Photo: Naugatuck Police Photo
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NAUGATUCK — State Police are leading an investigation into an officer-involved shooting that occurred during a traffic stop Monday night.
The traffic stop happened around 8 p.m. on the Route 8 northbound on-ramp at Maple Street. The vehicle stopped was a 2019 Dodge Charger bearing the Ohio registration of HQJ2680, police said.
Naugatuck Deputy Police Chief Christopher McAllister said Tuesday the officer stopped the vehicle “as a result of observing criminal activity.”
“During the course of the traffic stop the officer discharged his weapon at the vehicle while it drove at him.” police said.
Connecticut State Police identified the officer who fired his gun as Sgt. Nicholas Kehoss, a 10-year veteran of the Naugatuck Police Department, later Tuesday evening.
“After the initial contact, the officers did attempt to apprehend the vehicle on Route 8. However, they were not able to locate the vehicle because it fled at a high rate of speed,” McAllister said.
The operator of the vehicle is believed to be Roznovsky Antonio Machado, 24, of Waterbury, police said. Police said they believe Machado was the sole occupant of the car.
Police later found the Dodge in Waterbury, but Machado remains at large, state police said.
The Republican-American reported a Dodge matching the suspect vehicle’s description was found by police Tuesday morning. The vehicle had what appeared to be bullet holes in the front passenger door, windshield, and a smashed rear window, the newspaper reported.
Naugatuck police said they are “not aware of the extent of any of Machado’s injuries.”
McAlliser said Machado, “who is known to law enforcement,” was the lone occupant of the vehicle. “He’s the sole focus of our attempts to locate him.”
Kehoss has been placed on “administrative assignment,” per the Naugatuck police department’s policies, state police said.
State police said Officer Kevin Zainc was also involved in the incident, but that only Kehoss fired his weapon. Zainc has been with the department for more than 15 years, state police said.
One officer was treated at the hospital for minor injuries from the incident, police said. State police did not specify which officer was treated.
“As of September 15, 2020, the use of force investigation has been turned over to Joseph T. Corradino, State’s Attorney for the district of Fairfield,” state police said.
The Western District Major Crime Squad will be working with Carradino’s office in the investigation of the police-involved shooting, the agency said.
Both officers were wearing body cameras, and state police said they and Carradino’s office plan to release video footage and dispatch audio from the incident “in the coming days.”
State Police Trooper Josue Dorelus said the investigation by the Western District Major Crime Squad was requested by the State’s Attorney’s Office.
“Our primary goal at this point is to make sure the community members are safe and locate the suspect and provide any treatment that is needed,” he said.
Any person with information on the whereabouts of Machado can contact Naugatuck police at (203) 729-5221 or the NPD Confidential Tip Line at (203) 720-1010.
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