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Press Release

Hartford Man Pleads Guilty to Carjacking Offense

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Connecticut

John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that ARNO SMITH, 57, of Hartford, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to a federal robbery offense connected to a carjacking in 2018.

According to court documents and statements made in court, at approximately 11:00 p.m. on July 26, 2018, Smith approached a woman who was sitting in her 2006 Honda in a Hartford parking lot and pressed what the woman believed to be a gun against her neck.  Smith then grabbed the victim’s purse and the victim got out of the car.  Smith pointed the weapon at the victim, told her to walk away, and then drove away in the car.

After the robbery, Smith attempted to use the victim’s credit card at two locations in Bristol.

The investigation also revealed that Smith robbed the Price Chopper supermarket located at 121 Farmington Avenue in Bristol on July 27; the Price Chopper supermarket located at 410 Queen Street in Southington on September 4; the U-Haul Moving and Storage located at 755 Capitol Avenue in Hartford on September 5; the Home Depot located at 55 Granby Street in Bloomfield on September 15; the Lowe’s Home Improvement located at 31 Buckland Hills Drive in South Windsor on September 16; the Days Inn located at 185 Ella Grasso Turnpike in Windsor Locks on September 18, 2018, and the U-Haul Moving and Storage located at 3197 Main Street in Hartford on September 19.

Smith was arrested on state charges on September 20, 2018.  He was sitting in the victim’s car at the time of his arrest.

Smith pleaded guilty to one count of Hobbs Act robbery, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years.  A sentencing date is not scheduled.

Smith has been detained since his arrest.

This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Violent Crimes Task Force and the Hartford, Bristol, Southington, Bloomfield, South Windsor, Windsor Locks, Farmington and West Hartford Police Departments.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael J. Gustafson.

This prosecution has been brought through Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make neighborhoods safer for everyone.

Updated October 6, 2020

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Violent Crime