A 21-year-old Hartford man who told police that an 18-year-old Cromwell woman committed suicide has been charged in her murder.
Torrick Maragh was arraigned on Tuesday and bond has been set at $1.5 million.
Maragh was initially charged with two counts of possession of a sawed-off shotgun and has been incarcerated on those charges, but police later obtained a warrant charging him with the murder of Nasashalie Hoy, 18, of Cromwell,.
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Hartford police found Hoy after receiving a frantic 911 call at 11:15 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 5.
When they rushed to the basement of 1688 Broad St. in Hartford, they found her lying on the ground and bleeding from the throat.
She was rushed to Hartford Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at 11:58 p.m.
According to arrest paperwork, Maragh told detectives Hoy shot herself with a shotgun after the two had an argument.
Hoy's family never believed that was the case.
“We knew she didn’t commit this herself. She was never capable of doing this. She was just a happy soul,” Hoy's cousin, Kassandra Ortega, said.
They maintained that Hoy didn't shot herself and several family members were at the courthouse for the arraignment.
“I’m just glad that it finally happened today, because it’s been sitting here for so long,” Felix Hoy, Nasashalie’s father, said.
Maragh told police he and Hoy were initially “tussling” over a shotgun shell and she had a knife in her hand, but he was able to confiscate it from her before she ran out of the room, according to the arrest warrant.
When Hoy came back, she straddled Maragh, who was sitting on a bed, and she had a shotgun pointed at her neck when it went off, he said, according to the warrant.
The medical examiner’s office classified Hoy's death as a homicide and determined she died from a bullet to the neck.
Police said they worked closely with the state forensic science lab to analyze evidence.
According to arrest papers, Maragh owns the gun that took Hoy's life and admitted to hiding a second gun in the ceiling before police got to the scene.
“I think this situation all around is tragic,” Maragh’s attorney, Steve Slattery, said.
In court, the state’s attorney said they had a strong case against Maragh, but his attorney said it's not an open and shut case.
"The warrant does indicate that there was DNA of the deceased on both the handle and the trigger of the gun,” Slattery said.
Felix Hoy said he hopes this case goes to trial.
“I’m hoping he takes it to trial. If he says she killed herself, which I know she didn’t, let him prove it,” he said.
Maragh’s family was also in court, but declined to comment.
Maragh is due back in court on May 16.
The warrant charging Maragh with murder has a judge-set bond of $1.5 million.