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.


Criminal Law Supreme and Appellate Court Opinions

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=212

SC19549 - State v. Benedict ("The sole issue in this certified appeal is whether the trial court deprived the defendant, Adam Benedict, of his right to a fair trial by denying his request to strike a juror for cause when the defendant had shown that the juror was a police officer with possible ties to the agency investigating the defendant's case. In his second trial, the jury, including the challenged juror, found the defendant guilty of one count of sexual assault in the fourth degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-73a (a) (6), and not guilty of two additional counts under the same statute.The defendant appeals from the judgment of the Appellate Court affirming the trial court's judgment after concluding that the trial court properly had denied his challenge of the juror for cause.State v. Benedict, 158 Conn. App. 599, 620, 119 A.3d 1245 (2015).The defendant claims that the challenged juror's bias should have been conclusively presumed because the juror was a Southbury police officer who reported to a Connecticut state trooper and other Connecticut state troopers who investigated the defendant's criminal charges.We disagree and affirm the judgment of the Appellate Court.")

AC37947 - State v. Norman P. ("The defendant, Norman P., appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a jury trial, of three counts of sexual assault in a spousal relationship in violation of General Statutes § 53a-70b, one count of assault of an elderly person in the second degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-60b, and one count of assault of an elderly person in the third degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-61a. On appeal, the defendant claims, among other things, that the trial court improperly (1) refused to admit into evidence full written statement to the police after portions of the statement had been introduced by the state, and (2) refused to mark for identification the complainant's privileged records from Interval House, an organization that provides counseling and other services to domestic violence victims, as well as declined to conduct an in camera inspection of these records. We agree that the court improperly excluded the defendant's complete statement to the police, and, accordingly, we reverse the judgment of conviction and remand the case for a new trial. Because one of the remaining evidentiary issues is likely to arise again on remand, we address that claim as well. To that end, we agree with the defendant that the court improperly refused to mark the Interval House records for identification and improperly refused to conduct an in camera review of the Interval House records after the defendant made the requisite threshold showing pursuant to State v. Esposito, 192 Conn. 166, 179–80, 471 A.2d 949 (1984).")


Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinions

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=213

SC19731 - In re Daniel N. ("In this certified appeal, the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families, appeals from the judgment of the Appellate Court reversing the judgment of the trial court terminating the parental rights of the respondent father, Jose N., to the minor child, Daniel N. Specifically, the petitioner claims that the Appellate Court improperly concluded that the failure to canvass the respondent prior to the commencement of the termination of parental rights trial in accordance with the rule promulgated pursuant to the exercise of our supervisory authority in In re Yasiel R., 317 Conn. 773, 120 A.3d 1188 (2015), applies retroactively to the present case and requires reversal. See In re Daniel N., 163 Conn. App. 322, 333, 135 A.3d 1260 (2016). Because we conclude that application of the canvass rule announced in In re Yasiel R. to the present case would exceed the scope of the exercise of our supervisory authority in that case, we reverse the judgment of the Appellate Court.")


Habeas Appellate Court Opinions

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=214

AC37238 - Bush v. Commissioner of Correction ("The petitioner, Dion Bush, appeals from the judgment of the habeas court denying his amended petition for a writ of habeas corpus as well as the denial of his petition for certification to appeal. The petitioner claims that the habeas court erred by not concluding that his appellate counsel in a prior habeas appeal was ineffective. Specifically, the petitioner argues that his prior habeas appellate counsel was ineffective by failing to properly brief issues on appeal relating to: (1) alleged ineffectiveness by the petitioner's criminal trial counsel for not moving to sever the petitioner's trial from that of his codefendant; and (2) an alleged conflict of interest by criminal trial counsel resulting from his representation of another client that rendered his representation of the petitioner ineffective.We conclude that the habeas court did not abuse its discretion in denying the petition for certification to appeal, and, accordingly, we dismiss the appeal.")

AC37496 - Giattino v. Commissioner of Correction ("The petitioner, Richard Giattino, appeals from the judgment of the habeas court denying his amended petition for a writ of habeas corpus. He claims that the habeas court erred when it (1) declined to conduct an in camera review of school records pertaining to the victim of the underlying crimes; and (2) rejected the petitioner's claim that his criminal trial counsel rendered ineffective assistance. We decline to reach the merits of the petitioner's first claim, and conclude that the habeas court did not err with regard to the second claim. We therefore affirm the judgment of the habeas court.")

