Meriden police confirm homicide and suicide connected, but motive unclear

Meriden police confirm homicide and suicide connected, but motive unclear

Record-Journal


MERIDEN — Police say an ongoing investigation into the Sept. 1 homicide of a 20-year-old woman on Britannia Street indicates she was killed by a man who committed suicide by running into traffic on Interstate 691 that same night.

Police responded to the two incidents within a short period. A man was struck and killed by a vehicle on Interstate 691 westbound near Exit 8. He was later identified as Ross Coughlin, 31. His obituary states he was from Plainville, but police have said he was homeless. An investigation about the same time that night led police to 109 Britannia St., where they discovered the body of Sara Rose Magnanini, 20. Magnanini’s death has been ruled a homicide. She died from blunt impact injury to the head and sharp force injury to the neck, according to the medical examiner’s office.

Police previously said they believed Coughlin committed suicide by running into traffic on the highway, and that the two incidents were connected.

On Thursday, Detective Lt. Steve Burstein confirmed the incidents were connected.

“The investigation and evidence has shown that they are connected and we are awaiting the results of forensic tests for further information,” Burstein wrote in an email.

Magnanini, who lived in Southington, was visiting Coughlin in Meriden, according to Burstein. The two were social acquaintances, he added.

Burstein said the investigation is “strongly showing” that Coughlin killed Magnanini, adding that the department is still waiting for results of forensic tests. A motive hasn’t been determined.

“We are still looking into that,” Burstein said.

ltauss@record-journal.com 203-317-2231 Twitter: @LeighTaussRJ


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