The man who stabbed two Meriden teenagers outside Midstate Medical Center last month had been attacked by the teens in a random encounter on Kensington Avenue just moments before, according to new information from the Meriden Police Department.
One of the teens, 15-year-old DeAndre Felton, died from fatal injuries sustained in the 9:30 p.m. stabbing on Sept. 21.
The other, a 13-year-old city teen, still remains hospitalized with injuries, police said.
The Police Investigation So Far
In a lengthy news release issued Wednesday morning, Meriden police explain how the investigation points to both Felton and the other teenager as the aggressors in the stabbing incident.
The teens were hanging out with a group of friends at the Westfield Shopping Town Plaza in Meriden Square on Lewis Street just before the encounter.
When the mall closed, the group gathered in the parking lot, at which point Felton and the 13-year-old, whom the witnesses claimed were both “high,” made statements that they wanted to “look for trouble” and “beat someone up,” the news release said.
During a walk through the pedestrian access gate at a Midstate parking lot, Felton and the other teen broke away from the group and ran toward a man who was walking east on Kensington Avenue.
Police said the two teens jumped the man and, moments later, Felton and the 13-year-old teen ran back to the group at which point they collapsed from stab wounds. The witnesses told police they didn’t know this attack was going to happen.
It was at this point that Meriden police got a 911 call from an anonymous female caller reporting that two teens were stabbed on Kensington Avenue.
Police Speak to the Alleged Stabber
The male pedestrian, who police did not name, ran away from the two teens in an opposite direction after the stabbing, police said.
Police and emergency responders from Midstate arrived shortly thereafter and rushed both Felton and the other teen to the nearby hospital. Felton died of his injuries that night, while the 13-year-old was rushed to Hartford Hospital where he still is currently.
Investigators collected tangible evidence from the scene, including video surveillance footage, police said. That evidence helped police identify a “person of interest” within 22 hours of the incident, the news release said.
The man cooperated with police, giving a statement that was consistent with the other teen witnesses’ accounts, and handing over the pocketknife that was used in the stabbing, police said.
“He was not aware that he had inflicted a mortal injury to one of his attackers,” the news release said. “He became visibly shaken and upset when he learned that DeAndre Felton had died.”
The Ongoing Investigation
According to the news release, police chose to hold off on releasing this information out of respect of the families’ right to mourn and on the advice of community leaders.
“Many within our community are deeply affected by this incident,” police said. “We have taken these measures so that all members of the Meriden community will remain confident that all the Department’s efforts are intended to ensure a complete and impartial investigation.”
Meriden police have been in contact with the Office of the New Haven State’s Attorney since early in this investigation.
They said all of the evidence gathered and evaluated — including results from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner — will be forwarded to the state’s attorney’s office for a “comprehensive prosecutorial review and legal determination as to the propriety and specifics of what criminal charges may be filed.”