Chief State’s Attorney’s Meeting

Minutes of the Meeting of September 19, 2011

Office of the Chief State’s Attorney
Rocky Hill, Connecticut

The meeting was called to order at 12:53 p.m. by Chief State’s Attorney Kevin T. Kane.

Also in attendance were: Deputy Chief State’s Attorneys Leonard C. Boyle (Operations) and John J. Russotto (Personnel, Finance and Administration); State’s Attorneys David I. Cohen (Stamford-Norwalk), Patricia M. Froehlich (Windham), Matthew C. Gedansky (Tolland), Kevin D. Lawlor (Ansonia-Milford), Timothy J. Liston (Middlesex), Maureen Platt (Waterbury), Michael L. Regan (New London), David Shepack (Litchfield) and John Smriga (Fairfield); Supervisory Assistant State’s Attorneys Warren Murray (Danbury) and Senior Assistant State’s Attorneys Edward Narus (Hartford) and Brian Preleski (New Britain).

Also present: Executive Assistant State’s Attorneys Brian Austin, Jr., and Michael A. Gailor and Division of Criminal Justice (DCJ) Communications Officer Mark A. Dupuis.

State’s Attorney Lawlor made a motion, seconded by State’s Attorney Froehlich, to accept the minutes of the August 29, 2011, meeting. The motion passed unanimously.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane reported that the Division’s meeting with the Office of Policy and Management (OPM) regarding budget issues has been postponed until Thursday, September 22, 2011. There are currently 13 retirements anticipated to be effective October 1, 2011, reducing the Division’s position total from 539 in 2009 to 460 as of October 1. Additional reductions have resulted in a projected deficiency of $1.4 million (with pending retirements included) for the current fiscal year. There was discussion of the continued negative impact of budget and staff reductions on the Division’s ability to fulfill its mission. It was noted that statistics showing a decline in the rates of certain types of crime do not accurately reflect the demands that remain on the Division.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane expects to meet with Erika Tindill, Chair of the Board of Pardons and Paroles, to discuss the Division’s role in the parole process. It was noted again that the State’s Attorneys need more notice of parole matters where their input is requested.

Executive Assistant State’s Attorney Austin asked that each Judicial District send one employee to the October 14, 2011, training program on “Identifying the Defendant with Mental Illness: How Collaboration Can Improve Outcomes and Reduce Recidivism.” A similar offering at the Annual Prosecutor Training was well received.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane reported on the first meeting of the working group appointed by Governor Dannel P. Malloy concerning the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection Forensic Science Laboratory. The group is focusing on three areas: (1) identifying additional resources for the lab; (2) prioritizing and reducing the lab’s workload; and (3) the administrative structure of the lab. The State’s Attorneys were advised that police departments should be alerted to the fact that a significant number of cases involve misdemeanor charges where the statute of limitations may expire before testing can be done by the lab.

State’s Attorney Shepack reported on the initial meeting of the Sentencing Commission. Additional volunteers may be needed from the Division of Criminal Justice to serve on various subcommittees the commission may establish.

The meeting adjourned at 2 p.m. on a motion by State’s Attorney Cohen, seconded by State’s Attorney Lawlor, and approved without opposition.