a bit,” Kennedy said.

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East Haven Connecticut Police Chief Leonard Gallo Quits In Disgrace For Handling Of Latino Abuse Allegations That Led To Arrest Of 4 Of His Officers

January 30, 2012

EAST HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – A police chief under fire for his handling of anti-Latino abuse allegations that led to the arrests of four officers last week is retiring from office, the mayor said Monday, describing his departure as a “selfless act” intended to help the town heal.

Leonard Gallo, chief of the East Haven Police Department, has been chastised by federal civil rights investigators for creating a hostile environment for witnesses, and his lawyer has acknowledged that last week’s indictment refers to him as an unnamed co-conspirator.

Gallo, 64, had been suspended as police chief in April 2010 after the FBI launched the criminal investigation, but he was reinstated to the post in November after his friend Mayor Joseph Maturo Jr. took office.

“His decision to retire at this time is a selfless act, designed to assist in the healing process,” said Maturo, who described Gallo as a devoted public servant who “performed admirably in both his personal and professional life.”

The four officers, who were arrested Jan. 24 by the FBI, are accused of waging a campaign against Latino residents that included beatings, false arrests and harassment of those who threatened to report misconduct. They face charges including deprivation of rights and obstruction of justice; all of them have pleaded not guilty.

Maturo is also facing heavy criticism for saying last week that he “might have tacos” as a way to do something for the Latino community in the wake of the arrests. He later apologized for the remark.

Frederick Brow, chairman of the town’s police commission, said Monday that the commission is preparing to vote Tuesday night on whether to recommend to the mayor that Gallo be fired. He said he believes Gallo should not be allowed to retire.

“It’s been a general breakdown in control in that department for quite a while and it’s time for Gallo to be terminated,” Brow said.

He estimated that in retirement, Gallo would receive a severance lump sum of $130,000 to $150,000, plus an annual pension of $27,000 to $28,000. Brow said Gallo should not be rewarded for his conduct.

If the commission voted to recommend that Gallo be fired and Maturo agreed to fire him, Gallo would still get the pension but lose the severance pay, Brow said.

The FBI also is targeting additional suspects, and state officials say they are preparing for the possibility of widespread arrests that could cripple the town’s police department.

An investigation by the U.S. Justice Department’s civil rights division, which was separate from the criminal probe, noted concerns in a December report that Gallo had helped created a hostile environment for people who cooperated with federal investigators. It said Gallo had warned staff that the Justice Department had agreed to provide him with the names of individuals who cooperated with the investigation, even though that was not the case.

The federal indictment refers to Gallo as co-conspirator 1, accusing him of blocking efforts by the police commission to investigate misconduct. Gallo’s attorney, Jon Einhorn, has denied those allegations.

Einhorn said Gallo is retiring because he does not want to be a distraction for the town, and his departure is not an admission of guilt. He said Gallo is the target of a lawsuit and could face charges in the criminal probe. He said his client will be vindicated and he does not believe criminal charges would be justified.

He said waiting until the end of the week will give the town time to settle on a retirement package for Gallo. Maturo said the retirement takes effect Friday, and a search for a new chief will begin immediately. Until a new chief is selected, Deputy Chief John Mannion will assume the duties.

More than 15,000 people have signed an online petition calling for Maturo to replace Gallo. The petition was started by Reform Immigration for America, the same group that sent hundreds of tacos to Maturo’s office to protest his remark.

State Rep. Andres Ayala Jr., D-Bridgeport, said he and members of the state Latino and Puerto Rican Affairs Commission met with Maturo on Monday morning, but he declined to elaborate. Ayala and commission members are calling for the resignations of Maturo and Gallo.

“I think it’s the mayor’s responsibility that the police department represent everyone in the community,” Ayala said.

Maturo was mayor from 1997 to 2007 and was re-elected in the fall. After taking office in November, he reinstated Gallo, saying at the time that he did not believe the abuse allegations were true. The previous mayor, April Capone Almon, placed Gallo on administrative leave in April 2010.

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East Haven Connecticut Police Officers Dennis Spaulding, David Cari and Jason Zullo and Sgt. John Miller Arrested By Feds For Harassing And Assaulting Illegal Immigrants

January 24, 2012

EAST HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – Four police officers, including the president of the local police union, were arrested Tuesday by the FBI on charges that they assaulted illegal immigrants and covered up abuses in a New Haven suburb where a federal investigation found life was made miserable for Hispanics.

The East Haven officers assaulted individuals while they were handcuffed, unlawfully searched Latino businesses, and harassed and intimidated individuals, including advocates, witnesses and other officers who tried to investigate or report misconduct or abuse the officers committed, according to the federal indictment.

Federal authorities began investigating police in 2009 in East Haven, where the federal probe last month documented a pattern of abuse. The Hispanic population had doubled in the past decade to more than 10 percent of the seaside city’s 28,000 people, but Latino business owners said rough treatment by police drove away many newcomers from Mexico and Ecuador.

The arrests were welcomed by Hispanic business owners in East Haven, including Luis Rodriguez, an immigrant from Ecuador who had complained of harassment by police at his Los Amigos Grocery store.

“They should have to pay, not with many years, but enough to make an example of them. They should not abuse their power,” Rodriguez said. “All I ever wanted was to be left in peace.”

Officers Dennis Spaulding, David Cari and Jason Zullo and Sgt. John Miller, president of the police union, are charged with conspiracy, deprivation of rights and obstruction of justice.

Federal officials say the officers denied Latino residents and their advocates the right to be free of unreasonable searches and seizures, the right to not be arrested and detained without probable cause and the right to not be arrested on false and misleading evidence.

“In simple terms, these defendants behaved like bullies with badges,” said Janice Fedarcyk, assistant director of the New York office of the FBI.

Zullo allegedly described taking joy in singling out Latinos, telling Spaulding in a 2008 exchange quoted by the indictment that he liked harassing drivers and referred to “persons who have drifted to this country on rafts made of chicken wings and are now residing” in East Haven.

Miller repeatedly slapped a man handcuffed in his car, while Spaulding threw a man to the ground and repeatedly kicked him while he was handcuffed, according to the indictment. Mayor Joseph Maturo said the four men were arrested around 6 a.m. Tuesday at their homes and at the police department.

Donald Cretella, Miller’s lawyer, said his client has been honored with awards and risked his life in shootouts.

“John Miller is a hero in East Haven,” he said. “He’s decorated. He’s a wonderful family man. Hopefully, we’ll clear his name.”