AC38172 - Nieves v. Commissioner of Correction ("Following a grant of certification to appeal, the petitioner, Angel Nieves, appeals from the judgment of the habeas court denying his amended petition for a writ of habeas corpus. On appeal, the petitioner claims that the habeas court improperly concluded that he had not demonstrated that his trial counsel rendered ineffective assistance by failing to present an exculpatory statement made by a state's witness describing the perpetrator of the crime with which the petitioner was charged. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the habeas court.")


Insurance Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=215

AC38332 - Monroe v. Discover Property & Casualty Ins. Co. ("The plaintiff, the town of Monroe, appeals from the judgment of the trial court rendering summary judgment in favor of the defendant insurer, Discover Property and Casualty Insurance Company. The plaintiff claims that the court erred in holding that the allegations brought by a third party against the plaintiff in a prior action (underlying action) fell within an exclusion in the applicable policy, and, therefore, that the defendant had no duty to provide a defense to the plaintiff. We agree with the plaintiff and, accordingly, reverse the judgment of the trial court.")


Contract Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=216

AC37979 - Meadowbrook Center, Inc. v. Buchman ("This appeal requires us to assess the interplay between a legislative mandate based on a public policy and a procedural rule of practice. On appeal, the defendant, Robert Buchman, claims that the trial court incorrectly denied his postjudgment motion for attorney's fees, sought pursuant to General Statutes § 42-150bb, on the basis that his motion for attorney's fees was untimely, pursuant to Practice Book § 11-21. We reverse the judgment of the trial court.")


Land Use Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=217

AC38023 - Parillo Food Group, Inc. v. Board of Zoning Appeals ("The defendant, the Board of Zoning Appeals of the City of New Haven, appeals from the judgment of the trial court sustaining the appeal of the plaintiff, Parillo Food Group, Inc., from the defendant's decision granting the plaintiff's application for a special exception to operate a restaurant serving liquor that imposed a condition limiting its hours of operation. On appeal, the defendant claims that the court improperly concluded that it had no authority to limit the hours of operation of the plaintiff's restaurant. Specifically, the defendant claims that the court (1) should have determined that municipal zoning boards have the authority to place temporal restrictions on special exception uses, (2) erroneously concluded that Connecticut's Liquor Control Act, General Statutes § 30-1 et seq., divests the defendant of its power to attach conditions limiting the hours of operation of restaurants that serve alcohol, and (3) erroneously concluded that the challenged condition was not integral to the defendant's approval of the special exception. We agree with the defendant's second claim and, accordingly, reverse the judgment of the trial court.")



History of Thanksgiving Proclamations

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=210

For a brief history of Thanksgiving presidential proclamations and congressional resolutions beginning with the first Federal Congress, see the following National Archives web page:

A frequently requested item is the 1936 Connecticut Thanksgiving proclamation by Governor Wilbur L. Cross, which is reproduced as one of our Doses of Connecticut Legal History:


Habeas Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=211

AC37601- Mourning v. Commissioner of Correction (Habeas; "On appeal, the petitioner claims that the habeas court abused its discretion in denying his petition for certification to appeal because the record established that his criminal trial counsel rendered ineffective assistance by failing to move to exclude the testimony of the state’s ballistics expert. We conclude that the court did not abuse its discretion in denying the petition for certification to appeal. Accordingly, we dismiss the appeal.")

AC37576- Gerald W. v. Commissioner of Correction (Habeas; amended writ; "On appeal, the petitioner claims that the habeas court improperly rejected his claim that he received ineffective assistance from his prior habeas counsel. We affirm the judgment of the habeas court.")


Criminal Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=209

AC38624 - State v. Moore (Murder; "The defendant, Darnell Moore, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered following a jury trial, of murder in violation of General Statutes § 53a-54a.The defendant claims that the trial court improperly (1) denied his motion to strike the jury panel and (2) denied his motion to suppress evidence. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC38625 - State v. Frasier (Manslaughter in first degree with firearm; assault in first degree; carrying pistol or revolver without permit; lesser included offense; reviewability of claims; prosecutorial impropriety; "The defendant, Levarr Frasier, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a jury trial, of manslaughter in the first degree with a firearm in violation of General Statutes § 53a-55a, assault in the first degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-59 (a) (5), and carrying a pistol without a permit in violation of General Statutes § 29-35. On appeal, the defendant claims that (1) the court improperly instructed the jury on accessorial liability and (2) he was denied his right to a fair trial due to prosecutorial impropriety. We affirm the judgment of the court.")

