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May 3, 2019

Statement on Video Release of Anthony Vega Cruz’s Shooting

Hartford State’s Attorney Gail Hardy today released video footage of the April 20th shooting of 18 year old Anthony “Chulo” Jose Vega Cruz, by Wethersfield Police Officer Layau Eulizier Jr. on the Silas Deane Highway.

We were devastated as we watch the series of three videos that show the actions of the officers involved in the initial traffic stop, the chase and the shooting.  The footage highlights the reckless nature of the entire incident ending in Anthony Vega Cruz’s murder.

The Wethersfield Police Department and the culture that’s been fostered has a history.  Since 2015, the Connecticut Racial Profiling Prohibition Project has published an annual report on departments with significant racial disparities. The Wethersfield Police Department has been identified with significant racial disparities in every report produced.

Wethersfield’s border patrol on the town line between Wethersfield and Hartford has long been the place where the Wethersfield Police Department have performed the suburban version of stop and frisk: the disproportionate stopping of black/brown drivers for pretext stops at a much higher rate than any other law enforcement agencies across the state.

Instances like this shooting in Wethersfield was inevitable.  And here we are left with an egregious act of police brutality occurring in the name of democracy.

We must put an end to this practice.

Moral Monday CT pledges our support to fight for justice in this case.

Not one more!!!

Lastly, our hearts go out to Chulo’s family, others dear and near to him who loved him, the community he was nurtured in and our broader community as we all mourn his loss.

Moral Monday CT