CSAO: Report of the State's Attorney for the Judicial District of New Britain Concerning the Shooting Death of Bryant Davenport in Bristol on March 5, 2004.

Report of the State's Attorney for the Judicial District of New Britain Concerning the Shooting Death of Bryant Davenport in Bristol on March 5, 2004

Acknowledgments | Introduction | Summary of the Evidence | Processing the Scene | Witnesses | AutopsyRecorded Telephone Calls | Recorded Radio TransmissionsLetter Seized by the Connecticut State Police | Family Violence Protective Order | Forensic Testing | Applicable Law Regarding the Use of Deadly Force by Police Officers | Finding of Fact | Conclusion | List of Exhibits | Recorded Radio TransmissionsLetter SeizedFamily Violence Protective Order | Forensic Testing | Applicable Law | Finding of Fact | Conclusion | List of Exhibits  

Acknowledgements

In issuing this report concerning the death of Bryant Davenport, the undersigned received important assistance from a number of state agencies. These agencies included the Connecticut State Police, the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner and the Department of Public Safety Forensic Laboratory. Their assistance and expertise permitted the undersigned to have a complete and thorough investigation of this tragic event. In addition, I would like to acknowledge the assistance of the members of the Bristol Police Department, all whom fully cooperated with the State Police and the New Britain State's Attorney's Office.

I wish also to extend my condolences to the family and friends of Bryant Davenport on the loss of their loved one.

 Introduction

On the night of March 5, 2004, four members of the Bristol Police Department went to an apartment located in the Baymar Apartments, 94 Gaylord Street, Bristol, Connecticut upon a report of a domestic disturbance. Upon arriving at the Baymar Apartments the four officers went to the apartment in question, number 24, where they encountered Bryant Davenport. In the ensuing confrontation two of the Bristol officers, Officer Sean Greger and Officer Todd Lavallee, shot Mr. Davenport, thereby causing his death. The New Britain State's Attorney's Office was notified of this shooting and personnel from that office responded to the scene. The undersigned was contacted and requested that the Connecticut State Police conduct an investigation into the shooting of Mr. Davenport. This decision was made pursuant to General Statutes 51-277a(a) of the General Statutes, which requires the State's Attorney to conduct an investigation, utilizing appropriate law enforcement agencies, whenever a peace officer, in the performance of his duties, uses deadly physical force upon another person and such person dies as a result. Section 51-277a(c) of the General Statutes requires the State's Attorney to determine, upon completion of the investigation, the circumstances of the incident and whether deadly force was appropriate under Section 53a-22 of the General Statutes.

The Central District Major Crime Squad of the Connecticut State Police was assigned to investigate this police shooting and arrived at the Baymar Apartments in the early morning hours of March 6, 2004. As part of the investigation State Police officers processed the scene at and about Apartment 24. In addition, a neighborhood canvas was conducted and numerous witnesses were located and interviewed. The clothing and weapons of the four police officers and the clothing of Mr. Davenport were seized by the Connecticut State Police. An autopsy of the body of Mr. Davenport was performed by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner and a report of that autopsy was subsequently written. The State Police Forensic Science Laboratory conducted several examinations on physical evidence and written reports were generated.

Upon completion of their investigation, the State Police provided to the undersigned their investigative results, including police reports, written witness statements and reports of forensic tests performed. After reviewing all pertinent documents and pursuant to Section 51-277a(c) of the General Statutes, this report is hereby filed.

Summary of Evidence         

Mr. Davenport had been a resident of 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24, Bristol, Connecticut, for approximately two years, living there with his wife and children. On February 2, 2004, following his arrest for assaulting his wife, a protective order barring Mr. Davenport from entering the residence was issued by the Bristol Superior Court. This protective order remained in force on March 5, 2004.

In contravention of this protective order, Mr. Davenport, on March 5, 2004, went to the Gaylord Street apartment. At the time of his arrival, his wife, Leslie Davenport, was alone in the apartment. Mr. Davenport, who was intoxicated, engaged in a verbal argument with his wife, which turned violent. Ms. Davenport made a 911 telephone call to the Bristol Police Department, requesting assistance and describing the actions of her husband. Shortly thereafter the dispatcher telephoned Ms. Davenport and a second conversation occurred. As a result of these two calls, four members of the Bristol Police Department were dispatched to this residence. A confrontation occurred between Mr. Davenport and the Bristol officers at the door of the apartment. In the course of this confrontation two of the officers fired their weapons a total of three times, striking Mr. Davenport. Mr. Davenport was transported by ambulance to Hartford Hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly after arrival.

Processing the Scene

Members of the Central District Major Crime Squad of the Connecticut State Police processed the scene, 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24, and the surrounding curtilage during the early morning hours of March 6, 2004. This work began after Leslie Davenport, the tenant of this apartment, provided to the Connecticut State Police a signed consent to search. The processing of the scene included a survey of the area, a drafting of a sketch map, videotape and still photography of the scene, and the identification, seizure and cataloguing of numerous pieces of evidence. Police reports were written detailing the processing of the scene.

The Baymar Apartments consist of 43 apartments within a single building, located at 94 Gaylord Street, Bristol, Connecticut. Apartment 24 is located on the third floor of this complex. Entry from the outside leads to a stairwell which provides access to each of the three floors. The staircase between each floor is divided into two halves, with a small landing separating each portion of the stairwell. At each floor a landing separates two apartments. Upon ascending to the third floor, apartment 24 is to the right, apartment 23 is to the left. The third floor landing is approximately 8 feet long and 3 2 feet wide. Apartment 24 consists of a kitchen, a living room, a bathroom and two bedrooms.

The State Police documented several items discovered outside of the apartment. Found in the stairwell area were three expended shell casings. One of the shell casings was located on the landing between the second and third floor. The other two casings were found on the staircase leading to the third floor. On the third floor landing, outside of the door leading into apartment 24, was a mattress, upright and leaning against the wall. Also present on this landing was medical debris, a white shoe and a blue towel.

The door leading into apartment 24 opened inward into the living room. The trim on the interior jam of this door was observed to be damaged. In the living room was observed several pieces of furniture, including a sofa and tables, and numerous stacked, cardboard boxes. On the sitting portion of the sofa was found food, which appeared to be noodles and shrimp. On the back portion of the sofa, in close proximity to this food, was a large stain.

Found on the carpeted floor of the living room was medical debris, a wristwatch and blood-like stains. A utility razor type knife was found on the end table and a bullet like projectile was found on top of one of the cardboard boxes.

The remainder of the apartment was processed but no additional relevant evidence was observed. The apartment was in generally poor condition, with several piles of clothes and packed cardboard boxes observed.

