NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Two convicted felons were arrested on Wednesday, after New Haven police were tipped off about a suspicious vehicle and a man with a gun.
Just before 2:45 a.m., officers responded to The Regal Inn on Whalley Avenue. The 911 caller had reported a suspicious car circling the motel’s parking lot. Somehow the caller knew one of the four men in the car was armed with a gun.
The officer’s first pass through the front and rear lot turned up empty. The described car wasn’t there. When the officers returned some time later after checking the other area motels, the suspect car, a silver Honda Accord, had returned. It was running and parked in front of Room 141. Officers Steven Spofford, Nikki Curry and Keron Bryce arrived and joined their colleagues in the impromptu surveillance operation.
A passenger got out and entered the room. As the driver shut off the engine, The officers converged. The Honda had dark tinted windows. The officers couldn’t see inside.
The driver’s door swung open. Martinez Johnson sat inside. Officer Blaisdell asked him if he was a guest at the motel. Johnson said no – he was waiting for a friend. Got a license, asked Blaisdell. The answer was, no. The car wasn’t registered or insured either.
When Blaisdell asked Johnson to step out of the car, he refused. Officers Nikki Curry and Keron Bryce moved closer. Johnson was squirming in his seat. “He’s reaching, he’s reaching”, shouted Bryce. As Johnson reached beneath his seat, the officers reached in and removed him from the Honda. He’d been reaching for the loaded Smith & Wesson 9mm handgun they spotted on the floor.
The door to room 141 opened. A man and woman emerged wanting to know what was going on. One was Marquise Rumley. He said he’d just gotten out of the Honda. He was handcuffed.
Martez Johnson, a convicted felon, was arrested and charged with interfering with police, weapon in a motor vehicle, criminal possession of a firearm and six motor vehicle violations. Marquise Rumley, also a convicted felon, was arrested and charged with weapon in a motor vehicle and criminal possession of a firearm.