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Bad News Of 2017: Unusual Crimes In Fairfield County's Top Stories

Mark Christian was charged with the murder of a Bridgeport barber. Photo Credit: Bridgeport Police Department
Christopher von Keyserling of Cos Cob Photo Credit: Facebook
Former Norwalk firefighter Mark Monroe Photo Credit: Norwalk Police Department
A photo of David Byers by California photographer Michael Stokes. Photo Credit: Michael Stokes on Twitter

FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. -- From elected officials accused of sexual assault to Instagram models robbing banks, 2017 saw its fair share of unusual crimes in Fairfield County. There were also several shootings, murders, drug busts and robberies throughout the year.

Here are some of the most-read crime stories from 2017, as reported by the Daily Voice.

January: A well-known Greenwich Republican and a member of the town's Representative Town Meeting was arrested Jan. 11 and charged with fourth-degree sexual assault . A town employee said that Christopher von Keyserling said told her that he no longer had to be politically correct, then called her a "bloodsucking lazy union employee" and pinched her in the groin. The incident and subsequent arrest sparked protests , and in the fall, von Keyserling was voted off the RTM.

February: A former Norwalk firefighter was charged with dealing cocaine , including selling to undercover officers while he was on duty. When police searched Mark W. Monroe's house, they found several bags of cocaine, as well as prescription pills, steroid, hypodermic needles and a gun. Monroe was eventually sentenced to three years in prison .

March: Five people were arrested after police said they were r unning a drug trafficking ring out of a pair of grocery stores in Bridgeport. Police said the group would run drugs back and forth between the two stores while conducting sales. A search of one of the stores turned up more than 2,000 grams of cocaine, according to police.

April: A man later revealed to be an Instagram model from California eluded police as he robbed a Greenwich bank twice as well as a gas station. Police said that David E. Byers of Solana Beach, Calif., robbed a Citgo station in Cos Cob on Monday, April 23. The next day he robbed a Chase Bank in Greenwich, and then went back to the same bank the next day. He then stole a car, fled to Pittsburgh, and then went across the country, where he was eventually arrested in San Diego . He later pleaded guilty and could face 20 years in prison.

May: Jayson Negron, 15, of Bridgeport was fatally shot by a police officer on May 9 . Police said that Negron was driving a stolen car and that when officers approached, he reversed towards them and struck at least one officer. Another officer, later identified as James Boulay , then fired at the car, striking both Negron and his passenger, Julian Fyffe. The shooting led to outcries and protests . Video emerged of the aftermath of the shooting , and Fyffe filed a lawsuit against the city. Some called for Boulay to be charged with murder following the incident, and Bridgeport officials are still looking for ways to help the city heal.

June: A Ridgefield man who caught some teens trying to steal his car ended up getting arrested on a number of drug charges. After a 15-year-old Waterbury girl told police that she was shot outside a home on Hulda Lane in Ridgefield on June 5, they determined that she had been there with a group of kids trying to steal a car. The homeowner, Mauro Tropeano, had gone outside and caught the kids trying to steal his car, and fired off a shot, according to police. When he reported the incident, he did not mention firing a gun, and during a subsequent investigation and search of his home, police found large quantities of drugs, cash, and firearms. Tropeano was later arrested on firearm and drug charges.

July: A total of seven people overdosed on fentanyl-laced crack cocaine over one weekend in Norwalk, and two of them died as a result. Police quickly launched an investigation to find the source of the drugs. Undercover officers arranged to purchase crack from Eric Frank of Norwalk, who was arrested when he showed up to meet with officers. Police said he was injured while struggling with officers and taken to the hospital, where he obtained a handcuff key and unsuccessfully tried to escape. Police also arrested Derrick Wiggins of Waterbury after determining that he was also selling fentanyl-laced crack.

August: A 34-year-old Bridgeport man was tragically shot to death while working on his car in front of his home in Bridgeport. Police said that Cadell Moore was not the intended target of the shooting, which took place Thursday, Aug. 24 on Sixth Street in Bridgeport. Police later charged 22-year-old David Shavers with Moore's murder.

September: A 19-year-old Bridgeport man was shot to death on Thursday, Sept. 14. Police said Eric Diaz had been shot in the abdomen at the corner of Beadsley Street and Newfield Avenue, and later died of his injuries. Police later charged 53-year-old Lonnie Mebane with Diaz's murder , saying that it was a drug-related robbery.

October : A Bridgeport barber was killed while trying to protect his customers from a pair of gunman came into his barber shop on Oct. 14 and shot him. Police said that Mark Christian, 32, and a co-conspirator had robbed a man outside the barber shop, and then followed the man when he ran inside, intending to attack him again. Deon Rodney, 32, was killed while trying to make sure that his customers stayed safe in the incident. Christian was later arrested after exchanging gunfire with police and charged with murder, though police have not yet located the second suspect.

November: A bartender was shot during a robbery at BAR in downtown Stratford. Police said that on Tuesday, Nov. 14 an armed man entered the bar and demanded money. After the bartender, Regi Woodard, handed over the money, he was shot in the abdomen. Police later charged Jachim Brown of Bridgeport with committing the robbery and shooting, and also charged Eric Chambers of Bridgeport with acting as his getaway driver. Woodard endured five surgeries, but is recovering from his ordeal.

December: Two men were charged with sexually assaulting a 15-year-old Danbury boy . The boy told police that he had met Jamal Jackson, 31, of Brookfield and Timothy Connolly, 57 of New Milford, through a dating app. The two men were later arrested and charged with sexual assault.

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