Thea Digiammerino

2 Teens Charged With Murder of Bystander in Hartford Park

A 16-year old Middletown boy and an 18-year-old Hartford man were arrested Wednesday and charged in the shooting death of a 63-year-old man in Hartford on Sunday afternoon and the 16-year-old will appear in adult court.

Police said Thursday morning that the suspects were randomly shooting at a group of teens when the victim, Jeffrey Worrell, was struck.

Deputy Hartford Police Chief Brian Foley said Worrell was an innocent bystander who was just sitting in a park when he was shot.

Both teens have been charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder and are being held on million dollar bonds and are expected in court today. Police said one of the teens was the shooter and the other was the driver.

The 16-year-old is from Middletown and was arrested there on Wednesday. He has been taken to juvenile court.

Hartford detectives found the 18-year-old at his home yesterday.

“Yesterday afternoon, with some incredible underlying coincidences that I am not able to get into, the second juvenile was located by our detectives, and it wasn’t during an effort to locate him,” Foley said.

Police said both teens have juvenile arrest histories, which include charges for stolen cars. 

Police have been investigating since Worrell was found at Westland Street and Garden Street just before 2 p.m. with a gunshot to the head. He was transported from the scene to St. Francis Hospital, where he later died.

During the search for a person wanted for questioning in the homicide Tuesday, two Hartford police cruisers were damaged on Coleman Drive and several police officers were nearly struck, according to police.

The driver was able to get away, but police were able to locate the stolen car in New Britain, where three youths ran into a house, police said. New Britain police surrounded the house and Hartford police officers responded to the scene and police located three juveniles hiding in a bathroom, Foley said.

According to the news release, that's when police found persons of interest in the case and interviewed them. Police said the car had been stolen from Southington.

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