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Oct 252021
 

This morning an undisclosed number of Amity High School students and staff received a menacing message stating that there would be a shooting at noon today.

The message was poorly composed with capital and lower case letters with the appearance of a 1970s ransom note.

Editor’s notes: These are the sort of messages you will see originating  from nasties overseas with no punctuation marks, and misspellings (reciving, shootig, occir, and MEGA).

An accompanying photo of a handgun with another message stating “No ONE is SafE we cOmin for yoU AmitY you Will PayY”

Even though initially there was no way to know if this was a credible threat by an ill intentioned individual or a hoax by an insecure attention-seeking hacker, Amity administrators and law enforcement officials had no choice but to take it seriously and to do everything possible to keep everyone safe.

The Woodbridge Police were on site at the High School all day investigating the incident.

The job isn’t over after school lets out for the day. The Cyber crimes investigation will continue until authorities can determine the source of the messages. Was he or she a local citizen or a Russian cad looking to stir things up. Did it originate in North Korea or China?

The Woodbridge Police and other authorities have their hands full with this one, and the ne’re do well who caused all the ruckus today will pay dearly for the threat with jail time and fines, along with possible charges of threatening, breach of peace, etc.

Possible charges

Making criminal threats is a wobbler offense under PC 422, meaning it could be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony based on the severity of the crime and the individual’s criminal record.

A misdemeanor conviction carries up to 364 days in jail and up to $1,000 in fines, while a felony conviction is punishable by up to three years in prison and a maximum $10,000 fine.

UPDATED: Amity High School On Alert Following Email Threat

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Oct 252021
 

This morning, Monday, Oct. 25, Amity Schools Supt. Jennifer Byars sent out a notice to parents regarding a threatening email message that some student and staff reportedly received.

In it she stated:

“Some Amity Regional High School staff and students received an email this morning that contained a threatening message. The Woodbridge Police Department responded immediately and are investigating. School staff are supporting the investigation. At this time, we believe students are safe and will continue to look into the matter. Additional information will be provided as it becomes available.”

UPDATE: Parents are lining up to pick up their children after word went out on local TV News stations that the threatening e-mails contained images of guns.

In Case You Were Wondering: Two Serious Accidents In Woodbridge Today

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Apr 022021
 

Early this morning (Friday, April 2) Woodbridge Police, Fire, and Emergency Medical Services personnel responded to two separate motor vehicle incidents involving injuries.

The first incident, reported at approximately 4:11 a.m., was a motor vehicle accident on Rimmon Road, just east of Racebrook Road.  Emergency responders found that the sole occupant had been ejected and was pinned beneath the car.  He was extricated by Fire Department personnel and transported to Yale-New Haven Hospital with severe injuries.

The second incident, which occurred on Litchfield Turnpike (RT 69) south of Morris Road, was reported at around 5:27 a.m. and involved a combustion-related accident within a vehicle which resulted in severe injuries and burns to the driver.

The vehicle fire was extinguished by Fire Department personnel and the driver was transported the Yale-NH Hospital for treatment of life-threatening injuries.  This incident is being investigated by the CT State Police Fire and Explosive Investigation Unit in conjunction with the Woodbridge Fire Marshal’s Office, and the Woodbridge Police Department.

At this time the names of those injured are not available for release.

Hundreds Attend Tri-Town Black Lives Matter Rally in Woodbridge

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Jun 152020
 

Organizer Micaela Cardozo

With all the unrest across the country and more and more disturbing examples of prejudice and brutality against black citizens coming to light every day, peaceful Black Lives Matter rallies have become a popular way for many to express their feelings.

Just a week ago, Amity grad Micaela Cardozo decided that it was time the Amity community join in the movement and begin to truly understand the plight of their black brothers and sisters. 

She spoke with the first selectman, Police Chief Frank Cappiello, Youth Services Coordinator, and others and arranged for the streets to be closed for everyone’s safety during the march. She reached out to Orange Democrats Jodi Dietch and Mary Welander who set up a table with poster board and markers so protesters could make signs.

Several Woodbridge police officers, including the chief, were present, but not “in your face.” Cappiello stood in the back and took a photo of the gathering with his cell phone at the beginning and said of Cardozo, “She did a good job.” He also was pleased that every single person wore a mask, helping keep the risk of spreading COVID-19 to a minimum.

