The mission of the Connecticut Judicial Branch is to serve the interests of justice and the public by resolving matters brought before it in a fair, timely, efficient and open manner.
Recent Opinions

Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=713

SC19902 Order on Motion- In Re Elianah T.-T. ("Following the release of our decision in In re Elianah T.-T., 326 Conn. 614, 165 A.3d 1236 (2017), in which this court concluded that General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) did not authorize the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families (commissioner), to vaccinate a child placed in her temporary custody over the objection of that child's parents, the commissioner moved for reconsideration pursuant to Practice Book § 71-5. In this motion for reconsideration, the commissioner states that, in briefing this case, she should have claimed that General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) should be interpreted in the context of General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98. Specifically, the commissioner contends that the operation of General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) is limited to custody over juveniles who have been adjudicated delinquent, and that General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98 confer broader guardianship authority that permits her to vaccinate minor children in her custody. The commissioner candidly acknowledges that she did not advance her arguments concerning the effect of General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98 until the filing of this motion for reconsideration. As this argument was not previously advanced to this court, we grant the motion for reconsideration, but deny the relief requested.")


Connecticut Law Journal - October 17, 2017

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=712


Criminal Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=705

AC39619State v. Hall-Davis (Murder; conspiracy to commit murder; criminal possession of firearm; "The defendant, Matthew Allen Hall-Davis, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a jury trial, of murder in violation of General Statutes § 53a-54a (a), conspiracy to commit murder in violation of General Statutes §§ 53a-48 (a) and 53a-54a (a), and criminal possession of a firearm in violation of General Statutes § 53a-217 (a) (1). On appeal, he argues that the trial court (1) erred by refusing to give the jury an instruction on defense of others, (2) improperly restricted his closing argument, and (3) gave the jury a faulty and misleading instruction on conspiracy. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC40218State v. Rivera (Motion to correct illegal sentence; "The defendant, Jose Rivera, appeals from the judgment of the trial court dismissing his motion to correct an illegal sentence. We are asked to determine whether our state constitution affords greater protection to juvenile homicide offenders than that provided under the federal constitution. On appeal, the defendant claims that (1) the court erred in dismissing the motion to correct an illegal sentence on the ground that it lacked subject matter jurisdiction, (2) the court erred in dismissing the motion to correct an illegal sentence because the mandatory minimum sentence of twenty-five years of incarceration without the possibility of parole imposed on a juvenile homicide offender is unconstitutional under article first, §§ 8 and 9, of the Connecticut constitution, as it prevented the court from sentencing juveniles to less than twenty-five years of incarceration upon due consideration of the Miller factors and (3) the court committed constitutional error when it accepted the defendant's waiver, through counsel, without a canvass, of his right to a presentence investigation report. We disagree with the defendant and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court dismissing the motion to correct an illegal sentence.")

AC40213State v. Hathaway (Motion to correct illegal sentence; "The defendant, Robert Hathaway, appeals from the judgment of the trial court dismissing his motion to correct an illegal sentence. On appeal, the defendant claims that (1) the court erred in dismissing the motion to correct an illegal sentence on the ground that it lacked subject matter jurisdiction, (2) the court erred in dismissing the motion to correct an illegal sentence because the mandatory minimum sentence of twenty-five years of incarceration without the possibility of parole for murder is unconstitutional under article first, §§ 8 and 9, of the state constitution, as applied to juvenile offenders in that it bars courts from sentencing juveniles to less than twenty-five years upon due considerations of the Miller factors, and (3) the court committed constitutional error when it accepted the defendant's waiver, through counsel, of his right to a presentence investigation report. We addressed these precise issues in State v. Rivera, 177 Conn. App. ___, A.3d ___ (2017), also released today, and our resolution of the defendant's appeal is controlled by our decision in that case. We affirm the judgment of the trial court dismissing the motion to correct an illegal sentence.")

