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CT Teen Charged For Fatal Shooting Of 3-Year-Old

Jaziah Smith
Jaziah Smith Photo Credit: Hartford Police Department

A Connecticut teen has been arrested for allegedly shooting and killing a 3-year-old boy during a drive-by shooting.

Jaziah Smith, age 19, of Hartford, was arrested on Monday, April 19, for the killing which took place around Saturday afternoon, April 10 in Hartford, said Lt. Lt. Aaron Boisvert of the Hartford Police Department.

The 3-year-old boy, identified as Randell Jones, was shot around 2:25 p.m. while riding in a vehicle near 182 Nelson St., with his mother, his 4- and 5-year-old siblings, and another man when a shooter in another vehicle began firing bullets at the family’s car, said Boisvert.

Caught on city surveillance, the video shows a black Honda Accord pulled alongside the family's vehicle and someone inside began firing multiple shots at the vehicle. No one else in the car was injured.

The boy was initially listed in critical condition but later succumbed to his injuries, Boisvert said.

The Honda was later found abandoned in Windsor Locks and had been reported stolen, Boisvert said.

"The intended target of this shooting appears to be a male passenger of the victim's vehicle," Boisvert said.

On Saturday, April 17, after a week-long, intensive investigation, detectives assigned to the Major Crimes Division were able to identify the shooter and applied for an arrest warrant for Smith, he added.

On the morning of Monday, April 19, members of the Hartford Police Fugitive Task Force, Violent Crimes Unit, and Auto Theft Division took Smith into custody without incident. 

Smith, who was charged with one count of murder, remains in custody on a 1.75 million dollar bond.

"This homicide continues to be actively investigated. Anyone with information is urged to call the Hartford Police Department as soon as possible," Boisvert said.

Smith is no stranger to the police. Court records show he was charged last year with carrying a pistol without a permit and trespassing. He was free after posting a $75,000 bail. 

In response to the killing, activists led a vehicle caravan through the streets of Hartford this past Saturday, calling for an end to gun violence.

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