NEWINGTON, Conn. (WTNH) — In this edition of This Week in Connecticut History, News 8 looks back at the horror and pain in Newington 25 years ago.
On March 7, 1998, Matthew Beck, a 35-year-old accountant at the Connecticut Lottery Corp. headquarters, pulled out a gun and knife and killed four of his bosses before killing himself.
“Just say a prayer for all of them. Say a prayer for all the people who passed on.”
Panicked workers at the state lottery headquarters cling to each other in a parking lot after escaping.
“We all took off for the woods. That was it. We heard gunshots, and we were halfway through the woods.
The lottery’s president and CEO, Otho Brown, was killed as he ran through the parking lot, urging other employees to head for the woods. His last words were, “keep running.”
Beck had just returned from a leave of absence and moved back in with his family. They called police because they were afraid he was suicidal and had guns.
That rampage led the state to pass the nation’s first gun seizure law, giving police the power to take guns from people who are potentially violent or suicidal.
Connecticut Lottery’s current headquarters are in Rocky Hill.