BRIDGEPORT - Bridgeport police say they have identified an 18-year-old Stamford man as a key witness in the city's sixth murder of the year.

Police say Jeremy Middleton, of Stamford, knows exactly who killed his longtime friend, 18-year-old Shane Slinksy. They say Middleton is intimately acquainted with the details of Slinksy's murder.

They are urging him to come forward and help investigators.

"He just refuses to speak with us about this incident and to help bring closure to this case for the family," says Bridgeport Police Capt. Brian Fitzgerald.

Officials say Slinksy was shot to death in Bridgeport back on Aug. 27.

"An innocent 18-year-old, harmless, defenseless kid lost his life and we want to know why," says Jeffery Slinksy, the victim's uncle.

Police say if Middleton is concerned about his safety then they will ensure the state's attorney's office gets him into a witness protection program.