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Thursday, September 12, 2013


It appears that homicide number 20 for the City of Hartford may have occurred earlier today.

Sources are telling me that  a male individual was babysitting for his girlfriends  18 month old daughter earlier today on Middlefield Street in Hartford. Through some sort of interaction with the boyfriend, the child apparently suffered  life threatening injuries. The manner and cause of those injuries will be determined after an autopsy by the Connecticut Medical Examiner.. Sources told me that the manner and cause of death needs to be determined but they believe it is a homicide.
Sources have also told me that the boyfriend "is no stranger" to law enforcement officials in Hartford.

For some unknown reason, after the child sustained the injuries, the boyfriend drove to a home on Durham Street, he then took the child to Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center where the child was pronounced dead.

Hartford police later seized the boyfriends vehicle that he used to transport the child as potential evidence and the car was towed from the ER parking lot at Saint Francis


Two more department heads have abandoned ship and are jumping from the Segarra administration, Kevin Burnham , Hartford's DPW Director has announced his resignation and Finance Director has also announced his resignation today. Both are effective October 4,2013.

Although the resignations, especially Molleda are long overdue, this now leaves the Segarra Administration without a permanent Chief Operating Officer, Chief of Staff, Corporation Counsel, Human Resources Director, Public Works Director, Finance Director, Fire Chief and the Director of Emergency Dispatch Center. Does anyone see a problem here?  These positions need to be filled by competent people that  care about Hartford and actually live here to bring stability back to City Government

We don't need to hire anymore consultants at $85.00 an hour to determine how to fill these slots either.

The Mayor needs to begin re-stocking his cabinet soon though if he is going to  survive. The COO position has been open for over a year now and the next departure from City Hall needs to be Saundra Kee - Borges. Acting positions are nothing more than seat warmers. We need to have strong professional leadership coming out of City Hall for a change. Professionals that have vision and goals and can implement change to move our City forward efficiently in all of these vacant positions

Here is the press release from the Mayor's Office and not one mention of a ribbon cutting

Today, Mayor Segarra announced that he has accepted the resignation of Kevin Burnham, Director of the Department of Public Works and Julio Molleda, Director of Finance. Mr. Burnham has worked for the City of Hartford since 2002 and has an annual salary of $120,019. Mr. Molleda worked for the Hartford Library and Board of Education before coming to City Hall in 2011 at an annual salary of $151,918. Their resignation is effective October 4th.
Concurrently, Mayor Segarra has appointed two long-standing professionals with experience in local government to fill the positions.  Mr. Joseph A. Ruffo, CPA will take over as Interim Director of Finance. Mr. Ruffo, a former Auditor, Accounting Instructor and Budget Reviewer for the Government Finance Officers Association for more than 20 years, has been the Comptroller/Deputy Comptroller for the City of Norwich since 1987. He will continue at the same salary as the previous finance director.

The Mayor has also appointed Mr. Keith Chapman, former Town Manager of Newington, Special Advisor to the City Manager of New London and Hartford, as Interim Director of the Department of Public Works. Mr. Chapman has overseen the Public Works Department in Newington and New London and has over 20 years of experience in city management. Mr. Chapman’s salary is $140,000.

Both Mr. Chapman and Mr. Ruffo will start on Monday, September 16 to begin the transition.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


This something g that I have never done before on the blog. I am reposting something from Facebook. This was posted by the brother of a friend of my sister's that we grew up with. It involves a Vietnam Veteran who is down on his luck, Please read the posting, this is legit and not a scam.

If there ever was a time to show our appreciation, what is better than the anniversaryof 9/11.

9/9/13:I picked up a hitchhiker this ...morning. He was in his 60s, looked a little disheveled, raggy clothes, and was wearing a Vietnam Vet hat. Turns out he's been driving around the country since June and has hit all 50 states. His van broke down and he was thumbing from a campground where he's been tent camping to the dealership where his car had been towed. I told him to save my contact info in his phone in case he needed a ride back. He already had a Tim in there so he said he was going to enter my name as Tim God for rescuing him this morning. That made my day.

Later that day...My hitchhiker friend from this morning, Bill, called me to see if I could give him a ride back to the dealership tomorrow. After a lengthy conversation it turns out there's a bit more to his story. He appears to be pretty much homeless and has been camping out in his car more out of necessity than adventure. When he can raise some money for gas he moves on to the next place. He is indeed a Vietnam Veteran. He found out today his car is going to cost about $1800 to fix. He's going to reach out to his family and friends and try to raise the funds His plan is to see if the dealership will let him sleep in the car at night while they work on it because he can't afford the campground where he's staying.

