Connecticut Man Pleads Guilty In Fatal Shooting of Niece

January 13, 2020 - 4:59 pm

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut man pleaded guilty Monday to fatally shooting his niece and wounding her boyfriend, just before his murder trial was scheduled to start.

Michael Catchings, 23, of Stratford, had faced a murder charge in the August 2017 death of Raenetta Catchings, but under a plea deal pleaded guilty in Superior Court in Bridgeport to first-degree manslaughter with a firearm and assault, the Connecticut Post reported.

He faces 25 years in prison at sentencing on March 13.

The prosecutor told the judge that the family did not want the suspect prosecuted for murder.

Catchings shot Raenetta Catchings, 27, at a family birthday party during an argument involving the woman and her boyfriend.

Witnesses told police that Michael and Raenetta Catchings were as close as brother and sister, and Michael Catchings intervened to protect his niece but accidentally shot her.

Raenetta Catchings suffered a gunshot wound to the chest and died at the hospital.