Victim Filed Complaint Against Accused Shooter

As gunman remains on the loose, Wesleyan students, faculty told to stay home

Johanna Justin-Jinich, the 21-year-old Wesleyan junior who was shot and killed inside a Middletown bookstore Wednesday, had filed complaints against the man police believe shot her several times.

Stephen Morgan, 29, walked into the Red and Black Café on William and Broad streets, at 1 p.m., disguised and wearing a wig. He shot Justin-Jinich at her workplace and fled, leaving his wig behind, sources said. She was rushed to Middlesex Hospital, where she was pronounced dead, the Hartford Courant reports.

Justin-Jinich, who was from northern Colorado, had had problem with Morgan since 2006, when they were both students at NYU, sources said .

On July 10, 2007, she filed an aggravated harassment complaint with the New York Police Department against Morgan, police told WNBC. It claimed that he was calling her repeatedly and sent her insulting emails for at least a week.

In one e-mail, Morgan allegedly said Justin-Jinich was "going to have a lot more problems down the road."

Morgan had apparently already left the city at the time the complaint was filed and was not arrested.

In Middletown, police, armed with assault rifles and police dogs, searched for the shooter, but he remains on the loose. Middletown SWAT was able to respond quickly when they received the call because they had been training at Middlesex Hospital, the mayor said Thursday. 

Police Lt. Margaret Liseo told the Associated Press that evidence uncovered at the scene "heightened our level of concern," but she wouldn't say what the evidence was.

"We just want to get the message out there to be extra vigilant," she said. "This individual is armed and dangerous, and we want to be sure public safety is our top priority."

Police said they recovered Morgan’s car near the bookstore and believe he is on foot. He is believed to be armed and dangerous. Residents are urged to be vigilant and call 911 if they see the suspect but not approach him. It is unclear where he lives and a Wesleyan spokesman said Morgan has no known connection to the university.

Thursday morning, police and security still surround the Wesleyan campus and the school has instructed all students to remain in their dorms, based on the advice of local authorities.

Faculty and staff should not go to their offices unless otherwise instructed.

Students across the campus are reeling over Justin-Jinich’s violent death.

“She was a really nice person (with) a really pretty smile. She was a joy to be around, she would brighten people’s days up,” Michael Battle, a sophomore, said.

“I couldn’t have imagined how she could have had any enemy that would have wanted to do this.  It’s absolutely horrendous,” David Burke, a junior, said.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
Contact Us