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Man charged with attempted murder in shooting at New London gas station

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New London — A man was arrested and charged with attempted murder Tuesday in a shooting that left one person with serious injuries last month at a gas station.

Taj Johnson, 23, of no certain address, was charged Tuesday with criminal attempted murder, first-degree assault, criminal possession of a firearm, possession of a pistol without a permit, unlawful discharge of a firearm and reckless endangerment in the shooting that occurred March 12.

Johnson, who was served the arrest warrant while already making a court appearance on unrelated charges, remains in the custody of the Connecticut Department of Correction on an additional court-set cash-surety bond of $1 million.

Johnson already had been charged with first-degree threatening, breach of peace, third-degree assault, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, possession of a pistol without a permit and theft of a firearm in another armed altercation that occurred at the Public Library of New London on Huntington Street later that same day.

According to police, at 1:30 a.m. on Monday, March 12, officers responded to reports of a person shot inside the Gulf gas station, formerly known as the Ravi Petro Mart, at 290 Broad St. The male victim of the shooting was taken to Lawrence + Memorial Hospital and later flown by helicopter to Yale New Haven Hospital with serious injuries. The victim survived.

At the time of the incident, a police dog was unable to find the suspect but detectives had collected evidence from the scene.

Several hours later, at 11:33 a.m., officers responded to a 911 call and report of a disturbance involving two men at the library, where one man was reported to have a gun, police said.

When police arrived, officers found the man reported to have the gun had fled. However, after an intense search of the surrounding area, police found and arrested Johnson at 11:42 a.m. A stolen .380 semi-automatic pistol was recovered during the arrest, and at the time police said Johnson’s arrest might be associated with other investigations.

Johnson has been convicted before, including a one-year prison sentence in 2014 for a conviction on the charge of carrying a dangerous weapon.


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