Witnesses

Maimounah Masadi

Maimounah Masadi lived in apartment 20 of the Baymar Apartments which is located on the first floor. She was interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 6, 2004 and provided them with a written sworn statement. The following information is derived from her sworn statement and a police report of this interview.

Ms. Masadi stated that at the time of the police shooting she was at home with her family. At approximately 9:30 p.m. Ms. Masadi heard arguing coming from the hallway, with several male voices saying, "put it down now". She heard this phrase twice and then heard three gunshots and the sound of someone hitting the floor. Several minutes later she opened her door but was advised by the police to remain inside her apartment.

Howard McCarthy

Howard McCarthy, the husband of Maimounah Masadi, was interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 6, 2004. The following information is derived from his sworn statement and a police report of this interview.

Mr. McCarthy stated that at the time of the shooting he was in his bedroom, half asleep. He heard three or four gunshots. He then looked out his window and saw police officers.

Pamela Inferrera

Pamela Inferrera lived in apartment 22 of the Baymar Apartments, which is on the second floor and directly below apartment 24. She was interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 6, 2004. The following information is derived from her sworn statement and a police report of this interview.

Ms. Inferrera reported that she lived in apartment 22 with her boyfriend, Russell Taylor, and her two sons. On March 5, 2004 at approximately 9:35 p.m. all four individuals were in the bedroom of their apartment playing video games. At that time Ms. Inferrera heard people above her arguing, which was not uncommon. A commotion occurred in the hallway, with an authoritative voice saying something over and over again. The words this authoritative voice was saying included the word "drop". Mr. Taylor then went to the door of their apartment. While he was there, Ms. Inferrera heard what she believed to be a gunshot, following a couple of seconds later by two additional gunshots. Mr. Taylor then ran into their bedroom and ordered them to get onto the ground. Ms. Inferrera said that they did not leave their apartment after the shooting.

Russell Taylor

Russell Taylor was interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 6, 2004. The following is derived from a sworn, written statement he gave to the police and a police report of this interview.

Mr. Taylor reported that he was residing at apartment 22 with Pamela Inferrera and her two sons. The four individuals, at approximately 9:30 p.m., were in the back bedroom of their apartment playing video games when he heard yelling coming from the apartment above them. Mr. Taylor described the yelling between a male and an unknown individual as being "real intense". This commotion caused Mr. Taylor to go to the front door of his apartment to see what was going on. As he got to the front door, Mr. Taylor heard a male voice state at least twice the following words; "Drop the knife...drop the knife...I said drop the knife." This was followed by three gunshots. Mr. Taylor dropped to one knee and "duck-walked" back to his family. After insuring that they were safe, Mr. Taylor went back to the front door and looked out into the hallway. He observed a police officer, who he recognized as Officer Greger, who instructed him to go back inside the apartment.

Mr. Taylor currently is a corrections officer for the State of Connecticut and formerly was a Bristol police officer. He stated that he did not know the people living in the apartment above him but that it was not uncommon to hear them arguing.

Terese Williams

Terese Williams was living in apartment 23 of the Baymar Apartments, which is located on the third floor on the opposite side of the landing from apartment 24. She was interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 6, 2004. The following information was derived from a sworn written statement she gave to the police and the police report of that interview.

Ms. Williams reported that on March 5, 2004 at approximately 9:40 p.m. she was in her apartment with her son and her friend Molly Bukowski. She heard the Davenports arguing, which was not uncommon. On this night there was a lot of noise and then something banged against her door. She therefore called 911 and was advised that the police were at the scene. Ms. Williams then looked out the door and observed four police officers. Ms. Davenport was being handcuffed. She then was instructed by the police to close her door which she did. Ms. Williams stated that she had heard people arguing that night but could not decipher what they were saying and did not hear any gunshots.

Ms. Williams stated that she knew the Davenport family and had heard Bryant and Leslie Davenport argue constantly. She was aware that Mr. Davenport had moved out of the home several months ago. Ms. Williams stated that the Davenports were being evicted from the apartment because of the arguing and were scheduled to vacate their apartment in several days. Ms. Williams said that while she was aware of the verbal arguments between the Davenports she was not aware of physical altercations.

Molly Bukowski

Molly Bukowski was interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 6, 2004. The following information was derived from a statement she provided to the police as well as the police report of this interview.

Molly Bukowski reported that she was visiting her friend Terese Williams at her apartment on the night of March 5. She, Ms. Williams and Ms. Williams' son were in the living room listening to music, with the child playing video games. Ms. Bukowski heard a male yelling from the apartment across the hall, then a door slam and somebody went down the stairs. Approximately 45 minutes later Ms. Bukowski heard a crashing and banging noise outside of the apartment. Ms. Williams called 911 and then Ms. Bukowski and Ms. Williams opened the apartment door and looked outside. Ms. Bukowski stated that she saw three police officers and they had the mother who lived across the hall pinned to the ground. The police told the woman to close their door which they did. Ms. Bukowski stated that she did not hear any gunshots and was not aware that police were present until they opened the door.

Pablo Valera

Pablo Valera was telephonically interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 10, 2004. The following is derived from a police report of this interview.

Pablo Valera, on the evening of March 5, 2004, went to apartment 20 of the Baymar Apartments to visit his cousin, Howard McCarthy. At around 9:15 p.m. Mr. Valera went out to the parking lot where he met his friend Saliha Idlibi. While in the parking lot he observed three or four police officers arrive and enter his cousin's apartment building. While he was still outside he heard the police officers yelling, "To put it down". Mr. Valera then heard three gunshots from inside the building. He then went to his cousin's apartment where he stayed until 1:00 a.m.

Saliha Idlibi

Saliha Idlibi was telephonically interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 10, 2004. The following is derived from a police report of this interview.

Ms. Idlibi stated that she was at the parking lot of the Baymar Apartments at approximately 9 p.m. on March 5. She was talking to Pablo Valera when she heard people arguing inside the apartment building. Not long after, three or four police officers arrived in two police vehicles and they entered the building. She heard additional yelling and then four or five gunshots. Several minutes later Mr. Valera and she entered the apartment of Mr. Valera's cousin. While inside the building she did not see any police officers.

Leslie Davenport

On the night of March 5, 2004, while sitting in a police cruiser in the parking lot of the Baymar Apartments, Leslie Davenport was interviewed by Officer Craig Duquette of the Bristol Police Department and thereafter gave a sworn written statement to him. Ms. Davenport was transported to the Bristol Police Department and, when she expressed a desire to see a physician, was then transported to the Bristol Hospital. While she was at the hospital, members of the Connecticut State Police conducted a brief interview of her. Ms. Davenport provided to the State Police a signed consent to search her apartment. In addition, she spoke to the State Police concerning this incident. While the state police were speaking to Ms. Davenport a grief counselor from the hospital entered the room and the interview was terminated.

