WESTPORT, Conn. -- A Westport man was charged with shooting a landscaper with a pellet gun at the Parent Child Center on Saturday, police said.
Eric Lindhal, 25, was charged with second-degree reckless endangerment and third-degree criminal trespass. He was released on a promise to appear in court Dec. 11.
Police received a complaint Saturday from a landscaper, who said one of his employees had been hit and wounded by a BB or pellet while cleaning the grounds of the Parent Child Center on Hillspoint Road.
The 52-year-old man was hit on the upper left arm by the pellet, which had penetrated two layers of clothing and left a minor injury, police said. The victim was treated at the scene but declined further medical treatment, police said.
The facility was closed at the time, and the landscaper attempted to locate the shooter before contacting police but was unsuccessful.
Officers searched the area and spoke with residents of adjoining properties but were unable to locate a suspect, police said.
Officers worked with staff of the Parent Child Center and reviewed surveillance video from the time of the incident. One video showed an individual, later identified as Lindhal, entering the property and trying to hide from the landscapers, according to police.
One of the officers recognized Lindhal as someone he had interviewed Saturday. He was interviewed again on Monday, when he told detectives that he had fired a pellet rifle at a woodchuck on the property line several times, but he had not been aiming at anything or anyone else, police said.
Lindhal said he realized he may have hit one of the workers when police came to his house Saturday, but didn't say anything because he was afraid, according to police reports.
He told officers that he broke the rifle apart after the incident and threw it away, police said. The rifle was retrieved from a trash can and seized by police, and Lindhal was charged, police said.
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