Staples Grad, Nationally Known Bridge Player, Murdered In Hartford

Victor King earned national renown as a bridge player. At Staples High School, the Class of 1973 graduate (and son of longtime physics teacher Dick King) was a member of the state and FCIAC champion soccer teams.

On Sunday, King was brutally murdered. Suspect Jerry David Thompson — now in custody — used a Samurai sword to cause “severe trauma” to King’s arms, chest, shoulder and neck. He had recent moved into a vacant room in King’s Asylum Avenue home.

Victor King (Photo courtesy of Hartford Courant, from Jim Banks)

The day before, King had called police after being threatened with the sword by Thompson over a rent dispute.

The next day, when friends could not contact King, they called police.

Thompson — who has previous convictions for assault and robbery — has refused to talk to his public defender. He claims he is a “sovereign citizen,” not subject to law.

King worked at Travelers Insurance for more than 20 years. He retired from his IT job in 2018. He was a Grant Life Master bridge player, with 15,298.55 master points, and won a national championship in 2016.

His cousin, Jim Banks, told the Hartford Courant: “He was one of the good guys. One that would never hurt a soul. One that would always reach out and help others. He was pleasant as can be. Always seemed to be happy. He was just a joy to be around.”

9 responses to “Staples Grad, Nationally Known Bridge Player, Murdered In Hartford

  1. Peter Dickstein

    Thanks Dan. This is devastatingly sick and tragic news about the loss of a great guy and a stellar Staples soccer teammate. Victor was soft-spoken, highly intelligent, always ready to laugh, and tenacious. My heart and heartfelt condolences go to all who had the pleasure and honor of knowing him. -Peter Dickstein, Staples ’73

  2. Susan Iseman

    How horrible. I shudder to think I used to live in that neighborhood in the ‘80’s- across from the Mark Twain and Harriet Beecher Stowe houses.

  3. Susan Huppi

    So sorry to hear this. Will be thinking of his family.

  4. Andy Laredo

    OMG, what a shock and even more horrific when you read some of the Hartford media sources. We and others (Paul, Brad, Jeff, etc.) spent lots of time playing poker and bridge in our Staples days. How sad. How tragic. Our condolences to the King family…I think he had a younger brother also…Victor was a great guy!

  5. We grew up with Victor and Kevin and their parents, wonderful family. Such an unbelievable tragedy. We will keep Kevin and the rest of the King family in our thoughts

  6. George Barrett

    It is difficult to comprehend this upsetting news.
    Victor was a terrific teammate… not one to claim the limelight, but gritty and indispensable to our Team.
    Hard to lose another of our brothers
    My heart goes out to his loved ones.

  7. Mark Goldrosen

    This is so sad and tragic. I had the good fortune of spending time with Victor at the Staples soccer reunion in 2018. Victor was a very talented, yet humble and unassuming, teammate, and a very formidable participant in our weekend poker games. Victor always had a sparkle in his eye and a smile on his face. He deserved so much better. My sincere condolences to his family and loved ones.

  8. Victor (and his brother Kevin) were part of us group of kids who grew up on Rocky Ridge Rd/Nappa Rd/Nappa Ln in the late 60’s/early 70’s. I haven’t seen Victor in many, many years, but in the picture he has that same smile. Tragic, and upsetting to hear the details. RIP Victor.