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Off-duty Conn. officer helps end violent crime spree

By Josh Kovner
Copyright 2007 The Hartford Courant, Conn. 
MIDDLETOWN -- Were it not for the efforts of off-duty Middletown Police Officer Rob Siena and several civilians, a violent, one-man spree of carjacking and crashes through four towns may not have ended Saturday afternoon on Main Street in Cromwell.

"He's got a sister who lives in Middletown," Siena said Monday of Danilo Rivera, the man charged in the spree. "We think that's where he may have been trying to get to."

Siena, 42, a 19-year veteran of the force, was driving his Nissan pickup to work Saturday shortly before 2:30 p.m. He was in full uniform and wearing his duty belt. He said he noticed cars parked on the shoulder, as if they had stopped suddenly. Then he saw a scuffle -- people struggling around a car parked near a gas station at 529 Main St. He got out and ran to it. As he grabbed a man who was already being taken down by civilians, Siena shouted out: "What's going on? What have we got here?"

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