Press Releases


Jorden Rudel Sentenced in 2021 Murder of Rondell Atkinson in Woodbridge


(New Haven, CT) – John P. Doyle, Jr., State’s Attorney for the New Haven Judicial District, announced that the Honorable Gerald L. Harmon today sentenced Jorden Rudel, age 27, of New Haven, to 35 years in prison for his role in the 2021 murder of Rondell Atkinson in Woodbridge.

Rudel pleaded guilty in New Haven Superior Court to a charge of Felony Murder in violation of Connecticut General Statutes § 53a-54c. The plea followed an investigation by numerous law enforcement agencies that culminated in a trial of Rudel’s co-defendant, Rickey Traynham, in May of 2023. Evidence presented at Traynham’s trial established that Rudel confessed to multiple family members that he was involved in the robbery and fatal shooting of Atkinson, age 33, of West Haven, at the Pease Road Playground in Woodbridge on June 7, 2021. A Superior Court jury on May 30, 2023 found Traynham guilty of the murder of Atkinson and he was sentenced by the Honorable Elpedio N. Vitale on August 4, 2023 to 80 years in prison. Traynham was found in possession of the two murder weapons when police arrested him on July 11, 2021.

The case was investigated by the Woodbridge Police Department and the Connecticut State Police. The case was prosecuted by Supervisory Assistant State’s Attorney Seth R. Garbarsky and Assistant State’s Attorney Gregory L. Borrelli, with assistance from Inspector Michael Mastropetre.

“We are grateful to the Woodbridge Police Department, Connecticut State Police, and Division of Scientific Services for their tireless work on this investigation,” State’s Attorney Doyle said. “We appreciate all of Rondell’s family and friends who showed up at Rudel’s sentencing today to let the court know of the positive impact Rondell’s life had on his community and how much he will be missed. Although Rondell can never be replaced, we hope the sentences of these two defendants have brought a sense of justice and closure to all of those impacted.”