Norwich police arrest man charged with driving into cruiser, threatening officer

·3 min read

NORWICH — A 28-year-old man is accused of driving into the side of a Norwich police cruiser and threatening to shoot an officer on Tuesday before fleeing into a department parking lot and striking more vehicles, police said.

At approximately 6:40 a.m., an officer was parked in the area of Judd Road when his cruiser was "intentionally" struck on the passenger side by a Honda Accord, police said. The driver, identified as Roland Euell, allegedly exited his car and threatened to shoot the officer before driving off.

The officer was transported to The William W. Backus Hospital with minor injuries, police said. No firearms were displayed during the incident, police said.

Two of the vehicles damaged in the police parking lot on Thames Street in Norwich.
Two of the vehicles damaged in the police parking lot on Thames Street in Norwich.

When police located Euell’s vehicle in the area of Rockwell Street, he allegedly engaged officers in pursuit into the rear parking lot of the Norwich Police Department headquarters building on Thames Street.

Police said Euell struck police and personal vehicles before being taken into custody after his car became disabled.

Series of deadly winter fires hits Eastern CT, including blaze that killed Plainfield man

On Tuesday afternoon, vehicle debris, including what appeared to be a fender, was seen near the parking area's entrance. Lt. John Perry said damage is estimated to be "in excess" of $20,000 and involved two police cruisers and a personal vehicle.

Entrance to the Norwich Police Department parking lot on Thames Street, where vehicles were damaged early Tuesday during a pursuit.
Entrance to the Norwich Police Department parking lot on Thames Street, where vehicles were damaged early Tuesday during a pursuit.

Perry said this isn't the first time police headquarters has been the scene of vehicular violence. Years ago, a vehicle plowed into the building's front lobby prompting the erection of several safety posts near the front entrance.

Norwich re-evaluating police department safety precautions

Perry said the department is re-evaluating its safety precautions. The department for years has discussed moving from its current location to a more secure facility.

"We have to balance access with the safety of officers and members of the public who come here," Perry said. "These types of incidents are happening nationwide."

A look behind use of force by Norwich police: What does it mean? How often does it happen?

Perry said officers have in recent months been working mandatory overtime to cover shifts amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"This isn't a warzone and officers shouldn't be worried about their lives 24 hours a day when they come to work," he said.

One of two police cruisers damaged in the parking lot off Thames Street Tuesday morning.
One of two police cruisers damaged in the parking lot off Thames Street Tuesday morning.

Euell was charged with second-degree assault with a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, assault of a public safety officer, second-degree threatening, first-degree criminal mischief and reckless endangerment.

Euell was held on a $200,000 cash/surety bond and is due to appear in Norwich Superior Court on Feb. 10.

More: Gallup's Quarry was so polluted the EPA took over. Here's how much it pays Plainfield now.

Euell was charged by Norwich police in December 2020 with driving without a license, operating an unregistered motor vehicle, failure to display lights and improper use of a marker, license or registration, according to the state's judicial website. He pleaded not guilty to the charges and is due next in Norwich Superior Court on Jan. 28.

One of the vehicles damaged in the police parking lot on Thames Street in Norwich.
One of the vehicles damaged in the police parking lot on Thames Street in Norwich.

Euell has previous convictions for third-degree assault, criminal mischief and criminal trespass. In 2014, he was sentenced to serve 45 months in jail on a third-degree robbery charge, state records show.

John Penney can be reached at jpenney@norwichbulletin.com or at (860) 857-6965.

This article originally appeared on The Bulletin: Norwich car chase ends in police lot, Roland Euell arrested

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting