Man arrested in connection to 2016 homicide of Enfield woman

ENFIELD -- Enfield Police arrested 33-year-old Howard Bowen in connection to the death of 62 year old Pamela Cote. Cote’s body was found in a wooded area behind her apartment complex back in October 2016.  Bowen now faces murder charges.

“Bowen was located in East Hartford and questioned about the death of Pamela Cote. Investigators were able to establish probable cause charging Howard Bowen with the death of Pamela Cote,” said police.

According to court documents obtained by FOX61, police interviewed several people in connection with Bowen in their 10 month long investigation into this case.

Throughout the investigation it was discovered that Bowen and Cote knew each other prior to her death. Police emphasized this was not a random home invasion or act of violence, but rather an isolated incident in which the public was never in any danger.

Cote’s death was ruled a homicide a few months after her body was discovered in the woods behind 25 Windsor Court in Enfield.

“There were suspicious circumstances surrounding that [Cote’s death], immediately we started an investigation,” Enfield police Chief Carl Sferrazza said. There had been a silver alert issued for Cote shortly before her body was discovered, after a Meals on Wheels driver reported she was not answering the front door.

The police affidavit revealed the details of the day police initially entered her apartment last fall for a well-being check. Upon entry police found the front door barricaded closed with a chair forced under door knob and two men hiding in her closet, but no sign of Cote.  Police said one of the two men was Bowen.

The second man was later brought in for several rounds of questioning by police. In one of the sessions he asked to speak to police outside without a tape recording.  That’s when he reportedly admitted to police he saw Bowen put a pillow over Cote’s face until she died, and described hearing the victim call out, “help me!”

Bowen was later tracked down in East Hartford. He too was brought in for questioning and denied any knowledge or connection to Cote’s death.

Sferrazza said he hopes Bowen’s arrest will help give some kind of closure to the victim’s family. He added, “It’s never time to celebrate because we have a victim that’s not with us anymore we feel for the family of that victim always.”

Police also alluded to a possible second arrest that could come in this case.

“I won’t definitively say either way whether we’re closed or not because we still have to look at exactly the role any other person may have put whether it be before the crime or after,” Sferrazza said.

Cote was known as disabled, as she used a walker or motorized scooter to get around.

Police said Bowen was brought to Enfield Superior Court Friday morning to be arraigned from the Walker Correctional Facility where he is incarcerated on an unrelated robbery charge. He is now being held on $1,000,000 bond.