CT EnCon Police
Eastern District Highlights
June 2017

Missing Person/Drowning Incident
On Sunday afternoon, June 11, 2017, Officers Reilly, Landry, Flis, Sergeant Dwyer and Sergeant Ulkus were the initial responders to a call for a possible eight year old female and sixteen year old male who were reported missing in the Connecticut River from the shore of Haddam Meadows State Park, Haddam. Sergeant Ulkus and Officer Flis were transporting a small boat and immediately launched it to begin a search, assisted by another Eastern District EnCon Police vessel and EnCon Police Marine District personnel on two other vessels. The EnCon Police force was additionally joined by Haddam, Chester, and Middletown Fire and EMS vessels, South District Dive Team, and later a US Coast Guard vessel and helicopter. Further information confirmed a 17 year old male was missing after wading with several family members out into the river along an underwater sandbar adjacent to the main river channel, when all lost their footing and could not swim. The missing male reportedly tried to assist his 19 year old sister, who (along with her step-father) was rescued by passing boaters. Numerous other EnCon Police personnel assisted on site, including K9 Officer Logiodice who conducting a search. The coordinated vessel and dive team searches produced negative results, the search was suspended for the evening. EnCon Police, Haddam Fire, Middletown and State Police dive team members all resumed searching the next day with negative results; on Tuesday, June 13, EnCon Police officers on vessel and shoreline searches resumed and CSP dive team members later recovered the body of the missing 17 year old Meriden male. EnCon Police continue investigating the incident.

Haddam Meadows Related Incidents/BUI Arrest
During the missing person response to Haddam Meadows State Park, the two-lane boat launch became extremely congested as emergency personnel set up a command post on site while launching and recovering vessels, divers, etc. Additionally, EnCon Police worked to coordinate emergency services and assist many boaters who waited for hours to trailer their vessels. In the midst of this hectic situation, two minor motor vehicle accidents occurred and were investigated by EnCon Police officers, with minor damage to boat trailers and park property. Later, EnCon Police officers summoned EMS and an ambulance as the 39 year old mother of the missing male suffered from breathing and diabetic complications and was transported to Middlesex Hospital. Also this same night, Officers Tefft, Blackwell and Sergeant Stanko (involved in the search on a vessel south of the launch) found a twenty-two foot vessel well after dark with no lights on, as required; upon coming alongside, they noticed the vessel was listing, taking on water and found twelve people on board who did not realize the vessel was sinking. The vessel was escorted quickly to the launch and removed from the water with little time to spare; the 26 year old Waterbury operator was given field sobriety tests on shore, which he failed. He was arrested for BUI (Boating Under the Influence) and transported to State Police Westbrook barracks for processing.

Boating Enforcement / Incidents
Eastern District officers engaged in on-water boating enforcement throughout the month, particularly working weekends as scheduling allowed to patrol the lower Connecticut River (Haddam to Essex), joined with Marine District officers. Throughout the month Officer Ruggiero received several complaints of speed, wake and other boating violations on Lake Beseck, Middlefield, resulting in citations for failure to wear PFDs, violations of the local speed ordinance, and waterskiing without an observer. Other areas with noted enforcement included the Thames River, Mashapaug Lake (Union), and Mansfield Hollow Reservoir.
On June 2nd Officer Scatena-Kurtzenacker, along with Officer Arsenault, investigated the report of an abandoned 1950s fiberglass boat with motor adrift in the Quinebaug River, Canterbury, near the Butts Bridge state water access. The vessel, displaying old New York registration, was located (no adverse environmental impacts), and following a determined investigation, the 47 year old Jewett City male responsible for dumping the vessel was found. He admitted to drilling holes in the vessel and stated it had a seized motor. He was cited for abandoning a vessel and fined over $400; he also had the vessel removed from the water and properly disposed at his expense.

