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Westlake Legal Group > fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut

DNA from cigarette butts links man to 12-year-old’s kidnapping, sexual assault: prosecutors

A Connecticut man was arrested Wednesday in connection with the May kidnapping and sexual assault of a Massachusetts 12-year-old after investigators used DNA from discarded cigarette butts to tie him to the case, prosecutors said.

LAPD OFFICER LINKED TO TWO SEPARATE RAPE CASES BY DNA ‘COLD MATCH’: POLICE

Joshua Besaw, 35, of Thompson, Conn., faces several federal charges, including kidnapping and transportation of a minor to engage in illegal sexual activity, Connecticut’s U.S. District Attorney’s Office said. He was arrested Wednesday after police worked for almost two months to identify a suspect.

Westlake Legal Group Joshua-Besaw DNA from cigarette butts links man to 12-year-old's kidnapping, sexual assault: prosecutors fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/massachusetts fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime/sex-crimes fox-news/us/crime fox news fnc/us fnc Danielle Wallace article 03b0bf18-5057-531d-aea7-d0173de31dbb

Joshua Besaw, 35, was arrested Wednesday after allegedly kidnapping and sexually assaulting a 12-year-old in May. (Webster Police Department)

Besaw allegedly lured a 12-year-old girl off her bicycle and into his car at a park in Webster, Mass., on May 31. Court documents said Besaw told the girl his name was Chuck and he needed help because his girlfriend’s parents hated him, Western Mass News reported.

The man then transported the girl over state lines into Connecticut where he pulled over in a wooded area and sexually assaulted her, the Webster Police Department said. He eventually dropped the girl off in Dudley, Mass. where she ran to a resident’s home and called her mother.

Police asked the public on Facebook in June to help officials identify a suspect in the case. Investigators obtained surveillance video from several homes and businesses that lead them to Besaw. On July 10, investigators picked up cigarette butts that they witnessed Besaw throw away. The DNA on the cigarette butts matched DNA extracted from the victim on May 31, police and prosecutors said.

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The FBI, Connecticut State Police and local police departments in Massachusetts and Connecticut aided in the investigation.

Westlake Legal Group Joshua-Besaw DNA from cigarette butts links man to 12-year-old's kidnapping, sexual assault: prosecutors fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/massachusetts fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime/sex-crimes fox-news/us/crime fox news fnc/us fnc Danielle Wallace article 03b0bf18-5057-531d-aea7-d0173de31dbb   Westlake Legal Group Joshua-Besaw DNA from cigarette butts links man to 12-year-old's kidnapping, sexual assault: prosecutors fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/massachusetts fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime/sex-crimes fox-news/us/crime fox news fnc/us fnc Danielle Wallace article 03b0bf18-5057-531d-aea7-d0173de31dbb

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Author of ‘Gone Girl’ slams attorney’s claim linking Jennifer Dulos’ disappearance to book

The author of “Gone Girl” says that allegations connecting missing Connecticut mother Jennifer Dulos to her book’s main character — who concocts her disappearance to make it seem as though her husband murdered her — makes her sick.

Author Gillian Flynn said she’s been following 50-year-old Dulos’ story, and describes the situation as “so incredibly painful.”

“I’ve seen in recent coverage that Jennifer’s husband and his defense attorney have put forward a so-called ‘Gone Girl theory’ to explain Jennifer’s disappearance,” Flynn told WTNH-TV. “It absolutely sickens me that a work of fiction written by me would be used by Fotis Dulos’s lawyer as a defense, and as a hypothetical, sensationalized motive behind Jennifer’s very real and very tragic disappearance.”

MISSING CONNECTICUT MOM JENNIFER DULOS’ FAMILY, FRIENDS DENY HER CASE IS A ‘GONE GIRL’ DISPPEARANCE

Flynn’s story “Gone Girl,” published in 2012, revolves around a seemingly happy married couple. On their wedding anniversary, the wife suddenly disappears, and the husband becomes the prime suspect.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-5f0ade7417bf4a1f851c77509491ed02 Author of 'Gone Girl' slams attorney's claim linking Jennifer Dulos' disappearance to book Nicole Darrah fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment/genres/books fox news fnc/us fnc fda972d5-51a1-5f01-82c4-cd2d0c897165 article

Jennifer Dulos, pictured here, was reported missing on May 24. She was last seen dropping off her children at school in New Canaan, Conn. (New Canaan Police Department via AP)

Norm Pattis, a lawyer for Fotis Dulos, Jennifer’s estranged husband, told Fox News last month that Jennifer “had a troubled past,” and described her as a writer who “wrote a manuscript similar to ‘Gone Girl.”

He said Fotis was “emotional, tired, distraught” over the “exhausting ordeal,” and the disappearance of Jennifer.

A spokesperson for the missing woman’s family and friends slammed the comments, saying: “This is not fiction or a movie. This is real life, as experienced every single day by Jennifer’s five young children, her family, and her friends.”

“We are heartbroken. Jennifer is not here to protect her children, and these false and irresponsible allegations hurt the children now and into the future,” spokesperson Carrie Luft added. “Evidence shows that Jennifer was the victim of a violent attack in her New Canaan home.”

Jennifer Dulos was reported missing on June 24 and was last seen driving a black Chevy Suburban as she dropped off her kids at their private school in New Canaan.

