Two Bloomfield brothers are facing murder and conspiracy charges in the death of an eyewitness who planned to testify against one of the brothers in a murder trial.
A judge found probable cause Wednesday to charge Anthony Thompson, 27, and Earl Thompson, 30, with the murder last June of Asher Glace, a 21-year-old nurse's aide. She had told authorities she saw Anthony Thompson gun down three people outside a Hartford nightclub in 2005.
One of the victims shot outside the Cleveland Cafe - O'Neil Robinson - died, and Anthony Thompson was charged with his murder.
Two years later, but before Anthony Thompson went to trial, Glace's body was found inside a car in her mother's Authorities allege Anthony Thompson orchestrated Glace's murder from a Suffield jail cell where he was being held and asked his brother to "take care" of the witness.
Anthony Thompson was found guilty last week of killing Robinson, a father of 12, and is scheduled to be sentenced in that case in August.
In Hartford Superior Court Wednesday, Judge Carl Taylor ordered each of the Thompsons held with bail set at $5 million on charges of accessory to commit murder, conspiracy to commit murder and murder. Both already were jailed on other charges.
According to court documents, one of Anthony Thompson's former cellmates at MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution told authorities that Anthony told him that his brother was "getting rid of" Glace.
Cold-case investigators from the Office of the Chief State's Attorney examined records of telephone calls Anthony Thompson made from prison and records of a cellphone used by Earl Thompson.
Earl Thompson also drew attention to himself when he offered to be an informant for Hartford narcotics detectives in exchange for unrestricted visits to his brother in prison, court papers show.
In court Wednesday, defense attorneys Walter Hussey and Gerald M. Beaudoin argued that the allegations against the Thompsons were weak.
Hussey, who is representing Anthony Thompson, challenged the credibility of the state's key evidence - the statement by the former cellmate.
"The strength of the state's case is an individual who is incarcerated and serving 55 years," Hussey said. "There is no physical evidence linking my client to the crime. This is based upon a jailhouse conversation."
According to the warrant for Anthony Thompson's arrest, the inmate said in a sworn statement to police that he shared a prison cell with Anthony Thompson in May and June 2005. He said Thompson discussed his involvement in the murder of Robinson, and Thompson said his brother Earl, known on the street as "Biggs," had "a hit list" of witnesses' names.
"They would be killed by his brother," the cellmate told authorities.
When interviewed by police, Earl Thompson said initially that he was at home in bed with his girlfriend when Glace was killed. But when pressed, he told investigators that he knew why they wanted to see him. He said, "something to do with the girl that passed away."