STATE POLICE INVESTIGATE SALEM POLICE SHOOTING
On 06-18-2013 at approximately 1838 hours, Salem Fire Department responded to the area of 28 Witter Road, in Salem. Upon arrival, Fire Marshal Bourdeau discovered a three-car detached garage fully involved with fire and a separate rapidly growing fire within the residence. In addition, he found that the driveway to the residence had been blocked by several vehicles and a farm tractor inhibiting the fire department’s ability to reach the fire scene to fight the fire. Upon arrival of first responding firefighters, they discovered evidence to suggest that the fire may have been intentionally set. Fire Marshal Bourdeau immediately requested that the CT State Police Fire & Explosion Investigation Unit respond to the scene to conduct an origin and cause investigation into the circumstances of this fire scene.
A short time into the incident, two firefighters’ attention was drawn to a wooded area behind 10 Witter Road where a white male was yelling and reportedly waiving a gun. They relayed this information to the responding troopers at the scene. When troopers tried to approach this individual, they observed that he was acting very irrationally and began to charge at them while waiving a large blunt object resembling a club in a threatening manner. The male failed to comply with the Troopers repeated requests to stop and drop the weapon. As a result, one Trooper discharged his firearm to stop the imminent threat.
The suspect was immediately administered first aid and was transported by ambulance to Backus Hospital. He was later transferred to Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, RI, where he was pronounced dead. An autopsy is pending and the suspect’s identity is being withheld pending the notification of next of kin. No Troopers or firefighters were injured during the incident. The identity of the Trooper is also being withheld at this time.
The CT State Police, Fire & Explosion Investigation Unit has obtained a search warrant to process the fire scene and is working in conjunction with the Eastern District Major Crime Squad to determine the circumstances relative to the fire incident at 28 Witter Road.
At the request of the New London State’s Attorney, the CT State Police Central District Major Crime Squad is investigating this Trooper-involved shooting. State Police Detectives will process the scene, collect any physical and forensic evidence, and interview all witnesses in this incident. Detectives will examine the entire event and provide the findings to State’s Attorney for review.
Capt. Thomas Garbedian