FRIDAY EVENING UPDATE

CT A.G. JOINS SUIT AGAINST BLOCKING HEALTH CARE FUNDS

George Jepsen

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – Connecticut’s attorney general has joined what’s expected to be a growing coalition of state attorneys general suing to block President Donald Trump from stopping billions of dollars in payments to insurers under the Obama health care law. George Jepsen, a Democrat, is calling Trump’s executive order “incredibly mean-spirited.” The lawsuit is being filed Friday afternoon in a California federal court. Jim Wadleigh, CEO of Access Health CT, says Trump’s order will not change health insurance plans or rates offered through the state’s insurance marketplace for 2018. He says the majority of Access Health CT’s 98,000 customers won’t be impacted because they qualify for tax credits unaffected by the order. Wadleigh says the approximately 25,000 Connecticut customers ineligible for financial help may be affected more by higher premiums.

PROTESTS AGAINST TRUMP TAX PLAN

A proposal by President Donald Trump to eliminate the state and local tax deduction is drawing the ire of Connecticut officials. Senator Richard Blumenthal says the measure would really hurt working families. Blumenthal says about one third of New London County taxpayers claim a state and local property tax deduction, saving an average of 43-hundred dollars every year. He says President Trump’s tax plan would also cut funding to critical federal programs. Blumenthal and New London Mayor Mike Passero spoke out against President Trump’s budget proposal during a press conference Friday morning at City Hall.

PROBATION IN CHILD ASSAULT CASE

Angelique and Shawn Siegrist. (Family photo)

A Plainfield man will serve three years probation after pleading guilty under the Alford Doctrine to hitting his infant daughter, breaking her rib. 29-year old Shawn Siegrist admitted to lesser charges of third-degree assault, after his four month old daughter was found to have a cracked rib in December, 2014. Police say Siegrist originally said the injury occurred by maybe burping her too hard, but medical officials concluded that couldn’t have caused the extensive injury. Police say Siegrist did admit to having a temper, and witnesses say he would yell and swear at the child, saying he wished she was a boy. He is not to have any unsupervised contact with her, or any child under 16.

ARREST IN 2016 ROBBERY

Kenneth Nelson (The Day)

An arrest in an almost one-year old bank robbery. Groton Town Police say 36-year old Kenneth Nelson of Framingham, Massachusetts is accused of robbing the Chelsea-Groton Savings Bank branch on the Gold Star Highway in Groton in November of last year. Nelson was found on Wednesday by Massachusetts authorities, and turned over to Groton police. He was scheduled to appear Friday in New London Superior Court.

EX-LOTTERY CHIEF PAYS UP

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – The former president and chairman of the board of the Connecticut Lottery Corp. has repaid over $11,000 in improper benefits he received from the state. Frank Farricker paid the state $11,318.19 following a consent order Thursday. Authorities say Farricker began submitting improper invoices to the lottery for reimbursement when he was appointed interim CEO in 2016. The invoices included charges for cable television, personal phone bills and mileage expenses. According to the Office of State Ethics, the invoices continued on a “near-monthly” basis until Farricker resigned in May. Farricker had claimed he believed the invoices were for “necessary expenses.” He stepped down amid a scandal involving a lottery instant game.

HEROIN BIBLE

NORWALK, Conn. (AP) – A Connecticut man who was caught hiding heroin in a Bible while on parole will spend another six months in jail. 41-year-old Christopher Hayes, of Norwalk, was sentenced Thursday in Norwalk after pleading guilty to possession of narcotics and possession of narcotics with intent to sell. Hayes had previously been sentenced to three years in prison followed by three years of special parole in 2013 for multiple convictions including larceny. Prosecutors say police found cocaine and heroin in Hayes’ possession when they responded to reports of a disturbance in a Norwalk parking lot in July. Prosecutors say more heroin fell out of a Bible Hayes owned when police shook out the pages of the book.

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