Frank Riccio Jr., Spaulding’s attorney, said his client is an exemplary police officer.

“At this early stage it’s our position Mr. Spaulding is not guilty of the charges. He’s been nothing but an exemplary police officer. That’s why this is shocking.”

It wasn’t immediately clear who was representing Cari and Zullo.

The indictment says Miller reported to a police department leader described as a co-conspirator who blocked efforts by the police commission to investigate Miller’s misconduct. That refers to Chief Leonard Gallo, according to his attorney, Jon Einhorn, who denied that Gallo blocked the investigation.

“It’s unfair that he is mentioned in this regard when he isn’t even indicted,” Einhorn said.

The indictment also accuses unnamed union leaders of intimidation and interference to protect the officers, including a depiction of a rat posted on a bulletin board and a cartoon saying “You know what we do with snitches?” in a police locker room.

The U.S. attorney for Connecticut, David Fein, said the investigation is still looking into other incidents and individuals. Officials said no more arrests were expected Tuesday.

Maturo, a Republican who took office Nov. 19, recently reinstated Gallo as police chief. Gallo had been on paid administrative leave since federal authorities began investigating in 2010. Maturo said he backs the police.

“I stand behind the police department,” he said. “We have a great police department.”

The U.S. Department of Justice, which has pledged to reach out to the police department to work on reforms, said last month that the department engaged in a pattern of discrimination against Latino residents. Investigators said their probe was complicated by efforts to interfere with witnesses and by police silence.

Nearly half or a third of the drivers pulled over by certain officers were Latino, and the number of Latinos pulled over by certain squads was “extraordinarily high,” said Roy Austin Jr., deputy assistant attorney general for the civil rights division. Latinos who were stopped for minor violations were subjected to harsher punishments, such as arrest or vehicle towing, than were non-Latinos.

The East Haven Police Department of some 50 officers has come under scrutiny previously for civil rights issues. A federal jury ruled in 2003 that a white officer used excessive force and violated the rights of a black man he fatally shot after a chase.

Some officers involved in that case kept their jobs and were promoted, and there was no evidence that anyone received training to prevent similar confrontations in the future, Austin said.

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All Of A Sudden Privacy Is A Concern When Its Time For Police Officers DNA To Be Sampled And Stored

October 17, 2011

HARTFORD, CONNECTICT — When police in southern Louisiana were investigating the deaths of eight women in 2009, the sophistication of the crimes set off rumors that the serial killer was a police officer – speculation that became so pervasive that officials ordered DNA testing of law enforcement personnel to rule it out.

All local officers agreed to the testing and were eliminated as suspects, but the killer remains at large, said Jefferson Davis Parish Sheriff Ricky Edwards.

Having officers’ DNA samples on file is important for saving time in investigations and fending off doubt about evidence at trials because it allows authorities to identify unknown genetic material found at crime scenes, Edwards and other police and crime lab officials say.

Police in other parts of the country, however, are not as willing to hand over their DNA. Rank-and-file police from Connecticut to Chicago to Los Angeles have opposed what some experts say is a slowly emerging trend in the U.S. to collect officers’ DNA.

“From a civil liberties standpoint, there are a lot of red flags,” said Connecticut Trooper Steven Rief, former president of the state police union.

“It’s not that the law enforcement officers are opposed to giving up their DNA,” he said. “You need to have safeguards in place. Something that can tell you … something intimate about someone needs to be treated with the utmost care.”

Rief and officers in other states say their concerns include management using the DNA information to see if employees are predisposed to diseases and to predict workers’ future health problems. The rank-and-file also don’t want their DNA placed onto a national database that holds criminals’ genetic data.

Connecticut state police officials tried to get the legislature to approve a law requiring officers to provide DNA samples in 2009, but the bill died during the session after Rief and others spoke out against it at a public hearing at the Capitol.

In Chicago, police officers rebelled with a work slowdown in 2008 because of resentment toward their new chief over several issues, including a new policy to collect DNA from officers working at crime scenes.

In a still-unresolved dispute in Los Angeles, the police union and top brass have traded salvos over a requirement that officers give DNA samples in shootings involving police and other use-of-force incidents. Union leaders say management won’t restrict how the DNA information is used and stored, and the union cautioned officers in 2009 about potential privacy and misuse problems.

The union, the Los Angeles Police Protective League, has been waiting for the department to force an officer to provide his or her DNA, which it hasn’t done yet, so it can challenge the policy in court, a union spokesman said.

A small number of police departments across the country have limited policies on collecting officers’ DNA. New York and Las Vegas, for example, require samples from crime scene investigators.

Louisiana appears to be the only state with a law requiring officers to provide genetic samples. The law was enacted in 2003 and applies only to officers hired on or after Aug. 15 of that year.

During the investigation of the serial killings in Jefferson Davis Parish, about 70 miles east of the Texas line, Edwards said officers in his agency and the Jennings Police Department who were hired before the DNA law took effect voluntarily gave samples of their DNA.

“I think it’s a good tool that we’re utilizing,” Edwards said. “I see it as potentially going all the way across the country.

“I realize that there may be some privacy concerns,” he said. “We should be leaders in saying we don’t have a problem doing it.”

Police in other parts of the world, including the United Kingdom and Australia, have been keeping officers’ DNA on file for several years. The U.K. is also known for starting the world’s first government DNA database of criminal suspects in 1995. The U.S. followed suit and now has the world’s largest DNA database of criminals with 10 million profiles.

Some experts say policies requiring police officers’ to give samples of their DNA have been slower to catch on in the U.S. because police unions have more power here.

Lisa Hurst, a senior consultant with the lobbying firm of Gordon Thomas Honeywell, said that as DNA technology advances, it’s more important that officers’ DNA is on file to eliminate unknown samples found at crime scenes.

“Today’s tests pick up a high amount of samples,” said Hurst, whose firm lobbies for the DNA industry and advises governments on DNA legislation. “They need to make sure that this unknown (DNA) profile isn’t from a detective or patrol guy who accidentally sneezed while walking through the room.”

It’s especially important, she said, for eliminating reasonable doubt at criminal trials.

“If there’s one unknown sample at the scene, the jury may give the defendant the benefit of the doubt,” Hurst said.

Unknown DNA samples have caused problems in some criminal investigations, especially in the case of the so-called “phantom killer” in Europe. DNA from that woman was found at the scenes of about 40 crimes in Germany, Austria and France in recent years, ranging from burglaries to the shooting of a policewoman.

