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Three armed with stolen gun steal BMW, crash into police car in Waterford

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Three people from New Britain are facing a slew of charges after stealing a car, fleeing from police and crashing into a police vehicle with a stolen gun and drugs in the car Wednesday morning in Waterford, police said.

Officers responded to New Shore Road about 5:45 a.m. Wednesday after multiple people reported property being stolen out of vehicles in the area, according to the Waterford Police Department.

As officers were investigating, another person called 911 to report that a silver 2015 BMW had been stolen from their driveway.

Officers spotted the BMW driving down Gardiners Wood Road, followed closely by a black BMW that was reported stolen from Windsor Avenue. They attempted to pull the cars over, but both sped off.

The silver BMW headed toward East Lyme on Route 156. More than an hour later, police spotted the vehicle driving down Great Neck Road, where it made an illegal left turn and crashed into an oncoming police vehicle near the Route 156 intersection, police said.

The driver, 18-year-old Gerald Hines, of New Britain, was arrested in a swamp near the site of the crash, police said. Hines and the officer involved in the collision were taken to a hospital where they were treated and released, police said.

Officers found a handgun, which was reported stolen from Middletown, inside the vehicle, along with other stolen items, drugs and drug paraphernalia. They placed the vehicle’s two passengers, 18-year-old Angel Echevaria and a 15-year-old boy whose name police did not release, under arrest.

Hines faces 21 charges stemming from the incident and was being held on a $75,000 bond, police said. He is charged with second-degree larceny, sixth-degree larceny, conspiracy to commit larceny, criminal attempt to commit sixth-degree larceny, criminal trover, possession of marijuana with intent to sell, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of marijuana greater than four ounces, stealing a firearm, criminal possession of a pistol or revolver, unsafe storage of a pistol or revolver, having weapons in a motor vehicle, second-degree reckless endangerment, risk of injury to a minor, interfering with an officer, assault on a police officer, evading responsibility, reckless driving, disobeying the signal of an officer, making an improper turn and operating a vehicle without a license. 

Echevaria is facing 10 charges and was being held on a $50,000 bond. He is charged with second-degree larceny, sixth-degree larceny, conspiracy to commit larceny, criminal attempt to commit sixth-degree larceny, stealing a firearm, possession of marijuana with intent to sell, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of more than four ounces of marijuana, having weapons in a motor vehicle and risk of injury to a minor. 

The 15-year-old boy was released into the custody of one of his parents after also being charged with second-degree larceny, sixth-degree larceny, conspiracy to commit larceny, stealing a firearm, criminal attempt to commit larceny, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of more than four ounces of marijuana, having weapons in a motor vehicle and risk of injury to a minor, according to police. 

The incident is still being investigated and anyone who was a victim of theft or who has any information about the incident is asked to contact Waterford police at (860) 442-9451 or the anonymous tip line at (860) 437-8080.

t.hartz@theday.com

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