FOTIS DULOS AND GIRLFRIEND PLEAD NOT GUILTY IN CONNECTION TO DISAPPEARANCE OF HIS MISSING CONNECTICUT WIFE JENNIFER

The couple was in the midst of a bitter custody battle over the five children. Pattis said Jennifer Dulos “seemed intent” on moving the children to New York, where her mother lived, against the joint custody agreement.

However, court documents revealed Jennifer Dulos was “terrified for [her] family’s safety.” She alleged that her husband, a custom home builder who was born and raised in Greece but attended Brown University in the U.S., “has a history of controlling, volatile and delusional behavior.”

Luft said Pattis’ suggestion that Jennifer Dulos’ disappearance was tied to a book she wrote was nonsensical.

“I read Jennifer’s novel in installments as she was completing the manuscript,” Luft said. “She finished the draft around 2002. (This was before she was dating Fotis Dulos.) Her book has nothing to do with Gone Girl (published in 2012).”

She added, “Jennifer’s novel is not a mystery. It’s a character-driven story that follows a young woman through relationships and self-discovery over a period of years. Like all of Jennifer’s writing, it expresses a deep longing for human connection and the need to be accepted as one’s true self.”

Fotis Dulos and his live-in girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, both pleaded not guilty to charges of evidence tampering and hindering prosecution in June.

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Pattis, in a previously released statement, said, “We are continuing our investigation of Ms. Dulos’s disappearance, and believe it to be entirely consistent with the evidence to conclude that she was not a victim of foul play at the hands of third parties.”

He continued, “Efforts to distance Ms. Dulos from a Gone Girl-type scenario are well-meaning, to be sure. But the fact remains that Ms. Dulos remains accountably ‘Gone,’ and had the imagination, means and motive to disappear.”

Fox News’ Talia Kaplan contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-5f0ade7417bf4a1f851c77509491ed02 Author of 'Gone Girl' slams attorney's claim linking Jennifer Dulos' disappearance to book Nicole Darrah fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment/genres/books fox news fnc/us fnc fda972d5-51a1-5f01-82c4-cd2d0c897165 article   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-5f0ade7417bf4a1f851c77509491ed02 Author of 'Gone Girl' slams attorney's claim linking Jennifer Dulos' disappearance to book Nicole Darrah fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/entertainment/movies fox-news/entertainment/genres/books fox news fnc/us fnc fda972d5-51a1-5f01-82c4-cd2d0c897165 article

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Connecticut cops search reservoir in Jennifer Dulos investigation

Police searching for missing Connecticut mother of five Jennifer Dulos scoured a reservoir near the home of her estranged husband Wednesday.

New Canaan police said in a statement that members of the Connecticut State Police K-9 unit searched the property of the Metropolitan District Commission reservoir in West Hartford “as a part of the ongoing criminal investigation” into Dulos’ disappearance.

MISSING CONNECTICUT MOM JENNIFER DULOS’ FAMILY, FRIENDS, DENY HER CASE IS A ‘GONE GIRL’ DISAPPEARANCE

The statement did not say what investigators were searching for or what, if anything, they found. The Hartford Courant reported that the western edge of the reservoir is just a half-mile away from Fotis Dulos’ residence in Farmington.

Jennifer Dulos has not been seen since May 24, when she dropped off her children at school in New Canann. Fotis Dulos has denied having anything to do with his wife’s disappearance, a claim he repeated in an interview that aired Tuesday night.

FOTIS DULOS MAINTAINS INNOCENCE IN FIRST SIT-DOWN INTERVIEW SINCE WIFE’S DISAPPEARANCE

Fotis Dulos told WNBC-TV that while he and Jennifer had their differences during their divorce and child custody case, he wished no harm upon her.

“Statistically when this [a spouse disappearance]  happens,” Dulos said, “90 or 95 percent [of the time] it’s the spouse.”

Dulos claimed he belongs “in the 5 or 10 percent” of spouses who are innocent.

Westlake Legal Group Jennifer-Dulos Connecticut cops search reservoir in Jennifer Dulos investigation Frank Miles fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast fox-news/us/crime/manhunt fox news fnc/us fnc article 671ea63a-7831-5d14-92db-d2b964ad7d09

Jennifer Dulos has been missing since May 24 when she was last seen dropping off her children at school. (New Canaan Police Department via AP)

Fotis Dulos also put out a statement Tuesday night asking the public to “keep my children and Jennifer in your thoughts.”

“My children are the center of my world. I worry about them and Jennifer, and I would tell them that I know it is hard now but everything IS going to be alright [sic] eventually,” he said. “I understand the public’s perception of me as a monster given the little they know about the case, but I trust the system and the process and ask the public to do the same.”

SISTER OF JENNIFER DULOS’ ESTRANGED HUSBAND SAYS HE’S ‘NOT THE PERSON THEY SAY HE IS’

Fotis Dulos’ sister told Fox 61 many relatives and friends don’t believe Fotis Dulos was capable of harming his wife.

Rena Dulos, who lives in Greece, described her brother as someone who wanted to “have a big family under his paternal ‘wings'” and also “lovingly spontaneous to the core when it comes down to lifting other peoples’ spirits around him.”

Fotis Dulos and his girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, have pleaded not guilty to evidence tampering and hindering prosecution charges. Police allege the couple discarded items containing Jennifer Dulos’ blood in Hartford.

