Two months later, drugs and weapons charges

12/04/2012 4:48 PM |
Thomas Counihan, East End Drug Task Force, Suffolk DA

THOMAS COUNIHAN

The Wading River man who allegedly pulled a gun on cops in September before one of the officers fired a shot and missed was arrested Monday after more than two months in a psychiatric ward, police said.

Thomas Counihan, 60, had been in psychiatric care at Brunswick Hospital in Amityville since the Sept. 25 incident at his Wading River-Manor Road home, police said.

He was released Monday and transported to Riverhead police headquarters where he was booked on over a dozen drugs and weapons charges, officials said.

An ex-convict with a criminal history dating back almost 30 years, Mr. Counihan was initially visited by police Sept. 25 after failing to show up for a probation appointment and drug test, authorities said.

Mr. Counihan acted strangely when police arrived, and a few minutes later, when asked about drugs in the house, he pulled a loaded Colt .45 from his bed.

One of the two officers fired the shot after Mr. Counihan began to point the weapon away from himself — and toward the officers, police said. The shot missed, but Mr. Counihan hit the floor and was subdued by the officers, who took his gun, authorities said.

Police recovered heroin, cocaine, marijuana and pain pills from the house, officials said.

District attorney spokesman Robert Clifford said Mr. Counihan told authorities that some of the drugs obtained by police were his.

“The defendant admitted on the record during arraignment that the heroin … was for his personal use,” Mr. Clifford said.

Mr. Counihan is being held at Suffolk County jail without bail.

The case will likely be taken up by a grand jury in the coming weeks, Mr. Clifford said.

He’s facing charges of third-degree criminal possession of controlled substance, fourth-degree criminal possession of controlled substance, third-degree criminal possession of marijuana, menacing a police officer, second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a weapon, fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon, second-degree criminal use of a firearm, second-degree reckless endangerment, criminal possession of hypodermic instrument and criminal use of drug paraphernalia, officials said.