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Victim remembered as police probe fatal stabbing

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New London — A 46-year-old man arrested in connection with a Tuesday stabbing, which left another man dead at a Blackhall Street apartment, appeared in court Wednesday on unrelated charges.

Later Wednesday afternoon, family and friends gathered outside the apartment to remember the victim, Raheeim "Rah" General, with balloons, candles and posters with signatures, hearts and notes of "#1 Dad" and "love you."

Metese Hinds, who police said suffered injuries that were not life-threatening in the Tuesday incident, wore a paper hospital gown and no shoes as he was arraigned before Superior Court Judge Ernest Green Jr. at the Geographical Area 10 courthouse on Broad Street. Hinds had been living most recently at the Homeless Hospitality Center at 325 Huntington St. and was unemployed, according to a court official.

Police had arrested Hinds after the incident on an outstanding warrant charging him with violation of a protective order and held him in lieu of $10,000. Judge Green raised Hinds' bond to $75,000 and said if Hinds was to post the bond, it could only be done in court. The judge continued the case to Nov. 16.

The stabbing occurred about 7:20 p.m. Tuesday and police arrived at 49 Blackhall St. to find two stabbing victims on a second-floor balcony outside Apt. 2N.

City firefighters treated both men at the scene and transported them to Lawrence + Memorial Hospital.

General, 33, with a last known address of 36 Truman St., Apt. D, was pronounced dead at the hospital less than two hours later. As of Wednesday afternoon, the state Office of the Chief Examiner had not yet performed an autopsy to determine the cause and manner of his death.

The details of what occurred on the balcony still were unclear and part of an ongoing investigation by city detectives.

A resident of the multifamily home where the stabbings occurred knows the two men and said they knew each other. The man asked not to be identified. He said he was inside his apartment when he heard banging and yelling outside his door.

Hinds, he said, was clearly agitated, “bugging out” and screaming incoherently. The man said it is his belief that Hinds was on drugs at the time of the incident.

“It’s a shame that a good person is gone by somebody on some stupid drugs,” the man said.

Bystanders in the area at the time of the stabbing, who also declined to give their names, said they had heard screaming and shouting for someone to call 911.

Family of General said he was a father of five children, a good man and someone who had tried to do the right things.

General has four brothers and a sister, said General’s brother Jayme Hunt, who joined a group of more than a dozen people for a memorial outside the 49 Blackhall St. residence.

Candles burned in General’s honor and friends and family wrote notes on a poster board on a retaining wall.

“He helped everybody. He was a standup guy,” Hunt said. “He was a family guy who loved to cook and loved to fish. He never did harm to anybody.”

Hunt said General had custody of two of his kids and they were inseparable.

General’s uncle Paul Nunn said General “would extend his arm to help anybody.”

“He’d give the skin off his teeth. He was a man of loyalty. You look up loyalty in the dictionary and there is his picture,” Nunn said.

Edward Mendez, owner of Deli International, which is next door to where the stabbing took place, said he knew General as a quiet man who stopped into his shop on occasion and often was walking with his children.

Mendez said he had no idea what occurred on the night of the stabbing. “I’ve never seen him fight with (anybody),” he said.

Wade Hyslop Jr., pastor of the Trinity Missionary Baptist Church across the street, was outside his church Wednesday afternoon, watching as some unidentified people shared hugs near the crime scene.

“I think it’s an isolated incident, something people in the neighborhood should not be alarmed about. It’s been pretty quiet around here,” Hyslop said.

Hyslop said he did not know General but had heard someone describe General as the man who had helped him get off of drugs and turn his life around.

Hinds was wanted on a violation of a protective order charge stemming from a domestic incident in January. According to a court document in that case, Hinds repeatedly was knocking on the door of an unidentified New London woman, who said she was a former "buddy" of Hinds but who had since obtained a protective order that prohibited him from having contact with her.

Hinds, who a bail commissioner said suffers from substance abuse issues, has previous convictions for assault, failure to appear in court and interfering with police, according to court records. He has lived in Connecticut for 17 years and has a previous assault conviction in New Jersey, according to the bail commissioner's report.

General also was on the court docket Wednesday, having been charged three times over the past year with breach of peace and other charges. His attorney, Linda J. Sullivan, said she was saddened to learn of his death overnight but declined to comment further. The judge dismissed all of General's outstanding charges, since he is deceased.

Anyone with information concerning the incident Tuesday night is asked to contact New London police detectives at (860) 447-1481 or send anonymous information to New London Tips 411 by texting NLPDTip and the information to Tip411 (847411).

Day Staff Writer Amanda Hutchinson contributed to this report.

g.smith@theday.com

k.florin@theday.com

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