Hartford police investigate second homicide in 8 hours - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Hartford police investigate second homicide in 8 hours

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A man was shot in the head on Pershing Street in Hartford Tuesday morning. (WFSB photo) A man was shot in the head on Pershing Street in Hartford Tuesday morning. (WFSB photo)
A man was shot and killed on South Prospect Street late Monday night. (WFSB photo) A man was shot and killed on South Prospect Street late Monday night. (WFSB photo)
South Prospect Street. (WFSB photo) South Prospect Street. (WFSB photo)
Pershing Street. (WFSB photo) Pershing Street. (WFSB photo)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

Police in Hartford are investigating two homicides in eight hours.

They said the cases bring the capital city's 2015 total to 24.

Officers responded to Pershing Street just before 8 a.m. on Tuesday and found 32-year-old Desmond Wright shot in the head.

The incident happened near the intersection with Lebanon Street while Wright was on a sidewalk.

Police said Wright lives in the area but they aren't sure where he was headed.

Investigators said Wright is known to them and had been shot before. He had an active warrant out for a probation violation. Police said they believe he was targeted.

"We have to have a heightened sense of alertness because you don't know what to expect no more," said Peter Thigpen, a neighbor. 

Police said the Pershing Street shooting happened roughly eight hours after a homicide on South Prospect Street.

According to officers, multiple 911 emergency calls were made just before midnight on Monday.

Police said the shooting happened at an apartment complex right near the Dr. Ramon E. Betances School.

They said 32-years-old William Prieto was shot multiple times in his torso and died at the scene.

Prieto's family told Eyewitness News that they were sitting on the porch when the shooter walked up and fired.

The Hartford Police Department's major crimes division is investigating.

Investigators said Prieto he has a criminal record. They said they're vetting the possibility that his record may be linked to his death.

"This guy was certainly targeted and someone wanted to commit this act," said Deputy Chief Brian Foley, Hartford police.

His family said he was out of prison on federal parole.

Mayor Pedro Segarra said it's a frightening scene not only for those living in the neighborhood, but the city as a whole. He said there are many efforts underway to stem the spike in homicides.

"We have, over the past several weeks, been doing more analysis in terms of what is bringing on the homicides and shootings in our city and we're working with the U.S. [Department of Justice] diagnostic center to try to bring some clarity to this pattern, this unusual site and pattern, that we're seeing in our city," Segarra said.

There's no word on any suspects. Police said they have been speaking with witnesses.

They are also looking into whether both shootings are connected.

The violence is something Time Magazine picked up recently, comparing Hartford to some of the major cities in the country.

According to the magazine, Baltimore saw 215 homicides already, which is up from 2014.

New York has had 208, which is down from last year.

Hartford ranks last on the list.

At the time of the report there were 21 homicides in Hartford, up from 19 last year. After the recent two shootings Hartford now sits at 24 homicides for the year.

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