But the search for the woman ended with an embarrassing discovery in 2009: the DNA came from an innocent worker at a company that made the cotton swabs used to collect evidence.

Rief, the Connecticut trooper, said that while collecting DNA can be a good thing for criminal investigations, it also presents a host of problems.

“If we’re just having a philosophical discussion about solving crimes and collecting DNA, why not collect DNA from everybody when they’re born?” he said. “But I don’t think we’re ready to have that discussion as a society.”

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Former Bergin Correctional Institution Deputy Warden Neal Kearney Sentenced To 30 Months In Connecticut Prison After Sexually Abusing A Male Inmate For Years

October 9, 2011

VERNON, CONNECTICUT –  A former deputy warden at a Connecticut prison has been sentenced to 30 months in prison for sexually assaulting an inmate in 2008.

Fifty-year-old Neal Kearney of Bloomfield, who also was once the cheerleading coach at the University of Connecticut, had pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree sexual assault last month.

The inmate told police that Kearney abused him for years at the Bergin Correctional Institution in Mansfield and coerced him into having sex after he was released from prison. Officials say the inmate had hidden evidence in the case in the prison, included a rubber glove containing Kearney’s DNA.

Kearney also was ordered to register as a sex offender after he is released.

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Three TSA Agents, One Westchester County New York Police Officer, And Florida State Trooper Arrested During Drug Bust

September 13, 2011

STAMFORD, CONNECTICUT – Three Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents, along with two law enforcement officers, were arrested for conspiring to ship tens of thousands of oxycodone pills from Florida to New York and Connecticut, officials said Tuesday.

The TSA agents, based at airports in Florida and New York, as well as a Westchester County police officer and a Florida state trooper allegedly received cash payments to help transport the highly addictive painkillers, The Hartford Courant reported.

Some of the officers also allegedly helped ship the profits from the illicit drug sales back to Florida, the paper reported, citing federal prosecutors in Connecticut.

The TSA said in a statement obtained by FOX News Channel that it “holds its security officers to the highest professional and ethical standards and has a zero-tolerance policy for criminal activity in the workplace.”

It added, “The actions of a few individuals in no way reflect on the outstanding job our more than 50,000 security officers do every day to ensure the security of the traveling public.”

Further details about the scheme were expected to be released at an afternoon press conference in Stamford, Conn.

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New London Connecticut Pissed Away $11 Million On Fountain, Shuts It Down After People Pissed In It

June 7, 2011

NEW LONDON, CONNECTICUT – The city turned off the water at the new whale tail fountain over the weekend after someone reportedly defecated in the water.

“People are using the tail as a latrine,” Evelyn Louziotis said. “It’s an $11 million bathroom.”

“It’s sad,” City Councilor Michael Buscetto III said during Monday’s City Council meeting. “It’s two steps forward and three steps backward. There are people in the city who don’t care, and they need to be dealt with.”

Buscetto said since water started flowing in the whale fountain last month, police and fire officials have been called for people urinating, defecating and washing themselves off in the fountain water. He said some people who have cut themselves have also used the fountain to rinse off blood.

“I’m concerned with the sanitary aspect of the water,” Buscetto said, adding that there needs to be more supervision at the Parade. He said city officials know who is abusing the fountain and the Parade area.

“Let’s call them frequent flyers,” he said, referring to a group of people who routinely hang out on the benches on the Parade.

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Groton Connecticut Police Officer Kills Himself In Police Station

June 6, 2011

GROTON, CONNECTICUT – A police officer who was found dead inside the Groton City Police Department Monday morning killed himself, officials said.

The officer, whose name was not released, was found at the department at 295 Meridian St. around 8:30 a.m. by a fellow officer, according to a release from Chief Bruno L. Giulini.

The officer killed himself, said State Police Lt. J. Paul Vance.

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Headed For Connecticut State Prison: Former Bergin Deputy Prison Warden Neal Kearney Pleads Guilty After Sex With Prisoner

June 6, 2011

VERNON, CONNECTICUT – A former deputy prison warden has pleaded guilty to second-degree sexual assault for having sex with a prisoner.

Neal Kearney, 50, of Bloomfield, pleaded guilty Wednesday, the day jury selection was to begin for his trial in Superior Court in Rockville.

Under the terms of the plea agreement, Kearney will serve 30 months in prison and six years of special parole, and will be on the state sex offender registry for 10 years.

Kearney, who also was a cheerleading coach at the University of Connecticut, had turned down a plea offer from prosecutor Elizabeth Leaming in February.

The prisoner involved told state police that he met Kearney in 1996 or 1997, when he was at MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution in Suffield and Kearney was a counselor.

According to the warrant for Kearney’s arrest, the two engaged in sex in Kearney’s office at the Bergin Correctional Institution in Mansfield, where Kearney had been appointed deputy warden. Kearney told the prisoner that he had the man transferred to Bergin, according to the warrant.

The two also had sex when the man was out of prison, at Kearney’s condo and at the Erotic Zone store in Hartford, the warrant says. The two had contact for several years.

The prisoner disclosed the abuse by Kearney to his probation officer, who notified correction authorities and state police.

The prisoner also had proof. He had saved some of Kearny’s semen in a rubber glove that he hid in a mop closet at Bergin. Authorities recovered the glove from the closet, which was a short distance from Kearney’s office.

“I felt like I could not tell him ‘no’ because he had such power over me and he would keep me in prison if I did not do it,” the prisoner told state police.

Sentencing is scheduled for July 13.

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East Haven Connecticut Ditches Its Only Police Dog Amid Budget Cuts

June 6, 2011

EAST HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – The East Haven Police Department is losing its one police dog to budget cuts.

Sgt. John Miller, the police union president, tells the New Haven Register that acting Chief Gaetano Nappi decided to retire the 5-year-old German shepherd named Paro after the town council cut the department’s budget.

Paro has been working with Officer Dave Cari, who was informed by letter Thursday that the K-9 program was being eliminated and that he could choose to have Paro retire as his pet.

Nappi has declined to comment on the decision.

Miller says it would cost about $3,500 a year to keep Paro in service.

Cari has been on disability since Dec. 30, when he broke three ribs, but is preparing to return to active duty.

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Former Middletown Connecticut Police Officer Brian Flaherty Arrested For Fourth Time In Less Than A Month – Charged With Threatening

May 9, 2011

MIDDLETOWN, CONNECTICUT — A former city police officer was arrested on threatening charges after a warrant was served Monday.

