Police arrested Montreece Prather in connection with the shooting. (Willimantic Police)
WILLIMANTIC, CT (WFSB) -
A man was arrested after police said he fired multiple shots outside a club in Willimantic early Sunday morning.
Dispatch received multiple emergency 911 calls about shots being fired on Brooke Street near Tony's Pub around 2 a.m. Upon arrival, officers located 26-year-old Montreece Prather, of Willimantic, walking on Brook Street with a Smith & Wesson pistol in his hand.
Before police were called, eyewitness Peter Nesovich told Eyewitness News exclusively that he saw a massive brawl as crowds were letting out of Tony's Pub. He added it involved about 30 people in the pub's parking lot, but it escalated quickly on Brook Street.
Amid the mele, Nesovich believes someone from the bar crowd broke his windsheild wiper.
“It’s not snapped it’s out of position," Nesovich said.
As he feverishly dialed 9-1-1 on his cell phone, the call would not connect.
"By the time, I went to use my house phone I heard two pops," Nesovich said.
Police said several shots were fired and narrowly missed dozens of people.
"We were very, very fortunate that nobody was struck by any we don't know if anyone was targeted by the bullets," Willimantic Police Corporal Stan Parizo said.
After police confronted Prather, he fled on foot until after a short time, he was caught in a wooded area off of Chapman Street. Officers were able to arrest him after a "brief struggle."
"There was a struggle with an officer. He did climb a fence. He got hung up on a fence and that's when a Taser was deployed," Parizo said.
Police said no shots were fired and no officers were injured during the chase.
Officers with the help of the K9 unit found the handgun, which police said was "discarded during the chase," near a truck on Chapman Street.
Prather was charged with second-degree breach of peace, first-degree reckless endangerment, criminal possession of firearm, possession of a pistol without a permit, interfering with police and unlawful discharge of a firearm. He is being held on $25,000 bond and is expected to be arraigned at Danielson Superior Court on Monday.
Nesovich said during the fight and shooting, he feared the violence would soon approach his own doorstep.
“I feel pretty safe. I got a big German Sheppard," Nesovich said.
Nesovich said he is relieved the outcome wasn't far worse.
"You expect it from a bar sometimes. But, I don't expect shootings, I expect fights," Nesovich said.
The shooting remains under investigation.
Anyone with any information about the incident is asked to call the Willimantic Police Department at 860-465-3135. All calls will be kept confidential.
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