Individual With Newtown Ties Implicated In Two Homicides
UPDATE (Sunday, May 24, 2020; 6:36 pm): This story has been updated to include the name of the second person killed during the three-day crime spree. New photos from Connecticut State Police have also been added.
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An individual who Newtown Police say has strong local ties has been implicated in two Connecticut homicides — the first in Willington on Friday and the second in Derby — and two assaults, according to reports.
The victim of the second homicide has been identified as 23-year-old Nicholas Eisele, formerly of Newtown.
According to a release from Newtown Police Department Saturday night, Connecticut State Police were searching for Peter Manfredonia, who they said is considered "armed and dangerous," and is a primary suspect in the Willington murder.
The suspect has very strong ties to Newtown and with the recent sightings of Manfredonia in the Route 34 area of Derby, "we want our residents and those around to be aware of this very dangerous individual," the local police message states.
"Newtown Police have stepped up patrols and have increased manpower, out of an abundance of caution. Residents should be aware and on the lookout, that while no immediate danger exist the potential is here and we have addressed it by bringing in extra manpower to patrol and protect our residents."
The local department said the suspect was believed to be in possession of several firearms, and was driving a black Volkswagen Jetta with Connecticut plates AU78524. Just after 3:30 pm Sunday, May 24, however, State Police reported that the vehicle had been located in New Jersey, near the Pennsylvania border. Law enforcement agencies there were actively searching the area for the suspect.
The 23-year-old Manfredonia is described as a 6'3" white male, with disheveled, black hair, brown eyes, and weighs approximately 240 pounds.
He was last seen wearing a gray T-shirt, gray sweatpants, and carrying some type of bag.
'Brutal' Attack In Willington
Connecticut State Police said Manfredonia, with a date of birth of February 2, 1997, was seen on Friday leaving the scene of a homicide and serious assault on Mirtl Road, in the southern section of Willington. He was reported to be operating a red motorcycle.
Anyone seeing him was warned, "do not approach and call 911." At the time, state police said Manfredonia was believed to be in possession of a pistol and long guns.
Police said he was seen “carrying an unknown type bag with food rations and is believed to be armed with numerous weapons."
The Hartford Courant reported Manfredonia was responsible for a home invasion type break Sunday morning at another residence in Willington.
A vehicle that was stolen in that incident was found some time later near Osborndale State Park in Derby, in the vicinity of a home on Roosevelt Drive (Route 34) where another crime scene was located.
Officials later said that was the scene of a second murder tied to Manfredonia. Police have released the name of Nicholas Eisele, 23, as the deceased person found at the Roosevelt Drive residence Sunday morning. Eisele is also a former Newtown resident.
Manfredonia is a 2015 graduate of Newtown High School. He then attended the University of Connecticut.