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Prosecutors have consistently hinted more charges were likely, but have yet to file any other counts. Fotis Dulos is next scheduled to appear in court Aug. 2.

Fotis and Jennifer Dulos’ five children, who are aged 8 to 13 and include two sets of twins, have been staying with Jennifer Dulos’ mother, Gloria Farber, in New York City. Both Farber and Fotis Dulos are seeking custody.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-7d617c51b8634bba84eccd9efa33bc13 Connecticut cops search reservoir in Jennifer Dulos investigation Frank Miles fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast fox-news/us/crime/manhunt fox news fnc/us fnc article 671ea63a-7831-5d14-92db-d2b964ad7d09   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-7d617c51b8634bba84eccd9efa33bc13 Connecticut cops search reservoir in Jennifer Dulos investigation Frank Miles fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast fox-news/us/crime/manhunt fox news fnc/us fnc article 671ea63a-7831-5d14-92db-d2b964ad7d09

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Fotis Dulos maintains innocence in first sit-down interview since wife’s disappearance

Westlake Legal Group Fotis-Dulos1 Fotis Dulos maintains innocence in first sit-down interview since wife's disappearance fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime/cold-case fox news fnc/us fnc Danielle Wallace article 9be1518b-3b97-51f4-9775-80b0e29959c3

Fotis Dulos, a Connecticut real-estate developer charged in connection with the disappearance of his estranged wife Jennifer Dulos, maintained his innocence Tuesday during his first sit-down interview about the case, claiming he’s “worried” about his wife and never wished her “ill in any way.”

“I know what I’ve done, I know what I haven’t done,” the 51-year-old Greek immigrant told New York City’s WNBC-TV. “I have to stand and fight and hope that the truth is going to come out.”

“I know what I’ve done, I know what I haven’t done. I have to stand and fight and hope that the truth is going to come out.”

— Fotis Dulos, husband of missing Connecticut woman

Jennifer Dulos, 50, hasn’t been seen since dropping her children off at school in New Canaan, Conn., on May 24.

Fotis Dulos and his girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, are charged with evidence tampering and hindering prosecution and have been accused of disposing of items found in Hartford that contained Jennifer Dulos’ blood. The pair were released on $500,000 bond pending trial.

SISTER OF JENNIFER DULOS’ ESTRANGED HUSBAND SAYS HE’S ‘NOT THE PERSON THEY SAY HE IS’

“I had my differences with Jennifer like many people do when they go through a marriage. It didn’t work out for us, but that doesn’t mean that I wish her ill in any way,” Fotis Dulos said Tuesday. Jennifer Dulos filed for divorce two years ago, and the estranged couple had been involved in a contentious court battle up until her disappearance.

“I had my differences with Jennifer like many people do when they go through a marriage. It didn’t work out for us, but that doesn’t mean that I wish her ill in any way.”

— Fotis Dulos, husband of missing Connecticut woman

Despite the charges against him, Fotis Dulos said he has “faith in the system” but that he’s already been “convicted” in the minds of many.

“Statistically when this happens,” Dulos said, referring to a spouse going missing, “90 or 95 percent [of the time] it’s the spouse. ” Dulos claimed he belongs “in the 5 or 10 percent” of spouses who are innocent.

“[It’s] been a very tough time for the whole family. We’re all worried about Jennifer,” he said. “I’m worried very much about the kids and what they’re going through.”

The children, ages 8 to 13 and including two sets of twins, have been staying with Jennifer Dulos’ mother, Gloria Farber, in New York City. Both Farber and Fotis Dulos are seeking custody.

Fotis Dulos’ sister, Rena Dulos, who lives in Greece, spoke out for the first time Monday, defending her brother and insisting he’s incapable of having any involvement in Jennifer Dulos’ disappearance.

In a lengthy statement to Hartford’s FOX61, Rena Dulos said her brother desired to be a father and “sincerely craves to see his children and be an integral part of their upbringing.”

She also said her brother, who may have had “personal differences” with his estranged wife, “truly and sincerely holds her in his prayers” and wants “nothing more than to know that she is well and could ultimately return to their children.”

According to their arrest warrants, a couple whom police have identified as Fotis Dulos and Troconis were seen on video surveillance driving in Hartford around the time Jennifer Dulos was reported missing. The man was seen tossing garbage bags into more than 30 trash bins with items that were later determined to have Jennifer Dulos’ blood on them.

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Fotis Dulos’ DNA was found mixed with his wife’s blood on a kitchen faucet in the New Canaan home where she lived with her children after the couple split, according to State’s Attorney Richard Colangelo. Police said the house also had evidence of blood spatter and cleanup attempts, according to the arrest report.

Prosecutors consistently hinted more charges were likely, but have yet to file any other counts. He is scheduled to appear in court again Aug. 2.

Fox News’ Travis Fedschun, Paulina Dedaj, Perry Chiaramonte and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Fotis-Dulos1 Fotis Dulos maintains innocence in first sit-down interview since wife's disappearance fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime/cold-case fox news fnc/us fnc Danielle Wallace article 9be1518b-3b97-51f4-9775-80b0e29959c3   Westlake Legal Group Fotis-Dulos1 Fotis Dulos maintains innocence in first sit-down interview since wife's disappearance fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime/cold-case fox news fnc/us fnc Danielle Wallace article 9be1518b-3b97-51f4-9775-80b0e29959c3

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Nashville man charged with LGBT hate crime in Connecticut over church vandalism: police

Westlake Legal Group Charles-Yarbrough Nashville man charged with LGBT hate crime in Connecticut over church vandalism: police Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/religion fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/tennessee fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc d721a6f6-63a8-5125-8bef-bd0fd778a188 article

Police arrested a man on Monday after he allegedly caused damage to a Connecticut church because he felt the pastor was pushing an LGBT agenda.