AC38193State v. Thomas (Sexual assault in first degree; unlawful restraint in first degree; false statement in second degree; "The defendant, William B. Thomas, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a jury trial, of one count of sexual assault in the first degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-70 (a) (1), one count of unlawful restraint in the first degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-95 (a), and one count of false statement in the second degree in violation of General Statutes (Rev. to 2011) § 53a-157b (a). On appeal, the defendant claims that (1) the trial court violated his constitutional rights to confrontation and to present a defense by excluding evidence of the victim's prior sexual conduct under General Statutes § 54-86f, commonly known as the rape shield statute; (2) the trial court violated his right to due process by denying his pretrial motion for costs to pay for investigative services necessary to his defense; and (3) the state's closing argument was improper and deprived him of a fair trial. We disagree. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=706

AC38912N759ZD v. Stratford ("In this joint tax appeal, the plaintiffs, David H. Faile, Jr., Paul A. Lange, and N759ZD, LLC (LLC), appeal from the judgments of nonsuit, rendered by the trial court, in favor of the defendant, the town of Stratford (town). They also appeal from the court’s denial of their motions to open the nonsuits. On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the court’s findings that they violated its orders were clearly erroneous, and that, even if we assume, arguendo, that they did violate the orders, the court abused its discretion in rending judgments of nonsuit. We agree with the plaintiffs. Therefore, we reverse the judgments of the trial court.")

AC38853Zhang v. 56 Locust Road, LLC (Quiet title; "Having examined the appellate record and having considered the briefs and the arguments of the parties, we conclude that the judgment of the trial court should be affirmed. The trial court fully and accurately addressed the issues relevant to the parties' appeals and, in its memorandum of decision, set forth a proper statement of both the facts and the applicable law. Any further discussion by this court would serve no useful purpose.
The judgment is affirmed.")

AC38912Faile v. Stratford (Tax appeals; "In this joint tax appeal, the plaintiffs, David H. Faile, Jr., Paul A. Lange, and N759ZD, LLC (LLC), appeal from the judgments of nonsuit, rendered by the trial court, in favor of the defendant, the town of Stratford (town). They also appeal from the court's denial of their motions to open the nonsuits. On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the court's findings that they violated its orders were clearly erroneous, and that, even if we assume, arguendo, that they did violate the orders, the court abused its discretion in rending judgments of nonsuit. We agree with the plaintiffs. Therefore, we reverse the judgments of the trial court.")

  • AC38912 – Lange v. Stratford (see Faile v. Stratford above)


Tort Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=708

AC38704Smith v. Redding (Public nuisance; "In this absolute public nuisance action, the plaintiff, Brandon V. Smith, appeals following a jury trial from the judgment of the trial court rendered in favor of the defendant town of Redding. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the trial court improperly failed: (1) to admit evidence of involuntary subsequent remedial measures; and (2) to instruct the jury on the Redding Zoning Regulations. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Foreclosure Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=707

AC38970Bank of New York Mellon, Trustee v. Mauro ("In this mortgage foreclosure action, the defendants, Jeffrey J. Mauro and Renee A. Mauro, appeal from the judgment rendered by the trial court, Aurigemma, J., in favor of the plaintiff, The Bank of New York Mellon, on: the plaintiff's claim for strict foreclosure as to the defendants' mortgaged property in Killingworth, Connecticut; and the defendants' counterclaims against the plaintiff, seeking damages and equitable relief based upon alleged misrepresentations to them and other alleged misdealings with them concerning the note and mortgage here at issue, both by the plaintiff and by the original lender, America's Wholesale Lender (AWL), which was the plaintiff's predecessor in interest to the note and mortgage. As to the plaintiff's claim for strict foreclosure, the defendants argue that the court erred in basing its judgment for the plaintiff upon its prior, erroneous decision rendering summary judgment for the plaintiff as to the defendants' liability for foreclosure in this action, assertedly without sufficient evidence to establish the absence of any genuine issues of material fact on that issue. As to their counterclaims against the plaintiff, the defendants argue that, to the extent that such counterclaims are based upon the plaintiff's own alleged misdealings with them rather than those of AWL, the court erred in rendering summary judgment for the plaintiff by: (1) ruling that such counterclaims, so narrowed, were not properly pleaded in this action because they have no reasonable nexus to the making, validity, or enforcement of the subject note and mortgage; (2) ruling that one such counterclaim was barred by the applicable statute of limitations; and (3) failing to follow the prior ruling of a different judicial authority, in partially denying a motion to strike, that certain such counterclaims were legally sufficient to state claims upon which relief could be granted. We disagree with the defendants on each of their claims, and thus affirm the judgment of the trial court in its entirety.")


Habeas Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=709

AC39049Williams v. Commissioner of Correction (Denial of petition of writ of habeas corpus; "He claims that the court improperly concluded that he failed to prove that his trial attorney provided ineffective assistance of counsel by failing (1) to challenge the state’s medical evidence by consulting and calling as a witness a medical expert with experience evaluating medical evidence in child sexual abuse cases, and (2) to present the testimony of John Strugar, a neurosurgeon, who performed back surgery on the petitioner in August, 1999. We affirm the judgment of the habeas court.")

