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Lionel Virgile Accused Of Throwing Bleach In Officer's Face, Tossing Lit Molotov Cocktail At Other Officers In Brooklyn

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A Connecticut man was taken into custody Saturday after allegedly hurling bleach in an NYPD officer's face and throwing a lit Molotov cocktail at others.

It happened around 8 a.m. in Brooklyn.

The incident started early Saturday morning when police pulled over a 44-year-old man for running a red light in the area of Claredon Road and East 45th Street in East Flatbush.

That's when police say the man threw bleach in the face of the officer before speeding off.

A few minutes later, not far away, other officers stopped the vehicle near the corner of 54th Street and Snyder Avenue. The suspect then allegedly threw a lit Molotov cocktail at them.

The bottle bounced off the NYPD car and broke when it hit the street.

The suspect again sped off, only to crash. He was then arrested.

At that time, officers discovered three additional Molotov cocktails in his vehicle.

The suspect has been identified as Lionel Virgile, of Bridgeport, Connecticut.

WATCH: Suspect In Attack On Police Leaves Brooklyn Precinct --

Many in the neighborhood say they are disturbed by the attacks.

"I think it's very sad. Police officers are here to protect us and to keep us safe," one person told CBS2's Kiran Dhillon.

"I don't like that. I don't like violence," another person said.

"This is insane. I never heard nothing from this," one woman said. "We've been living over here since the '90s, and it's never been nothing this insane ... If I was doing the same job, I should not be put in danger at all. No, absolutely not."

"No matter what, every officer is an individual and that particular instance, that is an individual and he was just doing a traffic stop, so in that specific instance, no, that should not have transpired," another woman said.

NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea responded to the incident on Twitter, saying in part, "This is another reminder of how quickly a situation can change [and] the dangers your cops face every day while they're protecting [New Yorkers]."

Meanwhile, the Police Benevolent Association is also reacting, sending a safety alert to its members that says in part, "Make no mistake: this is the environment that our elected officials have created. This is the violent behavior that their anti-police rhetoric has inspired."

Retired NYPD sergeant Johnny Nunez agrees.

"The political rhetoric going around, I think it's a dangerous thing that's happening right now," he said. "You're talking about a Molotov cocktail, talking about a liquid, possible chemical that could disfigure someone."

The officer who had the chemical thrown in his face was taken to a local hospital, where he was treated for minor injuries to his face and blurred vision.

No other officers were hurt during this incident.

Charges against Virgile are pending.

CBS2's Kiran Dhillon contributed to this report.

UPDATE: Lionel Virgile, Accused Of Throwing Bleach And Molotov Cocktail At NYPD, Faces Federal Charges

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