Of all the local rallies, this is the first one we’ve seen that was fully orchestrated by young adults. 

Micaela recruited other Amity High alums, Ryan Rattley, Zoie Reed, and Tobe Nwangwu to speak at the gathering along with Woodbridge First Selectman Beth Heller. Only Rattley, who is in college in Pittsburgh, could not attend. He asked his mother, Carol Galloway, to read his thoughts for him. 

Micaela, a tall, pretty, blonde, introduced herself and stated, “You wouldn’t know it to look at me, but I am bi-racial, and I’ve never experienced racial discrimination. But my friends have and black lives matter.”

She introduced First Selectman Beth Heller, who first thanked all of the speakers and everyone there who came together in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, demonstrating their commitment to social justice. 

“We will march because Black Lives Matter. We march for justice, for equal justice under the law, for economic justice, for environmental justice, and for equal opportunity,” Heller said. “We march because this is who we are.”

Heller added this important piece of information. Some of you may be aware that the Merriam-Webster dictionary will now include systemic racism in its latest definition of racism.  Kennedy Mitchum, a young Black woman from Missouri and recent graduate of Drake University wrote to the Merriam-Webster editors, to request that the dictionary provide a more detailed definition of racism, a definition that recognizes that racism extends beyond one-to-one interactions or expressions of prejudice to include systemic racism where larger systems and institutions in society in education, policing, health care, or the economy work over time to reinforce differential treatment according to race.  To her surprise, the editors agreed.  In its new definition, Merriam-Webster will attempt to indicate that racism isn’t limited to discrimination or prejudice from one person to another but racism is also about longstanding institutions, laws, and regulations that promote notions of supremacy and inferiority between the races. This is systemic racism.

“We watch in anguish in response to systemic racism, particularly the pattern of needless and senseless acts of violence that have taken the lives of our black brothers and sisters, and recently, the tragic murder of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis police.  But this time, I think we have reason to hope that things will change,” she said. “There is a new burst of energy, a protest movement across this country and beyond our shores, in cities and towns in all 50 states, a movement that crosses racial, ethnic, political and generational differences, a movement that binds us together by our common humanity, a movement poised to inspire new policies and new legislation. 

Martin Luther King said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” 

“I think Dr. King believed that the arc doesn’t bend toward justice on its own,” Heller said. “That’s our responsibility, and that’s why we are here today.”

Next Nwangwu gave an impassioned speech, sharing the stories of several of the more recent black lives lost to police brutality, prejudice, and hatred, just because of the color of their skin.

Each heartwrenching account was shared with sadness, anger, and pain, as only a black person could tell it. You could hear a pin drop in the field of grass upon which the sea of white people sat along with their black neighbors, classmates, and friends.

Carol Galloway shared her son, Ryan’s statement just as he would have, with purpose, honesty, and sadness.

Ryan was a little black kid who went through the Amity school system, and the first time he heard a derogatory word about his race was on the bus coming home from Middle School. Woodbridge children were not the only ones to make him feel uncomfortable or out of place. He recalled riding his bicycle one day and being followed all the way to his home by a woman who didn’t let it end there. She sat outside his home for a while to make sure he wasn’t up to something criminal.

Ryan was on the Amity Lacrosse team and he was in four of five Amity Plays — even earning a nomination for a High School Musical Award for his performance in “In The Heights.”

He reflected on how everyone loves you then, congratulating you when you make a goal or give a great performance, but you can’t ride your bike through a Woodbridge neighborhood because you’re black.

Zoie Reed told the crowd that she was going to be brutally honest so, if they didn’t like what she was saying they were free to leave.

She got her feelings of anger and frustration across to everyone when she said, “Don’t say you understand, because you don’t.”

And she is right. As much as I or the next white person can be infuriated by the actions of a racist cop shooting a black person, or kneeling on his neck until he dies in the street, we will NEVER know how it affects the black person standing next to us. How can we? We are not black. We can walk into a store, or ride our bike down a street without being followed because we’re not black.

We all have a lot to learn. We need to have a conversation and really listen, and make a change in the culture across this nation.

Cardozo was choked up after Zoie’s speech and took a moment before introducing the pastor from a local church to lead the 8 minutes 46 second moment of silence in memory of George Floyd — the exact amount of time he lay in the street with a knee pressed against his neck as he pleaded, “I can’t breathe,” and called for his “Mama.”