I had to coax this information out of him, he seems to be a very proud man. He has asked me for nothing except for a ride in the morning. If anyone is inclined to help a stranger out, feel free to call Brustolon Buick Service Dept. tomorrow at (860) 415-4739 with a credit card and ask them to put it towards Bill Hart's (sp?) van repair. Any amount, big or small, will help.

I see "support the troops" messages on here all the time. Maybe we can't help them all but we can sure make a huge difference in this one's life. Let's see if Facebook can be used for things more important than cupcake recipes, Farmland, and me ranting about Republicans. Help a brother out and pay it forward.

9/10: To those who saw my posts yesterday about the Vietnam Vet I picked up hitch hiking- please call Brustolon Buick Service Dept. at 860.415.4739 and make a small donation to help him get his car fixed. It must happen today. Thanks to all who are stepping up to help a Veteran in need God Bless America.

Later that day: Update on my friend Bill- we went out to Dunkin Donuts for breakfast and now he's taking a nap out in the cabin. Brustolons has received 10 calls and over $600 from you guys. We have about $1000 to go to completely cover his repair bill and get him on his way. His plan is to head back to Florida where he has a small camper to live in. As of now he knows nothing about our efforts to take care of his van. Thank you all and continue to spread the word, &1000 is still a long way to go!

9/11: Just spoke to the service mgr. at Brustolon. They have knocked $250 off Bills van repair. We have raised about $800 leaving a balance of about $700. If you're not aware of what talking about please read my most recent posts. We're trying to get a Vietnam Vet (Marine) back In his van so he can get back to Florida. It turns out the van won't be ready til later today so we have one more day to raise funds. Please call Brustolon Buick at 860.415.4739 if feel like kicking in a few bucks to help a veteran out. I'm hoping on 9/11 we all remember the sacrifices all veterans have made. Lets pay off Bill's bill!!!!

As of 4:30pm today, balance is $290.


As residents spoke about  their concerns at Monday nights Council meeting regarding attrition within the Hartford Police Department, Council members in an attempt to dupe the public stated that there was actually an Academy class graduating  today to boost the numbers. They failed to inform the public that the so called class  was just one officer graduating from the Meriden Police Academy.

Not to belittle the one officer joining the HPD ranks, here is a little more info on Hartford's latest Police Officer

Officer Jose Cortes Jr. was born in Hartford and raised in the south end in the Charter Oak neighborhood.  on February 14, 2011 at the age of 19 and shortly after graduating from Bulkeley High School, Officer Cortes joined the Hartford Police Department as a Cadet.  As a police cadet, he gained valuable experience working in many different divisions of the police department to include:  Major Crimes Division, Fiscal Division, Teleserve, Records Division, and Training Division.

On April 5, 2013, he was promoted to police recruit where he attended the 23 week Basic Training Program the POSTC Academy in Meriden.   On September 11, 2013, he graduated as a member of the 341st recruit class at POSTC.  Officer Cortes Jr. is proud to serve the City of Hartford.  He has an ambition to become a Vice and Narcotics Detective as his career progresses.        




The Hartford City Council has called a special meeting for Monday at 5:30PM .. According to the meeting notice below, the intent of the meeting is to discuss the City violence with the Hartford Police Department . Please show up and voice your concerns on the increase in crime and gun violence, approximately a 10% increase over this time last year.

State representative Angel Arce, from Hartford's 4th District has asked me to help get the word out on this important meeting.

We need to get honest answers from the Council and hold them accountable for the budget cuts they made to Mayor Segarra and Chief Rovella's recommended budget for 2013/2014

 The Council has begun a disturbing trend of submitting and acting on resolutions that only attempt to micromanage the operations of the Police Department from the size of engines ordered in new cars to who can use the Police Department gym. The focus should be on making sure the police department is properly funded and staffed and our neighborhoods are safe

 Despite the Councils announcement to the complaining public at Monday nights meeting, Councilman Cruz announced that a "Police Academy Class " was graduating today to address the issue of attrition. The real truth is that there was no "class". One, yes one, officer graduated today from the Meriden Police Academy. That hardly is a net increase over the eight officers that have announced their departure in the last week and many more are expected to depart in the near future as they qualify for their pensions after 20 years.

It is important that we let the Council know that we support Chief Rovella and his efforts and we expect that HPD be properly funded to do the job that we know, and he has shown, that he can do when given the proper resources.

