Paul Foley

Recent Articles

‘Fish in a Barrel’: NCPD Distracted Driving Stops Up 73 Percent

New Canaan Police have made 159 stops for distracted driving since June 1, officials said Tuesday—up from 92 such stops in the same timeframe last year, a 73 percent increase. Officers are using unmarked cars in some cases and though “the summer months are a bit lighter, people are away,” distracted drivers are very active, according to Police Capt. John DiFederico. “And we are getting cars pretty consistently,” DiFederico told members of the Police Commission during their regular meeting, held at the New Canaan Police Department. When Commissioner Paul Foley asked whether it was “pretty easy” to spot motorists using smartphones, Police Chief Leon Krolikowski responded: “Fish in a barrel.”

The update to the commission comes as police focus enforcement efforts on streets with histories of accidents as well as complaints. Krolikowski has referred to distracted driving as the number one, major motor vehicle threat facing New Canaan. Here’s a column from the chief that details what constitutes distracted driving and the consequences of such under state law. Continue Reading →

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Officials Wary of Proposal for Nonprofit, Community Organizations To Use ‘Pop Up Park’ for Sales

Town officials on Tuesday night voiced objections to a proposal that nonprofit and community organizations be allowed to sell fundraiser tickets or items such as Girl Scout cookies in the Pop Up Park downtown, saying the popular pedestrian area should remain entirely solicitation-free. When the cordoned-off park launched five years ago, New Canaan’s traffic authority specified that nothing be sold there “mostly because we did not want to have in any way reactions by the merchants that the Pop Up Park would compete with them,” according to Police Commission member Sperry DeCew. “I am not particularly happy about this [idea],” DeCew said at the group’s regular meeting, held at the New Canaan Police Department. “I do not particularly want people in there being solicited by anybody to do anything—Lobsterfest or Girl Scout cookies. I think it’s inappropriate and there should be no solicitation whatsoever.”

DeCew and fellow Commissioner Paul Foley—together with Chairman Stuart Sawabini, who participated in the meeting on speakerphone—referred to a draft set of “sales guidelines” from the volunteer committee that organizes the Pop Up Park. Continue Reading →

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Letter: Vote Mallozzi-Williams Team at July 18 Republican Caucus

My wife and I moved to New Canaan 30 years ago. We raised our two boys, made many friends and rolled up our sleeves to volunteer in community activities. Personally, I have been on the Republican Town Committee (five years as chairman), Town Council (10 years), Fire Commission and currently Police Commission. I have a pretty good idea of how this town runs, what has worked and what has not. I have assisted a number of first selectmen and selectmen over the years and while we didn’t always agree on every course of action, we debated, respected each other, took a vote and moved forward. Continue Reading →

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Police Chief: Investigation into Oenoke Ridge Youth Party Nearing Conclusion, Discussion of Criminal Charges Underway

Authorities are nearing the end of their investigation into a youth party at an Oenoke Ridge Road home last month at which a juvenile male was seriously hurt, Police Chief Leon Krolikowski said Wednesday night. Asked to speak generally about criteria that officials use in deciding whether or not to bring criminal charges in such cases, the chief said, “It’s probable cause.”

“If we believe a crime has been committed then we apply for an arrest warrant for the offenders and the state’s attorney signs off on it or not,” Krolikowski said during the Police Commission’s meeting, held in the training room at NCPD. “But in a case like this we like to review all the facts beforehand with the state’s attorney so that we are all on the same page.”

Asked whether police had applied yet for an arrest warrant, he said: “Not yet, no, but that’s in the very near future.”

Police put out a public call for information about the March 25 party and received a “strong” response, Krolikowski said, though as with any major incident, “there were lots of rumors.”

“Many were unfounded,” the chief said. “There was some legitimacy to parts of the information we received and we had to compile it all. That is coming to a conclusion very soon, with a discussion with the state’s attorney about criminal charges.”

It isn’t clear whether police broke up the party, where it was, whether alcohol or drugs were involved, what was the nature of the young man’s injury, how old he is or how he was injured. Continue Reading →

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New Canaan Police Step Up Efforts To Serve, Clear Outstanding Arrest Warrants

New Canaan Police said Monday night that they’re bolstering efforts to serve department- and court-issued arrest warrants for people who have been cited for infractions or charged with crimes but have not been immediately reachable by authorities. As part of the department’s new warrant service initiative, older warrants for people who have been ticketed but likely will never be reachable—for example, those who travel to Connecticut seasonally from out-of-state to solicit door-to-door, incurring infraction summonses—will be “vacated,” according to Police Capt. John DiFederico. The department following a recent internal accounting found that it has about 117 such court-issued warrants—known as ‘PRAWN’ or paperless re-arrest warrants, issued when people fail to pay or plead to a ticket, DiFederico said at the Police Commission’s regular monthly meeting, held at Town Hall. Asked by commissioner Paul Foley whether warrants tied to past arrests will be prioritized based on severity, DiFederico said that police are trying to take care of those issued for felony-level offenses. They include outstanding warrants for first-degree failure to appear for 37-year-old Christian “Chris” Hernan Cruz, originally charged in 2012 with first-degree larceny and conspiracy to commit larceny, as well as third-degree forgery and conspiracy to commit forgery. Continue Reading →

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