FRIDAY EVENING UPDATE

LIGHTHOUSE SUIT SETTLED

New London Harbor LighthouseOne lawsuit regarding New London Harbor Lighthouse is settled. The property’s non-profit owner, the New London Maritime Society, has settled with lighthouse neighbors Randy and Bonita Waesche, who have agreed to purchase a small sliver of disputed property, which they claimed caused lighthouse visitors to trespass on their land. An opening in a granite wall should now allow visitors easier access to the lighthouse, without walking onto the neighbors’ property. The Maritime Society is still dealing with a lawsuit it has filed against the city, to try to lift a cease and desist order prohibiting lighthouse tours.

DUELING EDITORIALS

Providence Journal Hartford CourantPROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – The biggest newspapers in Connecticut and Rhode Island are feuding over which state is worse. The Hartford Courant wrote a scathing editorial after The Providence Journal in Rhode Island published an editorial calling its New England neighbor struggling, and blasting its business climate as enormously difficult. The Journal’s Jan. 24 piece ends by calling on Rhode Island Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo to try and attract jobs from Connecticut to Rhode Island, calling it “certainly less risky” than Connecticut. In a Friday editorial headlined “Why, Rhode Island, Why?” the Courant responded by detailing a long list of its neighbor’s woes. Those included pension problems, economic issues and “a legacy of corruption that not even Connecticut can match.” It closes by encouraging the states to work together.

GUILTY PLEA IN SEXUAL ASSAULT

CuffsVERNON, Conn. (AP) – A Connecticut man has pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 13-year-old girl. Walter Berger, of Coventry, pleaded guilty Tuesday to fourth-degree sexual assault and risk of injury to a child in Vernon Superior Court. As part of a plea agreement, Berger’s attorney will be able to argue his client should be exempt from registering as a sex offender during sentencing. State police were notified by the Department of Children and Families in 2014 about an incident involving Berger in Stafford in 2013. Police say the girl told authorities Berger touched her inappropriately under her shirt. Authorities say the girl said Berger later apologized and said he had been intoxicated. Berger will receive a five-year suspended sentence and three years’ probation when he is sentenced Mar. 22.

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