|Re: 12/3/2014 - New Haven Register: Suzanne Jovin investigators seek witness near murder scene|
Suzanne Jovin investigators seek witness near murder scene
Eli Whitney Luxury Apartments
By Randall Beach, New Haven Register
POSTED: 12/03/14, 5:45 PM EST | UPDATED: 30 SECS AGO
NEW HAVEN >> When investigators of the Suzanne Jovin slaying host their Thursday night forum at Wilbur Cross High School, one goal will be to seek witnesses to a couple arguing outside an apartment building near where Jovin’s body was found.
The state’s cold case unit representatives timed the public meeting to coincide with the Dec. 4, 1998 anniversary of Jovin’s death. It is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.
Jovin, 21, was a Yale senior, majoring in political science and international studies. Authorities aren’t sure where she was killed but she was discovered mortally wounded, suffering from 17 stab wounds, on East Rock Road at about 9:55 p.m.
Now, 16 years later, authorities want to verify the account of a witness who saw a man and woman in a heated argument outside the Eli Whitney Luxury Apartments at 750 Whitney Ave. That building is at the corner of East Rock Road.
“We have a witness who saw the argument in front of the apartment building,” said John T. Edwards, chief inspector in the office of Chief State’s Attorney Kevin T. Kane.
“A white couple came out the front door and walked through the two people who were arguing,” Edwards said, quoting the witness’ account.
In addition to looking for that “white couple,” Edwards said, “We’re seeking anybody who was at 750 Whitney and might have overheard this.” He said the argument occurred at about 9:30 to 9:40 p.m.
On two recent weekends, high school volunteers distributed leaflets in the East Rock neighborhood, urging residents to come to the meeting “to discuss any information from the night of Dec. 4, 1998.”
“We are asking for a renewed commitment by the public to assist in solving the homicide of Suzanne Jovin,” the leaflet stated. “We are interested in all available information or leads, no matter how remote or trivial that information may seem.”
Those who cannot come to the meeting can call the Jovin investigation team tip line: 1-866-623-8058. The email address is email@example.com. The U.S. Mail address is: Cold Case Unit, P.O. Box 962, Rocky Hill, CT 06067.
The state has offered a $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the murderer or murderers. Yale University has pledged an additional $100,000 to that reward fund.
The leaflet notes that on the night Jovin was killed, a female passenger took a taxi from the area of Blatchley Avenue to Newhallville at about 9:30 p.m. Investigators think this passenger could be a witness to the murder and they want to find her.
In addition, the leaflet stated that while the couple who found Jovin called 911, a person driving past the scene was overheard by the police dispatcher asking the couple if they needed help. Investigators are also trying to find that witness.
The leaflet noted that on the night Jovin died, she was planning to retrieve from another student Jovin’s study materials for the Graduate Records Examination. “That person is not considered a suspect but may know something about Suzanne’s plans that night.” Investigators want to find that former student.
Authorities at the public meeting are not expected to provide many specific details of their work, as the investigation obviously is ongoing and all information is sensitive. But Edwards said, “We’re making good progress. We will give a progress report.”
“People have come forward and we’re re-interviewing other people,” he said. “We’ve gotten some new information.”
During the forum, Edwards said, “We can talk about the timeline” of Jovin’s final hour. That night she had volunteered at the Best Buddies group gathering at Trinity Lutheran Church on Orange Street. Then she went back to her apartment on Park Street and from there, she walked to Yale’s Phelps Gate, where she returned the keys to the Yale vehicle she had borrowed for the gathering.
She was last seen leaving Phelps Gate at about 9:25 p.m.
What happened after that?
Call Randall Beach at 203-680-9345.