Brian Flaherty, 51, 71 Glendale Ave., was charged with three counts of second-degree threatening, his fourth arrest in less than a month. Specific details are not known as the arrest warrant is currently unavailable, police said.

Flaherty, a former Middletown police officer who left the force about six years ago, was first arrested on April 10 following an argument with a woman. Police met with the alleged victim and her family at the Westfield Fire Department on East Street. She was visibly upset, police said, and had fresh scratches and bruising on her face.

She claimed Flaherty had been assaulting her for 24 hours and had threatened to kill her. She was taken to Middlesex Hospital for injuries related to the reported attack.

Flaherty, who also had scratches on his face, would later tell police that he and his wife had been hitting each other and that he was trying to prevent her from buying drugs and keep her at home. Flaherty said he acted in self defense, according to the arrest report.

Flaherty also punched the woman’s father in the face after he came to the home and tried to break up the fight, police said. The woman’s father allegedly punched Flaherty and was charged with breach of peace.

Flaherty reportedly brandished a baseball bat during the argument, but family members were able to restrain him, police said.

While at police headquarters, Flaherty was uncooperative, police said. He clenched his fists, positioned himself in a fighting stance and later damaged the camera in his holding cell.

Flaherty was taken to Middlesex Hospital after telling police he was having a heart attack. Medical officials evaluated the suspect and released him back to police headquarters after determining he did not suffer from a heart attack.

The suspect was arrested again a short time later after returning to police headquarters to retrieve items left there after his earlier arrest.

While in the lobby he became unruly, police said, and was charged with disorderly conduct.

While in the interview holding cell, Flaherty allegedly tried to hang himself with his belt, police said.

Flaherty allegedly spit at officers when they tried to help him. Hunter’s Ambulance was called to transport Flaherty to Middlesex Hospital for a police-ordered examination. He allegedly kicked an EMT in the chest and chin, police said.

Flaherty would later tell hospital staff that he would kill himself if he had to spend the night in a jail cell, according to the arrest report.

He was charged with two counts of assault on a police officer.

Flaherty is also facing multiple charges, including third-degree assault, threatening and assault on a police officer after his initial arrest.

He is currently free on $35,000 in bonds and will return to Middletown Superior Court May 11.

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Connecticut Legislator Zeke Zalaski Switches License Plates To Avoid Angry Taxpayers

April 27, 2011

CONNECTICUT – How much are legislators feeling the pressure of voting on a budget that raises taxes during an economic crisis?

Rep. Zeke Zalaski, a Democrat from Southington, has taken the legislative plates off his car because of complaints he gets about taxes when he fills up with gas, he told NBC Connecticut Wednesday.

He wants to see Gov. Dannel Malloy, also a Democrat, to raise taxes only on the wealthy, something Malloy has said he will try not to do. Right now, Malloy’s budget includes increases in the income tax, as well as tax hikes on cigarettes, alcohol and gasoline.

“There are quite a few votes that are objecting to some of the things in the budget,” said Zalaski, “and I think that he’s willing to make some changes. He hasn’t drawn a line in the sand on everything yet.”

Zalaski signed a letter with 65 of the 99 House Democrats earlier this month complaining about the budget.

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Former Vernon Connecticut Police Officer John Troland Arrested For Second Time In Recent Months After His Release From Prison

March 26, 2011

WATERFORD, CONNECTICUT – A former police officer who served 18 months in prison for sharing confidential information about investigations with the targets of those investigations was charged Wednesday with violating the terms of his probation.

John Troland, 35, has been arrested twice by the Waterford police department in recent months. He was charged in connection with a domestic disturbance in January and for fifth-degree larceny in February. People on probation can face a violation of probation charge if they are arrested for another crime.

Troland turned himself in Wednesday afternoon at Vernon police headquarters and was released after posting $25,000 bail.

Waterford police charged Troland with fifth-degree larceny Feb. 2 after he allegedly stole shrubbery. He was released on $25,000 bail. He was arrested Jan. 31 on charges of disorderly conduct and criminal violation of a restraining order. He posted $5,000 bail. Both cases are pending in Superior Court in New London.

Troland was a Vernon officer for seven years. He resigned his position after his arrest in July 2005. He pleaded guilty in September 2006 to one count of interfering with an officer and computer crime. The charges Troland faced were reduced as part of a plea agreement.
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At the time of Troland’s guilty plea, Tolland State’s Attorney Matthew Gedansky said it was lucky that no narcotics investigators or informants who aided them were injured as a result of Troland’s conduct.

Troland disclosed the identities of narcotics officers and informants to his then-girlfriend, Sherri Lane-Cheema. Lane-Cheema and her relatives then shared the information with the targets of narcotic investigations on at least seven occasions, Gedansky said.

Troland also illegally used a law enforcement database to check on people, including potential girlfriends and former boyfriends of Lane-Cheema, police said.

Vernon police investigated and built the case against Troland.

In sentencing Troland, Rockville Superior Court Judge Terence A. Sullivan told Troland he should have known that people involved with drugs have a capacity for violence and that the information he disclosed could have resulted in the killing of a colleague or informant.

“You placed some of your fellow officers in unnecessary danger because of that,” Sullivan said. He also gave the Vernon police department a black eye, the judge said.

Troland said at his sentencing that he made bad decisions, but said he did not share confidential information with Lane-Cheema. Instead, he suggested, she overheard things “and put two and two together.”

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“Officer Of The Year” – Stamford Connecticut Police Officer Paul Mabey Arrested After Showing Female Motorist A Picture of His Penis

June 4, 2010

STAMFORD, CONNECTICUT – A Connecticut police officer has been arrested on a misdemeanor charge for allegedly showing a female motorist a cell phone picture of his genitals during a traffic stop.

Stamford Officer Paul Mabey, who was named the city’s “Officer of the Year” in 2006, was charged with disorderly conduct Wednesday and released on a promise to appear in Superior Court at a later date. He was suspended with pay on Friday.

Police say a 26-year-old Norwalk woman came forward last week with allegations that Mabey made inappropriate passes at her and showed her the cell phone picture during a traffic stop on May 26.

The 40-year-old Mabey couldn’t be reached for comment Thursday. There’s no phone listing for him. The 14-year police veteran is married with a baby.