Able-bodied participants walked to the corner of Meetinghouse and Newton, while others lined their cars up behind a police cruiser for a long walk around town displaying signs and chanting, “No Justice, No Peace,” “Black Lives Matter,” “I Can’t Breathe.” etc.

I’d like to congratulate Micaela for organizing this peaceful, poignant event for the Bethany-Orange and Woodbridge communities. And Thank You to the young speakers for putting their hearts and souls into their presentations.

I hope that we all now have a better understanding, although we won’t ever fully understand, and begin to make a difference because it really does matter. This is where it starts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

UPDATE: Woodbridge Homicide Victim Identified

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Nov 132019
 

Here is a followup to a previous story regarding a body found in Woodbridge.

Police continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding the body of a deceased male that was located Saturday evening in a wooded area along Woodfield Road.

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has positively identified the victim in this homicide investigation to be Abdur Terrell, age 28, of New Haven, CT. The victim was found to have suffered multiple gunshot wounds.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Woodbridge Police Department at (203) 387-2511.

No further information is available for release at this time.

Amity High School Lockdown: Drill Was Flawless

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May 202014
 

 

The halls of Amity High School.

The halls of Amity High School.

From Amity Principal Charles Britton:

This morning, at around 9 a.m., Amity High School was placed in a lockdown.

This was only a drill. There was no emergency at Amity High School. This drill was called by the Woodbridge Police Department.

First responders from Woodbridge, Orange and the Connecticut State Police responded as if there were an actual emergency.

This drill provided first responders, and faculty and staff at Amity High School the opportunity to practice a response to a real emergency.

Students, faculty and staff performed remarkably well during the drill. Students are currently in their Spartan Seminar meetings.

The day has returned to normal.

Our appreciation is extended to the Woodbridge and Orange Police Departments, and Connecticut State Police, for their professional and prompt response.

Sincerely,

Charles Britton

Only A Drill: Amity High School Locked Down

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Feb 242014
 

The halls of Amity High School.

The halls of Amity High School.

This morning, Amity Regional High School conducted a lockdown drill.

This was only a drill; there was no emergency in the building.

This drill was conducted in collaboration with the Woodbridge PD, Orange PD, and Connecticut State Police.

Principal Charles Britton said, “Our appreciation is extended to the officers who responded and assisted us with a successful drill. Faculty, staff and students were cooperative and attentive during the drill. At this time, school has returned to a normal schedule.”

 

Orange Residents Be Aware that Woodbridge Police Have A New Look

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Oct 102013
 

Officer Blume and Sgt. Cappiello of the Woodbridge Police Department in their new uniforms.

Officer Blume and Sgt. Cappiello of the Woodbridge Police Department in their new uniforms.

To all Orange residents who travel through the town of Woodbridge, to Amity or for other reasons, be aware that the Woodbridge Police have made a change to their traditional uniforms and would like the public to know so there is no confusion.

Due to availability, cost, safety, comfort, mobility, reliability and a number of other reasons, they have changed the overall appearance of their uniforms.

All black uniforms are what you will see uniformed police officers in Woodbridge wearing on a daily basis.  The only exception will be our traditional gray shirt and dark gray pants, which will only be worn on special occasions as a “Class A” uniform.

Many area departments have made similar changes for many of the same reasons.  Everything on the uniform is sewn on, making it safer, easier to maintain and more uniform.

Along with the new SUVs purchased several months ago, the Woodbridge Police Department continues to strive toward making Woodbridge a safer community in which to live.

woodbridge uniforms

If for any reason you are stopped or approached by someone claiming to be a Woodbridge Police officer wearing a uniform different than this, call the Woodbridge PD at 203-387-2511.

Amity Student Charged With Possession With Intent To Sell

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Sep 242012
 

(Image from the 420 Times)

Police were called to Amity High School, 23 Newton Road, Woodbridge, on a drug report Tuesday, Sept. 18 at 2:20 p.m.

According to the report by Woodbridge police, a 16-year-old Amity High School student was found to be in possession of numerous packets of marijuana with intent to sell.

The student’s identity was not revealed due to his or her age.

Police said the student was referred to Juvenile Court in New Haven.