Police arrested a Hartford man who they say is connected to a double murder that happened earlier this week.

Joseph Silva, 20, of Hartford, was arrested after police said they conducted a number of interviews.

He faced a judge in Hartford Superior Court on Wednesday.

Police said they were called to the area of 100 Cowles St. on Monday just before 10:30 p.m. after learning of reports that shots had been fired.

They found Joshua Cortez lying in the street and Alysha Ocasio inside a parked car. Both had been shot.

According to court documents, Silva told someone he was with that night that "Cortez fell to his knees and he shot him five more times, while saying, 'this is how Joseph Silva does it.' Silva then walked over to the female in the vehicle, opened the door and shot her several times in the chest. Silva said he emptied the magazine in her."

Cortez was pronounced dead at the scene from a gunshot wound to the head. Ocasio died at a Hartford Hospital from several gunshot wounds to the torso, according to police.

Investigators said they found several shell casings in the area. They also found a tire that they believed belonged to the suspect's vehicle.

The suspected vehicle was found a short time later across from 141 Freeman St. No one was inside.

Eyewitnesses told police that the occupants of the vehicle left it and got into a second one that drove away.

The second vehicle was located by patrol officers. Five people were involved.

After interviewing witnesses, police said they were led to Silva.

With the help of a K9, police searched Silva's home and found a firearm in the yard. Police believe it's the same one used in the homicides.

Investigators said the suspect was an acquaintance of both victims and that the shooting was related to "emotional circumstances."

Neighbors said both victims were in a relationship and lived together with their 2-year-old daughter.

Silva was charged with two counts of murder, unlawful discharge and altering or removing identification marks on a firearm.

Police said he has been arrested before.

His bond was set at $3 million.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to contact Sgt. Reginald Early at 860-757-4248.

Police said 20-year-old Kailei Opalacz of Glastonbury was arrested for weapons in a motor vehicle. She is accused of having a BB gun and a set of black skull steel knuckles. Police say she was in the car at the time of the shooting.

Copyright 2016 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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