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Newington Police Charge Husband With Wife's Killing

Police in Newington charged a Gilbert Road man with murder Thursday for the shotgun killing of his wife Sept. 21.

Michael C. Torbicki Jr. was held in lieu of $2 million and was to be arraigned Friday in Superior Court in New Britain. He has been hospitalized since the incident after, police say, he shot himself in the face with the same pump action shotgun he used to shoot his wife.

Patricia Torbicki was found covered in blood in the doorway of her house shortly before 9 a.m. on Sept. 21. A neighbor who called 911 said there was a woman with blood all over her in the doorway. “I think she’s dead,” the caller said.

The first responding officer could see that Patricia Torbicki suffered a fatal shotgun wound to the head. Police did not immediately charge into the house because they did not know where Michael Torbicki was and because they knew he had guns in the house.

The Newington police SWAT team eventually entered the house and found Michael Torbicki in the living room with a shotgun wound to the face. A 16-gauge shotgun was found lying near him. He was taken to Hartford Hospital for treatment.

Police said their investigation determined that Patricia Torbicki was in her night clothing and in the master bedroom when she was shot in the right leg. A blood trail through the house to the front door led police to believe that she was running to escape when she was shot a second time, killing her.

Friends and family told police that the Torbickis were having marital problems and that Patricia Torbicki was so concerned about her husband’s conduct that she sent the couple’s 13-year-old son to stay with her parents. Police learned that Patricia Torbicki left the house in late August, but returned around Sept. 18 to make clear that she was not abandoning the home in case the issue arose during a divorce proceeding.

A family member told police that Patricia Torbicki worked to patch the marriage up, but that Michael Torbicki refused to seek medical treatment for alcoholism, depression and other mental health issues. The family member said Patricia Torbicki told her husband that if he would not get help, he’d have to leave. The same family member said Michael Torbicki planned to file for divorce, according to police. No divorce case was filed.

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