May 242015

IMG_4914Mother Nature woke up in a great mood today and gave us beautiful weather for the Memorial Day ceremonies, parades and picnics.

After the Ceremony at the gazebo, Orange Center Road was wall-to-wall people, waving flags and cheering as the parade passed from the first police car to the last fire truck the energy was strong and patriotism apparent.

The Orange Congregational Church Nursery Group sold hot dogs, treats and cold drinks on the green. A couple of vendors had balloons and other inflatables for sale, but it’s the free stuff that really got people excited: American Flags, pinwheels and Sgt. Stubby pins were gladly accepted on the fairgrounds and along the parade route.

See More Photos on Our Orange Live Facebook Page.

May 242015

Don and Mary Jewell were honored during the ceremony on Sunday.

Don and Mary Jewell were honored during the ceremony on Sunday.

The Memorial Day Committee did a wonderful job planning an informative and meaningful ceremony at the gazebo prior to the annual parade on Sunday, May 24.

This year the Committee decided to honor Vietnam War veterans and a little known WWI Hero, “Sgt. Stubby.”

Commentator Bob Mirto read the story of Sgt. Stubby, a stray Pitbull who was smuggled on a ship and became a WWI hero, saving  dozens of lives and after receiving his Sergeant stripes, he outranked his handler.

When the guest speaker failed to show up, US Senator Richard Blumenthal stepped in and offered a brief speech.

Don and Mary Jewell were recognized as VIP Orange Veterans

The flags were waving, everyone was entertained and the weather was perfect – no one fainted from the heat and the well-attended ceremony went on quickly and got the message out that THIS is one of the most important things that anyone could do on Memorial Day.


May 242015

A view of the rear of the home and the propane tanks. (courtesy of Art Williams)

A view of the rear of the home and the propane tanks. (courtesy of Art Williams)

The devastating fire that destroyed a beautiful raised ranch on Derby Milford Road in a very short time on Saturday actually could have been much worse.

There was a danger right around the corner, that our volunteer firefighters were warned of before they arrived yet they still jumped right in and did their job. The danger — two giant propane tanks — in plain sight at the rear of the home as the fire poured out of the structure.

Imagine the injuries (or worse) that firefighters could have suffered if the tanks exploded.

Thankfully, there were no injuries.

The remaining structure continued to sizzle through the night and firefighters stood watch until about midnight to make sure no hot spots re-ignited.

May 232015

Screen Shot 2015-05-23 at 9.35.34 PMA fire broke out at 400 Derby Milford Road on Saturday May 23.

The homeowner was working outside, when he suddenly noticed his house was on fire.

The first fire truck arrived in minutes, a hose was hooked up to a nearby fire hydrant and the members of the Orange Volunteer Fire Department began working feverishly to extinguish the flames.

The smoke was so thick that it was impossible for neighbors to see what was happening. (courtesy of George Geane)

The smoke was so thick that it was impossible for neighbors to see what was happening. (courtesy of George Geane)

Derby and Woodbridge firefighters also assisted, but in spite of the quick response, and water availability, the home could not be saved.

The family’s loss was the talk of the town on Saturday afternoon and residents speculated as to how the fire started and why the home already was engulfed in flames when the dispatcher called firefighters to the scene.

Fire Marshal Tim Smith arrived at the home when flames were still shooting out of the roof and soon began his investigation.

He told Orange Live that the fire appears to be accidental, and it possibly started in a clothes dryer.

He said the house looks like a total loss.

So, how DID it spread so quickly? Smith said it had a good head start and went undetected for quite a while. “Once it broke out, the breeze pushed it through the house,” he said.

A view of the rear of the home. (courtesy of Art Williams)

A view of the rear of the home. Look At Those Propane Tanks !!! (courtesy of Art Williams)

The aftermath.

The aftermath.

May 172015

Screen Shot 2015-05-17 at 5.21.59 PMThe Orange Police Department announced on its Facebook Page that Assistant Chief Anthony Cuozzo was celebrating his 25th anniversary with the  OPD.

Asst. Chief Cuozzo is the 3rd most senior member of the department behind Chief Robert Gagne and Lieutenant Andrew Steinbrick.

He was sworn in as Asst. Chief on Sept. 12, 2012.


May 152015

10995309_818134861573271_3494597317392870262_nStaff and Students of Racebrook School arrived on campus Friday morning to find an unknown person had spray painted “DX” and male genitalia on their school building, walking track and playground equipment.

A check of the cameras revealed the below photographed suspect walking across the playground at about 12:48 a.m.

No vehicles were seen in the area.

If you know the identity of this person please call officer Kingston at 203-891-2130.

May 142015

Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 3.17.56 PMThe Orange Economic Development Corporation will be hosting the 14th Annual Orange Business and Community Expo on Wednesday, June 10, 2015, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the High Plains Community Center, 525 Orange Center Road, Orange. The Expo is free and open to the public.  Spread the word to all your friends, family, co-workers.

Start the day by signing up at the Welcome Center to receive your bag of goodies, sign up for a series of informative seminars and participate in the blood drive, then continue your day by enjoying food samples from various restaurants such as Eli’s of Orange, Chips, Coromandel, Smoothie King, Julia’s Bakery and buy a bag of Kettle Korn by Elm City for the ride home. 