Charles Yarbrough, 30, of Nashville, Tenn., now faces hate crime and burglary charges, according to a report from the Milford, Conn., police sent to Fox News.

JENNIFER DULOS’ ESTRANGED HUSBAND BREAKS SILENCE FOLLOWING DIVORCE HEARING WITH MESSAGE FOR 5 CHILDREN

Police said Yarbrough told them he went to Mary Taylor Memorial United Methodist Church in Milford on Monday and damaged the office door because he felt the pastor and the church as a whole were supporting the LGBT community and promoting its agenda.

In a statement, the Rev. Kristina Hansen called the incident “unfortunate and saddening.”

She added, “It does not, however, dissuade us from our affirming stance.”

‘FACEBOOK FUGITIVE,’ INSPIRATION FOR COUNTRY SONG, HONORS DEAL TO SURRENDER AFTER 15,000 LIKES: REPORTS

Hansen went on to say that the church stands “firmly” behind its mission statement, which recognizes and celebrates “the diversity of God’s creation and God’s gifts.”

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“As disciples of our Lord, we publicly acknowledge, welcome and support people of all races, genders, sexual orientations and gender identities, ages, nationalities, ethnicity, abilities and socio-economic situations.”

Westlake Legal Group Charles-Yarbrough Nashville man charged with LGBT hate crime in Connecticut over church vandalism: police Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/religion fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/tennessee fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc d721a6f6-63a8-5125-8bef-bd0fd778a188 article   Westlake Legal Group Charles-Yarbrough Nashville man charged with LGBT hate crime in Connecticut over church vandalism: police Talia Kaplan fox-news/world/religion fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/tennessee fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc d721a6f6-63a8-5125-8bef-bd0fd778a188 article

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Salmonella outbreak linked to fresh papayas sickens at least 62 people in 8 states, CDC says

Dozens of people in eight U.S. states have been infected with a strain of salmonella after eating fresh papayas imported from Mexico, according to federal health officials.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday that 62 people have so far been infected with the strain of Salmonella Uganda, of which 23 have been hospitalized.

The illnesses started on dates ranging from Jan. 14 to June 8, with most of the illnesses occurring since April.

CHILD EXPOSED TO E. COLI AT SAN DIEGO COUNTY FAIR DIES, 3 OTHERS SICKENED: OFFICIALS

“Epidemiologic evidence and early product distribution information indicate that whole, fresh papayas imported from Mexico and sold in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island are a likely source of this outbreak,” the CDC said.

Westlake Legal Group SalmonellaMap1 Salmonella outbreak linked to fresh papayas sickens at least 62 people in 8 states, CDC says Travis Fedschun fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/florida fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/rhode-island fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-jersey fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/massachusetts fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast fox-news/health/infectious-disease/outbreaks fox-news/health/infectious-disease/foodborne-illness fox news fnc/health fnc article 5fcddcc7-59f7-5d83-bb99-9a11067e39d2

At least 62 people in 8 states have been sickened with salmonella after eating fresh papayas imported from Mexico, according to federal health officials. (CDC)

While no deaths attributed to Salmonella have been reported, the agency is advising that consumers in those states not eat any, whole fresh papayas from Mexico. Health officials are also advising people not to eat fruit salads or other mixes that include papayas from Mexico.

“If you aren’t sure the papaya you bought is from Mexico, you can ask the place of purchase,” the agency states. “When in doubt, don’t eat the papaya. Throw it out.”

AMID SALMONELLA OUTBREAK, CDC WARNS: DON’T ‘KISS OR SNUGGLE’ CHICKENS

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is also advising importers, suppliers, and distributors, as well as restaurants, retailers and other food service providers across all states to halt sales of whole, fresh papayas imported from Mexico.

Westlake Legal Group iStock-Papaya Salmonella outbreak linked to fresh papayas sickens at least 62 people in 8 states, CDC says Travis Fedschun fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/florida fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/rhode-island fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-jersey fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/massachusetts fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast fox-news/health/infectious-disease/outbreaks fox-news/health/infectious-disease/foodborne-illness fox news fnc/health fnc article 5fcddcc7-59f7-5d83-bb99-9a11067e39d2

Whole, fresh papayas from Mexico and sold in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island are the likely source of the outbreak. (iStock)

Of those sickened so far, 24 were in New York, 14 were in Connecticut and 12 were in New Jersey.

Symptoms of salmonella usually develop 12 to 72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria, with most people developing diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps. The illness usually lasts four to seven days and most people recover without treatment.

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“In some people, the illness may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized,” according to the CDC. “Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the bloodstream and then to other places in the body.”

Federal health officials say that children younger than 5-years-old, pregnant women, adults 65 and older, and people with weakened immune systems are more likely to have a severe illness.

The CDC estimates that Salmonella causes about 1.2 million illnesses, 23,000 hospitalizations, and 450 deaths in the U.S. every year. Food is the source for about 1 million of those illnesses, according to the agency.

