BRANFORD, Conn. (NewsNation Now) — A suspect is dead following a 7-hour-long shooter situation Tuesday afternoon in Branford where a barricaded person reportedly fired shots at officers and the public.
Branford PD confirmed to NewsNation affiliate WTNH around 4:30 p.m., there is one gunshot victim with non-life-threatening injuries who had been transported to the hospital and is expected to survive.
Bomb Squad also responded because the suspect reportedly threatened to blow up the building in which he has barricaded himself.
Branford police said that several police agencies, including the Connecticut State Police and South Central Regional SWAT Team, were assisting.
Police say the call came into police at 12:03 p.m. of an active shooter in the area. Upon arrival, responding officers encountered heavy gunfire coming from the upper floors of a business/apartment building.
Witnesses tell WTNH that a man barricaded inside of a hair salon and opened fire on to police officers.
Brian Choronzy, a neighbor described, “I heard what sounded like gunshots, which is pretty unusual for this neighborhood, and they just continued increasing in frequency. And then, cops showed up in my neighborhood, blocked off all the streets, and told us to lock our doors and stay inside, everything. We could see more and more cops arriving on the scene, adding tactical gear, pulling out semi-automatic riffles, looked like it was a pretty big situation. And about five minutes ago, they knocked on the door as the snippers positioned on my front lawn had asked myself and my roommate if we would be willing to leave. And now I’m here…Growing up in this small town, you think ‘oh that’ll never happen here.’ But here we are.”
Officers continued to face heavy gunfire and were pinned down until armored BearCat vehicles arrived.
Those witnesses are inside of a laundromat that is located in a nearby shopping plaza, and they said that police told them to take cover.
Charles Steinberg, the owner of Branford Jewelers located in the nearby plaza, told us his shop locked down moments after realizing they were near an active shooter situation.
“We heard the popping and heard some banging and we just locked everything down. That was it, that was the end of our day…This usually doesn’t happen on the shoreline at all, you never really hear things like this going on, so it’s sad to see it happen here.”
Witnesses say that the man opened fire towards members of the public who are at the shopping plaza.
WTNH spoke exclusively with a woman named Jeanine sheltering in place in a nearby laundromat. She was there for at least five hours.
“It was getting really, really close, so the lady at the laundromat said ‘he’s starting to shoot around the parking lot’ so the cops came in the store and told everyone to go in the back and don’t go by the window,” Jeanine said.
NewsNation affiliate WTNH contributed to this report