There are new developments on a potentially dangerous patient at Connecticut Valley Hospital who is looking to be released into the community.
A hearing that was scheduled for Wednesday has been postponed after the Psychiatric Review Board agreed to have an independent psychiatrist evaluate patient Kenneth Ruggles.
Ruggles has been at Whiting Forensic in Middletown for the past 20 years after he tried to assassinate a police officer.
The Psychiatric Review Board had recommended Ruggles be allowed to receive treatment at an outpatient facility, but that did not go over too well with the several people - including the man he tried to kill.
Very few people are convinced that Ruggles isn't dangerous.
"My biggest fear is the day that's coming. The day he will be released," said former police officer Mike Daubert.
Daubert said he has lived in fear for a long time. He said he doesn't believe Ruggles, the man who tried to kill him 25 years ago, is not a threat.
"He still feels I am a Communist agent and that I was sent here to stop him from getting out of jail," he said.
This all started at the Bethel Post Office, when Ruggles was looking for signatures on a petition because he was running for governor.
Daubert was a young officer at the time. Daubert told Ruggles that he could not campaign in front of the post office.
Little did Daubert know that for the next seven weeks, Ruggles would stalk him everywhere he went, and he wrote it all down in his journal.
"He noted this in his journal that the time he had to assassinate me was during my dinner break," Daubert said. "That's when I did not have my vest on."
Daubert had been an officer for only six months. He was right out of college and was on his dinner break at a Bethel drive-in when an unemployed contractor in his 30s, Ruggles, carried out his plan.
"I was still sitting in the roadway," Daubert said. That's when Ruggles tapped Daubert's vehicle. "That was the start of the chase."
The pursuit ended a few blocks away. Ruggles pulled in front of Daubert's car and got out - armed with a shotgun.
"He said, 'I am an FBI. Agent Ruggles. Put your weapon down,'" Daubert said.
Daubert said he hesitated, and in that split second, Ruggles began firing.
Daubert was hit 21 times.
"I believe he blew the side of my face off," he said. "I had 17 different surgeries. My jaw was rebuilt."
Ruggles was found not guilty by reason of insanity, and was sent to Whiting in Middletown. He claims to be a Vietnam veteran, but he's not.
At one point Ruggles said he was the governor.
Ruggles had a hit list and included the names of previous governors, his own defense attorney, prosecutors and others who don't want him to be released.
People like Daubert.
"In the past he told doctors he was getting better. Then we saw his journal. It was found he was lying," Daubert said.
"But perhaps what is most disturbing is this. For the last 20 years, he has had this journal. This new review board didn't review any of his journals. We were shocked when it came out at the hearing," he said.
"If these doctors are not reviewing a journal that certainly doesn't make sense and they should review it," said Sen. Paul Doyle, of the Judiciary Committee.
Doyle said he has had concerns about Ruggles' journal and where he could be released at an outpatient center in the community.
"I don't think they (are prepared to handle people like that). They serve an important purpose in the community, but they are not efficient to protect community from an individual like this," Doyle said.
When Daubert was asked what he thought would happen if Ruggles was released, he said, "I think he will re-offend. He tells you that in the hearings, he states over and over he does not believe in mental illness or medications, that mental illness is a spiritual thing."
Despite being shot, Daubert continued to serve as a police officer, but has recently retired.
It's not often that state prosecutors ask for an independent evaluation, but this was a serious crime and Ruggles has not been out in the community in 25 years.
A decision could take up to two months.
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