Public Outreach Events/Training
Officers from the Eastern District participated in several public outreach events throughout the month, including a Great Park Pursuit / No Child Left Inside boating event at Hopeville Pond; a Boating Advisory Council Law Enforcement presentation; and honoring retired State Conservation Officer Stanley Lebuis of Preston, who died at age 95 in early June, by providing honor guards at his wake and military funeral.
Eastern District officers kept busy attending annual firearms qualifications training throughout the month of June. Individual officers also attended specialized unit quarterly and annual training sessions, including K9 Officer Reilly, and members of the Chemical Immobilization Team and the Boating Accident Reconstruction Unit (BARU).




Marine District Highlights
June 2017

Commercial Shellfish Enforcement

On June 1st, Officer Hey was patrolling Milford Harbor and noticed several commercial shellfish fishermen relaying seed oysters. Upon checking three vessels grouped together Officer Hey discovered that one of the three vessels did not have a commercial permit displayed nor did the occupants have a commercial permit to engage in said activity. Officer Hey issued said vessel captain a written warning for engaging in commercial shellfish activity and was ordered to disengage from the area.


Fishing Enforcement
On June 3rd, Officer Blackwell received a complaint that a male was taking short striped bass at the Dock Road State Boat Launch in Waterford. The complaint originated from a fisherman who was also at the boat launch who had advised the poacher he was not allowed to keep striped bass under 28”. Officer Blackwell arrived on scene and located the accused fishing next to another individual. Officer Blackwell was advised by the complainant that the accused was driving a red van and had put undersized striped bass in a white plastic bag inside the van. A check for a valid fishing license was made of which he did not have. Officer Blackwell asked the accused if he had caught any fish at which time the accused lied and stated that he didn’t. The accused eventually complied and opened up the van removing two short scup in a white plastic bag. He stated there were no other fish in the van but Officer Blackwell could see, in plain view, another white plastic bag sticking out from under a tarp of which she saw a striped bass. The bag was seized and the striped bass measured to be 15 inches in length. A third white plastic bag containing two more short scup was located. The accused was issued an infraction for Fishing w/o a License, Possession of Undersized scup and warned for Possession of Undersized striped bass. The accused’s fishing partner was issued the same. All fish were seized and donated to a local food pantry.
On June 17th, Officer Bruno, Sergeant Stanko and Captain Williams were on a vessel conducting boating enforcement on the CT River in the vicinity of the Baldwin Bridge. Officer Bruno saw a vessel that he recognized from a previous charter violation docked at a marina of which the captain of said vessel was filleting numerous fish next to four other people. Officer Bruno and Captain Williams remembered seeing the same vessel two weeks prior coming into the CT River with several people on board and believed the captain was involved in a charter fishing expedition w/o a valid charter license. Officer Bruno and Captain Williams proceeded by vehicle to the marina while Sergeant Stanko maintained visual contact from the water. Upon arrival Officer Bruno and Captain Williams checked the individuals catch. During the conversation it was determined that the four individuals hired the captain as a charter and had paid $650.00 for their trip. A statement was taken from one of the fishermen confirming the transaction. Officer Bruno then confronted the vessel captain and asked him for his charter license and captain’s license. The accused stated he was not chartering and was just taking friends out on a recreational fishing trip. The accused was advised of the written statement from his clients at which point he began to comply. A check of the accused showed that he did not renew his charter license and had let his captain’s license expire two years ago. The accused was issued a Misdemeanor Summons for chartering w/o a charter license and failure to have a valid license.

Park and Forest

On June 21st, Officers Blackwell and Monday responded to Rocky Neck State Park for a report of a group that had not paid for their campsite. East Lyme PD had responded to the same campsite the night prior for a reported noise complaint from the same site. Upon speaking with the couple they stated they had paid for their campsite the night prior at the entrance gate. Park staff confirmed that the couple had not paid, staff also stated the couple provided a fake license plate and phone number that was not in service. As Officers investigated Officer Monday noticed the vehicle in question being operated by a male not wearing a seatbelt. A motor vehicle stop was conducted revealing the vehicle had an expired insurance policy. The operator also advised he had a pellet gun in the back seat of which he stated he brought to the park to shoot raccoons that came near their campsite. The operator was issued and infraction for violation of campground regulations (failure to pay), failure to wear a seat belt, weapons in a state park, failure to carry insurance card, and violation of quiet hours. Both were evicted from the park.