Westlake Legal Group iStock-Papaya Salmonella outbreak linked to fresh papayas sickens at least 62 people in 8 states, CDC says Travis Fedschun fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/florida fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/rhode-island fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-jersey fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/massachusetts fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast fox-news/health/infectious-disease/outbreaks fox-news/health/infectious-disease/foodborne-illness fox news fnc/health fnc article 5fcddcc7-59f7-5d83-bb99-9a11067e39d2   Westlake Legal Group iStock-Papaya Salmonella outbreak linked to fresh papayas sickens at least 62 people in 8 states, CDC says Travis Fedschun fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/texas fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/florida fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/rhode-island fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-york fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/new-jersey fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/massachusetts fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast fox-news/health/infectious-disease/outbreaks fox-news/health/infectious-disease/foodborne-illness fox news fnc/health fnc article 5fcddcc7-59f7-5d83-bb99-9a11067e39d2

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Missing Connecticut mom Jennifer Dulos’ family, friends, deny her case is a ‘Gone Girl’ disappearance

Family and friends of missing Connecticut mother of five Jennifer Dulos on Monday countered a claim from her estranged husband’s lawyer that the author was “deeply troubled,” and said any links to a book she wrote nearly two decades ago were way off base.

In a Fox News interview on Friday, lawyer Norm Pattis said his client, Fotis Dulos, was “emotional, tired, distraught” over the “exhausting ordeal” and disappearance of his estranged wife.

He said Jennifer Dulos “had a troubled past,” describing her as a writer who “wrote a manuscript similar to ‘Gone Girl,'” a thriller that later became a hit Hollywood movie.

Westlake Legal Group Jennifer-Farber-Dulos Missing Connecticut mom Jennifer Dulos' family, friends, deny her case is a 'Gone Girl' disappearance Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox news fnc/us fnc article 37d79c44-267d-51e6-bb16-6ecb9b07edbb

Jennifer Dulos vanished one month ago. (Carrie Luft, on Behalf of the Family and Friends of Jennifer Farber Dulos)

In response, Carrie Luft, a spokeswoman for family and friends of the missing mother, said: “This is not fiction or a movie. This is real life, as experienced every single day by Jennifer’s five young children, her family, and her friends.”

She continued, “We are heartbroken. Jennifer is not here to protect her children, and these false and irresponsible allegations hurt the children now and into the future.”

Luft added, “Evidence shows that Jennifer was the victim of a violent attack in her New Canaan home.”

EXCLUSIVE: LAWYER NORM PATTIS SAYS CLIENT FOTIS DULOS’ ESTRANGED AND MISSING WIFE HAS A ‘TROUBLED PAST’

Jennifer Dulos was reported missing on May 24 and was last seen driving a black Chevy Suburban as she dropped off her children at their private school in New Canaan.

The couple was in the midst of a bitter custody battle over the five children. Pattis said Jennifer Dulos “seemed intent” on moving the children to New York, where her mother lived, against the joint custody agreement.

“She was not settled happily in New Cannan, intending to live there happily ever after,” Pattis said.

However, court documents revealed Jennifer Dulos was “terrified for [her] family’s safety.” She alleged that her husband, a custom home builder who was born and raised in Greece but went to college at Brown University in the U.S., “has a history of controlling, volatile and delusional behavior.”

Luft said Pattis’ suggestion that Jennifer Dulos’ disappearance was tied to a book she wrote was nonsensical.

“I read Jennifer’s novel in installments as she was completing the manuscript,” Luft said. “She finished the draft around 2002. (This was before she was dating Fotis Dulos.) Her book has nothing to do with Gone Girl (published in 2012).”

MISSING CONNECTICUT MOM JENNIFER DULOS’ ESTRANGED HUSBAND WANTS SEIZED PROPERTY BACK AMID STALL IN CASE

She added, “Jennifer’s novel is not a mystery. It’s a character-driven story that follows a young woman through relationships and self-discovery over a period of years. Like all of Jennifer’s writing, it expresses a deep longing for human connection and the need to be accepted as one’s true self.”

Westlake Legal Group AP19162585737127 Missing Connecticut mom Jennifer Dulos' family, friends, deny her case is a 'Gone Girl' disappearance Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox news fnc/us fnc article 37d79c44-267d-51e6-bb16-6ecb9b07edbb

Fotis Dulos and his legal team including Norm Pattis, left, during a hearing at Stamford Superior Court earlier this month. (Erik Trautmann/Hearst Connecticut Media via AP, Pool)

Fotis Dulos and his live-in girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, both pleaded not guilty to charges of evidence tampering and hindering prosecution earlier this month.

Westlake Legal Group Troconis Missing Connecticut mom Jennifer Dulos' family, friends, deny her case is a 'Gone Girl' disappearance Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox news fnc/us fnc article 37d79c44-267d-51e6-bb16-6ecb9b07edbb

Michelle C. Troconis has been charged with tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and first-degree hindering prosecution.  (Tyler Sizemore/Hearst Connecticut Media via AP, Pool)

Fotis Dulos’ DNA was found mixed with his wife’s blood on a kitchen faucet in the New Canaan home where she lived with her children after the couple split, according to State’s Attorney Richard Colangelo. Police said the house also had evidence of blood spatter and cleanup attempts, according to the arrest report.

