Police investigating death of New Haven mother as homicide; boyfriend confessed, court papers say

New Haven

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — A man is facing charges in connection to the death of a New Haven mother during a domestic shooting in the city Monday morning.

NHPD says the incident occurred in the area of Clifton Street and Lenox Street at about 9:19 a.m. The victim, later identified as 28-year-old mother of two Alessia Mesquita of New Haven, was pronounced dead on the scene.

Police say it was a domestic dispute that began in the vehicle. Mesquita exited the vehicle and then was shot.

RELATED: State officials seeing increase in domestic violence calls

At the time of the shooting, the one-year-old child of Mesquita and the suspect – later identified as 27-year-old Rashod Akeem Newton – was in the car on the scene. Police recovered the child unharmed. They were found with the father, who was taken into custody without incident on Eastern Street.

Police are currently investigating this incident as a homicide.

Newtown was identified as the boyfriend of the victim. Police say he has incidents on the record with New Haven Police.

New Haven police filed charges against Newton Tuesday morning in connection to Mesquita’s death. Those charges are murder, risk of injury to a child, and criminal possession of a firearm. His bond has been set at $3 million, according to Captain Anthony Duff.

Newton is also being held on an assault warrant out of West Haven for an unrelated crime. That is a $250,000 warrant.

Rashod Akeem Newton – charged with murder, risk of injury to a child, and criminal possession of a firearm in connection to death of his girlfriend and the mother of his child – 03 22 21 – New Haven Police

Later Tuesday morning, Duff said Newton was transferred to an arraignment for charges connected to the homicide.

Wednesday, Newton appeared before a judge. Court papers say he confessed to the shooting and that he and Mesquita had gotten into an argument before the shooting.

WEB EXTRA: Full press conference: New Haven PD give update on Clifton Street domestic homicide

Mayor Justin Elicker thanked the police department for their quick work on the case and extended his condolences to the family.

Acting Chief Renee Dominguez of New Haven Police Department said in a press conference Monday, “Domestic violence is something that we’re always aware of and it’s always something we need to be paying attention to as community members, as clergy, as family members because you don’t know what’s going to be the tipping point or what is going to escalate to something potentially this tragic.”

Police say multiple community members came forward with information that led police in the right direction.

Investigators are canvassing door to door and asking anyone with information or security camera video to contact the New Haven Police Department at 203-946-6304. Callers may remain anonymous. 

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