Two Homicides in 24 Hours in Hartford, Conn. - NECN


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Two Homicides in 24 Hours in Hartford, Conn.



    Two Homicides in 24 Hours in Hartford, Conn.

    Hartford police have identified the victims in two separate Hartford homicides that happened within 24 hours of each other Saturday and officers continue looking for at least two suspects in the capital city's eighth and ninth homicides of the year.

    Michael Clahar, also known as Slope, 28, of Hartford, has been identified as the victim in an early Saturday morning shooting near a Mary Shepard Place housing complex and police identified Rashad Collier, 27, of West Hartford as the man killed in a second shooting Saturday night in the area of George and South streets.

    Police responded to George and South streets Saturday night at about 8:30 p.m. and found Collier on the sidewalk suffering from gunshot wounds. He was pronounced dead on scene.

    Police initially had some trouble identifying Collier's gender, originally stating Saturday night that the victim was a woman, but provided a correction on Sunday identifying him as a 27-year-old male.

    No weapons have been recovered at this time. Major Crimes detectives were on scene for several hours and police interviewed several witnesses.

    Earlier on Saturday at about 3 a.m., Clahar, 28, was found suffering from a single gunshot wound to the head in the area of 602 Mary Shepard Place in the housing complex parking lot. Clahar was also declared dead on scene. Police said there is no indication that the incidents are related.

    Deputy Chief Brian Foley said there is no immediate danger to the public. Neither shooting was a random act and both victims were targeted, police said.

    “Both locations, we rarely have anything happen here, let alone something like this," Foley said.

    No suspects have been identified yet and no arrests have been made. 

    The day of two homicides in Hartford has frightened neighbors.

    "Too much. Too much," said Thomas Castro Jr., who lives near the corner where the second shooting happened. "...In a couple years they kill one over there, one next down there, one across from the store and one last night. This is not fair."

    One woman on George Street near the second homicide site has even considered moving.

    "A bullet doesn't have anybody's name, you know, they could just be shooting randomly and catch any innocent bystander," Madeline Garay said.

    Some are worried how summer will bode in terms of crime in the capital city as temperatures rise and people spend more time outside.

    "You can't sit right here on the front porch, or be worried that something's gonna happen or somebody's gonna drive by," Garay said.

    Ernest Prather, who lives near the first shooting at Mary Shepard Place and spoke to NBC Connecticut near the site of the second shooting near George and South streets, said "it's only going to get worse" come summer.

    "What can you do? What can I do? What can we as a people do?" Prather said. "We all got to get together and do whatever we can to put a stop to it."

    After the two fatal shootings, Hartford is almost halfway to its total of 19 homicides in 2014.

    Police said they plan to release more information on Sunday. The investigations are ongoing.