A State Police detective conducted a second interview of Ms. Davenport on September 22, 2004 at the Waterbury office of her attorney, Jason Lipsky. Present at that meeting, in addition to Ms. Davenport, the detective and Attorney Lipsky were Shelley Davenport, the daughter of Ms. Davenport, Mary Palin, the mother of Ms. Davenport, and Larry Palin, the brother of Ms. Davenport. The following information is derived from the statement of Ms. Davenport, dated March 5, 2004 and various police reports describing the interviews of her.

Ms. Davenport reported that she and the decedent had been married for 22 years. She described their life together as being "great" until the four months preceding the death of Mr. Davenport. During this time the marriage fell apart because of Mr. Davenport's depression, alcoholism and unemployment. She confirmed that the decedent had assaulted her on a prior occasion, which led to the Bristol Police being called and the decedent being arrested. Between the time of his arrest and his death, Ms. Davenport believed that her husband had been staying at the home of his mother and that he was unemployed.

On the night of March 5, 2004, Ms. Davenport was home alone, drinking vodka, when her husband unexpectedly entered the apartment using his house key. Mr. Davenport had also been drinking and an argument immediately broke out between them. The argument was initially verbal, with the decedent yelling at his wife, but soon escalated to violence. He dumped some Chinese food over her head and began to choke her with two hands, causing the two of them to fall onto the couch. While he was choking her she was unable to breathe. After a period of time he stopped choking her and went into the kitchen. Ms. Davenport took the opportunity to call 9-1-1 and then told her husband that the police were coming. He responded by saying that he would be ready for the police. Ms. Davenport believed that Mr. Davenport, at this time, obtained a box cutter, which was kept in a drawer in the kitchen. Mr. Davenport waited by the front door for the police to arrive. When the police did arrive Mr. Davenport opened the door and began to scream at them. She heard the police yelling at her husband to put the knife down. Ms. Davenport described the actions of Mr. Davenport toward the police as being "really aggressive". Ms. Davenport saw the police shoot the decedent causing him to fall to the ground. They then went and checked on him. The police also made Ms. Davenport lay down and handcuffed her. She reported that the actions of the police caused her to sustain injuries to her back. The police put her into a police cruiser and the handcuffs were later removed.

Officer Craig Duquette

Officer Duquette of the Bristol Police Department wrote a police report describing his actions and observations during the night of March 5, 2004. The following information is derived from this police report.

Officer Duquette was on duty the night of March 5 when it was broadcast by Officer Blackinton that there had been "shots fired". Arriving at the Baymar Apartments he observed Ms. Davenport sitting in the back of a police cruiser. She was removed from the cruiser and unhandcuffed by the police. Upon Ms. Davenport exiting the police cruiser Officer Duquette heard her state; "He got a knife.", and "He said he was going to wait for them and attack them!".

Officer Duquette asked Ms. Davenport if she was willing to give a statement and she agreed. He then took her to his cruiser, where the two sat inside. She was interviewed at this time and gave a written statement which has been described earlier in this report. While the two were sitting in the police cruiser Ms. Davenport complained of pain in her throat. The officer did not observe any visible injury but Ms. Davenport continued to say that her throat was painful and felt swollen. She initially refused treatment for this injury.

While Ms. Davenport was with Officer Duquette, Captain Britt of the Bristol Police Department spoke to her. He advised her that she would not be permitted to return to her apartment for some time. During this conversation, overheard by Officer Duquette, Ms. Davenport stated; "He was an asshole" and "He choked me". Captain Britt stated that Mr. Davenport had attacked the police officers. She replied, "Yes he did". Captain Britt also said, "He had a box cutter" and Ms. Davenport responded, "Yes, he did".

Ms. Davenport told Officer Duquette that her husband had been talking about suicide. Officer Duquette wrote the following comments made to him by Ms. Davenport: "He's been wanting suicide for so long." "He did this on purpose. He said he didn't care, let them come." "He's been very depressed lately, losing his mind." "He was drinking tonight, out of his mind." "He had a box cutter and said I'll be ready for them'". "When the police got here, I heard arguing. I heard, put it down, put it down!' and Fuck you, fuck you'".

Officer Sean Greger

Officer Sean Greger of the Bristol Police Department signed, on March 9, 2004, a police report detailing the events surrounding the shooting of Bryant Davenport. The following information is derived from this police report.

Officer Greger stated that Officers Lavallee, Fongemie and Blackinton and he responded to a complaint of a serious domestic occurring at 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24. The dispatcher informed the officers that the female complainant had stated that her husband had choked her and thrown food at her. The dispatch stated that the husband had left the apartment. Just prior to Officer Greger arriving at the scene, the dispatcher further advised him that the husband had returned to the residence and that there may be a protective order.

Officer Greger stated that the four officers arrived on the scene at the same time and together entered the building. Upon entering the building, Officer Greger could hear a female screaming from the upstairs apartment. The officers, while ascending to the third floor, were advised by the dispatcher that the husband was armed with a knife and was waiting for the police. Officer  Greger, upon reaching the third floor, continued to hear a female yelling. He reached for the door handle of the apartment and simultaneously the door opened into the apartment, pulling the officer inside. He found himself several inches away from a male, Bryant Davenport. Officer Greger pulled back and upon doing so, observed a razor knife in the hand of Mr. Davenport. Mr. Davenport swung the knife in the direction of Officer Greger. Officer Greger heard the other officers unholstering their firearms and shouting for Mr. Davenport to drop the knife. Officer Greger also unholstered his weapon, pointed his weapon at Mr. Davenport and shouted for him to drop his weapon.

Mr. Davenport lunged forward, again swinging the knife. Officer Greger noted that Officer Blackinton was standing behind him to his left, Officer Lavallee was standing behind him to his right and Officer Fongemie was standing behind Officer Lavallee. Officer Greger could feel his legs touching the legs of the other officers and his shoulders touching their shoulders. He reported that they had no where to go. Ms. Davenport peeked her head into the doorway and stated to her husband, "what are you doing?", and then to the officers, "He's crazy. He's crazy. He's got a restraining order."

Officer Greger reported that Mr. Davenport advance two steps toward the officer holding the knife as if he was going to stab him. He was at this point approximately two feet from Officer Greger. Officer Greger fired his handgun, striking Mr. Davenport in the chest. Officer Lavallee also discharged his firearm. Officer Greger fired a second time, believing that Mr. Davenport was trying to stab him. These shots caused Mr. Davenport to stumble back into the apartment.

