Month: November 2020

Officials Urge Residents to Learn Signs of Scam Artists Conducting Testing Activities

#HARTFORD, CT – Governor Ned Lamont is advising Connecticut residents that as demand for COVID-19 testing increases across the country, they should be on the lookout for scam artists seeking to take advantage of people most in need, including when searching for places to get tested. People in Connecticut are encouraged to use the state’s official coronavirus website – ct.gov/coronavirus – or the website of a provider like their local health clinic, hospital, or pharmacy to find a testing site. The governor said that these are reliable sources that can ensure people’s personal and health information will be protected. 

“Our testing program is one of the most robust in the country,” Governor Lamont said. “It’s troubling that scam artists would try to capitalize on that, but I know our municipalities — with our support — will continue to act quickly to stop these bad actors. Our residents should never hesitate to find a test if they are experiencing symptoms, living in a densely populated area, or living in an area with an outbreak.” 

COVID-19 testing sites in the state are run by institutions like hospitals, health clinics, and pharmacies that have the clinical background and appropriate licenses to oversee healthcare operations. There have been a small number of reports, most recently in Bridgeport, of pop-up testing sites claiming to work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and even local public health clinics. 

Here’s what Connecticut residents should know to find valid testing sites:

  • Those looking to locate testing sites are encouraged to use the testing locator feature at ct.gov/coronavirus or by call 2-1-1. Sites listed through the state have been vetted and are legitimate. 
  • If residents notice a pop-up testing site that is not at a health clinic, they should check ct.gov/coronavirus or call 2-1-1 to verify the testing site’s legitimacy before giving the site any personal information. 
  • People will never be asked for their social security number or financial information to get a test for COVID-19. If someone asks for this information, it is a scam. 
  • People should never be asked for cash at a testing site. 
  • When someone is tested for COVID-19, their information will be kept safe. The only people in touch with the patient after a test will be from their testing provider and – if the patient tests positive – a contact tracer.

If residents believe they visited a fraudulent testing site or that their information may have been compromised, they should:

  • Contact their local police department and department of public health. 
  • File a complaint with the Connecticut Department of Public Health Office of Facility Licensing and Investigations at dphflisevents.ct.gov/Complaints. They may also send an email to DPH.FLISlab@ct.gov
  • Visit identitytheft.gov to report identity theft and make a plan to protect themselves.
  • Review any bank or credit card accounts to ensure no activity looks suspicious. If something appears suspicious, they should report it to their bank or credit card company immediately.

“Since the start of the pandemic, Connecticut has been able to significantly bolster its testing capacity which has been a critical tool in defeating the spread of COVID-19,” Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz said. “In recent weeks, however, we have seen scammers set up fake COVID-19 testing sites trying to cash in on this pandemic. That’s why it’s so important that all of our residents take the necessary precautions when finding a testing site. Before getting tested, verify a testing site’s legitimacy by calling 2-1-1 or checking our state website. Make sure you visit a healthcare facility like a hospital or community health center, and verify that a pop-up testing site is run by one of those trusted entities. If you are experiencing any symptoms or were exposed to someone who is positive, don’t hesitate to get tested.”
“Testing plays an important role in public health and safety during this pandemic – but it’s important that our residents have confidence in the quality and legitimacy of the site they’re visiting,” Connecticut Public Health Acting Commissioner Dr. Deidre Gifford said. “I encourage everyone to visit ct.gov/coronavirus to find a test, and to continue following public health guidelines – including staying home if you feel sick, or have a known exposure to someone who has COVID-19.”
“It is important to get tested for COVID-19, and residents should not be deterred by potential scammers,” Connecticut Consumer Protection Commissioner Michelle Seagull said. “Most testing sites are legitimate, but there are some people out there who are unfortunately hoping to take advantage of a high-stress time for personal gain. We don’t want the occurrence of these scams to deter people from getting tested for COVID-19, but just as you would take steps to avoid scams in other parts of your life, it is also important to take precautions when choosing a testing site. Simple and easy steps like using ct.gov/coronavirus or calling 2-1-1 to quickly verify a testing site is legitimate is the easiest way to protect yourself. A legitimate testing site will never ask you for your social security number or bank account information or require a payment.”
“Scammers are always looking for ways to exploit crises for personal gain, and this pandemic is no different,” Attorney General William Tong said. “Through our joint state and federal COVID-19 fraud task force, we are investigating a wide range of misconduct, including healthcare fraud, price gouging, charities fraud and lending scams. If you are aware of COVID-19 related fraud or abuse, I want to know about it. The vast majority of testing sites are legitimate and licensed and no one should be deterred from getting a test. By taking basic precautions like checking first with ct.gov/coronavirus or by calling 2-1-1, you can be sure your test is safe, secure and legitimate.”
“Bridgeport residents are fortunate to have access to various official COVID-19 testing sites throughout the city,” Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim said. “We remain steadfast in our efforts to encourage everyone to get tested and take precautionary measures for their health and safety. While this is our new reality we will also safeguard against any individual that illegitimately uses this crisis as an opportunity to take advantage of people who are seeking help to prevent the spread of COVID in our community.”