AC38597Little v. Commissioner of Correction (Denial of petition for certification to appeal from the judgment of the habeas court; second habeas petition; "He claims that the habeas court (1) abused its discretion by denying his petition for certification to appeal; (2) improperly concluded that his guilty plea to kidnapping in the first degree was knowing, intelligent, and voluntary in light of our Supreme Court’s subsequent reinterpretation of our kidnapping statutes in State v. Salamon, 287 Conn. 509, 949 A.2d 1092 (2008); and (3) improperly concluded that he was not actually innocent of kidnapping in the first degree. We conclude that the habeas court abused its discretion by denying the petition for certification to appeal, but that the habeas court properly denied the petitioner’s second habeas petition. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the habeas court.")


Criminal Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=703

AC39853State v. Stonick (Larceny in sixth degree; illegal use of credit card; "The defendant, Katherine Lee Stonick, appeals from the judgment of the trial court noting a nolle prosequi to charges then pending against her of larceny in in the sixth degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-125b and illegal use of a credit card in violation of General Statutes § 53a-128d without ruling on her request that the charges be dismissed the pursuant to General Statutes § 54-56b. The nolled charges against the defendant stemmed from an incident that allegedly occurred on August 17, 2016, in which the defendant, while allegedly out on a date with the complainant, was accused of using the complainant’s debit card, without his knowledge or permission, to purchase a $300 gift card to the restaurant at which they were dining.

The defendant argues, and the state concedes, that the court erred in noting the nolle over the objection of the defendant without ruling on her request for a dismissal of the nolled charges or requiring the state to make certain representations concerning those charges pursuant to § 54-56b. That statute provides that once a defendant objects to the entry of a nolle and demands a dismissal, the state may enter the nolle only ‘‘upon a representation to the court by the prosecuting official that a material witness has died, disappeared or become disabled or that material evidence has disappeared or has been destroyed and that a further investigation is therefore necessary.’’ When the court noted the nolle in the absence of any such representation by the state, it did so in violation of § 54-56b.

The judgment is reversed and the case is remanded for further proceedings consistent with this opinion on the defendant’s objection to the state’s nolle and her demand that the nolled charges be dismissed.")


Habeas Supreme Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=702

SC19787 - James v. Commissioner of Correction ("The sole issue in this appeal is whether the calculation of presentence confinement credit should be adjusted for concurrent sentences imposed under one docket number but on different dates. The petitioner, Latone James, appeals from the denial of his amended petition for a writ of habeas corpus, which alleged, inter alia, that the calculation of his presentence confinement credit was incorrect. The respondent, the Commissioner of Correction, claims that it calculated the petitioner’s presentence confinement credit pursuant to General Statutes § 18-98d (a) (1) and the framework provided by this court in Harris v. Commissioner of Correction, 271 Conn. 808, 860 A.2d 715 (2004). We agree with the petitioner and, accordingly, reverse the judgment of the habeas court in part.")


Connecticut Law Journal - October 10, 2017

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=700


Contract Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=697

AC38236 - Pellet v. Keller Williams Realty Corp. ("The named plaintiff, Daniel Pellet, acting in his capacity as guardian for his brother, Stephen Pellet, appeals from the judgment of the trial court directing a verdict in favor of the defendants Keller Williams Realty Corporation (Keller Williams), Michael Ladden, David Olson, Pina Jenkins, Jason Kilduff, and Kimberly Kilduff as to all eight counts of the plaintiff’s substitute complaint, and from the trial court’s granting of the defendants’ motions for a special finding pursuant to General Statutes § 52-226a. The plaintiff argues that the court improperly (1) directed the verdict in favor of the defendants because it erroneously (a) equated all of the plaintiff’s allegations to claims of professional negligence and (b) determined that, as such, they must fail for lack of expert testimony as to the applicable standard of care; and (2) found that the plaintiff brought the action without merit and in bad faith pursuant to § 52-226a. We reverse the judgment and special finding of the court, and remand the case for a new trial.")


Family Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=696

AC37640 - Puff v. Puff ("The plaintiff, Claudia Puff, appeals from the orders of the trial court entered in connection with various motions following the dissolution of her marriage to the defendant, Gregory Puff. The plaintiff claims that the court erred in (1) approving a stipulated agreement between the parties, (2) modifying the parties’ agreement, (3) approving the parties’ agreement without first conducting an adequate canvass pursuant to General Statutes § 46b-66, and (4) granting the defendant’s motion for contempt.Weagree with the plaintiff’s fourth claim and disagree with her other claims. Accordingly, we affirm in part, and reverse in part, the judgment of the trial court.")