Officer Blackinton tackled Mr. Davenport, secured the box cutter and handcuffed Mr. Davenport. Ms. Davenport fell on top of Officer Blackinton. This action caused Officer Greger to grab her in a wrist lock while Officer Lavallee took her out of the apartment. She was handcuffed and placed in the back of a cruiser. Officer Blackinton notified dispatch that shots had been fired and that an ambulance was needed.

Officer Greger stated that at the moment he fired his weapon he believed that Mr. Davenport was going to kill him.

Officer Todd Lavallee

On March 9, 2004 Officer Todd Lavallee submitted his signed police report detailing the events surrounding the shooting of Bryant Davenport. The following information is taken from that police report.

Officer Lavallee reported that on the night of March 5, 2004 at approximately 9:30 p.m., while on duty, he was advised by the police dispatcher of a serious domestic disturbance occurring at 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24. Information provided by the dispatcher included that the female was yelling in the background and the male had just left the premises. Four police officers, Officers Greger, Blackinton, Fongemie and Lavallee responded to the scene. En route the dispatcher further advised the officers that there was a possible protective order against the male.

Upon arriving at 94 Gaylord Street, the four officers entered the building and began to ascend the staircase to the third floor. The officers were advised by the dispatcher that the male was back in the apartment and that he was armed with a knife. Officer Lavallee could hear the female screaming from inside the apartment. This caused the four officers to run up the staircase. The four officers arrived at the landing outside of apartment 24 and continued to hear the female screaming from inside the apartment.

Officer Greger reached for the door knob of apartment 24 and the door "flew open". This action caused Officer Greger to be pulled into the apartment. At this time, Officer Lavallee first observed Bryant Davenport, who was standing in front of Officer Greger, hold a utility knife above his head. In response, Officer Lavallee unholstered his firearm, a 9mm Glock pistol. Officer Lavallee reported that he began to command Mr. Davenport several times, in a loud voice, to "drop the knife, get on the ground." He also heard the other three officers make similar commands to Mr. Davenport. Officer Lavallee reported that Mr. Davenport did not comply with the officers' commands but stepped forward toward the officers, swung the knife and then stepped back. Mr. Davenport then repeated this threatening action.

Officer Lavallee stated that Mr. Davenport did not speak during this incident. However he did hear the female from inside the apartment screaming, "What are you doing? He's crazy." Officer Lavallee noted that Mr. Davenport had a distant look in his eyes and no expression on his face. Mr. Davenport stepped out of the apartment and continued to make several slashing movements with the knife. Officer Lavallee estimated the distance between Mr. Davenport and the officers to be one to two feet. Officer Lavallee concluded that the four officers were in danger of death or serious physical injury from the actions of Mr. Davenport. As Officer Lavallee determined that it was necessary to fire his weapon he heard a gunshot and then he fired. He also heard another gunshot. Officer Lavallee reported that a total of three shots were fired and he fired once at Mr. Davenport.

After the shots had been fired Officer Blackinton tackled Mr. Davenport, landing inside the apartment. He was handcuffed by Officer Blackinton. The female inside the apartment was also handcuffed under investigative detention. First aid was administered until the paramedics arrived on the scene.

Officer Gregory Blackinton

Officer Blackinton filed a signed police report on March 8, 2004 describing the events which led to the shooting of Bryant Davenport. The following information is derived from this police report.

Officer Blackinton responded to a report of a violent domestic occurring at 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24. Prior to arriving at the scene, the officer received from the dispatcher information that the suspect had initially left the premises but now had returned. Officer Blackinton arrived at 94 Gaylord Street at the same time as three other Bristol police officers, Officers Greger, Lavallee and Fongemie. As the officers approached the front door of the apartment building, the dispatcher further advised them that the suspect knew the police were arriving and was waiting inside the apartment with a knife. As Officer Blackinton and the other officers ascended the staircase toward apartment 24, he could hear a woman screaming from inside the apartment. Officer Blackinton, responding to this, told Officer Greger to pick up the pace.

Upon arriving at the landing outside of the apartment, Officer Blackinton continued to hear a female yelling in a scared voice from inside the apartment. At this time, Officer Greger was in the center, with Officer Blackinton to his left, Officer Lavallee to his right and Officer Fongemie to the right and slightly to the rear of Officer Lavallee. Officer Greger grabbed the door handle of the apartment door, which instantaneously flew open. Officer Blackinton then observed Bryant Davenport holding a grey box cutter in his right hand above his head. Mr. Davenport came into the hallway and swung the box cutter at the officers. This action caused Officer Blackinton to draw his firearm and loudly demand that the suspect drop the knife. All four officers had their firearms pointed at Mr. Davenport and were repeatedly calling for him to drop his weapon. Mr. Davenport retreated into the apartment and then lunged forward, again swinging the box cutter in a slicing motion. Mr. Davenport came within two feet of Officer Blackinton with the box cutter and then retreated to the apartment a second time. Officer Blackinton stated that due to the limited space on the landing, he could not get away from Mr. Davenport or get to the stairway without knocking other officers down the staircase.

Mr. Davenport stayed by the doorway for a second and then attacked the officers again with the box cutter held above his head, closing to less than two feet of Officers Blackinton, Greger and Lavallee. It did not appear to Officer Blackinton that Mr. Davenport was stopping his attack. Officer Blackinton reported that he was in fear of his life. Just as Officer Blackinton was to fire his weapon he heard three shots ring out from his right. Mr. Davenport buckled slightly and turned away from the officers. Officer Blackinton tackled Mr. Davenport and struggled to secure the box cutter. As he struggled with Mr. Davenport he felt the female from the apartment against his back. The other officers removed the female from him and Officer Blackinton was able to handcuff Mr. Davenport.

Officer Blackinton seized the box cutter and placed it on a cardboard box in the living room. He also seized a bullet that he saw loose on Mr. Davenport's chest and placed it on a nearby table. Officer Blackinton radioed for an ambulance and began first aid measures to Mr. Davenport. Mr. Davenport, the officer reported, was initially alert but quickly assumed a fixed gaze and became unresponsive.

Officer Christopher Fongemie

Officer Fongemie was interviewed by the Connecticut State Police on March 6, 2004 by members of the Connecticut State Police. Thereafter, on March 8, 2004, Officer Fongemie filed a signed police report describing the incident that led to the shooting of Bryant Davenport. The following is a summary of Officer Fongemie's police report and the police report of the State Police describing his interview.