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Pattis said he remained skeptical of the state’s evidence against his client, which also included surveillance footage of a man resembling Fotis Dulos and Troconis making 30 stops in a vehicle and dumping clothing, sponges and other items, which investigators said have tested positive for the missing mom’s DNA at some of those stops.

Pattis said he had not seen the state’s security footage but said he had “reasons to doubt that it’s reliable.”

Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran and Perry Chiaramonte contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Jennifer-Farber-Dulos Missing Connecticut mom Jennifer Dulos' family, friends, deny her case is a 'Gone Girl' disappearance Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox news fnc/us fnc article 37d79c44-267d-51e6-bb16-6ecb9b07edbb   Westlake Legal Group Jennifer-Farber-Dulos Missing Connecticut mom Jennifer Dulos' family, friends, deny her case is a 'Gone Girl' disappearance Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox news fnc/us fnc article 37d79c44-267d-51e6-bb16-6ecb9b07edbb

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‘Facebook fugitive,’ inspiration for country song, honors deal to surrender after 15,000 likes: reports

A fugitive in Connecticut who had agreed to surrender if his “wanted” post on Facebook collected 15,000 likes has kept his word, according to reports.

But Jose Simms, 30, did so belatedly, waiting until Wednesday after the post had received some 29,000 likes, FOX 6 of Springfield, Mass., reported.

Simms, who was believed to be homeless, contacted police in Enfield, Conn., who arrested him without incident, the report said.

THE LATEST: POLICE DEFEND FACEBOOK LIKES DEAL WITH FUGITIVE

Westlake Legal Group simms ‘Facebook fugitive,’ inspiration for country song, honors deal to surrender after 15,000 likes: reports fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox news fnc/us fnc Dom Calicchio d7969b55-c51d-5b74-8607-41f1896b094a article

Jose Simms, aka “The Facebook fugitive,” surrendered Wednesday, authorities said. (Torrington Police Department)

The suspect was charged with four counts of first-degree failure to appear and three counts of second-degree failure to appear, after missing court dates regarding charges ranging from breach of peace to risk of injury to a child.

The so-called “Facebook fugitive” was being held on $30,500 bond, according to FOX 6.

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Simms had made the Facebook arrangement with police in Torrington, Conn., who defended the move by saying the resulting publicity generated leads about Simms’ whereabouts.

Torrington police announced the arrest — on Facebook.

The case also inspired a country music parody song by the Nashville singing duo Dixie Jade.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

Westlake Legal Group b6b4c0b7-simms ‘Facebook fugitive,’ inspiration for country song, honors deal to surrender after 15,000 likes: reports fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox news fnc/us fnc Dom Calicchio d7969b55-c51d-5b74-8607-41f1896b094a article   Westlake Legal Group b6b4c0b7-simms ‘Facebook fugitive,’ inspiration for country song, honors deal to surrender after 15,000 likes: reports fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox news fnc/us fnc Dom Calicchio d7969b55-c51d-5b74-8607-41f1896b094a article

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Connecticut girl, 12, with rare disorder creates teddy bears that hide IV bags

Going to the hospital can be overwhelming for anyone. Between all of the machines, needles and being in an unfamiliar environment, it can be a scary experience — especially for a child.

Ella Casano, a 12-year-old Connecticut girl who regularly receives an IV for a rare autoimmune disorder, recognized the stress that can come in this environment for a kid and decided to create something that would make it less intimidating.

Casano wants to give them away to children in hospitals at no cost.

Westlake Legal Group CT-Stuffed-Animal-IV-Pouch4 Connecticut girl, 12, with rare disorder creates teddy bears that hide IV bags Kelly Taylor Hayes fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox news Fox 11 fnc/health fnc article 21ed05d5-7318-5b4c-a4a4-ae0e2b12f2c4

Ella Casano created the special teddy bears. (Medi Teddy)

“When I had my first infusion, I was surprised and a little bit intimidated by the look of the amount of tubing and medical equipment on my IV pole,” Casano states on the product’s website. “As I saw more and more children experiencing the same feelings, I became more interested in creating a friendlier experience for young IV patients.”

KANSAS TEEN MIRACULOUSLY SURVIVES 10-INCH KNIFE IN FACE

Westlake Legal Group CT-Stuffed-Animal-IV-Pouch2.JPG Connecticut girl, 12, with rare disorder creates teddy bears that hide IV bags Kelly Taylor Hayes fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox news Fox 11 fnc/health fnc article 21ed05d5-7318-5b4c-a4a4-ae0e2b12f2c4

Casano said she wanted a “friendlier experience” for young IV patients. (Medi Teddy)

At age seven, Casano was diagnosed with Idiopathic Thrombocytopenia Purpura, or ITP, a disorder that can lead to easy or excessive bruising and bleeding. People with ITP have an usually low level of platelets, which are the cells that help blood clot. Most children recover without treatment, according to the Mayo Clinic, but Casano is a rare case in that her diagnosis has never gone away.

Westlake Legal Group CT-Stuffed-Animal-IV-Pouch3.JPG Connecticut girl, 12, with rare disorder creates teddy bears that hide IV bags Kelly Taylor Hayes fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox news Fox 11 fnc/health fnc article 21ed05d5-7318-5b4c-a4a4-ae0e2b12f2c4

The teddy bears help conceal the tubing and equipment. (Medi Teddy)

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As a result, every eight weeks she spends the day at an outpatient clinic getting an infusion of IVIG, a medicine that helps increase the number of platelets in her body. Without the treatment, Casano can’t do normal activities like sledding, soccer or riding her bike when the platelets are low.