Probate Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=695

AC39024 - Eder’s Appeal from Probate ("David Eric Eder (David Eder), the biological son of the settlor, John Dennis Eder (settlor), appealed to the Superior Court from a decree of the Probate Court concluding that the remainder beneficiaries of the John Dennis Eder Annuity Trust (trust) include not only the settlor’s biological child, but also his adult adopted children. Following a hearing, the Superior Court concluded that the Probate Court properly had construed the trust and dismissed the appeal. David Eder appealed to this court, claiming that, as a matter of law, the Superior Court erred by holding (1) that the settlor’s intent in establishing the trust was not relevant to determining whether the subject adoptions were a sham and (2) that the adoptions did not contravene the purpose and intent of the trust because the adoptees were the natural objects of the settlor’s bounty. We affirm the judgment of the court.")


Criminal Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=690

AC39659 - State v. Taylor (Murder; robbery in first degree; conspiracy to commit robbery in first degree; hindering prosecution; tampering with physical evidence; "The defendant, Solomon Taylor, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a trial before a three judge court, on charges that included murder, under the Pinkerton doctrine, in violation of General Statutes § 53a-54a (a), robbery in the first degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-134 (a) (2), and conspiracy to commit robbery in the first degree in violation of General Statutes §§ 53a-48 and 53a-134 (a) (2). On appeal, the defendant claims that (1) there was insufficient evidence to support his conviction for murder, robbery in the first degree and conspiracy to commit robbery in the first degree because the evidence does not support the court's findings that he and his alleged coconspirator committed or conspired to commit robbery, and (2) the court improperly disqualified his first attorney approximately twenty months before the start of his trial. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC39725 - State v. Redmond (Writ of error; "This case comes before the court on a writ of error brought by the plaintiff in error, Patrick C. Redmond, who is the father of Patrick S. Redmond, the defendant in the underlying criminal proceeding. In his writ of error, Redmond alleges that the trial court improperly (1) ordered the forfeiture of certain seized property pursuant to General Statutes § 54-36a and (2) entered its forfeiture order without providing him notice and an opportunity to be heard in violation of the in rem forfeiture procedures set forth in General Statutes (Rev. to 2013) § 54-33g. For the reasons that follow, we disagree and dismiss the writ of error.")


Foreclosure Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Mazur, Catherine

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=691

AC38736 - JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Assn. v. Essaghof ("In this foreclosure action, the defendants Roger Essaghof and Katherine Marr-Essaghof appeal from the judgment of strict foreclosure, rendered after a trial to the court, in favor of the plaintiff, JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Association, and from the court's entry of a posttrial financial order. The defendants claim that the court (1) erred in rejecting their special defenses of fraudulent inducement and unclean hands, and (2) abused its discretion in ordering them to reimburse the plaintiff for property taxes paid by the plaintiff during the pendency of this appeal. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC39315 - Seaport Capital Partners, LLC v. Speer ("The plaintiff in error, Edward Bona, brings this writ of error to challenge the decisions of the trial court granting the motions of the defendant in error, Seaport Capital Partners, LLC (Seaport), for order of payment, and denying Bona's motions to reargue the order of payment. Bona claims that the court (1) lacked subject matter jurisdiction, (2) improperly granted Seaport's motions for order of payment, and (3) improperly denied Bona's motions to reargue. We disagree with Bona and, accordingly, dismiss the writ of error.")

  • AC39315 - Seaport Capital Partners, LLC v. Spear (see Seaport Capital Partners, LLC v. Speer)
  • AC39315- Seaport Capital Partners, LLC v. 76 – 78 Truman Street, LLC (see Seaport Capital Partners, LLC v. Speer)


Tort Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=692

AC39339 - McFarline v. Mickens (Negligence; "In this negligence action, the plaintiff, Ellen McFarline, appeals from the summary judgment rendered by the trial court in favor of the defendant, Patrick W. Mickens, Jr., administrator of the estate of Janet Mickens (Mickens). The plaintiff claims that the court, in granting the defendant's motion for summary judgment, erred by (1) failing to consider the pleadings, affidavits and other proof submitted in deciding that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact; (2) considering facts outside the confines of this case; (3) violating her right to due process of law by failing to allow her to review evidence from other cases that the court utilized in deciding the motion for summary judgment; (4) failing to apply the 'test' set forth in Sanzone v. Board of Police Commissioners, 219 Conn. 179, 592 A.2d 912 (1991), when determining if there was a chain of causation that included the defendant's negligence in sequence with a highway defect; and (5) denying her postjudgment motions to amend her revised complaint and to reargue the motion for summary judgment. We affirm the judgment of the court.")


