Arrest made in Hillhouse HS basketball game shooting - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Arrest made in Hillhouse HS basketball game shooting


Police in New Haven said an arrest has been made in a shooting outside a high school basketball game.

Detectives from the police department's major crimes unit say an unidentified 17-year-old male turned himself in to police on Thursday and was charged with assault and weapons crimes.

They said the suspect, whose name is not being released because of his age, is a student at one of the district's alternative high schools, Dixwell-New Light.

"The swift apprehension of the responsible individual would not have been possible without the community's involvement," Chief Dean M. Esserman said in a news release Thursday. "It was this collaboration that provided us with the necessary information to make the arrest."

The shooting was reported after the varsity boys basketball game at Hillhouse High School on Monday night. Police said 2,000 people poured out into the streets after the team lost to Career High School, and that's when shots rang out.

A 14-year-old male freshman was hit in the hand and grazed in the leg. The teenager was taken to a local hospital with no life-threatening injuries, police said.

Police said a gun was found in the area after the shooting. It is unclear how shots were fired.

New Haven police had nine officers assigned to the game and stepped up patrols after a fight at a game last week, but don't believe the incidents were connected.

The district canceled junior varsity and freshman games the following day and more security was brought in.

"With two gun incidents in the past week, we are reminded of the need for urgency in coming together as a school district and a community to engage our youth and keep them firmly on the path toward graduation and college success and away from gun violence," New Haven Superintendent of Schools Garth Harries said.

Extra security will be present at Hillhouse High School on Thursday night for the game against Guilford High School, school officials said. New Haven officials plan to have at least six officers on top of the security they usually have in place.

"The complexity of the issue of youth gun violence in our community runs deep, but we fail if we do not do everything in our power to confront the problem and change the culture. Our students deserve nothing less than the chance to work hard, rise up and achieve success in life," Harries said in a statement Thursday.

Hillhouse High School students told Eyewitness News they were scared after the shooting.

 "I don't want to get shot. It's pretty dangerous out there," said student Skyelyn Moreno. "It's like a family event. It's fun to go. But once this violence started, it ruins it." 

One woman told Eyewitness News the basketball games should be limited to fewer students.

"Maybe, we have to show your school ID," said Alexsa Santiago of New Haven. "If you don't go to either school that teams are playing, they shouldn't be allowed in."

One parent said she is not happy with what's going on these days and wants to be like days of the past.

"The kids worked it out themselves amongst each other," said parent Amy Santiago. "I don't know these kids. (They) have so much access to guns."

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