Hartford police continue to investigate Park Street carjacking that turned deadly

How to protect yourself during carjacking
Published: Oct. 4, 2022 at 4:28 PM EDT
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HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - Police are investigating a carjacking that turned deadly on Park Street in Hartford on Monday.

The attempted carjacking happened in broad daylight in the parking lot of the 1429 apartments, right across from Parkville Market.

Police said the two suspects who tried to steal that car were brothers with violent criminal backgrounds.

Hartford police said a man was followed into the parking lot of the apartments Monday afternoon.

Two brothers tried to steal the man’s car.

The carjacking victim tried to defend himself with a firearm and gunfire was exchanged.

“In this case there was an exchange of gunfire and at this point it looks like the individual was defending himself and potentially his car. But he’s in the hospital and it could very easily been tragic for him and his family a lot more tragic than it is right now,” said Hartford Police Chief Jason Thody.

23-year-old Jahziel Phillips Ray, one of the suspects allegedly trying to steal the car, was killed.

His brother, 22-year-old Joseph Ray, was injured and is in stable condition at the hospital. He faces several charges, including criminal attempt to commit murder and conspiracy to commit robbery.

The carjacking victim is also in stable condition at the hospital and is expected to survive.

Eyewitness News asked Hartford Police if the carjacking victim can face charges for killing someone as a self-defense measure.

“We’ve seen self-defense situations before whether it be with firearms or even not with firearms were we just collect the facts and we work with the states attorney’s office to see if it’s a chargeable case or not and that’s what will happen here,” said police.

Hartford police are also combing through surveillance footage, which will help in this investigation.

“We recommend avoiding a conflict at all costs. This can become dangerous. We hope that people would be able to call the police and that we’d be able to respond and that’s our job,” Thody said. “We want people to be situationally aware. I think that’s more important now than ever. Know your surroundings and pay attention. And if you see something that doesn’t seem right, that intuition is usually right.”

The incident also raises questions about self-defense.

“One of the things that we really want to emphasize is not to argue or fight with these individuals. Those are materialistic things that you have in your vehicle. That’s stuff that can be replaced. Your life cannot be replaced,” said State Police Sergeant Christine Jeltema.

She adds that it’s important you always remain aware of your surroundings.

“Keep your vehicle locked at all times. We see at gas stations, people leave their vehicles running. Their doors open, their vehicles unlocked, their windows down, roll up windows, lock your doors shut your vehicle off, take your keys with you,” Jeltema said.

It’s still too early to know if the carjacking victim can face charges for killing one of the suspects out of self-defense.

Hartford police are working closely with the state’s attorney’s office to investigate.

One dead after attempted carjacking in Hartford
Hartford police continue to investigate deadly carjacking on Park Street