Thursday, August 30, 2012

Chris Donovan withdraws from race

Chris Donovan has taken his name off the ballot, clearing the way for Elizabeth Esty to take his spot as the Working Families Party-endorsed candidate.
Donovan hand-delivered a letter to the Secretary of the State’s office today, officially withdrawing himself from the race.

Read more here.


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Attorney General Seeks Recovery of Incarceration Expenses

HARTFORD - The state is again seeking to recover the costs of incarceration for a former state probation officer, Richard Straub, who was convicted of sexually abusing eight juveniles, and later convicted of the attempted murder for hire of a state prosecutor.
Attorney General George Jepsen issued a press release Monday announcing that his office will be seeking to recover these costs.
Straub is serving his sentence in a Florida prison as part of a prisoner exchange compact with Florida. He began serving his 15-year sentence on the abuse convictions in 2000 and his consecutive sentence on the subsequent conviction in March, 2010. He continues to receive a monthly state pension of approximately $3,788 after taxes and deductions, according to Jepsen.
“Connecticut taxpayers should not be expected to pay for the cost of incarceration, when Mr. Straub can afford to pay for those expenses himself through his state pension,” Jepsen said, in the announcement.
 Connecticut’s pension revocation law does not apply in Straub’s case because it took effect on Oct. 1, 2008, after Straub’s original conviction. However, the state can still seek to attach any assets he may have, including his state pension, to help offset the cost of his incarceration.
According to Jepsen, his office is seeking a judgment in Superior Court in Hartford requiring Straub to pay the state $179,816 for the expense of keeping him in prison through March 1, 2014. He has been in a Florida prison since September 2004.
This is the second time the Attorney General's office has sought to attach Straub’s pension to pay for the cost of his imprisonment. The first time, Straub declared bankruptcy and the state was only legally entitled to recover only $98,000 on its $450,000 bankruptcy claim.
Straub’s bankruptcy discharged all unrecovered costs for his incarceration on the original conviction. However, Straub’s subsequent conviction on the failed murder-for-hire scheme occurred after his bankruptcy discharge, making the expenses for that sentence subject to recovery. Straub began serving that sentence on March 7, 2010 and he is not eligible for parole before Dec. 1. 2013.
- From a press release from the Attorney General's office, read the original here.
 Read an in-depth article published in the New Haven Register from May for more information: "Does crime pay after all? Former state workers still get pensions despite criminal convictions" Either scroll down on this blog, or read that story here.

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Principal at New Haven's Hillhouse High School rebuts allegations of grade tampering (videos, document)

By Shahid Abdul-Karim
Register Staff
NEW HAVEN — James Hillhouse High School Principal Kermit Carolina was flanked by roughly 250 friends, students, former students, parents, teachers, PTO members, and community leaders on the steps of the school Tuesday as his attorney called allegations of grade tampering for student-athletes at the school a “fishing expedition.”

Read more here.

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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

'Instances of grade tampering' found at James Hillhouse High School, New Haven school probe finds (videos, document)

By Shahid Abdul-Karim
Register Staff
NEW HAVEN — A New Haven public school investigation found alleged grade tampering for student athletes at James Hillhouse High School, including to keep one student NCAA eligible, which the school’s principal denies.
The probe into allegations of grade tampering began last fall after Hillhouse High School Assistant Principal Shirley Love Joyner, who is on a leave of absence, made allegations of grade tampering and improper granting of credits for student-athletes at the school, according to a report.

Read more here.

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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Ex-police chief Leonard Gallo tops list of East Haven retirees with $95K payout (document)

By Jennifer Swift
Register Staff
EAST HAVEN — Former Police Chief Leonard A. Gallo received a nearly $95,000 payout when he retired in February, as one of 19 retirements in the town from 2011 to 2012, according to financial documents.
In total, the 18 other retirees received about $560,000, apart from their annual pensions.
The payouts are mandated in their contracts. The Register obtained details of the payouts through a request under the state Freedom of Information Act.

Read more here.

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Monday, August 20, 2012

How a Bill Doesn't Become a Law

By Jordan Fenster
Register Staff
How does a bill become a law? It doesn’t, when the legislator who proposed it goes against their own party, according to some lawmakers.
Earlier this month, Democratic Simsbury state Rep. Linda Schofield published a column in which she spoke about reprisals for going against the party line.
“I was the frequent target of (state House Speaker) Chris Donovan’s vengeance, because I didn’t always vote the way he wanted me to vote,” she wrote.

Read more here.

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Saturday, August 18, 2012

Connecticut to seek reimbursement from suspect in Smolinski searches; family to appeal defamation verdict

Investigations Editor
DERBY — The state wants Chad Hanson, who has led police to conduct unsuccessful searches for the body of William “Billy” Smolinski Jr. of Waterbury, to reimburse the cost.

Meanwhile, the Smolinski family is planning to appeal a recent civil ruling against them, and they have set up a legal defense fund.

Read more here.

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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Former girlfriend of William 'Billy' Smolinski wins $52,000 in defamation case against his family

Investigations Editor
NEW HAVEN — A judge on Friday awarded $52,666 in damages to Madeleine Gleason, the former girlfriend of missing man William “Billy” Smolinski who sued his family members, claiming they harassed her, defamed her and falsely accused her of involvement in his disappearance.

Superior Court Judge Thomas Corradino, in a 34 page ruling issued late Friday, awarded $32,000 to Gleason for intentional infliction of emotional distress, $7,500 for defamation, plus $13,166 in punitive damages.

Read more and see the ruling  here.

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