Three men have been arrested for selling fake gold jewelry to a Carmel store, bilking the merchant out of $15,000. The Putnam County Sheriff's office says the men are believed to be part of an organized crime ring having ties to the Russian Federation.
32-year old Georgie Vaysband, 36-year old Daniel Gilkarov and 49-year old Yakovmiyer Kogen have been arrested after investigation over the past two weeks that found similar incidents through New York and New Jersey. Sheriff Donald Smith says initial tests showed the jewelry to be 18 carat gold, but it turned out to be a mix of metals with virtually no value.
Vaysband was arrested March 21st and is wanted in New Jersey on theft charges. The Queens resident was charged with two counts of Grand Larceny and is being held at Putnam County Jail on $500,000 secured bond. A search of his car on Saturday turned up 40 prescription pain pills and a charge of possession of a controlled substance was added to the rap sheet.
Gilkarov, also of Queens, was charged with Grand Larceny. He is wanted in New Jersey on a larceny charge. He is being held on $50,000 secured bond.
Kogen, a Bayridge resident was charged with possession of a controlled substance for also having illegal prescription pain meds. He is wanted by Woodbury police on a petty larceny charge and being held on $50,000 bond.
A BMW and a van were seized and are being held pending asset forfeiture proceedings.
Jay Lent has resigned from the position he held for about a year. Francis Dattalo has been named Union Savings Bank's new President and Chief Executive Officer. It's a promotion from the 64-year old's current position of Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.
He managed the bank's merger with First National Bank of Litchfield in 2009.
The change in leadership comes amid the bank's downtown branch building project. Union Savings is constructing a replacement branch at the old site of the police station.
A renovation has been proposed for the state boat launch on Lake Lillinonah in Bridgewater. The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection recently held an open house about the plans to provide information to the public.
Boating Division Director Eleanore Mariani says the idea is to close the launch as soon as a construction company has been hired.
Mariani says they are looking to reconstruct the launch to make it state of the art and handicapped accessible. An ADA accessible floating dock system will be added to make launching an retrieval of boats safer and more efficient.
The ramp will be replaced with a two lane, grooved, concrete slab surface; the turning and parking areas will be redesigned and paved; and concrete pavers will be installed around the ramp area to prevent erosion. A solar powered street light will be installed at the ramp that will help with launches and boat retrievals in the evenings.
The work will take about 6 months to complete.
The 17-year old Brookfield teen who was missing for about two weeks is now hospitalized in New York. Henry Ralph Manning disappeared from a shopping mall in Milford on March 9th after he told friends he would find another ride home.
His mother, Jenan Manning told the Brookfield Patch that her son needs surgery for an infection and treatment for his mental state.
The teen has been diagnosed with Nonverbal Learning Disorder.
He phoned his parents last week and State Police closed the missing person case. Police said he was reunited with his parents on Sunday, but his mother said the teen refused to return to Brookfield.
A cause of death has been determined for the elderly man killed in a house fire on Sunday in Danbury. Officials say Ronald Buckley, who was in his 70's, died of smoke inhalation and that his death has been ruled accidental.
The cause of the blaze was also ruled accidental and was started by a candle.
Fire Marshal James Johnson says the man was overcome by smoke and collapsed on the bedroom floor. Remnants of a glass-jarred candle were found in the bedroom.
Five people escaped the fire early Sunday morning on Harding Place. There were working smoke detectors throughout the house.
A Brookfield man charged in a massive marijuana ring has pleaded guilty to drug charges. Prosecutors say 49-year old Glenn Wagner accepted a plea deal yesterday that calls for a minimum prison term of 5 years. He is one of four men charged last year with conspiracy to distribute more than 100 kilograms of marijuana.
Part of the deal is that Wagner will forfeit 2 homes, a few motorcycles and an ATV.
49-year old Kevin Lubic of Salem New York has pleaded not guilty. The other two men charged accepted plea deals.
63-year old Richard Sciacchetano, who allegedly has ties to the Bonanno crime family, has been previously convicted of drug trafficking. The ring's alleged leader--47-year old Mark Mansa of Bethel pleaded guilty in December and part of the deal was that charges he distributed steroids were dropped.
A small hike is approved by the Region 9 Board of Education for the coming fiscal year. The 1.49 percent increase proposed for Joel Barlow High School would be split between Redding and Easton. Teens from both towns attend the school.
Two full time teachers have announced their retirement which will result in some savings when replacements are hired.
The public can comment on the proposed plan at the annual Region 9 District meeting on May 7th.
NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) A former butler has been found guilty of charges he tried to extort millions of dollars from philanthropist Anne H. Bass during a 2007 home invasion at her estate.
A federal jury in New Haven found Emanuel Nicolescu guilty of attempted extortion and other charges on its first day of deliberations.