Untimely Death

On June 24th, Sergeant Stanko and Captain Williams responded to a report of a body floating on the water in Clinton Harbor found by a passing boater. Clinton FD and PD responded and brought the deceased victim to shore. Clinton PD (The primary investigating agency) determined the individual was from Long Island who had been missing since June 11th 2017, he was the victim of a boating accident involving a capsized kayak.

Also on June 24th, Sergeant Chemacki along with Officer O’Brien and Captain Williams responded to another found body in the water in Long Island Sound in Branford. Said victim was found by another boater next to a wind surfboard. The individual was unconscious and was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced deceased. Later that evening, EnCon Officers responded to Stamford Harbor for a report of another unconscious individual who had fallen off a vessel. The victim was recovered and transported to a local hospital where he was also pronounced deceased. This brought a total of three deceased victims located in one day. Two of the three incidents (Branford and Stamford) are ongoing investigations.

Mutual Aid

On June 25th, Sergeant Stone and Captain Williams accompanied two Maine Game Wardens who were investigating an illegal commercial rafting operation on the Penobscot River in Maine. Several CT residents were interviewed who had paid for the trip providing valuable information to the Maine Warden Service to be able to apply for an arrest warrant in this case.


CT EnCon Police
Western District Highlights
March 2017

BOATING

On 6/24/17 West District Sergeants and Officers were assigned to the Candlewood Lake fireworks detail. EnCon units had contact with several hundred boaters entering and transiting the area of Danbury Bay conducting safety checks and enforcing a safety transit lane. Several warnings were issued for failure to display proper and/or necessary navigation lights.

Other notable incidents were:

At the conclusion of the fireworks, Sergeant Buckley and Officer Hage were engaged in a vessel stop for a slow-no-wake violation when they observed a vessel traveling without proper navigation lights. The officers performed a vessel stop at which time the vessel operator stated that their 360 degree white light had been broken off when someone tried to use it as a handle to get into the vessel. The area of the vessel smelled strongly of the odor of alcoholic beverages and the officers observed open containers of beer and a full container of vodka. It was determined that none of the occupants on board the vessel were over the age of 21. Eight of the ten occupants on board admitted to consuming alcohol that evening, including the operator, who was unable to complete one of the two preliminary field sobriety tests administered. All occupants were directed to put on life jackets and Officer Hage operated their vessel back to Lynn-Demings marina in New Milford escorted by Sergeant Buckley and Officer Johnston. Once on land, the operator was able to successfully complete the administered SFST's. All of the occupants who admitted to possessing alcohol were issued infractions for violation of Possession of Alcohol by a Minor. The operator was also charged with violation of Operating a Vessel without Proper Navigation Lights.

A vessel became stranded after experiencing disabling electrical issues. EnCon Officers kept in contact with the anchored vessel and arranged for a good Samaritan to tow the vessel to the nearest safe mooring.

A vessel struck a rock while exiting Danbury Bay. The vessel was escorted back to the boat launch by a Candlewood Lake Authority (CLA) Marine Patrol vessel and inspected finding only damage to a propeller. The incident did not meet requirements to be considered a boating accident.
At approximately 0100 hours on Sunday, an unknown vessel struck a raft moored off the shoreline in Brookfield. The collision caused extensive damage to the wooden raft. Upon the homeowner's attempt to check on the vessel and its occupant(s), it evaded from the scene. The incident was reported by the homeowner, at around 1000 hours, and is currently under investigation by EnCon Police with the assistance of CLA Marine Patrol.


CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS

On 6/6/17 a suspect Wallingford resident turned himself in and was arrested by warrant for two counts in violation of Public Indecency. He was processed at Connecticut State Police Troop I in Bethany. The investigation stemmed from a complaint on April 12th in which an adult female victim reported to EnCon that a male suspect had exposed himself to her and was hiking naked in Sleeping Giant State Park in Hamden on two separate dates (April 1st and 9th). EnCon Police have taken multiple reports of a male hiking naked and exposing himself at Sleeping Giant as far back as 2014. Through information obtained by State Environmental Conservation Police patrol units with the assistance of the Connecticut State Police - Western District Major Crime Squad the victim positively identified the suspect. The accused was released on a court ordered $10,000 surety bond and is scheduled to appear in Meriden Superior Court on June 19th.


