Accused Killer Left His Cell Phone Behind

Police were able to quickly make an arrest in the killing of an East Hartford convenience store clerk, partly because the alleged shooter left his cell phone on the store’s counter.

Police say Kezlyn Mendez also left behind fingerprints, and a probation officer recognized the 25-year-old Hartford resident from a surveillance video.

Mendez was arraigned today in court in Manchester.

“We don’t want this guy to come out in the street, until he changes himself,” said Syed Ahmed, one of several relatives of the victim who attended the court hearing. “They are going through a lot of things right now, it will take time, but it is really hard.

According to an arrest warrant, Mendez shot the clerk in the chest, only seconds after Mendez had pulled the gun out of his shirt pocket without the clerk’s knowledge, and while clerk Luthfur Tarafdar’s head was down.

Court officials said Mendez had ten previous convictions, and was on probation at the time of the attack.

He claimed to have untreated mental health problems.


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