Westlake Legal Group CT-Stuffed-Animal-IV-Pouch5 Connecticut girl, 12, with rare disorder creates teddy bears that hide IV bags Kelly Taylor Hayes fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox news Fox 11 fnc/health fnc article 21ed05d5-7318-5b4c-a4a4-ae0e2b12f2c4

Casano receives an IV for a rare autoimmune disorder. (Medi Teddy)

“Yes, I am proud of her, but more than that I feel happy for her,” her mother, Meg Casano, said. “She’s endured so much, missed so much, and tolerated so much and I’m so happy to see her so thrilled that her idea is taking off.”

Click for more from Fox 11.

Westlake Legal Group CT-Stuffed-Animal-IV-Pouch4 Connecticut girl, 12, with rare disorder creates teddy bears that hide IV bags Kelly Taylor Hayes fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox news Fox 11 fnc/health fnc article 21ed05d5-7318-5b4c-a4a4-ae0e2b12f2c4   Westlake Legal Group CT-Stuffed-Animal-IV-Pouch4 Connecticut girl, 12, with rare disorder creates teddy bears that hide IV bags Kelly Taylor Hayes fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox news Fox 11 fnc/health fnc article 21ed05d5-7318-5b4c-a4a4-ae0e2b12f2c4

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Missing Connecticut mother’s estranged husband posts bail

Fotis Dulos, estranged husband of a Connecticut mother of five, Jennifer Dulos, who’s been missing for more than two weeks, posted $500,000 bail on Tuesday in a criminal case tied to her disappearance.

After officials confiscated his passport and fitted Dulos with a location-monitoring device, he walked out of a Connecticut courthouse. He was still wearing an orange prison jumpsuit after having spent more than a week behind bars at the Bridgeport Correctional Center because he’d been unable to make bail.

He refused to answer questions as he left the courthouse.

Fotis Dulos and girlfriend plead not guilty over disappearance of his missing wife, Jennifer

Fotis Dulos’ attorney, Norm Pattis, argued Tuesday that his client’s $500,000 bail should be reduced to $100,000. He said the state’s case against Dulos was weak, and expressed doubt that his client would ever be charged with murder.

Westlake Legal Group Fotis-Dulos-2 Missing Connecticut mother’s estranged husband posts bail Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc f2bec214-d4d0-535f-9696-ba156b040966 article

Fotis Dulos stands during a hearing at Stamford Superior Court, Tuesday9 in Stamford, Conn. Fotis Dulos, and his girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, have been charged with evidence tampering and hindering prosecution in the disappearance of his wife, Jennifer Dulos. The mother of five has has been missing since May 24.  (Erik Trautmann/Hearst Connecticut Media via AP, Pool)

State’s Attorney Richard Colangelo revealed at a court hearing on Tuesday that Fotis Dulos’ DNA was found mixed with his wife’s blood on a kitchen faucet in the New Canaan home she lived in after they separated. He disclosed the evidence to challenge the request to lower bail. Colangelo argued that bond should be raised to $850,000, but the judge kept it at $500,000.

Pattis said his client posted bail using his retirement fund as collateral. After the hearing, Pattis said he believed his client would be “fully exonerated,” adding that he has an alibi. He said that the state “picked this fight and we will win it.”

Fotis Dulos’ next court hearing is set for Aug. 2.

A hearing in the divorce and child custody case was also held on Tuesday before Dulos posted bail. He declined to answer questions during the hearing, citing his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

Westlake Legal Group Fotis-Dulos-1- Missing Connecticut mother’s estranged husband posts bail Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc f2bec214-d4d0-535f-9696-ba156b040966 article

Fotis Dulos and his legal team including Norm Pattis, left, stand during a hearing at Stamford Superior Court. Fotis Dulos, and his girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, have been charged with evidence tampering and hindering prosecution in the disappearance of his wife, Jennifer Dulos. The mother of five has has been missing since May 24.  (Erik Trautmann/Hearst Connecticut Media via AP, Pool)

Dulos is under orders not to have contact with the children, who range in age from 8 to 13, while free on bail. A judge did not rule on the custody of the children on Tuesday. They have been staying in New York City with Jennifer Dulos’ mother, Gloria Farber, who has been granted temporary custody.

Anne Dranginis, Farber’s attorney, said that arrangement was in the best interest of the children during this “horrendous time in their lives.”

Michael Meehan, the children’s court-appointed guardian, took the stand at the custody hearing and said he spoke with Fotis Dulos the day after his estranged wife disappeared to inquire about an alibi. Dulos indicated he was home the previous day and had meetings in the afternoon, Meehan said.

When asked if he had concerns with the children having contact with their father, Meehan said, “At this point I do.”

Westlake Legal Group Troconis Missing Connecticut mother’s estranged husband posts bail Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc f2bec214-d4d0-535f-9696-ba156b040966 article

Michelle C. Troconis was arraigned on charges of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and first-degree hindering prosecution at Norwalk Superior Court in Norwalk, Conn. Monday, June 3.  (Tyler Sizemore/Hearst Connecticut Media via AP, Pool)

Fotis Dulos’ live-in girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, also pleaded not guilty before Judge John Blawie to hindering prosecution and tampering with evidence on Tuesday. She posted $500,000 bail last week.

