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Willimantic man charged with manslaughter in fatal October accident

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Montville — State police on Monday charged a Willimantic man with second-degree manslaughter and driving under the influence in connection with an Oct. 30 wrong-way crash that killed a New Milford man.

Cory Long, 35, of 74 Ives St. also was charged with first-degree reckless endangerment, second-degree assault, second-degree assault with a motor vehicle, interfering with police, engaging police in a pursuit, driving without a license, traveling at an unreasonable speed, failure to drive in the proper lane on a multiple-lane highway, driving the wrong way on a divided highway and failure to obey a control signal, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.

Thomas Richter, 74, of 3 Forest Drive, New Milford, died in the accident. His wife, Carol Richter, 73, was seriously injured. Isaiah Lee, 35, a passenger in the car driven by Long, also suffered serious injuries and was flown by Life Star helicopter to Hartford hospital, the affidavit said.

Long suffered serious injuries that were not life-threatening, the affidavit said.

About 2:15 a.m. on Oct. 30, a Norwich police officer saw a gray Subaru station wagon pull onto West Thames Street and cross the double lines as it traveled north, according to the arrest warrant affidavit. The officer turned on his police siren but the car continued traveling, eventually turning right onto West Main Street and ignoring stop lights and stop signs, the affidavit said.

At the intersection of Main and North Main streets, the Subaru went through a red light while heading toward the East Main Street Bridge and struck the raised granite curb next to the eastbound travel lane, the affidavit said. The car then crossed the double yellow line and struck a Toyota Corolla head on, the affidavit said. The Toyota had been stopped in the left lane on the westbound side of the bridge, waiting to turn left onto Viaduct road, the affidavit said.

The Norwich police officer said he had to physically remove Long from the Subaru because he wouldn’t comply with requests to get out of the car, the affidavit said.

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