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Kevin Bell Memorial Fund

October 15, 2014

The Hartford Fire Department and the Hartford Fire Fighter Association, IAFF 760, would like to thank everyone that has supported us through these difficult times.  We are still working to ensure that the Bell and Martinez families receive the support that they are deserving of.  Our thoughts and prayers are with them.

The Hartford Fire Department and the Hartford Fire Fighter Association, IAFF 760, are selling Kevin L. Bell Memorial Tee Shirts to raise funds for the Bell family.  The Tee Shirts are available for purchase thru the Hartford Fire Department Special Services Unit at the Hartford Public Safety Complex, 253 High Street, Hartford, CT between the hours of 8am to 4pm.  The shirts are also available at the Offices of the Hartford Fire Fighters Association, IAFF 760 at 1 Linden Place, Unit 104, Hartford, CT between the hours of 9am and 2 pm.  All proceeds from these sales will go to the Kevin L. Bell Memorial Family Fund.  The shirts are $20 and are available in Blue and Grey.  They will remain on sale until they are sold out.  For additional information contact the Hartford Fire Department Special Services Unit at 860-757-4520 or the Hartford Fire Fighters Association at 860-296-3523.

The Kevin L. Bell Memorial Family Fund has been established through the Hartford Fire Fighters Survivors' Fund to benefit the family of Brother Bell.  Donations may be sent to the following:

Kevin L. Bell Memorial Family Fund
C/O Hartford Fire Fighters Survivors' Fund
Farmington Bank
669 Hebron Ave
Glastonbury, CT 06033

We continue to work to show our support of Firefighter Jason Martinez and his Family as he works toward recovering from his injuries in the Bridgeport Burn Center.  They are and will continue to be in our thoughts and prayers.  Well wishes can be sent to Jason and his family via http://www.bridgeporthospital.org , then click on the CheerGram icon in the middle of the page and follow the directions to send you message. 

Please keep the Bell and Martinez families in your thought and prayers as we continue to support both families. 

Below is a picture of the Kevin L. Bell Memorial Tee Shirts. 

Memorial T-Shirt


Fallen Hero

Our first responders, our men and women of the Hartford Fire Department, put themselves at risk each and every day to protect the residents of the city. It takes an enormous amount of courage to do this. For that alone, they are heroes.

-Mayor Pedro E. Segarra

Bell Kevin

HPD Officer Lends a Helping Hand

Good Afternoon Chief Rovella,

In a day and age when people are quick to see the police at their worst, I thought you might want to see one of your officers at their best.

I am not sure who the officer was but I was walking down Broad Street at about 9:45 this morning and snapped this photo. When I see stories on line of Police officers buying boots for homeless people or car seats I often wonder if it is not staged for PR but it is hard to argue with watching an on duty officer changing a tire for someone. This officer clearly went above and beyond and thought you would like to know.

Steven Hotchkiss



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Officer Recognition

From: Lemke, Eric
Sent: Wednesday, October 1, 2014 9:14 PM
To: Rovella, James
Subject: Officer Maritza Brannick

Dear Chief Rovella,

I am writing you to acknowledge, what I feel, is Officer Maritza Brannick's recent exemplary service during the search for a suicidal subject.

On August 8, 2014, myself and Officer Brannick were dispatched to look for a suicidal male that was last seen looking "for a tall bridge", presumably to jump from. I located the subject on the Westbound I-84 entrance ramp from West Blvd, and observed that the male subject was standing next to the jersey wall on the west side of the overpass, approximately fifty feet over the parking lot of an office building on Capitol Avenue. After I blocked the ramp, I exited my cruiser and attempted to speak with the subject, who was crying and extremely distraught. The more I talked to the subject while attempting to move closer, the subject actually began to climb onto the jersey wall, stating that he wanted to be left alone and die. I immediately backed up and took a point of observation from the side of my cruiser, and the subject climbed off of the jersey wall, while maintaining a dialogue.

Upon the arrival of Officer Brannick, the subject immediately calmed, and began a dialogue with her which lasted approximately ten minutes. During Officer Brannick's conversation with the subject, he kept repeating that he wished to kill himself because nobody was helping him, and he felt that this was his only option. Officer Brannick was eventually able to gain the subjects confidence enough to approach him and walk him back to the safety of our cruisers, but not before the subject trusted Officer Brannick enough to give her his cell phone to talk with his wife.

In my 19 years in law enforcement, the times we see that actually have an immediate positive impact of a subjects life, are getting far and few between, and police are more often criticized for their actions. What I witnessed Officer Brannick do to save this persons life, made me proud to be a Hartford Police Officer. I only wish the general public could see just how dangerous this situation was for Officer Brannick, as seen in the recent past, the subject could have pulled her off of the bridge with him if he had made the decision to jump.

