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Death Penalty Phase Delayed One Day

October 24, 2011 by Josh Morgan

Jurors were supposed to hear opening arguments in the death penalty case against Joshua Komisarjevsky this morning, but the proceedings were delayed until Tuesday.
Superior Court Judge Jon C. Blue decided to postpone the start on the penalty phase until Oct. 25, as lawyers for both sides need to make arguments today. The defense team is seeking to suppress statements Komisarjevsky made to police about his previous burglaries and crimes shortly after his arrest in connection to the Cheshire Home Invasion. Blue is set to hear arguments, and rule on these motions today in the New Haven Courtroom.
Komisarjevsky was found guilty on all 17 charges against him on Oct. 14, which included six capitol felony counts and automatically triggered the penalty phase. The only possible outcome now is life in prison without parole or the death sentence. He was found guilty of murdering Jennifer Hawke-Petit and her two daughters, Hayley and Micheala, during the July 23, 2007 home invasion. He was also found guilty of assaulting Dr. William Petit, who managed to escape the home before it caught fire. The same jury that found him guilty two weeks ago, will decide his fate
The defense team has been granted up to 60 minutes to give opening statements tomorrow morning. Many believe the penalty phase could take up to eight weeks to complete, and testimony about Komisarjevsky's drug use, childhood sexual abuse and mental health is expected.
To read more about the first week of the penalty phase, pick up a copy of The Cheshire Herald on Thursday.

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