State Police make arrest in highway exit ramp murder on Route 8/25 connector

An arrest has been made in a case that appears to involve two drivers getting into a physical confrontation on an exit ramp of the Route 8/25 connector. One man died from a stab wound that apparently was sustained during the incident.

Anthony Espinal, 36, of 349 Hawley Ave., Bridgeport, was charged with murder on Dec. 23 and held on $250,000 bond.

State Police said Espinal was taken into custody at Troop G in Bridgeport without incident. He has an initial court appearance on Wednesday, Dec. 24.

The State Police applied for an arrest warrant from state Superior Court to charge Espinal after the incident, which occurred on the Exit 5 southbound off-ramp (Boston Avenue/North Avenue) on the night of Thursday, Dec. 18.

Cause of death determined

Bryant Kelly, 26, was found badly injured at the scene and taken to St. Vincent’s Medical Center, where he died a short time later. The Chief State’s Medical Examiner Office determined the cause of death was a stab wound.

Detectives from the State Police Western District Major Crime Squad conducted the criminal investigation.

“State Police detectives documented the crime scene, and secured physical and forensic evidence,” according to a State Police release. “Witnesses were interviewed and provided some detail of this event.”

Walking aggressively toward each other

The incident occurred at slightly past 11 p.m. on the southbound Exit 5 off-ramp in Bridgeport.

At about 11:20 p.m., State Police Troop G received a 9-1-1 call from a witness who stated that two people were outside their vehicles on the exit ramp. The individuals were walking toward each other in an aggressive manner, according to the caller.

Immediately after this 9-1-1 call, troopers received another 9-1-1 call from one of the people involved in the altercation. This individual stated that he was actively involved in an altercation with another male and he requested State Police response.

Scuffle overheard on phone

A scuffle was overheard on the phone and the 9-1-1 call was then disconnected. This male caller then called State Police 9-1-1 back and stated he had retreated to the corner of Lindley Street and Capitol Avenue, a short distance from the altercation.

Bridgeport police officers and state troopers arrived at that location and secured the man and his vehicle. Troopers also arrived at the scene of the altercation on the off-ramp, where a another male — later identified as Bryant Kelly — was severely injured.

Troopers provided emergency care at this scene and the male subject was transported by ambulance to St. Vincent’s Medical Center, where shortly later he was pronounced dead.

Providing information

State Police have asked anyone who may have driven pass this scene or observed anything just prior to, or during, this altercation to contact them at 203-696-2500.

All calls received will be kept in strict confidence, they said.