Man with axe accused of bias crimes, threats to bomb police station, kill troopers upon release

Man with axe accused of bias crimes, threats to bomb police station, kill troopers upon release

(As originally published, Tue, November 7th 2023, 5:56 PM EST)

COLCHESTER, Conn. (TND) — A call about a man causing a disturbance and pushing a woman with an axe led to his arrest, and police say the ruckus didn’t end there.

Connecticut State Police said the woman told them she was in a parking lot, walking to a business in Colchester on Monday.

That’s when Joseph Surwill left his home next door, picked up an axe, held it in a horizontal manner with both of his hands, and pushed the handle against her body, physically pushing her backwards.

Man with axe accused of bias crimes, threats to bomb police station, kill troopers upon release
Joseph Surwill is accused of picking up this axe, holding it in a horizontal manner with both of his hands, and pushing the handle against a woman’s body, physically pushing her backwards, Nov. 6, 2023. (Conn. State Police)

She added, he yelled at her to get off his property, using profanity and a racial slur. She said she wasn’t on his property and wasn’t hurt, but that Surwill caused her to fear for her safety.

Surwill, 57, was arrested and charged with intimidation based on bigotry or bias, breach of peace, first-degree threatening, interfering with an officer, and failure to comply with fingerprinting requirements.

Authorities said the last charge stemmed from Surwill being uncooperative and threatening to bomb a police station and kill troopers when he’s released.

Surwill’s bail was set at $100,000.

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