Officer Fongemie reported that on the night of March 5, 2004, at approximately 9 p.m., Officer Greger was dispatched to 94 Gaylord Street on the report of a "serious domestic" or a "domestic involving violence". Officer Fongemie also responded to that call and arrived at the scene at the same time as Officers Greger, Lavallee and Blackinton. As Officer Fongemie was exiting his cruiser the dispatcher advised the officers that the suspect would be waiting for them with a knife. The officers entered the apartment building and began to ascend the staircase to the third floor apartment, with Officer Fongemie in the rear. Officer Fongemie could hear a female screaming from within the apartment.

As Officer Greger was attempting to open the apartment door, the door opened inward and they were confronted by Bryant Davenport. Mr. Davenport was standing at the doorway of the apartment, with the knife in his hand held above his head. Officer Fongemie and the other officers stepped back. Officer Fongemie could continue to hear a female screaming but could not see her.

Officer Fongemie drew his firearm as did the other officers and they began to shout for the man to drop his knife. Mr. Davenport did not comply with the officers' commands and instead began to swing the knife toward the officers in a threatening manner. At this point Mr. Davenport was, Officer Fongemie estimated, approximately four to six feet away from him. As he swung the knife, Mr. Davenport would step toward the officers, then step away. As Mr. Davenport took these actions the officers continued to demand that he drop his knife.

Officer Fongemie stated that he was on the landing outside the apartment, with the other three officers to his left. Mr. Davenport became more aggressive and lunged at the officers to the left of Officer Fongemie. At this time Officer Fongemie believed that the other officers were in immediate danger of having serious physical injuries inflicted upon them by Mr. Davenport. He estimated that the knife was within two feet of these officers. He also expressed concern for the safety of the female in the apartment. Officer Fongemie heard three gunshots and saw that Mr. Davenport had been shot. Mr. Davenport fell forward but remained standing in a hunched over position. Officer Blackinton brought Mr. Davenport to the floor and handcuffed him. The female in the apartment then jumped on the back of Officer Blackinton and Officer Fongemie pulled her off of Officer Blackinton. He handcuffed her and took her outside to his cruiser. Officer Blackinton transmitted a request for an ambulance and first aid was given to Mr. Davenport by the police. Officer Fongemie stated he did not fire his firearm during this incident.

Autopsy 

An autopsy of the body of Bryant Davenport was performed by Dr. Edward T. McDonough, Deputy Chief Medical Examiner, at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, on March 6, 2004. Dr. McDonough, after completion of the autopsy, wrote a report detailing the autopsy and his findings.

Dr. McDonough noted in his autopsy report that he found four entry gunshot wounds and two exit gunshot wounds. The first entry wound noted was located on the left anterior chest. The bullet, upon entry, traveled through the body from left to right, from front to back and downward, coming to rest in the liver. The autopsy report noted a deep laceration of the right lobe of the liver. The bullet was recovered and submitted into evidence. The second entry wound was of the lateral aspect of the right nipple. This bullet, upon entry, traveled through the body from front to back, from left to right and slightly downward. The bullet coursed three or four inches into the subcutaneous tissue of the upper chest wall and was recovered in this tissue and submitted into evidence. The third entry wound was of the left mid axillary line. The bullet, upon entry, traveled through the body from left to right, very slightly front to back and slightly upward. The bullet exited the body in the right lower mid back and was not recovered during autopsy. This bullet, as it traveled through the body, perforated the left kidney, caused a laceration of the intimal surface of the aorta, lacerated the right kidney and likely part of the shredding of the liver. The fourth entry wound was of the surface of the left hand. The bullet traveled through the soft tissue causing an exit wound near the thumb. Dr. McDonough notes in his report that if the left hand is held upward in a stopping motion the wounds to the hand may match up with any of the three entry wounds on the torso.

Following the autopsy, Dr. Sherwood Lewis, Directory of Toxicology performed several toxicological tests. An analysis was performed on the brain of Mr. Davenport for the presence of ethanol. Ethanol was found at a concentration of 0.26%. An analysis was performed on the blood of Mr. Davenport for the presence of ethanol and certain other drugs. Ethanol was found at a concentration of 0.22%. In addition, chlordiazepoxide-related, nordiazepam, caffeine metabolite and mirtazapine were detected. Further testing showed nordiazepam present in the blood in a concentration of 0.1 mg/L and chlordiazepoxide present in the blood in a concentration of 0.2 mg/L.

Dr. McDonough concluded in his autopsy report that the cause of death was gunshot wounds to the chest and abdomen and that the manner of death was homicide.

Recorded Telephone Calls 

Three telephone calls pertinent to this investigation were recorded by the Bristol Police Department pursuant to their policy of recording all telephone calls made to or from the police dispatcher. A transcript of these three calls is presented below.

1. Incoming telephone call to 911 between dispatcher and Leslie Davenport

D=Dispatcher

L=Leslie Davenport

L-Oh, my God.

D-911-what is your emergency?

L-Yes, can you please come to 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24...

D-What's the matter there?

L-My husband is attacking me, please.

D-Okay.

L-Now. Please.

D-I understand that, ma'am. Are there any weapons in the home?

L-No.

D-Okay.

L-No.

D-Is he still inside?

L-Yuh, he's leaving now. Oh, my God.

D-Are you injured Ma'am? Do you need an ambulance?

L-Oh God, he just threw food all over me.

D-Do you need...

L-Please come.

D-Okay ma'am. We'll send over an officer.

L-Thank you.

D-Bye bye.

2. Outgoing telephone call from 911 between dispatcher and Leslie Davenport

D=Dispatcher

L=Leslie Davenport

B=Bryant Davenport

O-Unknown Bristol Police Officer(s)

L-You almost choked me to death.

B-I should have.

L-Hello.

D-Hi Ma'am, is he still there?

L-Yeah.

D-Okay, I'm gonna stay on the phone till each of the officers get there.

L-Okay.

B-(inaudible) fuckin' half water and half...

L-Mmmm he almost choked me to death. Goddamn guy, he threw all the Chinese food all over the place.

B- Yeah, because you won't shut your fuckin' mouth.

L-I won't shut my mouth? .

B-You won't, and I've asked you how many times to stop but all I wanted to do was sleep. L-L-He's drunk. He's drunk. He's drunk.

B- I'm waiting for the cops...(inaudible)

D-Okay, I understand that. I have officers on the way ma'am. I'm stay on the phone with you until they get over there, okay?

L-Okay, okay. Huuu....

D-Have you had problems previously with him?

L-Oh, my God. I don't believe this.

D-Ma'am, have you had any problems with him before?

L-Pardon?

D-Have you had any problems?

L-Yes, he has a restraining order. Not to be here.

B-You asked me to be here.

D-Okay. What's your name ma'am?

L-Pardon.

D-What's your name

L-Leslie Davenport.

D-And what's his name?

L-Bryant. Davenport.

