Manslaughter charge added against Connecticut teen who crashed into police cruiser, killed officer

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HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut teenager accused of causing a car crash that killed a Hartford police officer and seriously wounded another was arraigned on new charges Thursday including manslaughter and driving under the influence.

Authorities said Richard Barrington, 18, a high school junior, fled a traffic stop conducted by other officers, drove through two red lights and smashed into the passenger side of another cruiser that was responding to an unrelated emergency call on Sept. 6.

Officer Robert “Bobby” Garten, 34, an eight-year Hartford police veteran whose father retired as a detective on the force, died from his injuries, police said. Officer Brian Kearney was seriously injured and has since been released from a hospital.

Barrington was initially charged with motor vehicle-related crimes related to the traffic stop. Authorities on Thursday added charges of first-degree manslaughter, first-degree assault, driving under the influence and other alleged crimes.

Barrington appeared in Hartford Superior Court on Thursday as the new charges were added. His public defender did not immediately return phone and email messages seeking comment.

Barrington remained detained on $1 million bail. Officials have said he had no previous criminal record.

State police released an arrest warrant affidavit Thursday saying Barrington told investigators that he fled the traffic stop because his car was not registered, he did not have a driver’s license and he had marijuana. He also admitted that he had smoked marijuana about an hour before the crash, the affidavit said.

A memorial service for Garten last week drew police officers from across the region.

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