This press release was made possible by:

https://www.bmwofbridgeport.com/

Fairfield News: Cumberland Farms Robbery

Police UPDATE:

Police received a call at 11:17pm on 11/29/2020 from an employee of Cumberland Farms/Gulf Gas Station (975 Kings Hwy E) reporting they had just been robbed.

The employee described the suspect as 5’9”, white or Hispanic male wearing a black ski mask pulled completely down over his head, a black short sleeve shirt, gray sweatpants and black shoes.

The suspect entered the store and walked behind the counter where he ordered the employee to open the cash register and back away.  The employee complied with the suspects demands. The store employee stated they were not threatened during the encounter and there was no weapon displayed or mentioned. The employee noticed that the suspect kept their right hand in his pocket.

The suspect took the cash from the register and walked out of the store, on foot, southbound on Chambers Street under the I-95 bridge. It is unknown if the suspect got into a vehicle.

The store employee was not injured during the incident. The employee called Police as the suspect walked out the front door.

The suspect got away with approximately $200.00 in cash. Detectives are working on obtaining store surveillance video.

The case is being investigated by the Fairfield Detective Bureau.

2020-11-29@11:22pm–#Fairfield CT– There was a robbery at the Cumberland Farms at 975 Kings Hwy East, There is not a lot of details other than the robber fleeing towards the circle on Kings Highway.

Ansonia News: Fatal Motorcycle Accident

Police UPDATE: The victim in the fatal motorcycle accident on East Main and Main Streets is Kevin Parham age 55 of Norwalk, formerly an Ansonia resident. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner ruled the cause of death to be blunt trauma and the manner to be accidental.

Ansonia Police UPDATE: On November 29, 2020 at about 7:00 P.M., the Ansonia Police Department received a call of a person laying in the road at the intersection of East Main, Main, North Main and State Streets. Officers located a male in the road at the intersection seriously injured; a short distance away on North Main Street a motorcycle with heavy damage was located on its side. Video footage from the area confirmed the male in the road was the operator of the motorcycle and the accident involved only the motorcycle and no other vehicles. The male was pronounced deceased at the scene, his name will be released pending positive identification and notification of next of kin.

The investigation into the fatal accident has resulted in the closure of the following roads. North Main Street from Fourth Street to Main Street. Main Street from Maple Street to State Street. State Street from North Cliff Street to Main Street. East Main Street from Kingston Drive to North Main Street. All traffic should avoid the area until further notice.

The department is asking anyone with information to please contact 203-735-1885 or tips can be left anonymously through TIP 411 at the link below.

https://www.tip411.com/tips/new?alert_group_id=21553


2020-11-29@7:02pm–#Ansonia CT– Report of a motorcyclist being struck by a car at Main and East Main Street and the driver fled the scene. This may be a fatal crash according to radio reports.

This news report is made possible by:

Norwalk News: Police Promotions

#Norwalk CT–Promotions were made at Norwalk Police Headquarters by the Police Commission.
Congratulations to the officers and good luck in their new assignments.
Joseph Dinho was promoted to Lieutenant. Lieutenant Dinho has been with the department since 2007
and was promoted to Sergeant in 2013.
Dominic Cisero was promoted to Sergeant. Sergeant Cisero has been with the department since 2004
and was promoted to Detective in 2011.
Scott Ribisl was promoted to Detective. Detective Ribisl has been with the department since 2012.