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Connecticut Runs Out Of Money, Plans To Close Courthouses, State Parks, And Legalize Keno

May 30, 2009

HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT – Gov. M. Jodi Rell offered a supplemental budget Thursday that would cut $1.3 billion in spending over two years, close some courthouses and state parks, consolidate agencies and legalize Keno gambling to balance the state’s two-year budget.

The new budget would require no new taxes or cuts in education aid for municipalities and would reduce spending by 1.4 percent below the level for the current fiscal year.

The Keno games, which would be run by the state’s lottery corporation, would generate an estimated $60 million per year in new state revenue if Connecticut joins neighboring New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island in legalizing the electronic gambling game.

Rell’s budget proposes closing courthouses in Manchester, Norwalk, Putnam and Derby. Those would be in addition to her earlier call to close courthouses in Meriden and Bristol.

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The supplemental budget represents additional cuts beyond the ones that Rell offered in February, and is designed to combat a plan by Democratic legislators to raise taxes by more than $3 billion over two years.

In contrast, Rell says her budget requires no new taxes or tax increases, particularly in the state income tax. If the state can avoid tax increases, it will have a competitive advantage when the recession ends, she said.

“The top income tax in New York and New Jersey is nearly 9 percent, and Rhode Island’s is just under 10 percent, while Connecticut’s top rate is still 5 percent,” Rell said. “If we hold the line on taxes and make the tough decisions now, we will make our state infinitely more affordable for business and infinitely more appealing for investment.”

Democrats expressed immediate skepticism, saying they believe that the state would still have a budget deficit even with the additional cuts.

Rep. John Geragosian, a New Britain Democrat who co-chairs the legislature’s budget-writing committee, said he felt blind-sided by the cuts because he had been negotiating with the governor’s office. The negotiations ended unexpectedly Wednesday after Rell objected to a Democratic amendment on how the state’s budget deficit is projected.

“We’re not going to make irresponsible cuts on the backs of the poorest in Connecticut” without also asking for tax increases on the wealthiest, Geragosian said.

Rell intends to save $1 million per year by eliminating 200 summer jobs in state parks. However, the state’s biggest shoreline parks — like Hammonasset in Madison and Sherwood Island in Westport — will remain open. Even without staffing, some state parks will remain open if lifeguards are not necessary. Putnam Park in Redding, for example, will remain open even without staffing, and any closings would be on a case-by-case basis.

“Many inland state parks will be closed and gated with minimum maintenance performed,” the budget summary said. “Park naturalist and environmental education programs for inland parks will be suspended. Six inland freshwater, state-operated boat launches will be closed with the closure of associated state parks.”

Among the cuts, Rell is reducing Medicaid rates for nursing homes by 1 percent. She will also reduce payments to other Medicaid providers by the same 1 percent as of the new fiscal year on July 1.

After scrutinizing the budget for months, Geragosian said many of the cuts are simply not acceptable.

“Respectfully, I’ve spent about 100 times more on the governor’s budget than she has,” Geragosian said. “It’s almost June 1, and now we’re hearing about Keno. It doesn’t sound like a real solution.”

House Speaker Christopher Donovan said his “first blush” reaction was that Rell’s proposals “really tend to hurt those who are hurt most in our recession. If you’re looking at those who are affected by the recession — those who are looking for jobs, those who are looking to get new skills, those who are losing health care — you are affected adversely by her proposals. … We’re disappointed in that, and we certainly see our role as fighting to protect the citizens of our state from some of these devastating cuts.”

“We’re going to keep working,” Donovan said. “We would like to have a budget done by next week,” when the legislative session is scheduled to end. “But, given the fact that we just got these today, it’s going to make it hard.”

Donovan said Rell’s proposals highlight “the difference between the Democrats and Republicans. … The Democratic proposal largely looked at those with higher incomes in order to reach some of the gaps in the budget, plus we had some cuts that were out there, as well. The governor has left those upper-income people in the state unscathed. … Those on the lower end are taking a big hit.”

Geragosian said Rell “can’t get off saying she has a no-tax budget” with her proposal, because she wants “hundreds of millions of dollars in [increased] fees. … If you ride a bus in this state … if you ride a train in this state, she’s raising your taxes.”

Nonprofit agencies were not pleased with the cuts.

“The latest budget proposal from Gov. Rell would do severe damage to community providers and constituents who require provider services,” said Terry Edelstein, CEO of an association of nonprofits. “It starts by cutting annual funding by 1 percent in each of the next two years. These cuts will have a direct impact on the ability of providers to deliver services to people with mental illness, developmental disabilities and substance-use disorders.”

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Essex Connecticut Firefighters Lose Fire Truck

May 24, 2009

ESSEX, CONNECTICUT – A fire truck that had been stolen from the Essex Fire Department has been recovered, said officials Sunday morning.

Essex fire officials said they found the truck Sunday morning with the help of state and local police.

Firefighters say someone broke into a garage at the fire station on Saturday between 3 and 4 a.m. and stole the vehicle.

Police said they aren’t releasing any details of the investigation at this time because it is ongoing.

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Connecticut’s High Tech Plan To Track Sex Offenders Crashes And Burns At Taxpayer Expense

April 30, 2009

CONNECTICUT – Tracking bracelets were supposed to make Southbury residents feel safe. Instead, they are sending the wrong signal – maybe even no signal at all.

In September, the GPS tracking system came under fire when the ankle bracelet worn by David Pollitt, a convicted serial rapist, malfunctioned. Residents who live in Pollitt’s Southbury neighborhood say the bracelets can’t be trusted.

“I don’t feel comfortable with it. It’s not reliable,” Cathy Baisch of Southbury said.

“There are so many cloaking devices and ways to run interference, not to mention the problems with the device’s construction,” said Matt Devan of Prospect.

In the state, 81 sex offenders are equipped with GPS monitoring bracelets like Pollitt’s. Neither the state, nor the company that makes them keeps count of the number of times they malfunction.

The executive director of administrative services for the judicial branch said the technology does “glitch” from time to time.

“Frankly, most of them are false alarms, things like low battery, GPS unit out of position, things like that,” said Thomas Siconolfi.

Earlier this month, New Haven police spent hours searching the Long Island Sound after a jogger found an electronic monitoring bracelet floating in the water. Police said the parolee it belonged to was never found.

Siconolfi said the bracelets use tamper-resistant technology, but will not alarm if the offender is in a dead zone.

