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Connecticut Criminal Defense Law Blog

Man sentenced after fatal drunk driving crash

After a fatal drunk driving crash, a 31-year-old Connecticut man received a sentence of seven years' imprisonment and 500 hours of community service on July 23. Although the full sentence was originally 15 years in prison, a judge allowed the last eight years to be suspended and added five years of probation. The accused man was sentenced after pleading guilty to first-degree manslaughter and DUI.

The fatal accident happened in Southington around 11:30 p.m. on Dec. 22, 2012. At the time, the accused man had been driving his Audi the wrong way on westbound Interstate 84 from exit 29. Witnesses who noticed the Audi traveling in the wrong direction called 911 before the man crashed into a Ford driven by a 61-year-old woman. She was taken to St. Mary's Hospital where she died the next morning.

Proof must be provided for conviction

A conviction on a charge of possession with intent to sell a controlled substance carries more significant penalties than a simple possession charge. It may be noted, however, that the more serious charge requires the state of Connecticut to provide more proof of guilt to the jury since it has to prove both parts of the charge. Those parts being that the accused did indeed intend to sell the alleged substance in addition to having it in his or her possession.

For someone to be in possession of a controlled substance, it must be either on his or her person or within an area of which the accused was in control, such as a home or a vehicle. The former is called "actual possession" while the latter is "constructive possession." In addition to showing a substance's location, the state must also prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused was aware of the substance's illicit nature and knew that it was in his or her possession.

Convicted felon found with stolen gun and drugs

A Connecticut man was charged for drug possession after police pulled him over in Newington on July 15. The 38-year-old man was reportedly stopped because of an equipment violation while driving his BMW on the Berlin Turnpike at about 10:30 p.m. The news source did not report the officers' reasons for executing the search of the man's vehicle.

Police reportedly found drug paraphernalia, about two pounds of marijuana, 168 bags of heroin and a .45 caliber handgun that was loaded and stolen. Responding officers also discovered a 124-pill assortment of Adderall, Ritalin and morphine in the vehicle. In addition to multiple motor vehicle and drug offenses, including possession of narcotics, the man faces a count of criminal possession of a firearm by a felon and other gun charges. He was reportedly released on a $150,000 bond.

Couple accused of selling heroin through Craigslist

A couple in Connecticut was accused of attempting to sell heroin to police officers in the Norwichtown area. The 18-year-old woman and the 28-year-old man were detained after police arranged a meeting with them through the Internet. Both of the accused people are reportedly residents of Uncasville.

According to a statement from the Norwich Police Department Community Police Unit, an anonymous tip came in about a person who was allegedly using Craigslist for drug trafficking purposes. After police arranged to meet the alleged drug dealer, they found the accused couple waiting for them at the previously specified time and location. Officers then allegedly found the two people to be in possession of heroin.

Connecticut firefighter, husband charged with domestic assault

Both a firefighter and her husband have been charged in relation to a domestic violence incident that took place in the early hours of July 2, according to police. Police say that they responded a report of domestic violence at the West Hartford couple's apartment in the 100 block of Kane Street at approximately 1:09 a.m. but were at first unable to gain access to the apartment.

Shortly after the police arrived, the firefighter's husband exited the apartment. Police say the man was bleeding from his lip, eye and hand and that the right side of his face was badly swollen. The firefighter also exited the apartment, also reportedly bleeding from the mouth and with a partially swollen face. The firefighter was taken to the West Hartford Hospital for treatment while her husband was transported to the University of Connecticut Health Center where he received stitches in his lip.

Drug task force nabs 3 Connecticut men

On July 1, police took a 48-year-old man into custody on drug charges after he allegedly sold crack cocaine to an undercover officer. According to the East Central Narcotics Taskforce, police detained the man near Bissell and Main streets in downtown Manchester. Reportedly, the task force had been investigating drug activity in the area for several months and had detained two other suspected drug dealers four days earlier.

Police charged the 48-year-old man with sale and possession of cocaine and sale and possession of cocaine within 1,500 feet of a school. Allegedly, the man had 1.19 grams of crack cocaine in his possession.

Connecticut shoplifting leads to drug charges

Two people have been detained on drug charges after they were stopped in relation to two shoplifting incidents, according to New Hartford police. On June 14, police responded to a retail superstore on reports of a suspected larceny after a man allegedly fled the store but were unable to make contact with the man after a search of the area. Later the same day, police were again summoned to the superstore where security officers told the police that a woman had just fled the store and gotten into a red SUV.

Police say that they quickly spotted the red SUV outside of another store nearby; when they stopped the vehicle, police say that they realized that the driver matched the description of the male suspect from the initial shoplifting call. They allegedly discovered items used to manufacture methamphetamine in the SUV and had the vehicle towed after obtaining a search warrant.

Prosecution drops drug charges after wrong man indicted

Federal prosecutors dropped drug charges against a man on June 18 in a Connecticut court after it was determined that that the charges had been filed against the wrong man. According to the report, the man was taken into police custody in the Dominican Republic and was transported to the U.S. after it was believed that he was involved in a drug-trafficking ring.

This incident appeared to be a case of mistaken identity. The report stated that the man who was accused has the same name as the man who was actually believed to have been involved in the ring. The accused man had insisted that all along that he was not the man who prosecutors were looking for. Eight months after he was taken into custody, the motion was filed to drop the charges.

Domestic violence charges dismissed for famous couple

According to a Connecticut court official, a prosecutor has decided to drop domestic violence charges against musician Paul Simon and his wife, Edie Brickell. The couple was taken into custody in April on charges of disorderly conduct after an altercation in their home, according to police. Brickell took the blame for the alleged domestic violence incident in a statement forwarded to a national news outlet by her lawyer.

In the statement, Brickell said that she had initiated a fight with her husband. During a court hearing, the pair held hands and told the judge that they were getting along fine and had plans to see their son's baseball game later the same afternoon. The court official announced that the prosecutor was dropping the charges on June 17.

Drunk driver located after parking on lawn of Hartford home

A motorist, who was taken into police custody in Hartford after parking her car on the front lawn of a home, is facing a DWI charge, according to media sources. Police say that the 38-year-old woman's blood alcohol content was almost twice the legal limit when the incident occurred. At the time of this report, the woman was being held on a $10,000 bond.

No one was reported to be injured in the incident, which happened shortly before 10 p.m. on June 21. News sources say that the woman was behind the wheel of a Nissan XTerra when it crashed into three utility poles near the intersection of Albany Avenue and Steele Street in West Hartford.