A 51-year-old man accused of shooting his wife and turning the gun on himself at a Family Dollar store in Hartford late Saturday morning was arraigned in his hospital bed on Wednesday.
Elvin Perez-Soto has been charged with attempted murder, first-degree assault, criminal possession of a firearm, reckless endangerment and unlawful discharge of a firearm.
He is accused of shooting Sharon Rentas, 41, inside the store at 1200 Park Street just before noon on Saturday. Police said Perez-Soto and Rentas, who had been married for 11 years, were in the process of separating.
According to police, the couple walked into the store, began fighting and Perez- Soto pulled out a revolver and shot Rentas several times in the torso before shooting himself in the chest.
Store employees and customers scrambled for cover and many called 911.
"Ma'am, I need a cop and some backup at Wethersfield Ave. and 426 Park Street, there's a man shooting a gun inside the store," a caller told a 911 dispatcher in a recording released on Wednesday.
The female caller, who appeared to be a store employee, was locked in a manager's office with several other people.
"I have a lot of children in the store, please."
She told the dispatcher she could see someone laying on the floor.
Police said the store's surveillance system recorded the shooting.
"I just heard them," Brenda Girouard, a witness, said. "There was [sic] seven shots."
Another witness, Will Johnson, described the scene as chaotic and said people were "running, screaming, yelling 'somebody's shooting, somebody's shooting.'"
Rentas is listed in critical condition in the Intensive Care Unit of Hartford Hospital.
Perez-Soto is recovering from his injury. When he is released from the hospital, he will be held on $500,000 bond.
Police said in the arrest warrant that Perez-Soto is prohibited from having a gun because of conditions following a prior 15-year sentence for heroin distribution charges.