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Trupti Patel's Killer arrested after 7 years
Post by joydeep on Apr 29th, 2009, 5:19pm
Police: No suspect in woman's slaying
Victim was shot in head, found in apartment building, Conn. police say
RIMIN DUTT and CHRISTINE WALSH
Arjun Patel of New Jersey named the brand of khakra that he sells after his daughter, Trupti, who was recently killed in East Hartford, Conn.
EAST HARTFORD, Conn. - Trupti Patel appeared to be a happy person who worked hard and looked forward to starting a family. Why she was brutally killed last month remains a mystery to East Hartford police and Patel's family. Police found the 36-year-old's body in the basement of her apartment building early in the morning of July 10, about 16 hours after her husband had reported her missing. The state medical examiner's office determined she died from gunshot wounds to the head. Police have made no arrests, nor named any suspects in the case. While they are withholding many details so as not to jeopardize their investigation, police believe the slaying was premeditated and isolated, said East Hartford Police Lt. Curt Stoldt. "We know that there was a certain amount of preparation involved in this," he said. When reached by telephone at her New Jersey home early this month, Patel's mother spoke through tears. "I can't even speak," Vijaya Ben Patel said in Hindi. "Words don't come out. I just keep weeping the whole day remembering her. ... I just keep thinking, why did this have to happen to our daughter? My daughter had no enemies."
Trupti Patel worked with her husband, Alpesh Kalaria, at DST Output, a customer communications company in South Windsor. She left her job as a data entry clerk around 1:30 a.m. on July 9, while her husband remained at work on the night shift, Stoldt said. Kalaria told police that when he returned home around 7 a.m., his wife's car was in the parking lot of the Woodcliff Estates apartment complex, but she was not in the apartment, Stoldt said. Kalaria filed a missing person report around 9:40 a.m. The patrol officers who took the report did a "general search" of the building, but did not enter the basement, Stoldt said. "There was no reason to expect there was criminal activity," he said. Around 1:30 a.m. the next day, Kalaria and his friends notified police that they had found a smashed window and damage to a door leading to the basement. Officers then found Patel's body in the basement, Stoldt said. Her body was in a "pretty brutal state," Stoldt said. He would not describe injuries beyond the gunshot wounds, but said there was "something unusual about the murder." Police do not have an estimated time of when Patel died, he said. While police do not have any evidence pointing toward a robbery, they did release a list of four missing items they believe are significant to the case. Taken from Patel were: her shoes, described by her husband as "brown flats"; a silver Verizon flip-style cell phone with a built-in camera; a black or brown pocketbook including contents in Patel's name; and a blue fabric lunch cooler with a strap around the top. The couple had no children, Stoldt said. East Hartford police have no record of any incidents involving either Patel or Kalaria. Patel's mother said Kalaria has taken a leave of absence from work and is staying with his sister in New Jersey. "He visits us often," she said. "He was just here the other day." Patel and Kalaria met in India and lived at Woodcliff Estates for about a year and a half. Patel had earned her master's degree in India and wanted to continue her studies in the United States. Patel had three siblings, a sister who lives in California, one brother in India and another brother who lives with her parents. Her father, Arjun, owns a wholesale food business in New Jersey. He named his brand of khakra, a Gujarati snack, "Trupti" because of his daughter's love for the food. Beyond that, Arjun Patel declined to speak about his daughter. "What should I say? I don't know at this point," he said sadly. "The police are investigating." Acquaintances in Connecticut remembered Patel as an upbeat woman who cared about others. "She was a helpful person," said Bharat Bhuva, a family friend who lives in Glastonbury. An Indian woman who lives across the hall from Patel's apartment said she did not know her neighbor well because Patel was very busy with her job. "Whenever I saw her, she was very cheerful and very friendly," she said. That matches the description of Patel which Stoldt gathered from police interviews. "She was well-liked by pretty much everyone who knew her, and pretty much everyone has told us that she had a positive outlook on life," he said. "She was a very happy person, interested in starting a family, having children. She was a hard worker. We haven't heard anything negative about her from anyone." Police detectives have tried to interview everyone who lives in Patel's building, and the neighbors have been cooperative, Stoldt said. The killing sent chills through the large apartment complex, where many residents are of South Asian descent. "People are living in fear, really," said Lachanna Arsha, days before he planned to move out of his second-floor apartment and into a friend's place. "Many people are leaving this building. ... Because of this, I sent my pregnant wife to India." "Everybody's afraid," added Patel's across-the-hall neighbor, who lives with her husband and 5-year-old daughter. "We can see every day one or two moving vehicles. Everybody's leaving this apartment [building]." Stoldt said investigators have been working hard on the case, but have yet to turn up any solid leads. "It's a very active case, and we're extremely busy on it," he said. As for Trupti Patel's mother, the days are long while her family is at work, and she is left to think about her daughter. "I am alone at home and I can't stop weeping," she said. INDIA New England staff writer Poornima Apte contributed to this report.
