Man shot by police makes 1st court appearance on assault charges

Posted: Updated:
DANBURY -

A man who was shot by Danbury police last week made his first appearance in court Wednesday on charges including assault.

Aaron Bouffard just got out of the hospital and needed a walker to attend his arraignment.

Bouffard is facing assault, threatening, disorderly conduct and breach of peace charges.

State police are investigating how Bouffard came to be shot by Danbury Police Officer Alex Relyea. The incident happened last Wednesday at McDonough House, a substance abuse facility where Bouffard was a patient.

Police say they were called when Bouffard began to attack people at the facility. They say his behavior escalated when he grabbed two butcher knives. Bouffard then took off, with police catching up to him in the area of Old Ridgebury Road.

They say Bouffard refused to drop his knives, despite being told to do so, which is when Officer Relyea shot him several times.

Bouffard's mother says her son admitted he was holding the knives, but told her his hands were by his side. He also told her he never heard police tell him to drop them.

"He said he took a step, and they shot him in the side," says Sherry Bouffard. "It hit his ribs, he went down. They shot him again and he went down on the second knee. Why shoot him three more times? I don't understand that."

Sherry Bouffard says she doesn't believe her son was threatening police with the knives, and she wants to see video proof. However, Danbury police do not have body cameras.

Relyea is now on paid administrative leave, and police say this is his second officer-involved shooting since December. The investigation has been turned over to the state attorney's office.

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