MERIDEN, Conn. (WTNH) -- A Meriden store clerk was killed in cold blood and some officials say this may have been avoided if the suspect in the case was locked up.
Friday one State Senator stood by the victim's family, as they push for a change to Connecticut's new Early Release Program.
The death of 70-year-old Meriden convenience store owner Ibrahim Ghazal is being blamed, in some circles, on the state judicial system.
"He left the prison to kill my dad, that's what I believe," said Fapyo Ghazal.
Thirty-six year old Frankie Resto is accused of the murder. Resto was freed in April after serving most of his sentence, earning credits for an early release. State Senator Len Suzio says the relatively new Early Release Program should be suspended.
"So this law failed this family," asked News 8's Jamie Muro.
"Oh absolutely, unconditionally," said Suzio. "I would say without the early release law, Mr. Ghazal would be alive today."
Officials from the Governor's office press claim that under the old system, Resto would have been let out much earlier.
"Did Connecticut fail this family the way the system is set up," Muro asked.
"What happened in this case is a genuine tragedy, there's no question this man was murdered, very dangerous guy, no question about that. We understand Senator Suzio is in a tough election campaign," said Mike Lawlor, Office of Policy and Management.
Lawlor attacks Suzio as a hypocrite because he supports the early release of inmate John Papandrea, convicted of a Ponzi scheme.
"Senator are you advocating the release of an inmate," asked Muro. "According to Lawlor's office...John Papandrea?"
"John Papandrea was involved in a non-violent crime, I have no problem with people who...I do believe in redemption, people who commit crimes, non-violent crimes, can be reformed," Suzio said.
Suzio has started a petition because he believes this issue can't wait until the next legislative session.
"What is the answer? What do you want to see happen? You may want to suspend this? I want to know what you guys want," said Muro.
"We would like this program suspended for violent offenders, we would like to know specifically, how people are getting credits, are they taking programs they are required to be in, are they completing those programs," said Michelle Cruz, state victim's advocate.
STORRS, Conn. (AP) — Officials at the University of Connecticut have begun work on a master plan to reshape the infrastructure at the school.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman are directing U.S. and Connecticut flags to fly at half-staff on Saturday in honor of the 20 children and six adults who were killed a year ago at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown.
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As the snow heads our way for the weekend, we're dealing with some freezing temperatures out there. News 8 got advice from some professionals on how to keep you safe.
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The treasurer of the Milford Rotary Club has been arrested on larceny charges on accusations he embezzled more than $200,000 from the Milford Rotary and two other groups.
The state Democratic Party is returning a $10,000 contribution from the chief executive of Comcast-Spectacor and owner of the Philadelphia Flyers, saying it has learned he could be a state contractor.
West Haven officials say state plans to eliminate Exit 44 on Interstate 95 south will make it harder for the city to attract business.