Chief State’s Attorney’s Meeting

Minutes of the Meeting of March 15, 2015
Office of the Chief State’s Attorney
Rocky Hill, Connecticut

The meeting was called to order at 12:41 p.m. by Chief State’s Attorney Kevin T. Kane.

In attendance were: Deputy Chief State’s Attorneys Leonard C. Boyle and John Russotto; State’s Attorneys David Cohen (Stamford-Norwalk), Michael Dearington (New Haven), Gail P. Hardy (Hartford), Kevin D. Lawlor (Ansonia-Milford), Peter A. McShane (Middlesex), Maureen Platt (Waterbury), Brian Preleski (New Britain), Michael L. Regan (New London), Stephen J. Sedensky III (Danbury), David Shepack (Litchfield) and John Smriga (Fairfield); and Senior Assistant State’s Attorney Catherine Brannelly Austin (Waterbury).

Also present: Executive Assistant State’s Attorney Brian Austin, Jr., and Communications and Legislative Specialist Mark A. Dupuis.

State’s Attorney Sedensky made a motion to approve the minutes of the February 9, 2015, meeting. The motion was seconded by State’s Attorney Lawlor and passed unanimously.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane reported that guest state Victim Advocate Natasha M. Pierre would be unable to attend to due to illness.

Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Russotto reported that the Division delivered its budget presentation at a public hearing before the General Assembly’s Joint Committee on Appropriations and a subsequent meeting of the Judicial and Corrections subcommittee. All hiring remains on hold pending resolution of the 2015-17 biennial budget.

Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Boyle introduced Sergeant Mark Davison from the Connecticut State Police Western District Major Crime Squad who gave a presentation on blood spatter analysis. State’s Attorneys were advised to contact the Sergeant if they have cases where they believe such analysis would be valuable.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane reported on legislation pending in the General Assembly. It was unanimously agreed that the Division will adopt an official policy that the Chief State’s Attorney will (1) appoint a State’s Attorney from a Judicial District other than where the incident occurred to conduct any investigation required pursuant to Section 51-277a of the General Statutes, and (2) require that the State’s Attorney be notified immediately in the event of the death of any person in police custody. Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Boyle will draft the language for the policy.

State’s Attorney Platt reported on concerns involving the disclosure of the names of victims of sexual assault in certain reports from the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP) Forensic Science Laboratory. It was agreed that names will not be used and that Chief State’s Attorney Kane will so notify the laboratory.

Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Boyle distributed a memorandum concerning the registration of motor vehicles in Maine by Connecticut residents. The memorandum will be distributed to the Supervisory Assistant State’s Attorneys at all Geographical Area locations.

State’s Attorney Preleski reported concerns regarding the Board of Pardons and Paroles:

  • the State’s Attorneys are not being given timely notice of pardon/parole hearings;
  • the Board no longer allows the State’s Attorney to be heard at hearings;
  • the Board has changed its policy that convicts who were previously denied parole and told they would never be paroled may now be considered for parole; and
  • the Board will provide information to the State’s Attorney only upon official request pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane has written the Board requesting that the State’s Attorneys be allowed to be heard at Board of Pardons and Paroles hearings.

Executive Assistant State’s Attorney Austin reported on upcoming training. The Annual Professional Development Conference for Prosecutors will include a full day of training on Thursday, June 11, 2015, at Central Connecticut State University. A minimum of four hours also must be offered by each Judicial District on either Wednesday June 10, 2015, or Friday, June 12, 2015. The Division had 96 percent compliance with training requirements last year.

There being no further business, State’s Attorney Cohen made a motion to adjourn the meeting. The motion was seconded by State’s Attorney Shepack and passed unanimously. The meeting was adjourned at 2:32 p.m.