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Branford Motel 6 Robbery Suspect Arrested

by marcia chambers | Jul 28, 2014 12:00 pm

Branford P.D. A 55-year-old man, convicted in the past of committing larceny in Branford, was arrested again by Branford police on Friday. He was charged in connection with a pre-dawn robbery of Motel 6 in June, Capt. Geoff Morgan reported.

The suspect, Richard Filipelli, 55, of 52 Short Beach Rd, East Haven, was arrested on an outstanding warrant in connection with the robbery, after three Branford officers viewed the video surveillance system at the motel and positively identified one of the suspects as Filipelli. Police are still searching for the second man.

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Judge Outlines Trial Process For Branford Murder Suspect

by marcia chambers | Jul 25, 2014 8:35 am

Branford P.D. Walking slowly and with a cane, Thomas C. Malinka entered the sixth-floor courtroom of Superior Court Judge Patrick J. Clifford yesterday morning and listened intently as the judge explained how his murder case will unfold. 

This was Malinka’s second New Haven Superior Court appearance before Judge Clifford since his arrest in June for the murder of John Deveau, his Branford landlord. Malinka and Deveau lived side by side, one at 33C Crouch Rd., the other at 33D Crouch Rd. They were also friends, according to police. Then in late May 2013, after filing a theft report with police against Malinka, Deveau went missing. 

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Landmark State Education Lawsuit Postponed

by marcia chambers | Jul 24, 2014 8:19 am | Comments (1)

File Photo Back in January, a Superior Court Judge in Hartford rejected the state’s effort to delay a lawsuit that challenges the way Connecticut funds its public schools. Judge Kevin Dubay ruled the lawsuit would head to trial Sept. 9.

Now the educational coalition that initially fought the state’s delay has agreed with the state attorney general’s office to a five-month postponement. The trial is now slated to begin Jan. 6, 2015, two months after the gubernatorial and other statewide elections are held. 

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Cops: Woman Confesses To Man’s Murder At Branford Motel

by marcia chambers | Jul 7, 2014 3:54 pm | Comments (1)

Police have issued an arrest warrant for a Middletown woman and charged her with strangling a 41-year-old man in what police are investigating as a possible “rough sex” scenario.

The homicide took place at the Branford Motel last week; the victim’s body was found in his room the following afternoon, Thursday, after he failed to check out of the motel. The victim has been identified as Byron C. McDade, whose last known address was in Deep River. 

Detective Lieutenant Arthur Kohloff, who is supervising the investigation, said detectives from the state and local major state crime units found what they termed “vital evidence” in the motel room during the crime scene search which led investigators to Chucky’s Mobil restaurant where McDade and his date were captured together on video, hours before his death.

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Hobby Lobby Protest Hits East Haven Store

by Sally E. Bahner | Jul 7, 2014 7:00 am | Comments (1)

Sally E. Bahner Photo The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last week in favor of Hobby Lobby’s policy to deny certain forms of birth control to its female employees has fueled nationwide debate,

On Saturday, the controversy was felt locally when a dozen or so people gathered along Frontage Road in East Haven to protest against the company and the court’s decision.

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Wang Files 50 Motions

by marcia chambers | Jul 2, 2014 8:39 am | Comments (2)

With Permission The impact of State v. Wang—a recent State Supreme Court decision that held an indigent defendant who chooses to represent is entitled to state funding—played out in New Haven Superior Court Tuesday. Dr. Wang himself took center stage. 

During a two-hour hearing, Dr. Lishan Wang, whose long-delayed trial made legal history last month, appeared for the first time in Superior Court since the state’s highest court handed down a decision on how experts and other investigatory services connected to an indigent defendant will be funded in the state’s court system.

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Police Charge Neighbor With Missing Man’s Murder; Body Never Found

by marcia chambers | Jun 11, 2014 8:11 am

Branford PD Photo The two neighbors lived side by side, one at 33C Crouch Rd., the other at 33D Crouch Rd. They were friends, according to police. Then in late May 2013, John Deveau (pictured), who lived at 33 Crouch, went missing.

He disappeared, authorities said, after reporting to Branford police that his ATM card was stolen and $30,000 was gone from his account.

The body of Deveau, who was 62 when he disappeared, has never been found. But after a detailed investigation in which credit cards belonging to Deveau were found in the suspect’s car and the DNA of the victim was found on the suspect’s garden hose, Branford police yesterday charged Thomas Malinka, 44, who lived at 33D Crouch, with Deveau’s murder.

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Supreme Court Says State Must Pay For Expert Witnesses

by marcia chambers | Jun 9, 2014 4:20 pm | Comments (2)

In a unanimous decision, the Connecticut Supreme Court today ruled that an indigent defendant who chooses to represent himself has a constitutional right to public funding for expert witnesses at trial and that the public defender’s office must provide the funding once “standby counsel” has been appointed. 

The state Supreme Court’s decision, a unique occurrence on its docket, came about in the case of Dr. Lishan Wang, who faces a murder charge in Connecticut Superior Court in New Haven. Although Dr. Wang, who is representing himself in the case, has a stand-by public defender assigned by the court, the public defender’s office has refused to pay his costs for trial because Dr. Wang rejected their representation. Now that office will be required to pay his expert witness and investigator costs as long as the requests are “reasonably necessary” to present a criminal defense. 

Dr. Wang, 48, is charged with the murder of Dr. Vanjinder Toor, a former colleague at the Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center in New York. At the time he was shot to death outside his Branford condo on April 26, 2010, Dr. Toor was 34, a father and a post-doctoral fellow at Yale. His then-pregnant wife witnessed the shooting. She was shot at too, but not hit. Dr. Wang has alleged Dr. Toor and other Kingsbrook doctors and officials caused his firing in 2008 that ended his medical career. The preponderance of motions he has filed in court center on Kingsbrook, his former employer. In one motion filed recently he called them “terrorists.” 

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Dems Cross-Endorse Incumbent Probate Judge

by marcia chambers | May 27, 2014 7:05 am | Comments (1)

Mary Johnson Photo Republican Probate Judge Frank Forgione, who oversees the Branford and North Branford probate courts, won Democratic cross-endorsement for reelection last week, a first for him, he said. He told the Eagle he was “incredibly grateful” to be endorsed by both parties for the November election. 

Forgione, 57 (pictured above), was cross-endorsed at a seven-minute Democratic convention held at Canoe Brook Senior Center. The Republicans endorsed him a few weeks back. While on occasion over his judicial career Forgione has run unopposed, this is the first time he has been cross-endorsed for election.  This means Judge Forgione will win a four-year term in office, because there are no other candidates.

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Delivery Man Lives To Tell the Tale

by marcia chambers | Apr 2, 2014 11:33 am

Two would-be burglars arrived in Branford in a pick-up truck, getting off the ramp on I-95 and onto Cedar Street, the town’s main entrance, shortly after 3 a.m. Sunday.

They parked their truck in a small lot outside a condo unit on NorthMain Street, across the street from Dunkin Donuts. The idea was to come via Exit 54 and to leave via Exit 54.

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