Hartford Police detectives used DNA, ballistics, social media, videos surveillance and witness interviews to find and arrest two men allegedly involved in a homicide on Sigourney Street in April.
Police arrested Chris Olds, 27, of East Hartford in connection with the death of Michael Foley on July 20. Olds is charged with murder, first-degree assault and criminal possession of a firearm, according to police. Police had previously arrested Corey Fairley, 23, of Hartford on May 30 for his alleged involvement in the homicide. He is charged with accessory to murder, accessory to first-degree assault and criminal possession of a firearm, according to police.
The Courant obtained copies of the arrest warrant affidavits for Olds and Fairley, which detail the alleged crime and the steps detectives took to identify the suspects.
On April 15, police were called to 238 Sigourney St. for a reported shooting. They found 25-year-old Michael Foley of Hartford suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Foley was taken to Saint Francis Hospital where he was pronounced dead approximately 16 minutes later. A post-mortem examination on April 16 by the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed homicide and his cause of death as gunshot wounds to the head and torso, the warrant said.
Foley was a landscaper who worked in the tree-removal business and loved to fish and ride motorcycles, according to his obituary.
A second victim, Bruce Young, 56, arrived at Saint Francis with a non-life-threatening gunshot wound to his right foot.
Police found a .45 caliber firearm in Foley’s pants, a cell phone, four spent 9-millimeter shell casings and a substance suspected to be crack cocaine at the scene, the warrant said. They were also given information that the suspect was wearing a red shirt and had fled the scene toward Collins Street.
Minutes after the shooting, police also received calls from the superintendent of a Huntington Street property and a concerned citizen with further information.
The superintendent of the property reported finding a black hoodie and gray hoodie in the back parking lot. A firearm was later found wrapped within the black hoodie, which had “Hilfiger” written across the front in white lettering. Police later determined the sweatshirts belonged to the people involved in the shooting, the warrant said.
Casings test-fired from the gun were compared to shell casings found at the scene, and detectives determined they were both likely fired from the gun used in the homicide.
DNA samples taken from the gun were later found to be a likely match to Fairley and two unknown sources, according to the warrant. Police also took DNA samples from the gray sweatshirt, and it was determined to be a likely match to Olds.
City and local private cameras picked up Foley and Young walking to Sigourney Street before the shooting. Then three men – one in a gray hoodie, a second in a black hoodie and a third wearing a light blue shirt – walk up and talk to Foley and Young, according to the warrant. The five men end their conversation, and the three men continue walking south on Sigourney.
Then the man in gray, later identified as Olds, and the man in black, later identified as Fairley, turn around and walk toward Foley and Young and re-engage in conversation.
Olds then allegedly produces a firearm and shoots Foley, according to the warrant. Foley falls to the ground and Young hobbles away. Olds then hides behind a red Mitsubishi and allegedly shoots at Foley again before fleeing with Fairley from the scene toward Collins Street. The man wearing a light blue shirt lingers before walking away.
Police were able to identify the man in blue and interviewed him as a witness to the homicide. He confirmed he was there that day and knew Olds and Fairley through mutual associates, but told police he did not know their true names, the warrant said.
The witness gave police access to his personal Facebook account and cell phone and showed police a Facebook profile of a man he knew as “Rondo,” who he identified as the shooter. Detectives later used this profile to identify Olds through a search through a database of social media profiles.
Police also saw a video of the witness and the man in the black sweatshirt with “Hilfiger” across the chest posted hours before the homicide. Detectives immediately recognized the man and identified him as Fairley, according to the warrant.
The witness then identified Olds and Fairley as those involved in the shooting when presented with photos, the warrant said.
Police obtained a warrant for Fairley’s DNA and collected it during a scheduled probation meeting on May 2. A likely match to the DNA collected from the gun came on May 27, despite Fairley claiming while being interviewed by police that he never touched the gun.
Fairley told detectives on May 2 that he had only met Olds one time before the day of the shooting and did not know his real name. He said he and Olds had gone to Foley to purchase cannabis the day of the shooting. He said he turned away and heard gunfire and was shot in the leg, but did not seek medical attention.
He told detectives he ran away from the scene and Olds chased him, pointed a firearm at him and ordered him to give him his black hoodie.
Fairley was then presented with a photo lineup of eight men and did not identify Olds when shown his picture. Instead, he identified a man unassociated with the investigation.
Police obtained an arrest warrant for Fairley after the DNA match and arrested him on May 30 in Enfield. During a second
As it happens
Get the latest updates on Coronavirus and other breaking news events happening across Connecticut
photographic lineup, he identified Olds and said he was 100 percent sure of it, the warrant said. He told police he has known Olds and had been associated with him for around one year.
Fairley told detectives that Olds informed him that Foley, who he reportedly had issues with while in prison together, was on Sigourney Street. He said Olds said he was going to “handle it” that day, April 15.
The three drove to the rear of Sigourney Mews apartments and walked over toward the victim, Fairley told detectives.
Fairley then told police that the three greeted Foley and Young and continued south on Sigourney before he and Olds returned to the victims so that Olds could “handle it.” He said Foley “reached” and Olds produced a firearm and shot him, according to the warrant.
The two then ran south toward the rear of the building on Huntington Street, where Olds handed Fairley the firearm and Fairley gave Olds his black hoodie to wipe down the gun.
Fairley’s attorney, Michael Dwyer, declined to comment for this story. Olds is being represented by a public defender ahead of his arraignment on Aug. 3, but they were not yet assigned as of Wednesday morning.
Mike Mavredakis can be reached at email@example.com.