HUNTING ENFORCEMENT

On 6/5/17 EnCon Police and the US Fish & Wildlife Service served an arrest warrant to a resident of Newtown, CT for a violation of False Reporting / Deer and a Federal Lacey Act violation. It is unlawful for any person to import any fish or wildlife in violation of state law. It is illegal to import deer from a Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) confirmed state. The arrest was a result of an ongoing investigation. In February 2017 an anonymous tip was reported EnCon Police regarding a 24 point buck that was reportedly taken in Bridgewater, CT. The buck had a very large non-typical rack and the cape was clear of any blemishes caused by tick bites suggesting that it was not from a wild deer herd in Connecticut. The investigation established that on November 5, 2016, the accused hunted and harvested a 24 point buck from a captive deer farm in Pennsylvania. The accused did not process the meat for consumption, did not clean the deer as required prior to preparing it for mounting and illegally brought the whole buck back to Connecticut. He then tagged the buck and falsely reported it as being harvested in Bridgewater, CT. The accused stated that his wife did not know about his out of state hunting trip and he told her he had killed the deer in Ridgefield, CT. He further stated that his wife reported the deer online but checked it in wrong for an unknown reason. The accused stated that his wife wanted the deer to be scored by Pope & Young because of its unusual antlers. Pope & Young scores wild deer harvested by bow for official records. Pope & Young has declined to score the buck due to it being a captive raised farm deer. Deer from a (CWD) confirmed state, such as Pennsylvania, must be properly reported when harvested and must be processed for consumption and cleaned prior to being brought into Connecticut. CWD is contagious in deer and once it is established in the herd it is very difficult to eradicate. As a result of these violations, an arrest warrant was applied for, approved, and served. The accused was processed at Connecticut State Police Troop A and released on a court ordered $2,500 non-surety bond. He is scheduled to appear in Bantam Superior Court on 06/19/17.

PARK & FOREST ENFORCEMENT

On 6/22/17 Officer Johnston responded to Indian Well State Park in the Town of Shelton for a report of people swimming in "The Well." Upon his arrival at Indian Well he observed several people swimming who were issued infractions for swimming in a prohibited area. One female who was observed swimming did not have identification on her. She gave her estranged half-sister's name to Officer Johnston and impersonated her for a significant amount of time. When her real identity was revealed she was arrested for Swimming in a Prohibited Area, Criminal Impersonation, and Interfering with an Officer. She was transported to Troop A, processed, and released on a $1000.00 surety bond with a court date of July 3, 2017 at GA-5 in Derby.

On 6/23/2017 Southwest Officers conducting a patrol check of Paugussett State Forest (Great Quarter Road, Newtown) and observed a large number of vehicles parked in the parking area after sunset (Approximately 20:30 hours). EnCon Police as well as Newtown Police have received numerous complaints from residence on Great Quarter Road regarding after hour parties in the State Forest. With the assistance of Newtown Police, Officers located approximately 15 juveniles ranging in ages 15-17 years old. The investigation found one juvenile was in possession of a backpack containing alcoholic beverages, marijuana, and smoking pipe “bowl” with burnt marijuana residue. All juveniles were escorted out of the forest. A total of seven infractions for Hours of Operation were issued by DEEP EnCon Police and Newtown Police to the operators of the parked vehicles. One juvenile was issued a juvenile summons for Possession of Alcohol By Minor, Possession of Less Than .5 Ounces of Marijuana Type Substance, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, and Hours of Operation. The juvenile was released to the custody of a guardian with a court set date of 7/10/2017 at Juvenile Matters Bridgeport.

K-9 SERVICE CALLS

Both District K-9s were involved in several public outreach events, and a search for a lost, injured, and intoxicated hiker.

PUBLIC OUTREACH

District officers participated in 5 public outreach events consisting of ride-a-longs, High School career day, and K-9 demonstrations.

Captain Keith Williams
keith.williams@ct.gov

Connecticut Department of Energy & Environmental Protection
Connecticut State Environmental Conservation Police