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Suspect In Assault On Officer, Route 7 Pursuit Appears In Danbury Court

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DANBURY, Conn. — A 38-year-old Danbury man was to appear in court Monday on multiple charges, including assault on a police officer and escape from custody, after leading police on a two-state chase that ended with a search in a swamp on the Ridgefield-Danbury border off Route 7, police said.

Marc D. Debenigno, of 7 Clayton Drive, was charged with possession of narcotics, assault on a police officer, escape from custody, engaging in pursuit, reckless driving and reckless endangerment. He appeared in Danbury Superior Court.

The incident began July 4 at 9:15 a.m., when a State Trooper from Troop A-Southbury was conducting a check of the Commuter Lot off Exit 1 of I-84 in Danbury, State Police said in a statement. The trooper approached a vehicle with a man passed out at the steering wheel.

Debenigno, the only occupant of the car, had narcotics and drug paraphernalia on the passenger seat beside him, state police said.

The trooper woke up Debenigno, who stepped from the vehicle, police said. The trooper determined Debenigno was not having a medical emergency, and placed him under arrest.

But Debenigno resisted arrested and began to struggle with the trooper as he was being handcuffed, state police said. The trooper deployed his Taser, but Debenigno was not struck, police said.

Debenigno got back in his car and fled the commuter lot, police said. The trooper followed him into New York State on secondary roads, where New York State Police assisted, before the vehicle pursuit re-entered Connecticut, state police said.

The pursuit continued on Connecticut highways, until Debenigno's car slammed into a guard rail on Route 7 near West Starrs Plain Road in Danbury just north of the Ridgefield border.

He got out of his and ran, engaging troopers in a foot pursuit and jumping into a large swamp, state police said.

State Troopers secured the area and received assistance from Connecticut State Police K-9 teams, a Dive Team, a Bloodhound team, and Trooper One-helicopter.

The Danbury Police Department, Ridgefield Police Department, and Redding Police Department also assisted in the search. The Danbury Fire Department responded with a Zodiac boat and assisted CSP K9 teams in the swamp.

Debenigno was found in the swamp at 3:10 p.m. Friday, taken into custody and transported by EMS to Danbury Hospital for evaluation, state police said.

No trooper or civilian injuries were reported in the incident.

According to the Connecticut Judicial Branch website, Debenigno is also due back in court on Tuesday, July 14. He had been released on bond after pleading guilty to multiple charges, including third-degree attempt to commit burglary, third-degree burglary, first-degree larceny, violation of probation, possession of narcotics, illegal possession of a weapon in a motor vehicle, sixth-degree larceny and credit card theft. The website said he was awaiting post judgment proceedings on charges, related to his arrest on April 6.

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