Habeas Appellate Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=693

AC38491 - Byrd v. Commissioner of Correction (Second amended petition; "He asserts a number of claims on appeal, but his primary claim is that the habeas court improperly concluded that it did not have subject matter jurisdiction over his ex post facto claim alleged in count one of his petition. We conclude that the habeas court properly determined that it lacked subject matter jurisdiction over both counts of his petition and, therefore, did not abuse its discretion by denying the petitioner’s petition for certification to appeal. Accordingly, we dismiss the appeal.")


Connecticut Law Journal - October 3, 2017

   by Mazur, Catherine

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=689


Foreclosure Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=688

AC30037 - Citimortgage, Inc. v. Tanasi ("The defendants, Richard Tanasi and Athanasula S. Casberg Tanasi, appeal from the judgment of strict foreclosure rendered by the court in favor of the plaintiff, CitiMortgage, Inc. The defendants claim that the court erred in denying their motion to dismiss the foreclosure action because the plaintiff (1) lacked standing to commence foreclosure proceedings, (2) improperly relied on a document as a basis for standing, and (3) committed fraud warranting dismissal of the action with prejudice. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Criminal Law Supreme and Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=686

SC19760 - State v. Pelella (Threatening second degree; appeal by state on granting of permission; first amendment to United States constitution; "The defendant, Michael Pelella, was arrested following an altercation with his brother and charged with two counts of threatening in the second degree, one for threatening to commit a crime of violence with intent to terrorize under General Statutes (Rev. to 2013) § 53a-62 (a) (2), and the other for threatening to commit a crime of violence in reckless disregard of the risk of causing terror under General Statutes (Rev. to 2013) § 53a-62 (a) (3). The defendant subsequently filed a motion to dismiss the charges "for lack of sufficient evidence or cause," and the trial court granted the motion and rendered judgment dismissing the charges, concluding that the state would be unable to demonstrate that the statement by the defendant on which the charges were based constituted a "`true threat,'" a form of speech that is not protected by the first amendment to the United States constitution. Thereafter, the trial court granted the state's motion for permission to appeal, and the state now claims that the trial court improperly granted the defendant's motion to dismiss after (1) incorrectly determining that an expression of an intent to cause harm to another cannot constitute a true threat unless the contemplated harm is imminent or immediate, and (2) improperly viewing the evidence before it in the light most favorable to the defendant. We agree with both of these contentions, and, therefore, we also agree that the trial court improperly granted the defendant's motion to dismiss the charges. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the trial court and remand the case to that court with direction to deny the motion to dismiss.")

AC39337 - State v. Liam M. (Assault in second degree with dangerous instrument; disorderly conduct; "The defendant, Liam M., appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a jury trial, of assault in the second degree with a dangerous instruement in violation of General Statutes § 53a-60 (a) (2) and disorderly conduct in violation of General Statutes § 53a-182 (a) (1). On appeal, the defendant claims that (1) his conviction for assault in the second degree should be reversed because there was insufficient evidence for the jury to determine that a polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipe is a dangerous instrument within the meaning of General Statutes § 53a-3 (7), and (2) the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress incriminating statements that he made to police on the ground that such statements should have been excluded as tainted fruit of an unconstitutional arrest. We agree that the trial court erred in denying the defendant’s motion to suppress, and, accordingly, we reverse the judgment of conviction as to both charged offenses.")

AC38860 - State v. Dayton (Operating motor vehicle while under influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs; failure of defendant to appear at sentencing; "The defendant, Stacey Dayton, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a plea of nolo contendere, of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs in violation of General Statutes (Rev. to 1995) § 14-227a. On appeal, the defendant claims that the court improperly (1) denied his motion to dismiss, and (2) accepted his plea when it was not knowingly, intelligently or voluntarily made. The state disagrees with the defendant on the merits of this appeal and also contends that this appeal is subject to dismissal pursuant to the fugitive felon disentitlement doctrine. We disagree that this appeal should be dismissed and agree with the defendant's first claim. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the trial court.")