Man hurls Molotov cocktail, chemical at officers after running red light in Brooklyn

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Sunday, April 18, 2021
Man hurls chemicals at officer during NYC traffic stop
A man was arrested after throwing a chemical and a Molotov cocktail at officers when they pulled him over in Brooklyn Saturday.

EAST FLATBUSH, Brooklyn (WABC) -- A man was arrested after throwing a chemical and a Molotov cocktail at officers when they pulled him over in Brooklyn Saturday.

Officials say NYPD officers attempted to pull over a 2000 Lincoln Towncar driven by Lionel Virgile, 44, after he ran a red light at Clarendon Road and East 45th Street in East Flatbush just before 8 a.m.

They say Virgile threw a liquid chemical, possibly bleach or peroxide, in the face of an officer as he approached the car, and then drove off.

Police charged Virgile with possession of a destructive weapon on Saturday night.

Police released shocking body camera footage that shows the moment Virgile went completely out of control.

According to authorities, a chase ensued, and cops pulled behind the car. Virgile then threw a Molotov cocktail at the patrol car which bounced off the vehicle.

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Officers recovered an AK-47 magazine with 17 live rounds in it and one loose round inside Teague's shopping bag. A scale used for drug paraphernalia was also recovered from Teague's backpack.

As Virgile attempted to flee the scene, he crashed into a parked vehicle at 5519 Snyder Ave.

Citizen App video showed the active police scene Saturday morning.

Citizen App video shows an active police scene where a man reportedly threw a Molotov cocktail at officers in East Flatbush.

Police were able to arrest the 44-year-old. When cops checked the vehicle, they found several more homemade Molotov cocktails.

Officials are still trying to put the pieces together, but it appears that a routine traffic stop led to the discovery of someone who was trying to hurt cops and maybe target others. Officials say there were three other Molotov cocktail-like devices in his car, and there may be writings in the vehicle.

Eyewitness News spoke exclusively with the brother of the suspect, who says his brother is mentally unstable.

The brother says the suspect has been living in his car, the same one police found him in when they pulled him over.

He says his brother was arrested about a month ago, and the family hoped that they would keep him in jail because he is "not in the right state of mind." He says they've asked for help many times.

NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea tweeted about the incident Saturday afternoon.

An officer was taken to the hospital to be evaluated. He had blurred vision.

OTHER NEWS: Former NYPD cop pleads guilty in alleged murder-for-hire plot

(Previous coverage) NJ Burkett reports on the NYPD officer who allegedly plotted to kill both her estranged husband and the daughter of her boyfriend.


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