Arrest Made in New Haven Teen Murder

Thursday, Apr 17, 2014  |  Updated 11:54 PM EDT
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Taijohn Washington's mother speaks out after Jeffrey Covington is arrested in the murder of her son.

Taijohn Washington's mother speaks out after Jeffrey Covington is arrested in the murder of her son.

New Haven police have arrested an 18-year-old man and charged him with the murder of another teen.

Taijhon Washington, 17, of New Haven, was shot and killed near an elementary school in the area of Butler and Lilac streets. The shooting also critically injured his 16-year-old half-brother.

Both teens were found lying on the sidewalk near Lincoln Bassett Elementary School.

"When I see the sun shining, that's when I think of my son. Just happiness," said Natasha Pettigrew, mother of Taijhon Washington.

Pettigrew spoke with her son less than an hour before he was killed.

"He said he was coming from a friend's house and I said okay. Make it home and that was that," Pettigrew said.

Her son never made it home. Police believe Jeffrey Covington, 18, shot and killed Washington.

The cause of Taijhon Washington's death was determined to be gunshots to the chest, according to the affidavit.

As police investigated, they received a tip about Covington bragging about being responsible for the homicide, according to the affidavit. The documents also say there had been a history of issues because the suspect and his friends and the victims.

According to one statement police received, Covington said one of the victims had snitched on him. 

Police arrested Covington and picked him up on an outstanding probation violation warrant on Wednesday night.

When Covington spoke with police on Wednesday night, he denied any involvement in the shootings or being near the scene at all. 

He said he learned about the shooting after watching the news, but admitted to having a problem with one of his family members, according to court documents.

On Thursday morning, he was charged with murder, first-degree assault, criminal possession of a pistol or revolver, criminal use of a firearm and carrying a pistol or revolver without a permit.

Covington was arraigned this morning and held on $2 million. He is due back in court on May 6.

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