AC38327 - State v. Whitnum-Baker (Creating public disturbance; "The defendant, Lisa Whitnum-Baker, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a trial to the court, of creating a public disturbance in violation of General Statutes § 53a-181a. On appeal, the defendant claims that there was insufficient evidence to convict her of creating a public disturbance. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


DUI: Administrative Procedures for "Per Se" Suspension of Motor Vehicle Operator's License

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=208

The regulations concerning the Administrative Procedures for "Per Se" Suspension of Motor Vehicle Operator's License have been amended, effective September 7, 2016. The statement of purpose outlining the changes is reproduced below:

The proposed regulation reflects statutory changes to the Administrative "Per Se" procedures that have occurred in recent years, particularly as a result of Public Act 2009-187 and Public Act 2014-228. The regulations have been updated to reflect the General Assembly’s actions in the following ways:

1. Establishes the requirement that an operator install an ignition interlock device (IID) as a condition of restoration of his or her operator’s license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle after serving a suspension. The length of the suspension and the IID requirement are detailed in the statute and in the suspension notice from the department;

2. Allows law enforcement personnel to electronically submit to the Department of Motor Vehicles the information contained in the A-44 "Operating Under the Influence" Form as an alternative to mailing a hard copy;

3. Clarifies the provisions relating to administrative "per se" hearing continuances;

4. Requires the service of a subpoena to provide at least seventy-two (72) hours’ notice when summoning a police officer to appear at an administrative "per se" hearing; and

5. Eliminates a requirement that an operator automatically prevail in a hearing under this section in the event that the commissioner has not rendered a decision within thirty (30) days from the date of arrest.

See our Law about Driving Under the Influence for further references to statutes, regulations, and research reports.


New Office of Legislative Research Reports

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=206

The Office of Legislative Research has issued the following new reports:

Releasing Lighter-Than-Air Balloons - 2016-R-0176 - summarizes "(1) the Connecticut law that restricts how many balloons may be released into the air and (2) its legislative history."

Questions Concerning the Disposition of Neglected Burial Grounds - 2016-R-0278 - "Are municipalities responsible for a neglected burial ground consisting of private plots? Can a municipality transfer an abandoned burial ground to an individual or business for development? Can one adversely possess an abandoned burial ground?"

Building Demolition and Related Property Taxes - 2016-R-0285 - summarizes "the state laws on (1) building demolition and (2) property taxes for demolished buildings."

Terrorism Risk Insurance Program - 2016-R-0208 - "This report explains the federal Terrorism Risk Insurance Program (TRIP), as updated by the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2015. This report updates OLR Report 2004-R-0072."

OB-GYN Services at Federally Qualified Health Centers - 2016-R-0264 - "Can federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) provide obstetrics and gynecology (OB-GYN) services?"

Private Residential Wells - 2016-R-0263 - "Who is responsible for maintaining private residential wells in Connecticut? Do state laws establish minimum output levels and water quality requirements for private residential wells? Does the state require existing wells to be tested as a condition of selling a home?"



Probate Court Rules of Procedure - 2017 revisions

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=203

Revisions to the Probate Court Rules of Procedure have been approved and posted to the Probate Court's website, with an effective date of July 1, 2017.

The notice also includes a summary of significant rule changes. The revisions amend various rules on documentation and court fees, in addition to creating new provisions concerning petitions for fiduciary action and procedures for mediation.


Guidelines on Common Civil Legal Procedures

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=200

Did you know that the Judicial Branch has posted general instructions for some of the most common Civil court procedures on its Forms page?

Brief guidelines on the following topics are available by clicking on Civil Forms grouped by Subject:

In addition to providing an overview of the process, they also link to any applicable official forms.

The guidelines are not intended to be comprehensive, and are provided only as general information. When preparing any forms or documents to be filed in court, you should review the Connecticut Practice Book (a.k.a Court Rules), and you may also want to consider contacting an attorney with any legal questions.


Habeas Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=198

AC37685 - Jones v. Commissioner of Correction (Habeas; "On appeal, the petitioner claims that the habeas court improperly concluded that counsel who represented him on a prior petition for a writ of habeas provided ineffective assistance. We affirm the judgment of the habeas court.")

