WFSB - Eyewitness News

Man accused of stabbing woman to death at East Lyme innEAST LYME, CT (WFSB) -- A young woman is dead after having been stabbed Monday night in a motel on the shoreline. Officers were called to the Starlight Inn just after 10 p.m. on Monday for the report of a woman having been stabbed several times. She was rushed to the hospital where she died. Police have identified her as 25-year-old Corina Zukowski, of East Lyme. After several hours of investigating, East Lyme Police said Tuesday afternoon that they had made an arrest in the case. They arrested 28-year-old Avery Hallbrooks and charged him with murder. He's being held on a $1 million bond. Members of the State Police Major Crime Unit were seen going in and out of a second-floor room at the Starlight Inn motel Tuesday, gathering evidence. Meanwhile, local police interviewed guests who said they heard arguing between a couple around the time the stabbing happened. The motel sits right on Route 161 in a commercial district near I-95. Asem Majzoub’s family owns the business next door. “You don’t hear stuff like this happening and like when you hear a stabbing it’s just sad, it’s really sad,” Majzoub said. Hallbrooks is set to appear in court on Wednesday.
Staffing shortage impacting school resources officers in shoreline townWEST HAVEN, CT (WFSB) - A staffing shortage at one shoreline police department means doing more with less and that includes impacting the number of school resource officers. When it comes to the total number of officers in the department, the deputy chief says, they’re down roughly 20 percent. He says, in order to make sure the city is covered, they might have to make other changes. Officers make the rounds outside of one of West Haven’s six elementary schools, but now there will be one fewer school resource officer. “God forbid if something happens, what’s going to be the time response to get across town,” said Carrie Malangone. Carrie Malangone is the president of the West haven parent teacher association council. She understands the decision, but says it’s a tough one. “They know their job, they do their job well. Their best interest is for the children, for the families and the school system itself,” said Malangone. To help with staffing, the police department recently moved one of the two school resource officers at Bailey Middle School, back to patrol. They replaced that officer with one of the two that’s been roving between the six elementary schools, now there will only be one. “We are supplementing with patrol, stopping in at the schools during the day,” said Deputy Chief Joseph Perno, West Haven Police Department. According to Perno, he says it’s as if the department is trying to play chess, without all the pieces. “We have several officers that are out on extended military leave, several officers out on injury leave and it hurts. It hurts the department and the services we can provide,” Perno said. Budgeted for 120 officers, Perno says right now they have about 100. He says part of the reason they’re having trouble attracting and retaining officers, is the fact the city moved from a pension to a 401k nine years ago. He says with short staff when it comes to covering the city, they need to make the best with what they’ve got. “As I’ve said in the past, I’d rather have 8 SROs than 5 or 6, we could use a lot more of them. They’re a good asset to the community, to the children, I like the availability of having them in the school, interacting with the kids,” Perno said. Something parents wholeheartedly agree with. “It is concerning, but I know our people in blue will protect the city,” Malangone said. Perno says they could have to make additional changes to get more officers back out on the streets, but he says, further reducing the number of school resource officers is not something he wants to do.
Wreaths Across America organization stopping in CTBRANFORD, CT (WFSB) - A national organization that honors the service and sacrifice of the country's veterans is making a stop in Connecticut. Wreaths Across America is heading down to Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia for a special ceremony on Saturday. First, it will make a visit to the Branford Fire Department. The group organizes wreath-laying ceremonies across the country. Saturday, 1,400 of them will happen, including in Connecticut. The wreaths are put together in Maine and then shipped across the country. This weekend, for National Wreaths Across America Day, the organization will be leading a big ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery as well as other locations in all 50 states. Roughly 800 wreaths will be laid at veterans state cemetery in Middletown. "This is unbelievable. The people coming out for this, I cannot say enough," said Brian Miniter. Dressed in his Army uniform, Brian Miniter served more than 35 years, retiring as a Sergeant Major. "Being a Vietnam veteran and everything like that, I think their people deserve this. I'm sorry, I'm kind of emotional," said Miniter. Since 1992, Wreaths Across America has been supporting fallen military men and women and their families. Chevrolet is also a big sponsor. "Chevrolet has donated 4,000 wreaths to Wreaths Across America as well as 12 vehicles to be used in their escort to Arlington," said Jenna Jones, Chevrolet field manager for northeast region. "As they make their way down, we will have 12 vehicles in their convoy, headed to Arlington to National Wreaths Across America Day on Saturday." Tuesday, in addition to Branford, the group will stop in Norwalk. For more on Wreaths Across America, head <a href="https://www.wreathsacrossamerica.org/" target="_blank">here</a>.
Top Cromwell administrators placed on leave over 'misconduct' claimCROMWELL, CT (WFSB) - Cromwell's superintendent has been placed on paid administrative leave following a claim of misconduct. The Cromwell Board of Education said it recently received an anonymous complaint about Superintendent John Maloney and Assistant Superintendent Krista Karch. The board did not release the nature of the complaint; however, it said it expects an investigation to be completed before the holidays. "In order to ensure the investigation is handled with the utmost integrity, the Board, in consultation with legal counsel, feels it is most appropriate to place Superintendent Maloney, and possibly others including Dr. Karch, on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation," the Board announced to the community. "The status of paid administrative leave is not an adverse job consequence and should not be perceived as such at this time." The law firm Shipman &amp; Goodwin, LLP will conduct an independent review of this matter, the Board said. The Board thanked Maloney for his professionalism over the course of the investigation. Maloney has been the superintendent since the spring of 2017. Previously he was an assistant superintendent and a principal. Karch was also hired in 2017 and was a teacher in Portland. After approval from the Board is granted, Ms. Fran DiFiore, Cromwell High School's principal, will serve as interim superintendent. The public will get an opportunity to comment on the situation during a Board of Education meeting at 7 p.m. on Tuesday. It's happening at the Cromwell High School Library.
