Suspect in Berlin motel death held on $2M bond - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Suspect in Berlin motel death held on $2M bond

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Rahheem McDonald was officially charged with the murder of Pratik Jagani at the Days Inn in Berlin. (WFSB/North Haven police/family photos) Rahheem McDonald was officially charged with the murder of Pratik Jagani at the Days Inn in Berlin. (WFSB/North Haven police/family photos)
BERLIN, CT (WFSB) -

The man accused of shooting and killing a clerk at a motel in Berlin this weekend is being held on a $2 million bond. 

Police charged 38-year-old Rahheem K. McDonald, of Waterbury, with murder, criminal possession of a firearm, possession of a firearm without a permit, and possession of a high capacity magazine.

The arrest of McDonald comes after 25-year-old, Berlin resident Pratik Jagani was shot and killed while working as a clerk at the Days Inn on the Berlin Turnpike on Sunday.

According to an arrest warrant, a mother checked into the Days Inn around 2:30 a.m. Her children wanted milk, so she asked the front desk, which had the product. When going to get the milk, the children were told by McDonald to come to his room. 

"You two come into my room right now," McDonald, who was only wearing boxer shorts and black socks, said, according to the arrest warrant. 

The two boys told police they ran out of the Days Inn and told people, who were in the parking lot, that McDonald was trying to abduct them. Those people called police.

McDonald told police he stayed at the motel because he needed to get away from Waterbury where he lives and there were people there who were "looking to do him harm."

According to the arrest warrant, McDonald said he was sleeping with a prostitute and thought Jagani was also conspiring with the prostitute about his troubles in Waterbury.

McDonald told police "he proceeded to take his 9MM Glock out and shoot the clerk twice." The arrest warrant states that Jagani was found shot in the head and holding a phone. 

According to the arrest warrant, the shooting was caught on the motel's surveillance cameras.  

Police said McDonald took off in a rented car and was later arrested that night after the shooting when he got into a head-on car crash in North Haven half an hour later. Two people were hurt in the crash.

Police said McDonald ran off, but came back to the scene of the crash, where he was arrested. McDonald told officers he was high on the drug PCP.

McDonald was arraigned in New Britain Superior Court on Thursday. As the court appearance ended, McDonald was seen crying. His bail remained at $2 million. 

Victims family was in court. They did not want to comment to the media on Thursday.  

McDonald's family was not in court on Thursday. Eyewitness News went to his home where neighbors said  he lives with a family member, but no one came to the door. 

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