AC37796 - Parker v. Commissioner of Correction (Habeas; " On appeal, the petitioner claims that the habeas court (1) abused its discretion by denying certification to appeal from the judgment denying his petition for a writ of habeas corpus and (2) improperly concluded that his criminal counsel had not rendered ineffective assistance by advising him to plead guilty. We dismiss the appeal.")


Criminal Law Supreme and Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=196

SC19326 - State v. Bouknight (Murder; carrying pistol without permit; criminal possession of pistol or revolver; commission of class A, B or C felony with firearm; "The defendant, Derrick Bouknight, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a jury trial, of murder in violation of General Statutes § 53a-54a (a), using a firearm in the commission of a felony in violation of General Statutes § 53-202k, carrying a pistol without a permit in violation of General Statutes § 29-35, and criminal possession of a pistol or revolver in violation of General Statutes § 53a-217c (a) (1). On appeal, the defendant claims that the trial court abused its discretion in ruling that a Facebook profile page and photographs thereon were properly authenticated.

We agree with the state. The defendant has not met his burden of showing that the admission of the evidence had a substantial impact on the jury's verdict. In addition, the state's case was strong. Numerous witnesses identified the defendant as the one who shot Baines. We conclude, therefore, that any error relating to the admission of the evidence challenged by the defendant would have been harmless.

The judgment is affirmed.")

SC19499 - State v. Agron (Writ of error; "This case is before us on a writ of error brought by the plaintiff in error, 3-D Bail Bonds, Inc. (plaintiff), who claims that the trial court improperly denied its motion seeking relief from its obligation on a surety bail bond (bond) pursuant to General Statutes § 54-65c, which the trial court had ordered forfeited after the principal on that bond, Angel Agron, who is the criminal defendant in the underlying case, failed to appear for a scheduled court date. The defendant in error, the state of Connecticut, responds that the trial court properly denied the motion, claiming that the plaintiff had not satisfied the requirements of § 54-65c because Agron was not "detained" for purposes of § 54-65c when he was personally confronted by fugitive recovery bail enforcement agents in Puerto Rico, and the state refused to extradite him to Connecticut. We conclude that the trial court properly denied the plaintiff's motion and, therefore, dismiss the writ of error.")

AC35731 - State v. Yates (Motion to correct illegal sentence; denial of motion to correct illegal sentence; "The defendant, John Yates, appeals from the judgment of the trial court dismissing his motion to correct an illegal sentence. The defendant claims on appeal that the court improperly (1) permitted appointed counsel to withdraw without first requiring him to articulate the reasoning behind his determination that there was no sound basis for the motion to correct an illegal sentence, and (2) concluded that his sentence had not been imposed in an illegal manner. We conclude that only the form of the judgment is improper, and, accordingly, we reverse the judgment dismissing the defendant's motion to correct an illegal sentence and remand the case to the trial court with direction to render judgment denying the defendant's motion.")


Workers' Compensation Supreme Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=197

SC19631 - Holston v. New Haven Police Dept. (Workers' Compensation; "On appeal, the defendant asserts that the board improperly determined that the plaintiff’s heart disease claim was timely. Specifically, the defendant claims that the board improperly affirmed the decision of the commissioner that the plaintiff’s hypertension and heart disease were separate diseases, each with its own one year limitation period for filing a claim for benefits. We disagree with the defendant and, accordingly, affirm the decision of the board.")


Veterans' Day - Friday, November 11, 2016

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=194

The Judicial Branch Law Libraries will be closed on Friday, November 11th for Veterans' Day.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has a Veterans Day FAQ on their website. Interestingly, they state that the correct spelling is Veterans Day, with no apostrophe. However, Connecticut Gen. Stat. sec. 1-4 Days designated as legal holidays, refers to the holiday as "Veterans’ Day".

You can view more court holidays and closings at the General Court Information page.



Collection of Delinquent Property Taxes - 2016 Edition

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=193

The 2016 edition of Collection of Delinquent Property Taxes in Connecticut has been posted to our research guides page.

Table of Contents

Section 1: Foreclosure of Tax Liens
Section 2: Summary Foreclosure of Tax Liens
Section 3: Collection Actions
Section 4: Tax Warrants
Section 5: Alias Tax Warrants
Section 6: Motor Vehicle Property Taxes


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