Officer Brannick performed her duties with selfless professionalism, and was able to assist the subject to get the mental health assistance he so desperately needed. I have worked with Officer Brannick on many tours of duty since this incident, and it never ceases to impress me how compassionate and professional she is, even during the most stressful of calls.

Thank You,

Officer Eric R. Lemke

Officer Eric Lemke
Patrol Division
Hartford Police Department
253 High Street
Hartford, CT 06103

September 26, 2014 Arrest

On September 26, 2014 at 8:54pm Hartford Police Department Patrol Officers and South Conditions Officers responded to the area of Wyllys Street in response to a 911 citizen complaint of shots fired. The citizen caller provided a detailed description of the suspect and stated he was seated in a vehicle near 137 Wyllys St. Responding Patrol Officers observed a suspect fitting the description at that location. When the suspect noticed the approaching officers, he fled on foot. The suspect was unable to out run the officers and was apprehended by South Conditions Officers in the area of 15 Patsy Williams Way. Members of the Shooting Task Force responded to assist with the follow up investigation. A subsequent on scene investigation led to the recovery of the Charter Arms Corp .38 SPL Revolver containing five spent shell casings and 28 bags of heroin. An extensive canvass of the area was conducted yielding no victims, and/or further evidence.

Arrested: Gabriel Ramos, 24 of Hartford, CT (Convicted Felon)
1. Possession Narcotics
2. PWITS Narcotics
3. PWITS Narcotics School Zone
4. Interfering with Police
5. Carrying Pistol w/out a Permit
6. Weapons in a M.V.
7. Unlawful Discharge of a Firearm
8. Reckless Endangerment
9. Criminal Possession of a Firearm

14-31792 09292014

Homicide Information Needed

On September 28, 2014 at 1:12am, Hartford Police Department Patrol units responded to the above location on a report of shots fired and a victim injured. Upon arrival, they located the victim, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds in the torso and neck area. EMS transported the victim to St. Francis Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 1:49am. A crime scene was established processed by Crime Scene Detectives. HPD Homicide Detectives from the Major Crimes Division are assuming the investigation. This is the 11th Hartford homicide of 2014.

Victim: - Anthony Wortham 09/05/77, LKA 80 Flatbush Ave. HTFD.

Anyone with information is asked to call HPD/MCD Homicide Sergeant Brandon O'Brien (860) 757-4089; or web tips can be submitted to the right of the webpage. (click "Submit and anonymous Tip")

Domestic Violence Suspect Wanted

The Hartford Police Department Major Crimes Division Domestic Violence Detectives are actively searching for Rashad Wilson age 35 of Hartford, who is wanted for a domestic assault that occurred on 09/24/14 in Hartford, CT. Wilson has an active felony warrant for Criminal Attempt Murder, Assault 2nd, Criminal Possession of a Pistol, Reckless Endangerment, Risk of Injury, and Larceny 3rd. This warrant carries a judge set $1,000,000 bond. He is believed to be hiding out with family. Note that Wilson wears glasses and a beard or goatee. Please do not approach Wilson as he is potentially a danger. Mugshot below:

Height: 6'01"  Weight: 190  Eyes: Brown Complexion: Medium

Scars & Tattoos: Scar on top of forehead; tattoo: "1 life to live" inside forearms

Vehicle: 2001 Nissan Maxima 4DR   Vehicle Reg#: 520ZZA  Vehicle Color: Dark blue

If you have information on Wilson, please call Sergeant Andrew Weaver at (860) 757-4214. Or information can be submitted using the annonymous tip link to the right of the page.

Sex Assault Arrest

On September 19, 2014 Hartford Police Department Detectives from the Special Investigations Division (S.I.D.) received information that Jimmy Benitez, 34 of Hartford, was in the area of 217 Franklin Avenue. Benitez had two active arrest warrants at the time. One for a Failure to appear on a previous firearms charge and the 2nd warrant was for several current Felony Sexual Assault Charges. Detectives conducted surveillance and Benitez was observed returning to a parked vehicle in front of 217 Franklin Ave. While the vehicle was still parked, S.I.D. Detectives and assisting officers approached the vehicle. Detectives located Benitez hiding in the third row seat of the parked vehicle. He was taken into custody without incident.
Benitez is being held on a $500,000.00 cash only bond.

New Charges:
1. Sexual Assault of Minor 1st Degree (3 Counts)
2. Sexual Assault of Minor 4th Degree
3. Risk of Injury to Minor (3 Counts)

Previous FTA Charges:
1. Failure to Appear 1st
2. Interfering with Police
3. Criminal Possession of Firearm
4. Weapon in Motor Vehicle

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Hartford Police Department
Public Safety Complex
253 High Street
Hartford CT, 06103

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HARTFORD CITY HALL ADDRESS: 550 Main Street, Hartford, CT 06103 PHONE: (860)757-9311 HOURS: 8AM - 5PM