file: Ansonia police officer ‘justified’ in using deadly drive

ANSONIA — Danbury State’s attorney Stephen J. Sedensky III made a number of thoughts that could avoid police shootings of mentally and psychologically challenged people in his report clearing an Ansonia police officer of wrongdoing.

The 18-page record released Friday afternoon concluded Ansonia Police Officer Brendon Nelson didn’t violate any legislations when capturing Michael Gregory, a 30-12 months-old Bridgeport man who dismissed repeated requests to drop a knife before charging at three officers with it.

family members advised Sedensky that Gregory suffered from publish-anxious stress syndrome, manic melancholy and a bipolar sickness but become no longer taking his remedy, in accordance with the report. instead, his girlfriend pointed out, he had been ingesting closely, turned into argumentative and pushed, choked and slapped her earlier than she went to the police station seeking support on Jan. 2, 2020.

Michael Gregory, the 31-year-old man who was shot and killed by Ansonia police on Jan. 2, 2020.

Michael Gregory, the 31-12 months-historical man who was shot and killed by means of Ansonia police on Jan. 2, 2020.

contributed photograph / CMG

An autopsy decided Gregory’s blood alcohol level was “greater than 3 times the felony restrict for driving a motor vehicle.”

The lady additionally admitted she allowed Gregory to reside along with her and their son in direct violation of a no-contact restraining order following his Nov. 16, 2019, arrest on account of a domestic dispute along with her, the report observed.

nonetheless, Sedensky’s record referred to, Gregory’s demise became “at the least the third officer-involved shooting” he investigated which concerned a deceased adult with mental fitness issues.

“This state’s lawyer is reluctant to make observations that don’t go to his choice and yet when equivalent cases hold bobbing up, it requires an exception,” he wrote.

as a result, he suggest local police and the state legislature believe instituting here:

Require 911 operators and police dispatchers to ask callers if there is any intellectual health heritage of which the responding officers should still be conscious;

Police departments enforce protocols and guidelines when responding to cases the place a person, particularly people that are armed, suffers from a mental sickness;

Officers be held harmless by means of statute if they make the determination in the box to enable an individual to continue to be by myself or to be dealt with by a social worker, when that adult later harms themselves or the social worker. besides the fact that children, he noted, that recommendation would no longer follow when a 3rd celebration’s safeguard is in danger.

in line with a group of state laws outlining the method, state’s attorneys from an extra jurisdiction than the branch concerned are asked to assessment the case and check no matter if the officer or officers who fired throughout the incident were justified in the use of deadly actual force.

Nelson, an eight-year member of the department, has certainly not had a complaint filed against him, in response to the investigation carried out with the aid of Sedensky, State Police Detective Rachel Van Ness and the State Police Western District predominant Crime Squad. He additionally changed into up to date with training on the use of force, taser, pistols and pepper spray.

Gregory had prior arrests together with one involving a Nov. 16, 2019, domestic disturbance with the same lady where a no-contact restraining order become issued two days later.

Three officers — Sgt. Christopher Flynn, Officer Wojciech Podgorski and Nelson — have been despatched to 81 Myrtle Ave. about 7:35 p.m. on Jan. 2 after the woman went to the police station.

After spending a few minutes knocking on the door, the officers opened it and announced their presence within the home, in response to body digicam footage.

in the photos, time and again all the way through a quick — and deadly — confrontation with police, Gregory instructed officers “you’re going to must shoot me.”

Gregory emerged from a room within the home armed with what looks to be a knife and superior towards the officers, even after a Taser become deployed.

because the three officers asked him to relax and drop a knife, Gregory time and again spoke back, “You’re going to ought to shoot me!”

Three gunshots can be heard on the physique digital camera pictures of the war of words released via state police.

both the woman and Victoria Mitchell, Gregory’s mom, noted they agree with police escalated the situation by way of worrying he come to them although there was nobody else in the residence, in response to the investigative document.

Sedensky’s report discloses that Gregory had attempted suicide during the past, as currently as per week previous. His file extra claims: “Her pal indicated that Mr. Gregory doesn’t are looking to be alive and wants to be capable of blame his dying on someone else.”

The document said Nelson “become justified based upon his budget friendly belief that using such drive became imperative to shield himself and others. As such, using lethal drive become applicable and no further action could be taken by way of the Division of criminal Justice.”

“I’m grateful that Brendon turned into cleared of any wrongdoing,” Ansonia Mayor David Cassetti talked about Friday afternoon. “he’s a very good and conscientious officer. Our department is neatly-educated and strives to do the right element in each name they go on. this could build up their morale.”