NEW LONDON, Conn. (AP) – A submarine commander is praising the way his crew responded when a sailor intentionally shot himself aboard the Groton-based vessel. The USS North Dakota was about 150 nautical miles from the base on Jan. 12 when the petty officer shot himself in the shoulder with a government-issued rifle. The sailor was in an ambulance in New London within about seven hours. The submarine’s skipper, Cmdr. Mark Robinson, said in a post on its Facebook page that the crew acted heroically to treat the sailor and transfer him from the cramped sub to a tug boat at sea at night. The post has since been deleted. The sailor has been recovering from surgery at a hospital in New Haven.
SMALL EXTENSION GRANTED
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – The Federal Emergency Management Agency is extending temporary housing benefits for three more days to 36 Puerto Rican families living in Connecticut after being displaced by Hurricane Maria. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s office says the Democrat spoke by phone Friday with FEMA Administrator William “Brock” Long, who informed him of the reprieve. Malloy and the state’s U.S. senators were surprised to learn Thursday that FEMA had rescinded an earlier decision to extend transitional shelter assistance through February 14. FEMA informed Malloy’s office on Thursday the money was being stopped, acknowledging the extension had been granted in error. Democratic U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal is calling FEMA’s three-day extension “a weak attempt at damage control.” Malloy’s office says the state will continue to assist the evacuees after the three days run out.
SEX OFFENDER ARRESTED AGAIN
Norwich police say a convicted sex offender in the city has been charged for the fifth time in the past seven years for failing to follow the requirements of being on the offender list. Police say 60-year old Raymond Warren was charged Friday with two counts of failing to verify his address and failing to report an address change. The alleged violations occurred last year. Warren is being held in lieu of 10-thousand dollars bond. The West Thames Street resident was required to register as a sex offender for life in 2002 after being convicted of third-degree sexual assault of a minor. He has been a convicted felon since 1976.
DRUG FACTORY WITH CHILDREN
A Killingly man is accused of running a drug factory out of his home while two young children were there. Police say 24-year old Tyler Ayotte-Pierce was leaving his residence on Saint James Row around 7:30 this morning, when police stopped him. Police found multiple packages of crack cocaine in his bedroom, as well as some marijuana, digital scales, and a facsimile firearm. An 8-year old and 3-year old in the residence were taken into state custody. Ayotte-Pierce is out on 50-thousand dollars bond, and is due in court January 30th.
FORMER RI LAWMAKER PLEADS IN NAKED CASE
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – A former high-ranking Republican lawmaker in Rhode Island has pleaded not guilty to breaking into a neighbor’s home while naked. Former House Minority Leader Robert Watson appeared in Superior Court Friday. He’s charged with felony breaking and entering. Watson was released on $10,000 personal recognizance. He was ordered to seek counseling and not to trespass on his neighbor’s property in East Greenwich, Rhode Island. Police say Watson was seen running across his street naked and entering his neighbor’s house in November. Patrolmen found him naked and bleeding. The homeowner told police it was the second time Watson entered his home without permission. Watson spent more than two decades in the State House, retiring in 2012. His attorney, Timothy Williamson, says it’s too early to comment.