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Surveillance video shows Conn. police station shooter banging on window, firing shots at glass

After a conversation about depression and “feeling trapped,” the woman drove to the police station with a gun belonging to her boyfriend, a retired NYPD officer

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Laprise said she would carry out the shooting with a gun belonging to her boyfriend — a retired New York Police Department officer

FOX 61 News

By Christine Dempsey
The Middletown Press

BRISTOL, Conn. — With a son who has Down syndrome and a daughter in legal trouble, Suzanne Laprise felt “trapped,” she told someone she met at a local bar before she drove down the street to the police station and opened fire, according to a police report about last week’s incident.

Laprise said she would carry out the shooting with a gun belonging to her boyfriend — a retired New York Police Department officer, Hearst Connecticut Media Group has confirmed.

Thanks to the police station’s bulletproof glass and use of a less-than-lethal weapon to subdue her, the report said, the incident was resolved without anyone seriously injured during her apparent suicide attempt Thursday night. The state Inspector General’s Office, which investigates all police-involved shootings, on Tuesday released videos of the incident.

Earlier in the evening, Laprise, a former employee of the state Department of Developmental Services, told a fellow bar patron what she planned to do, the report said.

She chatted with a woman who was smoking a cigarette outside the Bristol Sports Bar and Grille, 369 N. Main St. At first, they talked about hairstyles, but the conversation suddenly grew dark, the witness told police, according to the report.

“Out of the blue, Laprise started to talk about how she has a disabled son and she feels trapped,” the witness told police. The witness said she didn’t know Laprise’s name. She told police Laprise also talked about how her daughter has been in jail, according to the report.

“Laprise seemed very depressed at this point,” the woman told police, according to the report. She talked to Laprise about getting help, and told her to take one day at a time.

READ MORE: Videos show Suzanne Laprise opening fire in Bristol police station

Laprise told the woman her boyfriend is a NYPD officer, the report stated. However, an NYPD spokesperson told Hearst Connecticut Media the man retired in 2012.

Laprise told the woman she had taken her boyfriend’s gun, which she said lacks a safety to prevent an accidental shooting, the report said. She tapped the side of her purse and told the witness the gun was “right here,” although the woman never saw the weapon, the report stated.

The witness told investigators that Laprise also said, “I’m going to go to the Bristol Police Department and tell them to kill me or I will shoot them,” according to the report.

The other woman didn’t believe Laprise, the report said. Still, she talked to her again about seeking mental health treatment.

She suggested Laprise go home and sleep on it and see how things were the next day, and Laprise agreed, the report said. But when Laprise got into her car, she drove toward the police department down the block at 131 N. Main St. Another patron said Laprise stopped in front of the police station, the report said.

The bar’s owner called police, but it was too late.

Laprise parked awkwardly on a raised divider next to the sidewalk, got out, stumbled, fell and got back up, the report said. She walked into the police station and paced around the lobby, gun in hand, and slapped her hand, and the gun, against the windows at the front desk, where no one was sitting, and the Records Division, which was closed for the day, the report said.

Someone saw her on camera and announced on the police radio that a woman had just walked into the lobby with a firearm, the report said. She began firing the gun at both windows as officers approached the lobby from two hallways, the report said.

When police got to the lobby doors, which have small windows in them, she fired at them, too, the report said. Like the front desk and Records windows, the doors also have bullet-resistant glass, and the projectiles didn’t penetrate them.

An officer in the northern hallway fired twice at Laprise, but that glass also didn’t break. Police went into the lobby, fired a stun gun at her and subdued her, the report said.

Laprise was crying on the floor as officers handcuffed her, repeatedly saying “kill me,” the report said. She was arrested on nine charges, including criminal attempt to commit murder with special circumstance, carrying a dangerous weapon and illegal possession of a large-capacity magazine, police said. She’s in custody on $1 million bail.

In all, Laprise fired five shots at four windows in the police station lobby, “without due regard (as) to who or what may be on the other side,” according to the report.

Ten rounds remained in the gun, nine in the magazine and one in the chamber, the report said.

The bulletproof glass will cost about $26,000 to replace, $10,000 for each of the big windows and $3,000 for the smaller ones in the doors, according to the report.

But the cost of Laprise’s alleged actions could have been much more: Two officers died the last time Bristol police came under fire.

Almost exactly one year ago, Lt. Dustin DeMonte and Sgt. Alex Hamzy died in an ambush at a house on Redstone Hill Road on Oct. 12, 2022. They thought they were responding to an incident of family violence, police said. Officer Alec Iurato, who was wounded in the barrage of gunfire, took out the gunman with a single shot.

“How much more can Bristol PD take, especially in such a short time?” one woman said on Facebook, where police announced the arrest.

“I’m especially concerned for Officer Iurato, just returned to duty and I pray so very hard he was not present for the latest attack,” she said. “He is so brave to even return to duty ever and to return to this!”


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