Hartford PD: Car attempting to flee shooting backs into, kills 71-year-old woman, suspect arrested


HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — A 71-year-old woman has died after she was struck by a car that was attempting to flee the scene of a shooting in Hartford on Thursday afternoon.

Police said that just before 2 p.m., officers responded to the corner of Garden and Westland streets after a shooting broke out between people in two cars.

According to police, one car was parked when the other car pulled up next to it and the people inside began arguing. The fight then led to the occupants of both cars shooting at each other.

Police said that when one of the cars attempted to flee the scene quickly, the driver backed up into the woman, who was in the street.

She was taken to the hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Family members have identified the woman as Yvonne Smith. She was considered the grandmother of the neighborhood.

“My mom was a really good person, she could make you laugh,” Bridget Smith said. “She would help you with anything. She was a good person to be around because she had a good spirit.”

“She is a jokester,” her daughter Sharanda Lyn Smith said. “She made you laugh when you’re feeling down. She would help you out in situations and give you the best advice in the world.”

Her daughters said she was on her to the store to get bread and milk when the tragedy occurred.

“I love her; I miss my mom so much,” Bridget said. “I can’t even get her back. They killed a good woman. And for what? Some teenagers kill her? Why are they shooting? I don’t know. It’s senseless.”

“She was just going to the store. Didn’t even…” Dawn Smith, Yvonne’s other daughter, said. “So it’s sad.”

The car that hit the Smith was stolen, and while it then remained on scene, all of the occupants fled on foot.

Police apprehended one man, who was suffering from a gunshot wound. He was then taken to the hospital. Officers also captured a second suspect, who is a juvenile. Both are considered persons of interest.

The incident remains under investigation by Major Crimes and the Traffic Division.

Mayor Luke Bronin released the following statement after the incident:

“Our entire city sends our prayers to the family of the woman who was killed after being struck by a car involved in a shooting this afternoon on Westland Street.  Any time violence takes a life in our community it’s a tragedy, and to lose an innocent life as senselessly as this is just gut wrenching.  Our police department has already apprehended two individuals involved, and they are working hard to bring all of the perpetrators involved to justice.”

On Friday morning, police arrested the suspect of the incident. Police say the suspect is a 16-year-old juvenile and is charged with manslaughter, larceny and evading responsibility resulting in death.

According to officials, the vehicle involved in the incident was a theft from Manchester two days prior.

Investigation is ongoing.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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