Shooting at Hartford nightclub leaves one dead, two injured

Shooting at Hartford nightclub leaves one dead, two injured

Michelle Brodsky, Staff Writer

This past Sunday, February 17, turned into a day of rampant fear when a shooting outside the Vibz Uptown Hartford nightclub left one dead and two injured. In Hartford’s second homicide of 2019, the deceased was identified to be Jakari Lewis, 28, of the Blue Hills neighborhood. The other two victims, a 28 year old man and a 29 year old woman, have not been identified at this time but were transported to St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center shortly after the tragedy took place.

Just moments after 1:45 a.m., “officials received a shot spotter activation of gunfire rounds in the area of 3155 Main St. The nightclub at that location had just closed.” Eight rounds had been fired and police were on the scene within moments. A shot spotter activation is used to convey the location of gunfire so that authorities can respond to threats as quickly as possible. Following the incident, crowds gathered and flooded the parking lot.

Although police arrived quickly and paramedics immediately began administering life-saving treatments, Lewis succumbed to his injuries soon after the fact. Lewis had previously served prison time for manslaughter but sources have affirmed that he was in the process of rebuilding his life. He received a reduction in his initial sentence when his lawyer, Corrie-Ann Mainville, “convinced a prosecutor and judge to give Lewis a break,” saying that “this kid just stood out for me from the very beginning.” Back in 2012, Lewis and his best friend, Jahad Belcher, were in a car from which gunshots were fired. A chase ensued but was quickly terminated when Lewis drove into a utility pole and subsequently faced serious injuries.

Belcher died soon afterwards and Hartford Superior Court Judge Joan K. Alexander sentenced him to eight years in prison followed by ten years of parole. Taking the advice of his lawyer and those close to him, Lewis changed his ways and worked hard to improve himself. “He took advantage of every program available, got a job in the prison kitchen and rose to the position of manager. He also wrote a children’s book for his twins.” Lewis sought to show people that life after prison was possible if a hard work ethic were applied.

No suspects have yet been identified but Hartford police are working relentlessly to bring the individual responsible for these heinous acts to justice.

Police are asking that anybody with relevant information call 860-722-TIPS so that this case can be resolved quickly and efficiently.