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State’s Attorney says police shooting in Meriden was justified

ROCKY HILL — Investigators said three police officers were justified in shooting a suspect last year after he refused to put down a weapon after a traffic stop.

On October 18, 2018,Ryan Holley was shot by police and suffered non-life threatening injuries in the parking lot of the CVS on East Main Street.

The report states, “While Ryan Holley initially had no way of knowing that MPD officers were operating the unmarked SUV, he made the conscious and deliberate decision to attempt to display his registered pistol to its occupants, and in doing so accidentally discharged one (1) round into his own windshield. By firing this round he endangered the life of his passenger as well as potential motorists in the vicinity. Further, Holley failed to obey the officers’ commands to put down his firearm as he emerged from a moving vehicle in the CVS parking lot, compelling the officers’ use of deadly physical force.”

The State’s Attorney’s Office said, “Based upon the preceding facts and circumstances as found by the CDMCS, and pursuant to prevailing Connecticut law, State’s Attorney Griffin concludes that Detective Michael Fonda, Detective John Dorais, and Officer Benjamin Pellegrini of the Meriden Police Department were justified in discharging their firearms.”

Meriden police said they have also closed their internal investigation with the same finding.

Police said just before 10:30 p.m.  five officers from the Meriden Police Department began following a Buick Century in an unmarked car on West Main Street.

THe report said the officers believed the occupants of the Buick Century were involved in possible illegal narcotics activity.

Police said the Buick then drove onto I-691 east. As they merged to get onto Route 15 south, a gun was fired from inside the Buick.

Officer followed the Buick onto East Main Street, and into a CVS parking lot. Holley, the driver of the Buick, then left the car with a gun in his hand. As officers exited their own cars, Holley turned to him. Three officers discharged their guns, striking Holley in the arm.

Holley did not cooperate with the investigation.

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