Man Accused of Crashing Into East Hartford Police Admitted to Buying Heroin: Police

A man accused of hitting three police officers with a car in East Hartford on Tuesday afternoon has an extensive criminal history, admitted to buying drugs, and has been placed in detox and on medical watch, according to authorities.

The suspect, Kevin McNeilly, 52, of Manchester, admitted to buying heroin in Hartford, going to the parking lot of the Hampton Inn and Suites in East Hartford to shooting up and then "flooring it" to get away when a security guard approached him, police said.

According to court records, McNeilly has an extensive criminal history that includes 33 arrests since 1981 on burglary and larceny charges, authorities said.

He is accused of crashing into the police officers after they approached him in the parking lot of the Hampton Inn and Suites on East River Drive in East Hartford at 2:45 p.m. because they believed there was a drug transaction, police said.

McNeilly reversed his car into two officers, who were on foot, and struck a third officer when he drove out of the lot, police said.

Officers fired their weapons, but McNeilly was not shot and fled, heading onto the Interstate 84 Eastbound ramp and onto Silver Lane, where he lost part of a tire, drove on lawns and crashed into a locked gate that leads to Applegate Lane, police said.

Police eventually caught up with him on Knollwood Road and took him into custody after shooting him with a stun gun to get him under control.

During the pursuit, McNeilly threw heroin from the car, according to the arrest warrant, and admitted to buying heroin in Hartford, then going to the hotel to inject the drugs.

He said he backed up when a security guard approached him, hit vehicles in the lot and and sped up to get away, police said.

The three injured officers were taken to Hartford Hospital, authorities said. Two have been released, but one remains hospitalized.

McNeilly, who was charged with engaging police in a pursuit, interfering with police, possession of narcotics and tampering with evidence, appeared in court on Wednesday in a wheelchair.

Bond was initially set at $1 million, but it was reduced to $800,000.

He is due back in court on Feb. 10.

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