Police have arrested a fifth person linked to the July 4 killing of a man found wrapped in plastic and "literally blown up" in a remote area of Hamden, according to state and federal officials.
Maurice Wearing, 26, of West Haven, was arrested Tuesday morning. He was charged with conspiracy to commit murder, second-degree hindering prosecution and tampering with evidence.
Christopher Miller, 40; Deborah Miller, 59; Natali Martinez-Sanchez, 29; and James Bryant, 64; all of 59 Front Avenue in West Haven, were arrested Monday as part of the investigation into the death of their 39-year-old housemate.
Christopher Miller was charged with his murder.
The victim, Edward Brooks, was found wrapped in a plastic bag and tied with rope at West Rock State Park in Hamden on the Fourth of July, according to the U.S. attorney's office. Police found his body while investigating the report of an explosion nearby on Wintergreen Avenue.
Investigators revealed at a press conference Monday that Brooks was shot and killed at his home in West Haven, then dumped in Hamden.
Then, "literally, he was blown up with an explosive device," according to U.S. Attorney Dierdre Daly.
In the days after Brooks' death, investigators searched his home at 59 Front Avenue in West Haven. Federal authorities said Brooks' housemates were "subjects of an ongoing narcotics investigation" but wouldn't comment Monday on how long they had been under scrutiny.
During the search, investigators found materials used to make pipe bombs, which matched the device used to "blow up" Brooks' body, federal prosecutors said. Authorities also uncovered about 16 grams of crack cocaine, 10.6 grams of methamphetamine and drug packaging materials.
"A little over a week later, the individuals believed to be responsible for this horrific crime have been identified and apprehended, as have individuals who helped ‘clean up’ and try to conceal this violent murder," Daly said.
Investigators have not commented on a possible motive.
State's Attorney Kevin Lawlor said Christopher Miller has been appointed a public defender but did not know the defender's name. It's not clear if the other suspects have attorneys.