Her next court date is July 18.

Following the brief hearing, her attorney Andrew Bowman, lashed out at the media for what he called “unfair and inaccurate” reporting and said that his client is innocent.

Earlier, Pattis told Fox News there are “powerful reasons” to doubt his client was at his wife’s New Canaan home the day she disappeared.

Authorities said Troconis wasn’t in New Canaan the day Jennifer Dulos went missing, according to The Hartford Courant. Troconis told police she has no idea where Dulos could have been, the paper also reported.

Police obtained a search warrant for her now-confiscated telephone.

Westlake Legal Group Jennifer-Farber-Dulos Missing Connecticut mother’s estranged husband posts bail Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc f2bec214-d4d0-535f-9696-ba156b040966 article

(Carrie Luft, on Behalf of the Family and Friends of Jennifer Farber Dulos)

Jennifer Dulos, 50, was last seen on May 24, when she dropped her children off at their private school in New Canaan.

The case has received national attention and the search for Dulos — entering its 18th day — has stretched from Connecticut to neighboring New York.

Monday marked the sixth consecutive day investigators combed through a trash facility in Hartford. They started last Tuesday, painstakingly searching the football field-size area looking for Dulos. At times, they have brought in cadaver dogs at assist but so far their search has come up empty.

Citing surveillance video and cellphone location evidence, authorities accuse Fotis Dulos and Troconis of dumping clothing, sponges and other items that contained Jennifer Dulos’ blood at multiple locations in Hartford, including the trash facility. Police have said the people in the surveillance video fit the description of Fotis Dulos and Troconis.

Pattis said Tuesday that police haven’t identified the license plate of the vehicle seen on video in Hartford when the items were discarded.

FOTIS DULOS HIRES ALEX JONES’ ATTORNEY TO DEFEND HIM IN DISAPPEARANCE OF HIS WIFE

When asked why Fotis Dulos’ DNA was found mixed with Jennifer Dulos’ blood, Pattis said he did not know.

“He was in the house. Do you know where your DNA is?” he asked a reporter.

Pattis added: “I would ask everyone to put aside the easy narrative here that an angry ex-spouse took matters into his own hands to resolve a custody dispute. That didn’t happen. Having said that, I don’t know what happened.”

In arrest warrants, police wrote that blood spatter and evidence of cleanup attempts were also found at the missing mother’s home.

The bad blood between the former couple escalated in the weeks leading up to Jennifer Dulos’ disappearance. Their divorce and custody battle had become increasingly bitter and divisive. According to court documents, more than 400 motions were filed. Jennifer and Fotis Dulos accused each other of ignoring court orders and threatened to hurt one another in front of their five children. There were also threats to kill one another and at times, even the children.

Following Fotis Dulos’ June 3 arrest, an investigation into his background by Fox News revealed a complicated man who kept up appearances as a successful businessman for years when in fact he was drowning in debt. He got his business Fore Group Inc. off the ground with financial support from his father-in-law, who between 2004 and 2016, fronted him nearly $10 million. The funds were largely cut off in 2017, around the same time his marriage to Jennifer Dulos was ending.

After Jennifer Dulos’ father, Hilliard Farber, passed away in 2017, her mother, now the executor of her husband’s estate, sued Fotis Dulos for $500,000 in January 2018. Court documents claimed the Farbers loaned Fotis Dulos the money in 2012 and that he had promised to pay them back but hadn’t done so by June 2017.

While Fotis Dulos has been behind bars, Troconis was spotted on Thursday meeting with detectives at her lawyer Andrew Bowman’s Westport office. A day later she was spotted with investigators at the Farmington home she lived in with Dulos. While it’s not known whether Troconis made a deal with prosecutors, NBC Connecticut’s drone footage showed people searching the yard and the wooded area behind the 10,000 square-foot home.

“The towns of New Canaan, Farmington and Avon have responded to Jennifer’s disappearance with a steady stream of love,” Jennifer Dulos’ friend Carrie Luft said on Tuesday in a statement on behalf of her family and friends. “These gestures of empathy and kinship have helped keep us going.”

“Jennifer’s family, friends, and above all her children are living in limbo — missing her embrace, her lilting laugh, her bedtime backrubs, her gentle strength,” Luft wrote.

“Please know that the children are safe and loved and supported in every respect. But more than anything in the world, they long to know where their mother is.”

Luft asked anyone with information about Jennifer’s disappearance to contact police, pointing to the newly launched website – www.FindJenniferDulos.com – and a dedicated e-mail FindJenniferDulos@newcanaanct.gov.

Luft also thanked the forces of the New Canaan and Connecticut State Police “for their ongoing and exhaustive efforts to locate Jennifer.”

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“Thank you also to every single person who has called in a tip,” she added. “Keep the information coming. Please help us find Jennifer.”

Fox News’ Maria Paronich, Tamara Gitt, Lissa Kaplan, Barnini Chakraborty and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Fotis-Dulos-2 Missing Connecticut mother’s estranged husband posts bail Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc f2bec214-d4d0-535f-9696-ba156b040966 article   Westlake Legal Group Fotis-Dulos-2 Missing Connecticut mother’s estranged husband posts bail Talia Kaplan fox-news/us/us-regions/northeast/connecticut fox-news/us/crime fox-news/us fox news fnc/us fnc f2bec214-d4d0-535f-9696-ba156b040966 article

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