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Newtown police are investigating a violent incident involving multiple crimes, including robbery, that occurred late on the afternoon of Thursday, November 2, in a Sandy Hook Center parking lot, Detective Lieutenant Richard Robinson said Monday, November 6.
The identity of the man who committed the crimes is unknown; Newtown police are being aided by Danbury police and Waterbury police in the probe, Det Lt Robinson said.
On November 2, Newtown police received a call reporting that an auto theft had occurred in a commercial parking lot behind 111, 113, and 115 Church Hill Road.
After arriving, police learned that an unidentified man had recklessly driven a compact Toyota Venza SUV into the parking lot. The man then exited the Toyota and approached a 10-year-old girl who was holding the keys for a nearby 2014 Honda Odyssey minivan, police said.
The man took the keys from the girl, got into the Honda, started the vehicle, and then attempted to drive away, police said. As the man attempted to flee the area, the girl’s father tried to stop him by jumping onto the Honda’s hood.
The fleeing man then accelerated, resulting in the father falling off the Honda and receiving minor injuries, police said.
The auto thief then drove out of Sandy Hook Center and was last seen entering Interstate 84 at Exit 11, police said.
On November 6, Det Lt Robinson described the perpetrator as a man between 18 and 25 years old who has a dark complexion. The man has short dark hair, but no facial hair.
The stolen Honda was located in Danbury over the weekend, Det Lt Robinson said. The Toyota, which the perpetrator had left in the Sandy Hook Center parking lot, had been stolen from Waterbury.
The criminal charges, which Newtown police would file in such a case, include robbery, theft of a motor vehicle, reckless endangerment, and risk of injury to a child, among various motor vehicle charges. No weapons were displayed during the incident, Det Lt Robinson said. The man who had fallen off the Honda in the parking lot declined transport to a hospital.
Det Lt Robinson said he is hopeful that police will identify the auto thief, locate him, and make an arrest in the case.
Police ask anyone with information about the Sandy Hook incident to contact investigating Patrol Officer Paula Wickman at the police station at 203-426-5841.