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Milford man dives into water to escape West Haven police after early morning burglary

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WEST HAVEN — An early morning burglary  ended up with the suspect taking a dive into a lake to escape officers in West Haven.

Police say they were conducting patrols around 12:40 a.m. when they noticed a ladder against Krauszer’s Food Store at 544 Derby Avenue

Backup units arrived and assisted in a search for the suspect. A bag containing burglary tools, including an acetylene cutting torch was located. Officers then located a male hiding behind a tree. He fled on foot when he was confronted by the officers.

The suspect, identified as James Samperi, 37 of Milford, jumped the venue to Maltby Lakes. He attempted to escape the foot pursuit by diving into the water and trying to swim away.

Police surrounded the body of water and Samperi eventually reached a small island in the middle of the water.

The West Haven Fire Department soon arrived and assisted getting the suspect safety to shore. Police arrested Samperi and charged him with burglary, possession of burglar tools, and interfering with police.

One officer did suffer a shoulder injury, was treated, and released.

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