Hamilton's first Hartford performance is TuesdayHARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - The first performance of the Broadway smash hit Hamilton happens Tuesday night in Hartford. The 2 hour and 45 minute show is running at The Bushnell's William H. Mortensen Hall. The first show starts at 7:30 p.m. However, <a href="https://www.wfsb.com/news/hamilton-at-the-bushnell-boosts-business-for-theater/article_a5023224-f4e6-11e8-88a7-bfb45dd0c839.html" target="_blank">tickets have been sold</a> out since the Hartford shows were announced. A lottery remains available. To enter it, head to the musical's website <a href="https://hamiltonmusical.com/lottery/" target="_blank">here</a>. The show will be in Hartford until Dec. 30. On Tuesday, Tre Frazier, one of the actors who grew up in CT and attended a school in Hartford, visited some local students. "Being part of the show is a fantastic experience for me and being back in Hartford is wonderful as well. I saw my very first musical at the Bushnell and I'm going to rehearsal this entire week, it's insane," said Frazier, a Bloomfield native. He's an understudy in the show, and is an alum of CREC Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts, and graduated in 2014. He said he owe's much of his success to the school he attended. "I owe the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts a lot because before I came here, I didn't know musical theater was something you could actually pursue as a career. I didn't know it could be a college major," Frazier said. After showing the students some choreography on Tuesday, he reminded them to stay humble and dream big. "This is where I belong, I'm going to work hard and make that happen and here I am," Frazier said. A number of restaurants in the city are offering specials for ticket holders while the show is running. Firebox Restaurant is offering a series of themed specials and cocktails, as well as Porron &amp; Pina. At Peppercorns, Dish Bar &amp; Grill, and Sorella Restaurant, ticket holders will get 20 percent off meals. Owner and chef of Peppercorn's, Dino Cialfi, saw the play and immediately became a huge fan. "When it came to Hartford, I was like, 'I have to make some food that would be popular in those days,'" said Cialfi. He came up with a menu with what our forefathers ate. "They used to eat steak at fancy parties, so there's a Hamilton steak on the menu. Hamilton was born in West Indies so the soup will be a West Indian influence," said Cialfi. Republic at the Linden is offering 10 percent off for ticket holders.
CT to start collecting data for Census 2020HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -- Connecticut kicked off Census 2020 on Tuesday. The Census collects data on things like population, race, housing, and income, but there is a lot at stake for this upcoming Census. The population count will be used to determine the distribution of congressional seats and electoral college votes among the states through 2030. Plus, how an estimated $800 billion a year in federal funds are allocated for Medicare, local schools, roads and other public institutions and services. “Just to give you an idea there are 40 Census tracks in Hartford. In 2010, 36 of those Census trackers were identified as hard to count. Meaning less than 73 percent of people failed to return their form,” said Michelle Riordan-Nold, executive director of the Connecticut Data Collaborative. Census 2020 will start on April 1 of that year. Documents go out through the United States Postal Service.
New Britain man accused of sexually assaulting two childrenNEW BRITAIN, CT (WFSB) – A New Britain man is accused of sexually assaulting two children. According to police, Pedro Torres, 57, was arrested for two separate sexual assault complaints. One of the incidents was reported in July 2018 and the second incident stems from several years ago. The victims were a male and female juvenile. Torres is charged with sexual assault 1st degree, risk of injury to children, and sexual assaults 4th degree. He was held on bond and is due in court on Wednesday.
BB gun found prompts lockdown at Killingly schoolKILLINGLY, CT (WFSB) -- Killingly High School was placed in a lockdown on Tuesday after a plastic BB gun was found. It happened around 11:30 a.m. when two students reported a potential threat at the school. State police responded to investigate and later deemed the school safe after finding the plastic BB gun. Classes returned to normal around 12:20 p.m. An investigation is ongoing.
Waterbury church holds its 'adopt a family' eventWATERBURY, CT (WFSB) - A special program is underway in Waterbury to make sure less fortunate families can celebrate Christmas this year. The Grace Baptist Church is once again holding its adopt a family event. It is collecting donations to make sure parents can give their children toys for the holidays. "They are families less fortunate, people with low income, single parent families, single mothers who may of more than one child, parents maybe working three or four jobs and may not be able to provide christmas for their children," said Kristopher Reese, senior pastor, Grace Baptist Church. The church is located at 65 Kingsbury St. in Waterbury. For more information, people can contact the Grace Baptist Church at 203-756-5269 or 203-757-1191.
Danbury man arrested in sex abuse case involving minorDANBURY, CT (WFSB) -- A Danbury man is facing charges following a case of sexual abuse of a minor. Police arrested Edmund Paris on Dec. 7, after an investigation into sex abuse of a child. Further details of the investigation were not immediately available. Paris was charged with fourth-degree and two counts of first-degree sexual assault, two counts of aggravated sexual assault of a minor, and four counts of risk of injury to a minor.