Chief State’s Attorney’s Meeting

Minutes of the Meeting of October 22, 2012

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

The meeting was called to order at 12:44 p.m. by Chief State’s Attorney Kevin T. Kane.

Also in attendance were: State’s Attorneys Michael Dearington (New Haven); Patricia M. Froehlich (Windham); Gail P. Hardy (Hartford); Maureen Platt (Waterbury); Peter A. McShane (Middlesex); David Shepack (Litchfield); John C. Smriga (Fairfield); Deputy Chief State’s Attorney John J. Russotto; Supervisory Assistant State’s Attorney James Bernardi (Stamford-Norwalk); Senior Assistant State’s Attorney Charles M. Stango (Ansonia-Milford); and Deputy Assistant State’s Attorney Sean McGuiness (Danbury).

Also present: Executive Assistant State’s Attorney Brian Austin, Jr., Division of Criminal Justice Communications Officer Mark A. Dupuis, and legislative liaison Wilfred Blanchette.

State’s Attorney Shepack made a motion to approve the minutes of the September 17, 2012, meeting. The motion was seconded by State’s Attorney Hardy and approved unanimously.

Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Russotto reported that budget expansion options must be submitted to the Office of Policy and Management by October 26, 2012.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane announced that he has appointed Robert J. Hughes as Chief Inspector for the Shooting Task Forces/Cold Case Squads Bureau. The State’s Attorneys were encouraged to consider how to work with police departments and other agencies in their Judicial Districts to deal with urban violence as is being done in Hartford, New Haven and New Britain.

Wilfred Blanchette reported on the Division’s preparations for the 2013 legislative session. One priority will be reform of the investigatory grand jury system to facilitate its use in the investigation of urban violence. A draft of the bill will be circulated.

State’s Attorney Platt reported that the Management Committee is developing a self-evaluation form to be completed by employees prior to their formal evaluation. The committee is asking the State’s Attorneys for their input on a Division of Criminal Justice ethics policy. A memorandum on employee schedules was distributed.

State’s Attorney Froehlich reported on behalf of the Training Committee. The committee is examining the format and topics for the annual prosecutor training program in June 2013. There will be a management training program for all State’s Attorneys and Supervisory Assistant State’s Attorneys on December 10, 2012, at the Courtyard by Marriott in Cromwell. The program is mandatory for supervisors unless excused by the State’s Attorney.

Brian Austin reported that the Connecticut Sentencing Commission is examining drug-free school zone laws at the request of the Co-Chairs of the General Assembly’s Judiciary Committee. The Sentencing Commission will hold a public hearing on November 8, 2012. The State’s Attorneys are invited to submit their input prior to the hearing.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane and State’s Attorney Shepack reported on the Sentencing Commission deliberations on the sentencing of certain juvenile offenders in light of the United States Supreme Court rulings in Graham and Miller. Concern was expressed about the concept of granting parole retroactively in murder cases where sentences were imposed and the victims and their relatives had the clear understanding that there would be no parole.

State’s Attorney Froehlich invited the State’s Attorneys to attend a “Raising the Bar” bench-bar symposium sponsored by the Middlesex, New London and Windham County bar associations on November 2, 2012, in Middletown.

State’s Attorney Shepack made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 2:05 p.m. The motion was seconded by State’s Attorney Smriga and passed unanimously.