B-You better tell them they better come with fuckin' shotguns or whatever because

I'm..(inaudible) .ready for fuckin' battle.

L-Oh, oh, he's, he's really drunk. He's drunk.

B-No, my wife is drunk.

L-Because this is not him, usually it's not him. But he is, oh my God I thought I was gonna die.

B-They better bring a fuckin' army with them because...(inaudible)

L-You should see, you should see this place, oh my God.

D-No, I, I, I understand ma'am I do have uh...

L-Stop it...

D...officers en route.

L-No, you're not having no cigarettes from me. No. Give me my pocketbook. Now he's stealing my pocketbook. Oh, my God.

B-(inaudible).

L-Oh my God. What...Bryant.

B-Look at you.

L-Well I just tripped. What are you doing in my pocketbook?

B-Oh you, I want a cigarette.

D-Leslie. Leslie.

B-Get the fuck...

D-What are you doing with that knife? He's got a knife in his hand.

B-I'm waiting for the cops...(inaudible)

L-He's got a fuckin' knife in his hand. Get him the fuck outta here, please. Please. Please.

B-Tell them they better pack, (inaudible) when they come for me (inaudible) cause I'm gonna fuckin' kill them (inaudible)

L-Oh, my God.

D-Leslie, Leslie, does he have the knife in his hand?

L-Huuu, yes.

D-Can you ask him to place the knife down?

B-(inaudible) fuckin' (inaudible) fuckin'

L-It's a uhm, it's one of those, I don't know, not a knife, but one of those, I don't know how ya...Oh my God.

D-Okay, Leslie. Can you ask him to put the knife down cause the officers are not gonna come in with him holding a knife.

L-Don't hold the knife to the cops Bryant.

B-No, I'm gonna fuckin' kill them or they're gonna kill me. It's either or...

L-Oh no. Oh no. He's fuckin' lost his mind. He's lost his mind. I just don't know what's going on with him. (Crying)

O-Drop it. Drop it. Drop it.

L-I don't get him.

O-Drop it. Drop the knife. Get down on (inaudible)

B-No. No.

O-Drop it. Drop it. Drop the knife.

B-No. No.

O-Drop it. Get down on (inaudible)

B-No. Come on.

O-Get down...

Three shots fired.

L-Bryant. Bryant...what are you doing?

O-Get her out of here.

D-Leslie. Leslie.

L-What...what...I'm okay, (inaudible) is okay, oh my God, oh my God.

3. Incoming Telephone Call to Bristol 911 between dispatcher and Terese Williams

D=Dispatcher

T=Terese Williams

D-911-What is your emergency?

T-Uhm, there's something going on next door like a big fight.

D-Yuh, we do, we do have officers out, ma'am.

T-94 Gaylord Street?

D-Yup, bye, bye.

T-Bye.

Recorded Radio Transmissions

Radio transmissions between the police dispatcher and several Bristol police officers were recorded pursuant to the policy of the Bristol Police Department to record all such transmissions. The recorded transmission covers the period of time from the report of the disturbance at 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24 to the firing of shots

D-Dispatcher

Car 1-Officer Greger

Car-4-Officer Fongemie

Car 8-Officer Lavallee

Car 21-Officer Boutin

K-9 Unit--Officer Blackinton

D-Bristol to Car 1, Car 21.

Car 1-1

Car 21-21.

D-Car 1, Car 21, 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24, for a domestic, male party is leaving at this point in time. Uh no weapons in the home.

Car 1-What's he look like? What's his name?

D-Elderly male, woman could not give me a description, she's more upset about the food being thrown.

Car 21-Car. 21 Bristol. I have a car stopped, do you have another car free?

Unknown Car-(inaudible) I'll head over there with him.

D-10-4 Eaton, K-9.

Car 21-21 Bristol.

D-Go ahead 21.

Car 21-Route 6 by Hess, 66463 Charlie, a green Suburu.

D-What's your cross street again?

Car 21-Uh, Maple and Route 6.

D-10-4.

***********************************************

D-Car 1, Car 8, K-9. The gentleman is back in the apartment keeping the call...caller on the phone.

D-Any cars available to back up 21 at Farmington near Maple end...?

Car 21-21. I'll be all set.

D-10-4, 21

************************************************

Unknown Car-(inaudible)

D-Go ahead.

Unknown car-(inaudible) unregistered...

D-10-4, standby.

Car 1-Car 1 to Bristol. Car 1 to Bristol.

D-Go ahead 1.

Car 1-We're 10-9.

D-10-4. Be advised I gonna be checking out a possible protective order for that location.

Car 1-10-4.

Car 4-Unit 4 will be out with him.

D-10-4 (inaudible).

D-Car 1, Car 8, K-9. Be advised he now has a knife in his hand. He's waiting , he states he's waiting for you.

Car 10-Attention all cars, I'm on West Street approaching West Center, if you want to hold up a minute...

(Unknown officer)- Four of us will be all set at Gaylord.

(Unknown officer)- Car 1, did you get that?

(Unknown officer) 22 Bristol 10.

D-10-4.

Car 10-Car 1 or K-9. Car 1 or K-9. Car 8, anybody at the scene at Gaylord?

Car 22-22 to 10, I'm right around the corner do you need something?

Car 10-Yeah, I want them to hold up. I don't know if they got it that he's got a knife in his hand, they didn't respond to dispatch.

Car 22-I'm right here I'll check and see if they're in there already.

(Unknown officer)-(inaudible)...K-9... Bristol...17-1... shots fired...

D-10-4. K-9.

Letter Seized by the Connecticut State Police

The clothing worn by Bryant Davenport at the time of the shooting were seized at Hartford Hospital by Officer Kristin Boutin of the Bristol Police Department. She thereafter returned to the Bristol Police Department and placed the clothes in the evidence room. On the morning of March 6, the Connecticut State Police seized the clothing from the Bristol Police Department, maintaining custody thereafter. One item of clothing was a brown, leather jacket. In the interior right side pocket of this jacket was found a two page handwritten note addressed to "My love Leslie" and signed "Bryant". This letter read as follows:

Dear my love Leslie,

I never thought it would end like this You broke my heart after I gave you everything you could have in this world but you shit on me I cannot live like this anymore I just want you to know you will be better without me I love my girls and I'm sorry that you pushed me over the edge I will never forget you and the girls Believe me I will always be watching over you girls and my family I have nothing to live for without you But I don't have the power anymore I do admit that I had a great life untill (sic) drug's (sic) took over and ruined everything I stood for Just try to forgive me what I have done to myself It's my time to go now I hope I see you in the next world so don't be late Just remeber (sic) no service just put me in the pond. It was a great life with you while it lasted

Love always

Bryant

Family Violence Protective Order

On February 2, 2004, Judge Barry C. Pinkus of the Connecticut Superior Court, while sitting in Bristol, signed a family violence protective order against Bryant Davenport. This order was issued as a result of the arrest of Mr. Davenport on January 31, 2004 for Assault in the Second Degree, in which the alleged victim was Leslie Davenport. This protective order, which was in effect on March 5, 2004, ordered Mr. Davenport to refrain from entering 94 Gaylord Avenue, Apartment 24, and to refrain from assaulting or threatening her.

