Occasionally appellate courts issue what are known as “per curiam” opinions: opinions delivered in the name of the court, rather than in the name of an individual judge. Indeed, the Connecticut Supreme Court just issued such an opinion the other day. Read the rest of this entry »
As any conscious person knows, Michael Skakel was recently released from prison on bail. His release follows Superior Court judge Tom Bishop’s decision that Skakel’s defense lawyer did not provide a constitutionally adequate defense during Skakel’s trial for the murder of Martha Moxley. Read the rest of this entry »
Regular readers know that I have been less than pleased with some of the actions taken and policies pursued by the administration of Governor Dannel Malloy with respect to freedom of information. But if someone is going to criticize an administration, he or she also should give credit where credit is due. Read the rest of this entry »
Is a trial court judgment final, for the purpose of seeking appellate review, if all issues in a case have been resolved except the issue of attorney’s fees? The United States Supreme Court is going to revisit that issue this term in Ray Haluch Gravel Co. v. Central Pension Fund. I say “revisit” because many of us thought that the Supreme Court had settled that issue long ago. Read the rest of this entry »
Superior Court Judge Eliot Prescott just denied the Danbury State’s Attorney’s motion to stay disclosure of the Sandy Hook 911 calls. The court ruled that the 911 calls must be released by December 4, 2013 unless the state obtains a stay from the Appellate or Supreme Court.
I’ve only had time to scan the decision. However, as anticipated, the court ruled that the State’s Attorney failed to demonstrate that he was likely to succeed on his argument that the 911 calls contained information “relative to a child abuse investigation,” as defined under state law. The court also rejected the argument that the 911 calls constituted “signed statements of witnesses,” which is an exemption under the state Freedom of Information Act.
I’ll have more after I read the decision thoroughly. Read the rest of this entry »
As promised, this afternoon Danbury State’s Attorney Stephen Sedensky released his report of the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School and the Lanza home on December 14, 2012. The 44-page report is available here. The 236-page appendix is available here. Having read the report, I have a few reactions. With one exception, my comments are limited to the legal implications of certain statements in the report. Read the rest of this entry »
Colin McEnroe kindly invited me to speak with him this morning on his show on WNPR about the Danbury State’s Attorney’s highly anticipated summary report of the Sandy Hook investigation. Click here to listen to a podcast of our conversation, which begins at approximately 21:10 minutes into the program.
I had the honor and pleasure of appearing this morning as a guest on WNPR’s “Where We Live,” with host John Dankosky and regular guests Colin McEnroe, Mark Pazniokas and Matt Sturdevant. The topic: The long-delayed release by Danbury State’s Attorney Stephen Sedensky of the Sandy Hook investigation report.
In recent days Governor Malloy has expressed his extreme impatience and displeasure with the length of time it is taking Danbury State’s Attorney Stephen J. Sedensky III to release his own final report of the tragic events of December 14, 2012 at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT. (I say “his own final report” because the State Police are preparing their own investigative report, as is customary. It needs to be released as well. A highly redacted “executive summary” by Mr. Sedensky is not sufficient.)
Governor Malloy has stated of the prosecutors in the Danbury State’s Attorney’s office, “They don’t work for me. If they did, this report would have been out already.”
Governor Malloy is not passing the buck. He is absolutely accurate in stating that he does not control Connecticut’s State’s Attorneys. But if the governor is not in charge of them, who is? Read the rest of this entry »
The Supreme Court just released its decision in Lopez, et al. v. Bridgeport Board of Education, et al.,, otherwise known as the Paul Vallas case, about which I have previously posted. The Supreme Court held that absent fraud, a quo warranto action can not be used to mount a collateral attack on an administrative agency’s determination that a public officer is qualified to hold his position. Accordingly, the Court reversed the judgment of the trial court (which had ruled that Mr. Vallas could not hold the office of superintendent) and remanded the case with instructions to dismiss the plaintiffs’ complaint.