Chilling Details of New Canaan Boy’s Drowning Emerge in Arrest Warrant Application

The 5-year-old New Canaan boy who nearly died after drowning last month at Chelsea Piers in Stamford struggled visibly at the surface of the pool as he drifted toward its deep end, flailing his arms, sinking and pushing off of the bottom to take a final breath before sinking again and losing consciousness, according to a Stamford Police Department arrest warrant application. Surveillance video also shows that a lifeguard—charged last week in connection with the incident—though he walked past that area of the pool twice, failed both times to look toward the water where the unconscious boy’s body was submerged, according to surveillance video cited in the application by Officer Christopher Friel of the Stamford Police Department’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation-Crimes Against Persons Unit. Zachary Stein, 23, of New Canaan, was charged Sept. 7 with risk of injury to a minor, a felony offense, as well as first-degree reckless endangerment. Under state law, a person is guilty of risk of injury if he or she “willfully or unlawfully causes or permits any child under the age of sixteen years to be placed in such a situation that the life or limb of such child is endangered, the health of such child is likely to be injured,” among other circumstances.

Investigating New Canaan Infant’s Death: Stamford Police Seek Medical Guidance Regarding ‘Very Severe’ Head Trauma

Medical guidance on just when, where and how a 3-month-old New Canaan baby could have sustained the head trauma that led to her death on Tuesday is central to the Stamford Police Department’s ongoing investigation into the homicide, officials said. The baby girl was one of just three children at Little Bears Beginnings Daycare in the city’s Cove neighborhood on Tuesday “and we are definitely seeking a medical opinion and medical guidance on this to see if the baby could have presented as normal if it came to daycare with severe injuries,” Capt. Richard Conklin of the Stamford Police Department told Dropped off around 7 or 7:30 a.m., the infant remained at the Wardwell Street daycare through the day—a call went to the baby’s mother in the afternoon—until some time after 3 p.m., when a call went to medical personnel reporting that child had difficulty breathing, Conklin said. “We want to meet with the people involved, we want to interview them and take statements, and medical guidance is crucial in this case because everyone is in agreement that there has been severe trauma, but when did this take place?” he said. “And that is what we will try to establish, is when and how that took place so medical guidance is of real importance here.”

First reported by The Advocate of Stamford, the unimaginable tragedy was widely discussed in New Canaan Thursday.

Family of New Canaan Woman, 25, Who Died after Fall at Stamford Mall: ‘She Was a Wonderful, Loving Person’

The family of the 25-year-old New Canaan woman who died Monday night after a fall at Stamford Town Center remember her as a warm and kind person. Lindsey Reiniger attended West Elementary School in New Canaan as a youngster and then Rippowam in Stamford, according to her grandfather, town resident Lance Minor. “She was a wonderful, loving person,” Minor said. Reiniger had been studying nursing at Norwalk Community College, he said. She died at Stamford Hospital after falling six levels off of a level-9 escalator, according to Stamford Police Capt. Richard Conklin.

Pre-Dawn K9 Search Yields Juvenile Arrest in New Canaan

New Canaan police arrested a 17-year-old Stamford man following a pre-dawn search Tuesday that included officers and K9 dogs from Norwalk and Stamford, officials say. It started at about 12:10 a.m. when New Canaan police officer Rex Sprosta spotted a motorist driving erratically on Jelliff Mill Road near Ponus Ridge, according to Police Chief Leon Krolikowski. The car would turn north on Ponus and, after pulling onto Clearview Lane, come to an abrupt stop “and the occupants fled the vehicle,” Krolikowski said in a press release. “The New York registered vehicle was found to be stolen from Stamford. Subsequently, an intensive search of the area began.”

After about 30 minutes, the juvenile was found (by Stamford K9 dog Bobi) hiding under a porch, the chief said.