Community Bulletin Board
- 'Brass Valley: Made in America' Exhibit
- IMTI Installs Solar Panel System
- Local Senators support Firefighter Fundraiser
- Sacred Heart H.S. Names Top Students
- Summer Exhibits at the Mattatuck Museum
- Connecticut Museum Open House Day~June 8
- Waterbury Health Care Council Awards
- NAMI announces T-Shirt Contest Winner
- Dolce Fundraiser for Cardiology Center, 6/29
- StayWell Receives Patient-Centered Certification
- American Jazz at Museum’s 1st Thursday
- Palace Theater's 2013-14 Broadway Series
By John Murray
In February 2012 Deputy Police Chief Vernon Riddick, pictured above, moderated a panel discusssion on the history of the African-American struggle inside the Waterbury Police Department. For decades systemic racism held qualified black officers from advancing beyond patrolmen, and black cops were confined to beats in minority neighborhoods. Grudgingly, the department began to open up, but it wasn't until a federal lawsuit was filed by Cicero Booker Jr. in the early 1980s that measurable change occurred. Eleven months after the panel discussion on racism, Mayor Neil O'Leary has selected Vernon Riddick to lead the Waterbury Police Department in the wake of Chief Michael Gugliotti's retirement. Riddick will officially be the Acting Police Chief while O'Leary searches for a permanant replacement for Gugliotti, who is out on vacation until his retirement on March 18th. In the absence of Chief Gugliotti, Riddick will assume the role of Acting Chief of Police immediately, becoming the first black officer in history to lead the Waterbury Police Department.
Waterbury Police Chief Michael Gugliotti announced the start of a citywide Highway Safety Initiative. “The summer months are where we see the most vehicle collisions.” Chief Gugliotti said. “Not only does the frequency of crashes increase but so does the extent of the injuries. Unsafe driving practices are primarily to blame particularly excessive speed, distracted driving and alcohol.” The Department’s Traffic Enforcement Unit continues to aggressively enforce motor vehicle laws in an effort to reduce the accident rate.
Billy Smolinski Jr. vanished from Waterbury August 24th, 2004.
Story By John Murray
Seven and a half years after Billy Smolinski Jr. disappeared from Waterbury, Connecticut, the local police department is taking another look at the case. The new development was triggered when Billy's parents, Bill and Jan Smolinski, met with Waterbury Police Chief, Michael Gugliotti, on March 22nd.
"The Smolinskis asked me a lot of questions that I had no answer for," Gugliotti said. "I wasn't involved with the investigation seven years ago, but it was a complete disaster. We need to find answers to their questions."