Forensic Testing

The State Police Forensic Laboratory was asked to examine certain evidence seized in connection with this investigation and perform appropriate tests. The following is a summary of the tests and the test results:

1. The Firearms Section of the lab examined the four Glock 9mm handguns carried by the police officers, the three shell casings found outside of the apartment, the three bullets and the two bullet fragments recovered from the scene or during the autopsy. Two of the shell casings were determined to have been fired in the handgun of Officer Sean Greger. The other shell casing was determined to have been fired in the handgun of Officer Todd Lavallee. Of the three bullets found, all were identified as being a caliber 9mm Luger, metal jacketed bullet having polygonal rifling characteristics, consistent with Glock firearms, but each lacked individual characteristic markings necessary for a positive identification. Each of the bullet fragments were identified as being a copper fragment, irregular in shape, and bearing no characteristic markings. They were not further identified. In summary, the laboratory was able to determine that two of the shell casings were fired from Officer Greger's handgun and the other shell casing was fired from Officer Lavallee's handgun but the lab was unable to determine from which of the handguns the three bullets and the two bullet fragments were fired.

2. The Criminalist Section of the laboratory examined numerous pieces of evidence which were seized during the course of the investigation. The four handguns of the police officers were examined and, as to each weapon, no fibers or blood-like stains were located on or in the barrel. The three 9mm Luger bullets were examined and blood-like stains were located on each. As for the two bullet fragments, a blood-like stain was found on each fragment. In addition, on one of the fragments, tissue-like material was located. The grey utility knife seized in the living room of apartment 24 was examined and a blood-like stain was located on it.

3. The Criminalist Section also performed DNA analysis on certain of the seized evidence. The lab first determined the DNA profile of a sample of Bryant Davenport's blood. Then the lab determined the DNA profile of a blood swab taken from the blade of the utility knife, the DNA profile of a swab of blood taken from a bullet fragment and the DNA profile of a stain of blood taken from a bullet. The lab then compared the various DNA profiles and found that the DNA profile of the decedent was consistent with the DNA profile of the various blood stains tested.

4. The laboratory also examined the utility knife for identifiable latent fingerprints. The result of this examination was that there were no identifiable latent impressions developed.

5. The laboratory also examined the leather jacket and sweater that Mr. Davenport was wearing at the time that he was shot. Four holes consistent with being bullet holes were found in the jacket: one near the front right collar area of the jacket, the second near the front left armpit, the third in the back area and the fourth in the left sleeve cuff. Microscopic examination of these four holes failed to reveal any gunpowder-like particles. Chemical testing of the holes located on the jacket was conducted and no lead residue was observed. Seven nitrite particles were located around the hole located near the front right collar.

The laboratory, in examining the sweater, observed a total of six holes in four areas. Of these six holes, four were determined to found to be consistent with bullet holes. The other two holes were of uncertain origin. The location of the four bullet-like holes were as follows: one was located in the front upper right chest area, the second near the front center chest area, the third near the front left armpit area and the fourth in the back lower area. Microscopic examination of the six holes failed to reveal any gunpowder-like particles. Through chemical testing, lead residue and two nitrite particles were observed on the periphery of the bullet-like holes located in the front area of the sweater. Chemical testing failed to reveal any lead residue or nitrite particles in the back hole.

The laboratory, as previously noted, was unable to determine which handgun had fired the bullets which caused the holes observed in the jacket and sweater of the decedent. Therefore, the laboratory fired the gun of Officer Greger to obtain a representative test-fire pattern. Firing this handgun into a leather fabric similar to the jacket, it was observed that a majority of gunpowder was absent after four feet, and a majority of nitrite particles were absent after two feet. A handgun of the same model and make as the officers' guns was fired into a cotton fabric similar to the sweater. It was observed that a majority of gunpowder was absent after four feet and a majority of nitrite particles were absent after four feet.

The laboratory criminalist was able to conclude, based on the various tests performed, that the bullet-like holes in the front of the jacket and sweater were consistent with entrance holes and the bullet-like holes in the back of the clothing were consistent with being exit holes. In addition, the residue patterns observed on the sweater were consistent with a firearm being approximately four feet from the sweater when at least one of the bullets were fired. Because it is not possible, due to the proximity of the bullet-like holes, to determine whether the particles observed on the sweater were deposited by one bullet or more than one bullet, the criminalist could not determine whether one bullet was fired from approximately four feet, or more than one bullet was fired from that distance. The presence of nitrite particles on the right front collar of the jacket was consistent with the firearm being approximately two feet from the jacket when the bullet which caused that hole was fired. The absence of nitrite particles around the other holes in the jacket is consistent with the bullets which caused these holes being fired at a distance greater than two feet from the jacket.

Applicable Law Regarding the Use of Deadly Force by Police Officers

Section 53a-22(c) of the General Statutes permits a police officer to use deadly physical force upon another person when he reasonably believes such to be necessary to defend himself or a third person from the use or imminent use of deadly physical force. The test to determine reasonableness is both subjective and objective. First, the officer must believe that the use of deadly force is necessary to defend himself or another from the imminent use of deadly physical force. Second, that belief must be objectively reasonable. See State v. Smith, 73 Conn. App. 173, cert. den. 262 Conn 923 (2002).

The test is not whether it was in fact necessary for the officer to use deadly physical force in order to defend against the imminent use of deadly physical force. The test is whether officer believed that it was necessary to use deadly physical force and whether such belief was objectively reasonable, based on the facts and circumstances known to the police officer at the time the decision to use deadly force was made. See State v. Silveira 198 Conn. 454 (1986), State v. Adams 52 Conn. App. 643 (1999).

The United States Supreme Court has explained this test in a civil rights case:

"The reasonableness' of a particular use of force must be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene rather than with the 20/20 vision of hindsight...The calculus of reasonableness must embody allowance of the fact that police officers are often forced to make split-second decisions--in circumstances that are tense, uncertain, and rapidly evolving--about the amount of force that is necessary in a particular situation." Graham v. Connor 490 386 (1989).

Finding of Fact

Based on a review of the investigation the undersigned makes the following findings of fact:

Bryant Davenport, the husband of Leslie Davenport, was living apart from her at the time of his death, pursuant to a court order. This family violence protective order, issued after Mr. Davenport had been arrested for assaulting his wife, prohibited him from entering the residence of 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24, Bristol, Connecticut.