Returning this year, for kids of all ages, will be an Animal Exhibit by Beardsley Zoo.  Also for the adults we have networking with 56 other business vendors including but not limited to Beirne Wealth Consulting, Connecticut Basement Systems, Crunch Fitness, Framers Insurance, Frontier Communication, Gutter Toppers, Lemay Motors, Life Line Nursing, Statefarm Insurance Agent Kevin Piscitelli and Orange Visiting Nurse Association.   A Business After Hours event hosted by the Chamber of Commerce  will follow the Expo.  Details at the Chamber of Commerce booth.

We couldn’t do it without help from our Sponsors. A list of current Sponsors includes:  Signature:The United Illuminating Company; Gold: University of New Haven, Northeast Electronics Corporation, Yale University, Cohen and Wolf and Orange Economic Development Commission.

Please call the Orange Economic Development Corporation office at (203) 891-1045 for more information or visit the OEDC website at OrangeEDC.com/expo.htm.

May 122015

Police Blotter Logo thx DaveA New Haven woman was party to an unrelated incident and officers discovered she was wanted on a warrant on April 27 at 9:19 p.m.

According to police, the warrant against Kelly Hoyt, 28, of 397 Edgewood Ave., New Haven, stemmed from an incident in 2013 when she used a Florida resident’s personal information to obtain cell phones and phone service at a store in Orange.

Hoyt was subsequently taken into custody and charged with third-degree identity theft, fourth-degree larceny, third-degree computer crime, conspiracy to commit fourth-degree larceny, and attempted sixth-degree larceny.

She was released after posting $5,000 bond for court May 11.


May 122015

Orange Police Headquarters

Orange Police Headquarters

The Orange Police Commission met at Town Hall on Monday, May 11.

As always the Traffic Authority portion of the meeting came first to discuss any traffic related issues, followed by the general Police Commission items.

Following were some of the topics on the agenda:

Traffic Authority

Subdivision for 560 Lambert Road to subdivide 3.51 Acres of Residential Land to create 2 lots. The applicant went to TP&Z last week but did not have all the approvals and signatures he needed for consideration.

He told the commissioners that the existing house will be removed and two houses would go in along with two new driveways.

Police Chief Robert Gagne looked at the plans and said the sight lines would be the same as they now are.

After a brief discussion the commission unanimously approved the plans.

The applicant received the signatures he needed and will go before the TP&ZC at its next meeting.

• Safety complaint

A resident on Buttonball Road spoke to Asst. Chief Cuozzo about cars speeding in this family neighborhood and expressed her wishes for Children At Play signs as a way to help keep up to 9 kids living there safe.

All of the commissioners are familiar with the road and added the comment, “if another car is coming you may have to stop so they can get by” to the discussion.

Chief Gagne said police will monitor the traffic as much as they can.

They unanimously agreed that getting the signs asap is a priority.

ALS Trek Bike Ride

The annual Tri-State ALS Trek bike ride from Cambridge Mass to Greenwich Ct June 26-28 will come through Orange on Sunday, June 28.

Chief Gagne said the bicyclists will be riding down Route 1, Malloy and Dogwood Roads and up through Route 34 on the final day of the event.

Police Commission

Asst. Chief Cuozzo presented the monthly report for April.

There were two commercial burglaries last month.  The first was at Fieldstone Village where someone took snowblowers. The second was at the unoccupied Orange Medical Center where construction and cleaning equipment were taken at some point, but the actual date is unknown.

A residential burglary was reported on Garden Road and Jewelry and silverware were reported missing.

Copper pipes were taken from a vacant home on Brookside Drive (in the same part of town as Garden Road)

Officers responded to a burglar alarm at another home (address not stated) and jewelry was reported missing.

In April police made 35 criminal arrests, issued 429 traffic tickets, investigated one stolen car complaint, and responded to 58 motor vehicle accidents.

Department Expenditures

• Sgt. Ray LaPlante was sent to accident reconstruction training.

• Minor leaks in the building were repaired

•Cabinetry was installed in the mobile command post

•A drain on the roof was retrofitted.

Budget Balance

Chief Gagne said everything looks good.

Any overtime (overages) can be taken care of by end of fiscal year.

The cost of gas went down and that helped save money.


A resident wrote a letter saying an officer who helped her was patient and kind and went the extra mile.

Another resident praised an officer for ensuring her safety when she had car trouble.

New Recruits

The Orange Police Department will welcome four new officers at the police academy graduation in Milford on Monday, May 18.

All four officers will be sworn in on Tuesday, May 19 and then begin their on the job training.

May 112015



Orange police located David DiLeonardo, 20, of 257 Williams St, West Haven from this incident in Waterbury and brought him to police headquarters to answer the warrant for his arrest on May 7 at 5:42 p.m.

The warrant stemmed from an incident on January 9, when officers tried to stop a car driven by DiLeonardo for traffic violations. But DiLeonardo refused to stop and caused two traffic accidents before his car was rendered inoperable.

He fled on foot into the city of West Haven.

Detective Mike Morrin’s investigation led to the driver’s identification, and a warrant was secured.

After Orange Police served the first warrant, DiLeonardo was turned over to West Haven and eventually North Haven Police, where he was wanted on additional arrest warrants.

Orange police charged DiLeonardo with sixth-degree larceny, driving without insurance, driving with a suspended license, drivning an unregistered motor vehicle, evading responsibility of a motor vehicle accident and engaging an officer in pursuit.

Charges: Larceny 6th degree, Operating a Motor Vehicle without Insurance, Operating a Motor Vehicle with a Suspended License, Operating an Unregistered Motor Vehicle, Evading Responsibility of a Motor Vehicle Accident, Engaging an Officer in Pursuit

He was held on $15,000 bond, then turned over to West Haven Police.