Authorities say three men broke into the house on April 15, 2007, injected Bass and a guest with what they claimed was a deadly virus and refused to provide an antidote unless they turned over $8.5 million. The substance turned out to be harmless.
Nicolescu's attorney, who did not call any witnesses, says he did not participate in the crime.
Bass testified Tuesday she was certain she would die during the crime.
The Apple store at the Danbury Fair Mall will soon have some technology competition--a Microsoft retail store is moving in.
The store in Danbury would be one of about a dozen locations in the United States. Officials say the location could mean 30 full time jobs and some part time workers. Microsoft went into the retail store business in October 2009.
Danbury Economic Development Director Bruce Tuomala says this is the first retail store in New England and the New York area.
According to the Microsoft's website, the retail experience allows customers to test-drive play and explore software, devices and hardware. The site also says there are 4 locations coming soon in California, Texas and two in New Jersey; but doesn't list the one in Connecticut.
The Danbury store could open as early as this summer.
A Patterson man is arrested for violating the New York Sex Offender Registration Act. The Putnam County Sheriff's office reports that 37-year old Jason Hickok was arrested Thursday for failing to provide a current picture of himself to law enforcement.
He was convicted of 3rd degree rape in 1996.
At that time Hickok was required to register his address annually on the state Sex Offender Registry and provide the photo every 3 years. Hickok was arraigned and sent to Putnam County Jail on $20,000 cash bail. He will be in court April 5th to answer the charge.
Sheriff Smith says the requirements are in place to help protect the public against the risk of repeat offense posed by sex offenders.
State and local authorities say a man found dead in Danbury on Friday was a 43-year-old city resident who suffered a blow to the head.
Police say the man was Mario Imbesi, who lived at the Fairview Avenue apartment complex where his body was found. The Chief Medical Examinesays Imbesi died from blunt head trauma. His death has been ruled a homicide.
Police say he was originally from Port Chester, N.Y.
No one has been arrested in the killing. Anyone who may have seen anything suspicious in the area over the last several days is asked to call police are 203-797-4662.
Danbury police say there were several shootings Monday night. None resulted in injuries. Police say several shots were fired into a home on Grandview Avenue around 8:20pm.
A short time later shots were fired in the area of Beaver Street. Police did see a vehicle fleeing the scene that didn't have headlights on. A short chase followed with police stopping the driver on Middle River Road.
Police took three suspects into custody.
Police say 19-year old Matthew Anderson of Danbury allegedly threatened residents at a house on Rowan Street with a gun. He's been charged with carrying a firearm, threatening, reckless endangerment and conspiracy to commit reckless endangerment. He is being held on $500,000 bond.
Also arrested was 20-year old Steve Hernly of New Fairfield. He was charged with reckless driving, engaging in pursuit, conspiracy to commit reckless endangerment, carrying a firearm and criminal attempt to commit assault on a police officer. He is being held on $500,000 bond.
21-year old Tarrance Smith of Danbury was charged with lawful discharge of a firearm, reckless endangerment, risk of injury to a minor and criminal mischief. During processing, Police discovered two outstanding warrants for Smith's arrest. He is being held on a combined $560,000 bond.
BETHEL, Conn. (AP) Bethel police say a 48-year-old industrial company executive from New York state has died from head injuries he suffered during a bike race accident over the weekend.
Police say Markus Bohler of Poughkeepsie, N.Y., died after tumbling from his bike and landing head-first on pavement during the Bethel Spring Series, a weekly semi-professional race series. Bohler was wearing a helmet.
No other cyclist was injured in the accident.
Bohler was a technical service project leader for AkzoNobel, a company that makes paints and specialty chemicals. His Facebook profile says he graduated from the University of Siegen in Germany in 1984 with a degree in chemical engineering.
Police are investigating the accident.
A Danbury teenager has been killed in a one car crash on the campus of Western Connecticut State University in Danbury. University Police say 17 year old Christopher Anthony Reyes of Danbury was killed when the car he was driving crashed on University Boulevard on the West Side campus at 9:21pm Sunday.
Police say Reyes was not a student at the university.
University Spokesman Paul Steinmetz says Reyes was one of several people playing basketball at the university, and they all left in separate vehicles. He was the only person in the vehicle.
The accident remains under investigation. It's the second fatal accident on campus since November whe a West Conn student from died from injuries sustained during a hit and run accident on White Street.
At Danbury high School, Assitant Principal Jessie Belanger says students, faculty and staff are in mourning. Grief counselors are on hand.
A fire broke out at a vacant boy scout camp cabin in Newtown early Friday evening. Newtown Hook and Ladder, the Hawleyville Fire Company and Sandy Hook Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company all responded to 72 Taunton Lake Road just before 8:30 Friday night.
