On January 15, 2020, at approximately 4:36 p.m., the Norwalk Police Department broadcast that they were looking for a stolen vehicle and provided a description of the vehicle via the Hotline. According to initial reports, Norwalk officers had responded to a reported armed carjacking, which occurred in their city.
Norwalk officers subsequently located and attempted to stop the vehicle and the driver engaged officers in a pursuit on Route 7 southbound before Norwalk supervisors terminated the pursuit. A State Police dispatcher spoke with Norwalk Police regarding their BOLO (which stands for Be On the Look Out) and was told that the operator was armed with a knife. This vital information was necessary because the State Police Pursuit Policy adopted in September 2019 prevents Troopers from normally pursuing stolen vehicles unless the person pursued in the vehicle has committed, is attempting to commit or will imminently commit a crime of violence (actual or threatened), or there are articulable exigent circumstances that warrant the need to apprehend the suspect in a timely manner because of the potential for harm to the public if apprehension does not occur (see attached DESPP A&O Section 13.07.01 for additional details).
Soon afterward, State Police Dispatch in Bridgeport began to receive calls reporting that a white Hyundai was traveling northbound on I-95 in a reckless manner; driving both along the right shoulder and center median at a high rate of speed. At 4:46 p.m., the white Hyundai was observed on DOT cameras traveling in the median at high speed prior to Exit 22 on I-95 northbound. State Police Dispatch continued to monitor the vehicle’s travel via DOT cameras until Troopers were able to get behind it in the vicinity of Exit 36. Troopers attempted to stop the Hyundai and the driver struck two State Police cruisers and continued northbound before exiting the highway off Exit 43 onto Campbell Avenue into the town of West Haven.
On Campbell Avenue, the Hyundai struck a civilian’s vehicle and was successfully boxed in by State Police.
State Police and West Haven Police attempted to get the driver out of the vehicle and initially deployed less-lethal means (Taser), which was ineffective. When the driver displayed a weapon (later determined to be a knife), a Trooper on scene discharged his assigned duty pistol, striking the driver.
Medical aid was rendered at the scene by State Police and West Haven Police until the driver could be transported by ambulance to Yale-New Haven Hospital. The driver later succumbed to his injuries.
There were no reported injuries to civilians, Troopers, or Officers on scene.
The Connecticut State Police - Central District Major Crime Squad (CDMCS) will be working with the New London State’s Attorney’s Office on the investigation of this police-involved shooting.
On January 16, 2020, an autopsy was conducted at the State of Connecticut Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Farmington. The decedent was thereafter positively identified as Soulemane Murbarak, age 19, of New Haven, Connecticut. Next of kin were notified and our detectives remain in contact with the family.
The Connecticut State Police Troopers involved in this incident were:
Connecticut State Police Troopers involved in this incident were:
Trooper Brian North, who has been with the State Police for 4 ½ years
Trooper Joshua Jackson, who has been with the State Police for 4 ½ years
Trooper First Class Ross Dalling, who has been with the State Police for 7 ½ years
The investigation has determined that only Trooper North discharged his duty pistol. In accordance with Department policy, Trooper North has been placed on administrative assignment.
The Troopers involved in this incident had vehicles that were equipped with in-car cameras and they were also wearing body-worn cameras; as a result, there is video and dispatcher audio. The Connecticut State Police and the New London Office of the State’s Attorney will work to release this video footage and dispatcher audio in the coming days.
The investigation is in its early stages and is ongoing. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the Connecticut State Police - Central District Major Crime Squad at 860-706-5656.