Another problem the state is dealing with is response time. Siconolfi said it takes an average of 15 to 20 minutes for police to respond to any GPS alerts — and that’s only if the bracelet has a cell signal to communicate the violation. Some lawmakers are outraged.

“It’s absolutely too much time, because by the time the system responds to the violation of this type, the damage has been done and people have been hurt for life,” Rep. Demetrious Giannaros said.

There’s also concern when it comes to monitoring the offenders. Right now, there are no probation officers on the clock on weekends, meaning a call from the vendor to police reporting an alert could go answered.

“This is the first I’m hearing about this. It’s totally unacceptable,” Giannaros said.

Those in charge of the program wanted to fix the problem by opening a monitoring center here in Connecticut.

Right now, most offenders are monitored by employees in Florida. It carried a price tag of $400,000 and at last check, was put on hold indefinitely.

Appeared Here


Connecticut’s High Tech Plan To Track Sex Offenders Crashes And Burns At Taxpayer Expense

April 30, 2009

CONNECTICUT – Tracking bracelets were supposed to make Southbury residents feel safe. Instead, they are sending the wrong signal – maybe even no signal at all.

In September, the GPS tracking system came under fire when the ankle bracelet worn by David Pollitt, a convicted serial rapist, malfunctioned. Residents who live in Pollitt’s Southbury neighborhood say the bracelets can’t be trusted.

“I don’t feel comfortable with it. It’s not reliable,” Cathy Baisch of Southbury said.

“There are so many cloaking devices and ways to run interference, not to mention the problems with the device’s construction,” said Matt Devan of Prospect.

In the state, 81 sex offenders are equipped with GPS monitoring bracelets like Pollitt’s. Neither the state, nor the company that makes them keeps count of the number of times they malfunction.

The executive director of administrative services for the judicial branch said the technology does “glitch” from time to time.

“Frankly, most of them are false alarms, things like low battery, GPS unit out of position, things like that,” said Thomas Siconolfi.

Earlier this month, New Haven police spent hours searching the Long Island Sound after a jogger found an electronic monitoring bracelet floating in the water. Police said the parolee it belonged to was never found.

Siconolfi said the bracelets use tamper-resistant technology, but will not alarm if the offender is in a dead zone.

Another problem the state is dealing with is response time. Siconolfi said it takes an average of 15 to 20 minutes for police to respond to any GPS alerts — and that’s only if the bracelet has a cell signal to communicate the violation. Some lawmakers are outraged.

“It’s absolutely too much time, because by the time the system responds to the violation of this type, the damage has been done and people have been hurt for life,” Rep. Demetrious Giannaros said.

There’s also concern when it comes to monitoring the offenders. Right now, there are no probation officers on the clock on weekends, meaning a call from the vendor to police reporting an alert could go answered.

“This is the first I’m hearing about this. It’s totally unacceptable,” Giannaros said.

Those in charge of the program wanted to fix the problem by opening a monitoring center here in Connecticut.

Right now, most offenders are monitored by employees in Florida. It carried a price tag of $400,000 and at last check, was put on hold indefinitely.

Appeared Here


Judges Gone Wild: Crazed Connecticut Supreme Court Upholds Drunk Driving Conviction Of Man Who Wasn’t Even Driving

March 25, 2009

CONNECTICUT – Drunken people don’t actually have to drive their cars to be charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the state Supreme Court ruled Monday.

The court’s 5-0 ruling came in the case of Michael Cyr, who was arrested in Manchester in February 2005 in a parking lot near a bar. He had started his car remotely and then sat in the driver’s seat intoxicated, but never put the key into the ignition and didn’t drive anywhere.

Justices ordered the state Appellate Court, which had thrown out Cyr’s conviction, to reinstate it and send the case back to Superior Court in Manchester for sentencing.

Cyr, 50, of Andover, faces a year in prison followed by three years of probation. He pleaded no contest after a judge rejected his motions to dismiss the case. It’s his third conviction for drunken driving, following others in 1997 and 1998.

“In starting the engine of his vehicle remotely then getting behind the steering wheel, the defendant clearly undertook the first act in a sequence of steps necessary to set in motion the motive power of a vehicle,” Chief Justice Chase Rogers wrote in the opinion.

The “motive power” phrase comes from a 1939 Connecticut court decision, cited by the Supreme Court on Monday, that defines what constitutes “operating” a motor vehicle.

Rogers wrote that Cyr’s case was the latest in a series that have raised questions about the definition of operating a vehicle under Connecticut’s drunken-driving laws.

A message seeking comment was left for Cyr at his home.

His wife, Jessica, said that she was overwhelmed by the court ruling. The couple live with her two children, aged 12 and 13, from her previous marriage, and she was laid off from her job.

“I don’t know what I’m going to do,” she said in a phone interview as she cried. “I’ve got no job. My husband won’t be able to work. If I turn my heat on, the boiler leaks. … I can’t believe it.”

Jessica Cyr said that she knows the dangers of drunken driving, because both she and her mother were in accidents in which the other drivers were intoxicated. She said that she has had neck pain, while her mother suffered a traumatic brain injury and was blinded.

The Cyrs could appeal Monday’s decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, but Jessica Cyr said that’s not likely because they couldn’t afford it.

Steven Tomeo, Michael Cyr’s lawyer, said that the court has set a bad precedent.

“It sounds like they’re saying if you’re under the influence, if you’re impaired, you have no right to go into the car in the driver’s side and if you do, you do so under you’re own peril with the chance of being charged with operating under the influence,” Tomeo said. “I just would like them to stick with the facts.”

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Judges Gone Wild: Crazed Connecticut Supreme Court Upholds Drunk Driving Conviction Of Man Who Wasn’t Even Driving

March 24, 2009

CONNECTICUT – Drunken people don’t actually have to drive their cars to be charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the state Supreme Court ruled Monday.

The court’s 5-0 ruling came in the case of Michael Cyr, who was arrested in Manchester in February 2005 in a parking lot near a bar. He had started his car remotely and then sat in the driver’s seat intoxicated, but never put the key into the ignition and didn’t drive anywhere.

Justices ordered the state Appellate Court, which had thrown out Cyr’s conviction, to reinstate it and send the case back to Superior Court in Manchester for sentencing.

Cyr, 50, of Andover, faces a year in prison followed by three years of probation. He pleaded no contest after a judge rejected his motions to dismiss the case. It’s his third conviction for drunken driving, following others in 1997 and 1998.

