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Attorney says homicide weakened state's case in June 11 shooting

Published September 17. 2013 2:00PM   Updated September 17. 2013 8:27PM

The attorney for a man accused in a June 11 shooting in New London argued for a reduction in Jamel J. McIntosh’s bond Tuesday morning in Superior Court because the intended target of the shooting, Jesus Pinero, has since been fatally shot by somebody else.

“There’s no more victim,” argued attorney John P. Pickering on behalf of McIntosh, 36, of Norwich. “Unfortunately, the person was gunned down in the streets. That weakens the state’s case considerably.”

Judge Hillary B. Strackbein kept McIntosh’s bonds at $275,000 after prosecutor Stephen M. Carney said he would still take the case to trial based on other evidence. Strackbein said she wants to expedite the case under the circumstances.

McIntosh has been held in lieu of $275,000 since New London police charged him with firing at Pinero on June 11 outside the Universal Food Store in the Hodges Square neighborhood. Pinero, 29, of New London, was not injured in that incident but was fatally shot on Aug. 29 in the area of Connecticut Avenue and Prest Street. Police have not made any arrests but said the homicide investigation is continuing.

In building a case against McIntosh, the police had used video surveillance from Hodges Square Wine & Spirits and information from the Department of Adult Probation, which was monitoring McIntosh via GPS. The police also spoke with a female witness who was standing with Pinero when the shooting occurred.

McIntosh is charged with criminal attempt to commit first-degree assault, criminal possession of a firearm, altering a serial number on a firearm, first-degree reckless endangerment, unlawful discharge of a firearm, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and carrying a pistol without a permit.

He had been sentenced in February 2011 to four years in prison, suspended after 18 months served, followed by two years probation for numerous criminal charges, including possession of narcotics, third-degree assault and violation of a protective order.

Pickering argued Tuesday that the quality of the liquor store video is bad and never shows a person’s face and a gun in the same frame. He said electronic monitoring only places someone in the general area rather than pinpoint their whereabouts and that the witness to the June 11 shooting is unreliable.

Based on the state’s assurances, Strackbein said she saw no reason to lower the bond.

“I think we need to go forward with a (plea) offer or a trial,” she said, continuing the case to Oct. 17.

k.florin@theday.com

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