On the night of March 5, 2004, Mr. Davenport went to 94 Gaylord Street, Apartment 24 in violation of this court order. Upon entering this apartment he encountered Leslie, who had been home alone at the time. Mr. Davenport, prior to arriving at this apartment had been drinking heavily and was intoxicated. His blood alcohol level, as stated in the autopsy report, was determined to be .26%. Ms. Davenport, prior to the arrival of her husband had also been drinking alcoholic beverages.

These two people became involved in an argument which initially was verbal, but quickly turned violent. During this violent confrontation Mr. Davenport threw a plate of Chinese food over his wife's head. Ms. Davenport at this time made her first telephone call to the Bristol police. In this telephone call Ms. Davenport requested the assistance of the police and told the dispatcher that her husband was attacking her. The dispatcher informed her that a police officer would be sent to the apartment.

Shortly thereafter the dispatcher called back to the Davenport apartment. Ms. Davenport answered and was overheard telling her husband that he had almost choked her to death. Mr. Davenport's response, also overheard by the dispatcher, was that he should have. The dispatcher told Ms. Davenport that police were on the way to the apartment and that the dispatcher would remain on the telephone until they arrive. Mr. Davenport, prior to the arrival of the police was overheard making various threats against the police including: "I'm waiting for the cops...", "You better tell them they better come with fuckin' shotguns or whatever because I'm...(inaudible) ready for battle.", "They better bring a fuckin' army with them because ...(inaudible)", "Tell them they better pack, (inaudible) when they come for me (inaudible) cause I'm gonna fuckin' kill them (inaudible)", "No, I'm gonna fuckin' kill them or they're gonna kill me. It's either or...". While these threats were being made against the police by Mr. Davenport, his wife informed the dispatcher that he had a knife in his hand.

The dispatcher, while speaking to Ms. Davenport on the telephone, is also communicating with the responding officers. Initially they are told that there is a domestic at the apartment and the male party is leaving the apartment. Thereafter, the dispatcher informs the officers that the male party has returned to the apartment, that he has a knife in his hand and is waiting for the police.

Four Bristol police officers responded to the call and went to the landing outside of apartment 24. Officer Greger, who was the officer in front, reached to open the front door. As he was doing this the door opened inward and Officer Greger was confronted by Mr. Davenport wielding a box cutter. Mr. Davenport began to wave the box cutter about in a menacing and threatening manner, advancing toward the officers and then retreating. The officers demanded several times that Mr. Davenport drop the weapon but he did not. Instead he again moved toward the officers, holding the box cutter in an aggressive manner. Officer Greger fired his handgun twice in rapid succession at Mr. Davenport. Almost simultaneous to Officer Greger firing his handgun Officer Lavallee discharged his weapon one time. All three shots struck Mr. Davenport causing him to fall back into the apartment. Mr. Davenport was gravely injured as a result of these gunshots and expired shortly after arriving at the hospital.

At the time these three shots were fired the four police officers were at the landing outside of the apartment. Mr. Davenport was inside the apartment, by the front door threshold. It is impossible to determine the exact distance between Mr. Davenport and the four officers at the time the shots were fired. Given the results of the examination of the clothing of the decedent by the State Forensic laboratory and the rapidity of the gunshots, it would appear probable that the distance between Mr. Davenport and the two officers who fired their weapons, Officer Greger and Officer Lavallee, at the time the shots were fired was approximately two to four feet. This estimate is generally consistent with the reports given by the four officers present at the scene.

Conclusion

On the night of his death, Bryant Davenport was clearly intoxicated and acting in an aggressive manner with those he encountered. Upon learning that the police were coming to the apartment, he armed himself with a box cutter and made numerous threats against the police. Upon the arrival of the police, Mr. Davenport confronted them with the box cutter, acting in an aggressive manner. He refused to drop the knife, despite several demands by the officers to do so. His actions were such that it was reasonable for an officer to conclude that Mr. Davenport intended to attack one or more of the officers. Given his possession of a box cutter and his proximity to the officers, Mr. Davenport was in a position to inflict great bodily harm on them. Retreat with complete safety could not reasonably be accomplished given the immediacy of the threat and the presence of four officers in close proximity on the landing. In addition, given that Mr. Davenport was armed and had already assaulted his wife, retreat by the officers, leaving Mr. Davenport in the apartment, would have endangered Ms. Davenport's safety. Therefore, the use of deadly force by Officers Greger and Lavallee was appropriate under Section 53a-22 of the General Statutes.

No further action will be taken by the Division of Criminal Justice.

Scott J. Murphy
State's Attorney
Judicial District of New Britain
October 13, 2004


List of Exhibits

1. Connecticut State Police report, dated April 14, 2004, titled "Master Evidence Report".

2. Connecticut State Police report, dated April 27, 2004, titled "Sketch Map Report".

3. Statements of Maimounah Masadi and Howard McCarthy, dated March 6, 2004.

4. Statement of Pamela Inferrera, dated March 6, 2004.

5. Statement of Russell Taylor, dated March 6, 2004.

6. Statement of Terese Williams, dated March 6, 2004.

7. Statement of Molly Bukowski, dated March 6, 2004.

8. Connecticut State Police report of interview of Pablo Valera, dated March 10, 2004.

9. Connecticut State Police report of Saliha Idlibi, dated March 10, 2004.

10. Statement of Leslie Davenport, dated March 5, 2004.

11. Consent to Search, signed by Leslie Davenport, dated March 6, 2004.

12. Connecticut State Police report of interview of Leslie Davenport, dated April 16, 2004.

13. Connecticut State Police report of interview of Leslie Davenport, dated September 23, 2004.

14. Bristol Police report of Officer Craig Duquette, dated March 6, 2004.

15. Bristol Police report of Officer Sean Greger, dated March 8, 2004.

16. Bristol Police report of Officer Todd Lavallee, dated March 9, 2004.

17. Bristol Police report of Officer Gregory Blackinton, dated March 8, 2004.

18. Bristol Police report of Officer Christopher Fongemie, dated March 8, 2004.

19. Connecticut State Police report of interview of Officer Fongemie, dated March 31, 2004.

20. Letter of Bryant Davenport

21. Family Violence Protective Order

22. Forensic Science Laboratory report, dated March 12, 2004.

23. Forensic Science Laboratory report, dated March 16, 2004.

24. Forensic Science Laboratory report, dated May 19, 2004.

25. Forensic Science Laboratory report, dated May 24, 2004.

26. Forensic Science Laboratory report, dated June 4, 2004.



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