“In starting the engine of his vehicle remotely then getting behind the steering wheel, the defendant clearly undertook the first act in a sequence of steps necessary to set in motion the motive power of a vehicle,” Chief Justice Chase Rogers wrote in the opinion.

The “motive power” phrase comes from a 1939 Connecticut court decision, cited by the Supreme Court on Monday, that defines what constitutes “operating” a motor vehicle.

Rogers wrote that Cyr’s case was the latest in a series that have raised questions about the definition of operating a vehicle under Connecticut’s drunken-driving laws.

A message seeking comment was left for Cyr at his home.

His wife, Jessica, said that she was overwhelmed by the court ruling. The couple live with her two children, aged 12 and 13, from her previous marriage, and she was laid off from her job.

“I don’t know what I’m going to do,” she said in a phone interview as she cried. “I’ve got no job. My husband won’t be able to work. If I turn my heat on, the boiler leaks. … I can’t believe it.”

Jessica Cyr said that she knows the dangers of drunken driving, because both she and her mother were in accidents in which the other drivers were intoxicated. She said that she has had neck pain, while her mother suffered a traumatic brain injury and was blinded.

The Cyrs could appeal Monday’s decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, but Jessica Cyr said that’s not likely because they couldn’t afford it.

Steven Tomeo, Michael Cyr’s lawyer, said that the court has set a bad precedent.

“It sounds like they’re saying if you’re under the influence, if you’re impaired, you have no right to go into the car in the driver’s side and if you do, you do so under you’re own peril with the chance of being charged with operating under the influence,” Tomeo said. “I just would like them to stick with the facts.”

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Crazed Central Connecticut State University Police Investigate Student Who Avocated Carrying Guns On Campus In Oral Presentation

February 28, 2009

CRAZY IN CONNECTICUT – For CCSU student John Wahlberg, a class presentation on campus violence turned into a confrontation with the campus police due to a complaint by the professor.

On October 3, 2008, Wahlberg and two other classmates prepared to give an oral presentation for a Communication 140 class that was required to discuss a “relevant issue in the media”. Wahlberg and his group chose to discuss school violence due to recent events such as the Virginia Tech shootings that occurred in 2007.

Shortly after his professor, Paula Anderson, filed a complaint with the CCSU Police against her student. During the presentation Wahlberg made the point that if students were permitted to conceal carry guns on campus, the violence could have been stopped earlier in many of these cases. He also touched on the controversial idea of free gun zones on college campuses.

That night at work, Wahlberg received a message stating that the campus police “requested his presence”. Upon entering the police station, the officers began to list off firearms that were registered under his name, and questioned him about where he kept them.

They told Wahlberg that they had received a complaint from his professor that his presentation was making students feel “scared and uncomfortable”.

“I was a bit nervous when I walked into the police station,” Wahlberg said, “but I felt a general sense of disbelief once the officer actually began to list the firearms registered in my name. I was never worried however, because as a law-abiding gun owner, I have a thorough understanding of state gun laws as well as unwavering safety practices.”

Professor Anderson refused to comment directly on the situation and deferred further comment.

“It is also my responsibility as a teacher to protect the well being of our students, and the campus community at all times,” she wrote in a statement submitted to The Recorder. “As such, when deemed necessary because of any perceived risks, I seek guidance and consultation from the Chair of my Department, the Dean and any relevant University officials.”

Wahlberg believes that her complaint was filed without good reason.

“I don’t think that Professor Anderson was justified in calling the CCSU police over a clearly nonthreatening matter. Although the topic of discussion may have made a few individuals uncomfortable, there was no need to label me as a threat,” Wahlberg said in response. “The actions of Professor Anderson made me so uncomfortable, that I didn’t attend several classes. The only appropriate action taken by the Professor was to excuse my absences.”

The university police were unavailable for comment.

“If you can’t talk about the Second Amendment, what happened to the First Amendment?” asked Sara Adler, president of the Riflery and Marksmanship club on campus. “After all, a university campus is a place for the free and open exchange of ideas.”

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Crazed Central Connecticut State University Police Investigate Student Who Avocated Carrying Guns On Campus In Oral Presentation

February 28, 2009

CRAZY IN CONNECTICUT – For CCSU student John Wahlberg, a class presentation on campus violence turned into a confrontation with the campus police due to a complaint by the professor.

On October 3, 2008, Wahlberg and two other classmates prepared to give an oral presentation for a Communication 140 class that was required to discuss a “relevant issue in the media”. Wahlberg and his group chose to discuss school violence due to recent events such as the Virginia Tech shootings that occurred in 2007.

Shortly after his professor, Paula Anderson, filed a complaint with the CCSU Police against her student. During the presentation Wahlberg made the point that if students were permitted to conceal carry guns on campus, the violence could have been stopped earlier in many of these cases. He also touched on the controversial idea of free gun zones on college campuses.

That night at work, Wahlberg received a message stating that the campus police “requested his presence”. Upon entering the police station, the officers began to list off firearms that were registered under his name, and questioned him about where he kept them.

They told Wahlberg that they had received a complaint from his professor that his presentation was making students feel “scared and uncomfortable”.

“I was a bit nervous when I walked into the police station,” Wahlberg said, “but I felt a general sense of disbelief once the officer actually began to list the firearms registered in my name. I was never worried however, because as a law-abiding gun owner, I have a thorough understanding of state gun laws as well as unwavering safety practices.”

Professor Anderson refused to comment directly on the situation and deferred further comment.

“It is also my responsibility as a teacher to protect the well being of our students, and the campus community at all times,” she wrote in a statement submitted to The Recorder. “As such, when deemed necessary because of any perceived risks, I seek guidance and consultation from the Chair of my Department, the Dean and any relevant University officials.”

Wahlberg believes that her complaint was filed without good reason.

“I don’t think that Professor Anderson was justified in calling the CCSU police over a clearly nonthreatening matter. Although the topic of discussion may have made a few individuals uncomfortable, there was no need to label me as a threat,” Wahlberg said in response. “The actions of Professor Anderson made me so uncomfortable, that I didn’t attend several classes. The only appropriate action taken by the Professor was to excuse my absences.”

The university police were unavailable for comment.

“If you can’t talk about the Second Amendment, what happened to the First Amendment?” asked Sara Adler, president of the Riflery and Marksmanship club on campus. “After all, a university campus is a place for the free and open exchange of ideas.”