Fire fighters say no one was inside the camp cabin and there were no injuries. Crews left the scene around 10:30 and say the building is still useable.
The address is listed as the Cullens Youth Association, which owns 20 acres off Taunton Lake Road. The facilities include a 24-hundred square foot lodge with a kitchen, restrooms and equipment storage. The Association's website says the lodge is open to all youth organizations in Newtown year round.
It was named for Reverend Paul Cullens who started Newtown's Scouting programs. The property also boasts two acres of activity fields, four acres of wooded camping sites and a seven acre lake.
A funeral service was held Friday for the 15-year old from Oxford who was killed last Friday in a car crash. Family and friends gathered at the Cornerstone Assembly of God Church to say goodbye to Brandon Giordano.
The sophomore was on the football team and his teammates, in their jerseys, were among the packed beyond capacity crowd.
The teen was a passenger in the backseat of a car driven by 19-year old Eric Ramirez. Police say Ramierez was fleeing officers when the car went airborne off an embankment and crashed into a building.
The investigation into the crash is continuing and charges will likely be filed.
There was a brawl Tuesday night at 19 Fairfield Avenue after a Danbury Police officer was trying to write a parking citation.
Five men had been drinking on the front porch at the time. They started yelling not to write the ticket, but the Danbury officer explained that the truck's owner had received several notices that it could not be parked overnight, but all of the warnings were ignored.
The men then surrounded the officer, who called for back-up. When more officers arrived, one of the group shoved the back-up and was arrested. Officers tried to calm the men down and move them, along with women and children who gathered around, into the apartment.
An officer went inside with the group when one started fighting him. The officer tried to arrest the suspect, but the others started attacking him. That's when the original responding officer kicked in the locked door to get the officer out.
The five men were taken into custody for fighting with the officers.
Three men who lived in the Fairfield Avenue apartment were arrested. 39-year old Erik Valverde was charged with disorderly conduct and interfering with the duties of a police officer. He was held on $50,000 bond.
21-year old Adrian Valverde was charged with disorderly conduct, assaulting a police officer and interfering with the duties of a police officer. He was held on $25,000 bond.
26-year old Christian Valverde was charged with disorderly conduct, assaulting a police officer and interfering with the duties of a police officer. He was held on $5,000 bond and an ICE detainer.
35-year old Walter Valverde and 23-year old Diego Vasquez, both of Coronoa New York, were charged with disorderly conduct, assaulting a police officer and interfering with the duties of a police officer. Valverde was held on $5,000 bond while Vasquez was held on $25,000 bond.
When the Putnam County Sheriff's office received a phone call Wednesday of a bomb threat and hostage-taking situation at Carmel High School, a swift response was organized. But the calls turn out to be a hoax.
Bomb-sniffing dogs converged on the school, adjacent to the Sheriff's office, and found nothing. The caller said three intruders took two female students hostage in a third floor bathroom. There were no signs of intruders or people under duress.
In fact there were only a few people in the school because the calls came in around 4:30, after dismissal time. Some students on adjoining sports fields were moved further away as a precaution.
The response was completed within 3 hours.
Sheriff Donald Smith says this kind of false report is a terroristic threat that is designed to incite fear and cause significant disruption. But he says children are a precious resource, so any threats against them is taken very seriously.
The Sheriff's Office is investigating who made the calls. Smith says the perpetrator will be prosecuted to the fullest extend of the law.
A missing hiker was founded dead in Seth Low Pierrepont State Park in Ridgefield on Tuesday night. State Police say the death is not being considered suspicious.
The Ridgefield Police K-9 unit was brought in to search the woods around 8pm. Zeus located the man's body at the bottom of some steep terrain. Because the man's location, the recovery effort wasn't completed until about 2:30am.
The hiker's name has not been released.
The Ridgefield Fire Department and a state police K-9 unit assisted in the search.
Danbury Police are investigating a car accident Wednesday night that resulted in a driver crashing through the wall of a hangar at Danbury Municipal Airport. Fire Officials say the car went over a guard rail, through a fence, into the wall and came to rest inside the hangar after hitting two planes around 6:45pm.
The driver was injured and she was transported to the hospital.
There was no fuel leak and no fire as a result of the collisions. Airport officials told the Danbury Patch that the metal hangar is made up of "X-shaped" braces with a 6-foot span that are within the walls. They say the Subaru Legacy's width is about 5 feet.
There were no inuries inside the airport hangar.
The body of a man found Tuesday along a section of the Appalachian Trail in Sharon has been identified as 65-year-old Phillip Scourby, of Roxbury.
State Police said they responded to a 911 call Tuesday at 11:40 a.m. A hiker reported he had found an unresponsive man on Breadloaf Trail, near the Cornwall town line.
There is no evidence of a crime, and an initial investigation indicates Scourby died of natural causes.
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