Police: 18-year-old accused of stabbing mother to death in Middletown appears in court

Connecticut

Conn. (WTNH) — 18-year old Eugenio Vela appeared on a video screen in Middletown Superior Court. He faces charges of murder, assault, and violation of a protective order.

On Thursday afternoon witnesses heard screams and saw a black Honda pulled over on East Street with a male outside hitting the female driver. When they approached the woman was able to drive away. 

They told the suspect he shouldn’t be hitting a woman and according to court papers “The male then stated to witness 1 ‘she slapped me.’”

He then took off on foot. The victim who suffered multiple stab wounds drove to the Westfield Fire Department to get help.

“Unfortunately they were unable to stabilize her enough for Life Star to transport so she was rushed… the did not want to waste any time… so they rushed her from the parking lot of the fire department right over to Middlesex hospital where sadly she was pronounced dead,” said Middletown Police Lt. Brian Hubbs.

Vela who is a Middletown High School student was arrested while walking on nearby Ridgewood Road.

“Vela said when the car was stopped on East Street, he was trying to pull the victim out of the car to ‘finish the job’ but she was caught in the seatbelt.”

He claimed self defense saying he was being stabbed and slapped first while they were in the car but police “… asked Vela if he thought he would have been able to get out of the car and run away (as opposed to stabbing the victim multiple times), and he said no because he is a fighter.”

A family friend who came to court said the victim is Vela’s mother and said her son had mental health issues which were difficult for her to control.

“Given that it’s a domestic violence incident we’re not identifying what the relationship is,” said Lt. Hubbs.

In addition to this incident Vela was also arrested in April for violating a protective order for the same victim. 

In court today his attorney Angela Anastasi asked that he undergo a mental health evaluation and be placed in age appropriate housing while being held.

Vela who was most recently living at a local hotel has no prior convictions. He was ordered held on $1-million bond and is due back in court on June 8, 2021.

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