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Veteran New Haven Connecticut Police Officer Sam Streater Suspended After Being Caught With A Whore In His Car

December 1, 2008

NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – New Haven Police Chief James Lewis has suspended an officer for allegedly patronizing a prostitute while off-duty. Officer Sam Streater is a 17-year veteran assigned to the patrol division. Investigators say other officers found Streater with a suspected prostitute in his personal vehicle in late September. The chief has made cutting down on prostitution a major priority for the department. The police union president is taking issue with how the department’s internal affairs unit handled the case. He says officers can’t be forced to give statements for off-duty conduct. City spokeswoman Jessica Mayorga told the New Haven Register of the investigation, “We let the process work, and the process works.” She added, “The consequence is balanced with the nature of the incident, and we trust the process.

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Veteran New Haven Connecticut Police Officer Sam Streater Suspended After Being Caught With A Whore In His Car

December 1, 2008

NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – New Haven Police Chief James Lewis has suspended an officer for allegedly patronizing a prostitute while off-duty. Officer Sam Streater is a 17-year veteran assigned to the patrol division. Investigators say other officers found Streater with a suspected prostitute in his personal vehicle in late September. The chief has made cutting down on prostitution a major priority for the department. The police union president is taking issue with how the department’s internal affairs unit handled the case. He says officers can’t be forced to give statements for off-duty conduct. City spokeswoman Jessica Mayorga told the New Haven Register of the investigation, “We let the process work, and the process works.” She added, “The consequence is balanced with the nature of the incident, and we trust the process.

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Manchester Connecticut Police Officer Todd Belknap Back On Duty After Suspension For Attack On His Wife

June 5, 2000

MANCHESTER, CONNECTICUT – An embattled Manchester police officer got his badge and gun back last week, but a departmental probe into allegations that he grabbed his estranged wife by the neck in November and threatened her could begin as early as today.

Officer Todd Belknap was restored to full duty after prosecutors at Rockville Superior Court dropped a breach of peace charge against him, saying that he had sought counseling and his wife did not wish to pursue the charge further.

Belknap, a former patrol officer who joined the force in 1990, was suspended for a short time after his arrest by state police in November and was later placed on restricted duty. On Wednesday, once the charge against him was dismissed and a criminal protective order lifted, Belknap was assigned to the department’s accreditation bureau.

But the resolution of the criminal charge also cleared the way for internal affairs to begin its own investigation, Capt. Roy Abbie said. “The internal investigation could not be done until the criminal investigation ran its course,” he said.

Belknap, 37, declined comment Friday except to say he will cooperate fully with the internal investigation of Karin Belknap’s allegations. Karin Belknap told a state trooper in November that her husband reached out of the driver’s side window of his car, grabbed her by the throat and shirt, and said “Armageddon is coming.”

Todd Belknap denied that he grabbed his wife or threatened her, according to the arrest warrant. He told the investigators he was sitting in his car outside his wife’s apartment, discussing some legal issues regarding paperwork for one of their cars. He also told police his wife had previously made false accusations against him.

Last spring, during an internal affairs investigation, Manchester police could not substantiate Karin Belknap’s earlier allegations that Belknap had been violent toward her.

But Manchester police charged Todd Belknap with assault in 1992 after two incidents involving another woman, his girlfriend at the time, in Manchester. The criminal charges were dismissed after Belknap was granted entry into a probation program that required him to attend family violence classes.

She sued the police department, contending that police ignored her call for help after the first alleged attack. The case was settled for $55,000.

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Fired Bristol Connecticut Police Officer Michael D. Case Lied About On Duty Sex With Drunk Suicidal Woman

April 6, 1995

BRISTOL, CONNECTICUT — A police officer fired in 1992 for having sex with a suicidal woman initially denied that the encounter occurred, according to documents made public Wednesday.

The officer — Michael D. Case — also knew the woman had consumed alcohol, according to a police internal affairs investigation that Case and the city fought unsuccessfully to keep sealed.

Police Chief William R. Kohnke released the documents concerning the July 3, 1992, incident on Wednesday, hours after the state Freedom of Information Commission voted unanimously to order their disclosure.

Case, 36, of Terryville, appealed his firing to the state Board of Mediation and Arbitation, claiming the discipline was too severe for his misconduct. That appeal is pending.

Case has maintained publicly that he had consensual sexual relations with the woman, who is now 38, while in her Divinity Street apartment. He was on duty and in uniform at the time.

The woman, who has not been identified by police, charged that she was raped by Case when she blacked out. Case denied raping the woman and told superiors that she seduced him, according to two internal affairs investigation reports Kohnke released Wednesday afternoon.

Police did not pursue criminal charges. They said investigators could not corroborate the woman’s claim.

The Freedom of Information Commission ruled Wednesday morning that the separate criminal investigation conducted by police into the rape claim did not have to be disclosed because it contains uncorroborated allegations.

The internal affairs reports offer this account of the woman’s allegations:

She was examined at Bristol Hospital for depression, then asked to use a telephone to call a neighbor at about 4:30 a.m. for a ride home. Case had earlier been dispatched to her apartment after she threatened suicide. At the hospital, he offered her a ride home, and she accepted. Case then continued his patrol.

About an hour later, the woman intended to dial 411 for a substance abuse hotline number but dialed 911 by accident. When she realized her mistake, she hung up. Case was then sent back to her apartment to check on her well-being.

At 5:32 a.m., Case radioed in that the woman was fine. But he remained to talk to her in her kitchen. The woman told Case that she was still depressed and unsure whether she should return to the hospital or go to bed.

Case told her that perhaps she should go to bed, according to her version of events. He then followed her into her bedroom, and the sexual encounter occurred when she blacked out, she told police. When she came to at 6:25 a.m., Case was still in her bedroom and standing over her, the woman claimed.

Moments after Case left the apartment, she became hysterical and called a rape crisis center and her boyfriend in Woodbury, who drove to Bristol and took her back to Bristol Hospital, she and her boyfriend said.

The woman told police that she had drunk five beers and used cocaine before having any contact with Case, and that she was upset over breaking four years of sobriety.

Case’s version differed on several points. He claimed that a nurse asked him to give the woman a ride home from the hospital and that once in the apartment alone with her, she seduced him.

Case made the seduction claims three weeks after the incident, although the report contains no description by him of the sexual encounter. When he was initially asked by superiors about the woman’s rape claim, he denied having any sexual contact with her.

“I didn’t touch her at all,” Case was quoted as telling investigators three hours after she filed the complaint.

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