Please show up and make your voices heard.

Just your attendance in support of a properly funded Police Department will make a difference


No I haven't lost my mind. Recently I posted about a Seymour Street landlord that was intimidated by a local thug drug dealer  after he tried to rid his property of the drug dealer. You can read more about that here

 The problem is that the dealer opened up a huge can of worms by his actions, that has now , at least temporarily , put his fellow entrepreneurs and amateur neighborhood pharmacists , out of business and some behind bars.

When I first got the complaint about the Seymour Street neighborhood and the vandalism done to Stan Gutt's property , I spent some time observing the activity on the street. The blatant open-air drug dealing was amazing. The street was busier with hand to hand drug deals than the McDonald's Drive thru around the corner. The drug dealer Wesley  or Ricky, depending which name he is going by this week. created a firestorm.

Within days, about every resource available was brought to bear to take this street back. The Shooting Task Force, the HPD Traffic Division ,Narcotics Officers, Condition Units , DEA and I am sure I am missing a few others. Thank you Wesley, this wouldn't have happened without you or your boys slicing a few tires and smashing some windows. On Monday a full scale sweep of the area produced numerous arrests of the same drug dealers that were dragging the neighborhood down.

The residents of Seymour Street are appreciative today. They can call 911 and report quality of life incidents all day long, but Wesley made it happen. This afternoon when I spent some time on Seymour Street, there were no drug dealers peddling their wares, the Community Service Officer Ghami Perez was making his presence known and it was a much different street than I saw just a week earlier. Even most of the lawns were free of trash and garbage, the street was clean with one exception

The only real exception was the Seymour Street side of the rear lot of the DCF  Hudson Street Headquarters. Apparently the landlord that makes a decent amount of money off the State of Connecticut has forgotten that he needs to clean up his Seymour Street frontage. Neighbors pointed out the recliner and discarded tires as well as the lawn that hasn't been cut for moths, definitely an eyesore.

Thank you Wesley, this wouldn't have been possible without your initial actions, the street has been cleaned up and you drew HPD's attention to the drug dealing. Good Job. Next time you drive by as you did today while we were out there, stop and say hello to Officer Perez. He might even thank you for your help ( be careful though, her might  have a warrant for you )


With the money that Hartford dumps into Media spokespeople at City Hall, they continue to miss the boat. A lot of good stories are happening in this City, but very rarely will you see that in a press release. Typically it is like pulling teeth to get the details on positive stories.

I regularly take heat for writing the negative stories, but I gladly post positive stories  when they are  made available to me.

Here are just a couple of examples that should have made a press release out of the Mayor's Office, but unfortunately haven't. They might actually take a little more work to put together than the next ribbon cutting, but these are the things that might actually begin to turn around the City's image.

The first one comes out of the Hartford Police Department and the Emergency Dispatch Center. The Dispatch Center has taken a bashing recently, but there are good people that work in there and combined with a Hartford Police Officer, are trying to make a difference.

I don't know all of the specifics, but Hartford Police Officer Matt Labbe and a dispatcher named Betty ( sorry, but no one has provided me with more details, including her name) went above and beyond after a recent incident. If I have the details wrong, please feel free to correct me in the comments.

Apparently Officer Labbe had a contact recently with a homeless family . The mother was confined to a wheelchair, but still the family found themselves on the streets. Now I am not sure how, but apparently Labbe and Betty arranged for shelter at a local motel temporarily. I am not sure if they paid for the room or if the hotel stepped up and provided a vacant room, but the homeless family was offered a roof and accommodation's.

The next problem occurred with transportation of the wheelchair bound mother  to the hotel. Betty the Dispatcher stepped up and made a call to someone she knew at American Medical Response, (AMR) who in addition to their ambulances operates a wheelchair transport service. Betty was able to convince AMR to step up and transport the mother  and her wheelchair to the hotel free of charge.

These are the type of things that should be put out to the public daily instead of the usual nonsense about where Mayor Segarra is cutting the next ribbon No one cares about him and his golden scissors, but a police officer and a dispatcher making a difference would send a good message about the people in our City.

This next story I can already picture on CNN or the national news. He isn't going to be happy with this posting because I don't think he wanted it out, but this is a great story. A Hartford Police Lieutenant who has asked me to remain anonymous, is known  as an accomplished runner. Anonymous LT, has run numerous marathons and is constantly training to shave the few seconds off his times. Sometimes a tough job for an older guy edging closer to retirement.

