FROM DEPUTY CHIEF BRIAN FOLEY:
At the Hartford Police Department, we feel that the most critical time for us to communicate with our community and the media is during the immediate hours after a police involved shooting. Last night we again provided an on-scene media briefing and also communicated with key community members approximately an hour after the incident. The following is an update to that information:
Last night The Hartford Police Department (HPD) was contacted by the South Windsor Police Department regarding an Emotionally Disturbed Person (E.D.P.) who had just left his mother’s house in South Windsor. According to his mother, when her son (Christopher Reh, W/M/28 of Enfield CT) left the house he was depressed, previously suicidal, had a knife, and made verbal statements to her that he was going to “stab police officers”. The mother told police that Reh has previously tried to kill himself with self-inflicted slashing wounds.
This information was communicated to H.P.D. Public Safety Dispatchers via an official South Windsor police tele-type. South Windsor police also put out a Silver Alert on Reh. South Windsor police told HPD they had “Pinged” Reh’s phone in the Park Street area of Hartford. This information was relayed to HPD Patrol Officers. HPD officers found Reh in his car on Park St. last night at 8:14pm.
As HPD officers approached his vehicle, Reh rammed three police cruisers, and also struck a uniformed Hartford police officer who was approaching on foot. The officer (Andrew Nelson Jr. 3yrs at HPD) was struck and knocked to the ground. At this time Officer Nelson had fired his gun at the Reh multiple times. Reh was struck twice in the Right arm. A “10-0, Officer Down, Shots Fired” call was made by on-scene officers.
Reh then drove a short distance and crashed into a building at 577 Park St. Reh was taken to St. Francis Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Medical staff listed him in stable condition with 2 gunshot wounds to the right arm.
Officer Nelson was taken to Hartford Hospital. Medical staff listed him in stable condition with a minor head injury, he was treated and released.
A second officer was also taken to Hartford Hospital for minor injury and evaluation. He had been operating his HPD cruiser when Reh rammed his vehicle head-on. He was also treated and released.
We continue to work cooperatively with the CT States Attorney’s Office through the investigation. This morning, Hartford Police Department Major Crimes Detectives obtained an arrest warrant for Christopher Reh. He is charged with Criminal Attempt to Commit Murder, 2 counts of Assault on Police, Reckless Driving, Operating a MV with Suspended License and Evading Responsibility. The warrant has a $1,000,000 bond. Reh is at St. Francis Hospital receiving treatment for his injuries. He is in HPD custody at the hospital awaiting his release and arrest.
The investigation of the complete incident is ongoing. As per protocol with the Connecticut States Attorney’s Office, the shooting is being investigated by an outside police agency. As with all HPD police involved shootings, there is also an internal investigation and review.