Kelvin Daye,41 murdered Trupti Patel
Post by guest on May 21st, 2011, 07:45am
Kelvin Daye, 41, is charged with the 2004 murder of Trupti Patel.
Police Use DNA to Solve 2004 Cold Case
The suspect could face the death penalty if convicted.
East Hartford Police have made an arrest in a 2004 cold case.
Friday, police charged Kelvin Daye, 41, with the murder, kidnapping and sexual assault of Trupti Patel.
On July 9, 2004, Patel's husband reported her missing from their Nutmeg Lane apartment. Her body was found in the basement of the couple's apartment complex later that night. Police searched the basement after family members noticed suspicious damage to the building. Patel was 36 at the time of her death.
The case was cold for years, until July 2010, when a DNA database matched DNA found at the scene to Daye, according to police.
Thursday, East Hartford police obtained an arrest warrant for Daye, and arrested him Friday afternoon, police said.
Daye has been in custody on unreleated charges since 2006, police said. In 2009, the Connecticut Department of Correction handed Daye over to federal authorities to begin deportation proceedings for being an illegal alien.
Daye faces two counts of Captial Felony, one for murder committed during the course of a sexual assault, the other for murder committed during a kidnapping, police said. He could face the death penalty on both counts. Day also faces charges of first-degree Aggravated Sexual Assault, Kidnapping, Murder, Felony Murder and Robbery.
He is being held on $5,000,000 bond.
Re: Kelvin Daye jamaican native Sentenced To Life
Post by iwitness on May 30th, 2013, 12:44pm
Kelvin Daye Sentenced To Life In Prison For 2004 Slaying
Kelvin Daye was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole Thursday for the brutal slaying of Trupti Patel in East Hartford as she was coming home from work in 2004.
Daye made a statement to the court but refused to own up to the grisly murder.
"I didn't come to this country to hurt anybody," said Daye, who is Jamaican. He told the judge he's innocent.
Alpesh Kalaria, Trupti Patel's husband, said he wasn't surprised by Daye's claim of innocence.
"There are few criminals who say they did the crime," he said.
A Hartford jury found Daye, 43, guilty of murder, felony murder, capital felony and first-degree kidnapping on March 14 after 4 1/2 hours of deliberation. It acquitted him of first-degree sexual assault and one count of capital felony.
Citing case law on double jeopardy, Judge Elpedio Vitale vacated the murder, felony murder and kidnapping charges.
After a trial, prosecutor David Zagaja argued to jurors that the presence of Daye's DNA at the crime scene showed he committed the kidnapping, sexual assault and rape of Patel, who was last seen at her workplace about 1 a.m. on July 9, 2004. Her body was discovered early on July 10 in the basement of her apartment building at 200 Nutmeg Lane, hours after her husband had reported her missing.
Zagaja told jurors that Daye ambushed Patel, dragged her about 300 feet down a hallway and took her into a utility room where he raped her and killed her. She died of multiple gunshot wounds, including two to the head.
Public Defender Robert Meredith told jurors that Daye had indeed gone into the apartment building's basement, but he argued that Daye did not commit the crime. Instead, Meredith said, Daye came upon Patel's body, did not report it because he was trespassing in the basement, then left.
East Hartford police initially suspected Patel's husband in her death. They investigated the case, but after a while it went cold. DNA evidence recovered from the crime scene was entered into evidence, though, and in 2007, after Daye was convicted of selling drugs, he was required to provide a DNA sample to the DNA database. In 2009, police were notified of a match of the evidence from the Patel killing and Daye.
In addition to the DNA evidence, Daye's mistress told East Hartford police that Daye told her he killed a "lady in the basement."
Daye, who was married with children and living in East Hampton, was arrested May 20, 2011, and has been in custody on $5 million bail ever since.