Again I don't have all the specifics, but  the LT. was recently approached to take part in a rare opportunity for Public Service and it has nothing to do with police work. Because of his reputation as an accomplished runner, he was asked to work with a blind runner who is a middle school student in a suburban school, who is participating in Cross Country running. He runs with her and apparently she wears very dark glasses and even in the bright sun, combined with the glasses she can make out his silhouette to follow him

The Lieutenant says he has to wear a white shirt so she can see him. He is not able to offer her any encouragement as they run, since that would be an unfair advantage apparently, but he calls out obstacles and guidance to her such as curbs, roots, turns  etc. She apparently gave the aging Lieutenant a run for his money today in the heat as she runs an under 7 minute mile.

I am sure there is a lot more positive things going on around our City, but I need to be made aware of them. If you have some good new, feel free to e-mail me or call me. If City Hall won't put it out, I will. And thank you to our City employees that are willing to go above and beyond.

UPDATE: After the original posting , the Lieutenant , who was originally named, asked me to remove his name because he is doing this  to do the right thing, not for publicity. I also removed identifiers as to the students school. Anyone familiar with HPD will know immediately his identity, but at his request I have removed his name.


Channel 3, WFSB's Hartford Bureau Chief Len Besthoff  has called it quits at Channel 3.Besthoff's last day on the air at Channel 3 was apparently yesterday after he notified station management that he was making the move to WVIT Channel 30 according to sources . Besthoff is apparently under contract to Channel 3 until October 6, 2013
Staff at both Channel 3 and Channel 30 were advised of the move yesterday through e-mails to employees.
Besthoff has been hired by NBC/Comcast as the Chief Investigative Reporter at the West Hartford affiliate and will be assigned full time to the Troubleshooters Investigative Team. This is apparently the model nationwide for the Comcast stations and their Investigative units to make a strong commitment to in depth Investigative reporting committing a large amount of money and manpower to the effort..
For those that have enjoyed Besthoff's reporting style and investigative journalism for the last eleven years on 3, he will be making his on-air debut at WVIT 30 after October 7, 2013. It is only one click up on most remotes in the Hartford area to be able to follow Len to his new home.
According to sources, Besthoff may be the first of upcoming departures of on air personalities from the station. WFSB is owned by the Meredith Corporation.
For more on this, check out the Connecticut Laurel Blog. The Laurel focuses on Connecticut Media personalities and their moves. The management e-mail and more on Len's departure is posted there
Best of Luck Len in your new endeavor

Monday, September 9, 2013


Sources are confirming that the Connecticut Appeals Court has  ruled against State Representative Minnie Gonzalez and her appeal of charges levied by the State Elections Enforcement. This may open the way for a referral to the Office of the Chief State's Attorney for criminal prosecution.

Gonzalez does apparently have the option of appealing the ruling to the CT Supreme Court

The official ruling can be viewed below:

The case stems from allegations of voter and ballot fraud brought against Gonzalez in a 2006 case before the State Elections Enforcement Commission.


This is not a posting I look forward to posting, but in a sense of fairness, I think I have to. Both Rhonda and her husband are friends of mine. Please keep them both in your thoughts a they work through this difficult time, as well as the victim of the crash for a speedy and full recovery

At 9:30 pm Patrol units were dispatched to the area of Farmington Ave and Prospect Ave on a report of a head-on motor vehicle collision with a person trapped within one of the vehicles. One of the drivers appeared unconscious, but soon thereafter awoke. HFD arrived on scene and extricated the occupant due to the severity of the damage.  She was transported to St. Francis Hospital for non-life threatening injuries. The second vehicle was a 2012 Ford Escape, owned by the City of Hartford. The operator had signs of intoxication, therefore; HPD Traffic DUI Enforcement responded and assisted in the DUI investigation.  CSD responded and processed the scene.  Both vehicles sustained extensive damage.  Preliminary investigation revealed that the Ford Escape was traveling south on Prospect Ave, and veered off into oncoming traffic, ultimately colliding head on with the vehicle traveling northbound. That vehicle crashed into a parked Jeep along the east curb line.  

The operator of the Ford Escape was formally charged with several motor vehicle violations, as well as DUI.  

Rhonda Moniz-Carroll   (Refused medical attention) City of Hartford-DPW
54 Cone St, Hartford CT

Charges:  DUI & Failure to Travel in the Proper Lane  Vehicle: 2012 Ford Escape   (Owned by City of Hartford) CT 240HFD  (Totaled)  

Other operator: Female from Hartford (Transported to St. Francis Hospital;  ankle injury & concussion Stable)