FRIDAY EVENING UPDATE

ARSON ARREST

Tyree Davis (Norwich PD)

A registered sex offender whose last known address is in Taftville, has now been charged with arson and attempted murder in connection with a Norwich fire. 38-year old Tyree Davis is being held on a million-dollars bond, after fire broke at 261-263 Central Avenue in Greeneville early Wednesday morning. Everyone in the building got out safely, while a firefighter suffered minor injuries. Davis was already arrested this week on separate charges of violating a protective order. He’s also been charged with refusing to be fingerprinted. Police say they expect more arrests in connection with the fire.

NO HEARING

41 Boswell Avenue, Norwich

An appeal hearing regarding the condemnation of a Boswell Avenue boarding house in Norwich has been cancelled, with no new date scheduled as of now. The city’s website says the hearing regarding 41 Boswell Avenue was scrapped Friday due to a request for a continuance. The city’s building department condemned the 14-tenant building January 2nd, citing numerous code violations. Building owner James Liang sought the hearing, claiming the condemnation is a city conspiracy against him.

RAPIST TO GET FOUR YEARS

Four years in prison is facing a Windham County man after admitting Friday in Danielson Superior Court that he raped a young student several times. 21-year old John Gialanella pled under the Alford Doctrine, meaning he doesn’t agree with the case brought against him, but doesn’t want to go to trial. He’s to be sentenced March 23rd. Prosecutors say Gialanella and the victim began dating in October 2013, when he was 17, and she was 14, and he forced her to have sex several times. The relationship ended in April 2015, when she filed a restraining order. Police say Gialanella was kicked out of Saint Anselm’s College in New Hampshire in 2015 for sexually assaulting a student, and had to be treated at the college’s mental health facility.

STATE HIGH COURT ASKED TO RECONSIDER

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – A coalition of cities, towns, parents and public school students is planning to ask the Connecticut Supreme Court to reconsider its ruling that the state’s education funding system is constitutional. Leaders of the Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding say they plan to file a motion with the high court Friday afternoon. Justices earlier this month overturned a landmark ruling by a lower court judge who ordered officials to overhaul the state’s public education system, saying a huge gap in test scores between students in rich and poor towns shows parts of the system are unconstitutional. The lower court ruling came after a months-long trial in 2016. The Supreme Court acknowledged the achievement gap, but said it alone does not violate the equal protection provisions of the state constitution.

CT PART OF SUIT AGAINST TAX OVERHAUL

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Governors Cuomo, Malloy and Murphy (News 12 CT)

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – New Jersey and Connecticut are joining New York in planning to sue the federal government over the Republican-led federal tax overhaul. Democratic governors Andrew Cuomo of New York, Dannel Malloy of Connecticut and Phil Murphy of New Jersey announced in a conference call Friday that they will team up to take the Trump administration to court over the federal tax plan that’s expected to cost taxpayers in their states billions of dollars. Malloy says he expects other states to join the lawsuit. There’s no word on when it will be filed. Cuomo, a potential 2020 presidential candidate, says the tax overhaul enacted by Washington Republicans unfairly targets Democratic states. In New York, the changes will raise federal taxes for many homeowners by capping a state and local tax deduction at $10,000.

CT DMHAS BEING SUED

Kathleen Flaherty

An advocacy group has filed suit against Connecticut’s mental health agency alleging patients are sometimes held in restrictive settings long after they’ve demonstrated an ability to function in the community. The suit was filed Thursday against the state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services by the nonprofit Connecticut Legal Rights Project. The project’s Executive Director Kathleen Flaherty tells the Hartford Courant that Connecticut is one of the few states that allows for unlimited civil commitments, and patients have remained institutionalized for months or even years after they were declared ready for discharge. A spokeswoman for the state mental health agency referred questions to the state attorney general’s office, which said in a statement it will respond to the suit “at the appropriate time in court.”

LIS TUNNEL???

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is pushing ahead with efforts to gauge interest in building a tunnel under Long Island Sound. The Democrat on Friday said the state Department of Transportation has issued a “request for expressions of interest” in the project. It invites input on logistics, environmental impact and costs that will be used to develop an official “request for proposals” to build the tunnel. A recently released study conducted for the DOT said the idea for a tunnel connecting New York’s Westchester and Long Island shores or linking New York to Connecticut is feasible, but would be costly. The study estimates a tunnel could cost up to $55 billion, depending on which option is selected. DOT officials say they’ll be talking to people in private industry to gauge interest in the idea.

SEAL RELEASED

(WTNH)

CHARLESTOWN, R.I. (AP) – A baby seal is back in the ocean following a two-month stay at a local rescue clinic. Mystic Aquarium’s rescue team released the nine-month old harbor seal named Sweet William into the ocean at Blue Shutters Beach in Charlestown, Rhode Island Thursday. The seal, which had been rescued in Maine last year, was treated for facial wounds and pneumonia at the aquarium’s clinic. Officials say the seal gained 21 pounds while it was there. Mystic’s rescue program began in 1975. The program is supported by volunteers and public donations. The aquarium is preparing for its 5th Annual Seal Splash. Participants venture into the cold waters of Long Island Sound with proceeds going to the rescue clinic. The event will be held at Eastern Point Beach in Groton on Feb. 17.

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