Police: Conn. home invasion suspect drew diagrams

AP News
Posted: Aug 23, 2011 4:23 PM
Police: Conn. home invasion suspect drew diagrams

A Connecticut man charged with killing a woman and her two daughters during a 2007 home invasion drew diagrams to show investigators how he tied up the victims, a police detective testified Tuesday.

Joshua Komisarjevsky gave investigators a 90-minute tape-recorded statement and drew diagrams to show them what happened, Cheshire Detective Joseph Vitello said in New Haven Superior Court. The girls were tied to their beds in their Cheshire home and died of smoke inhalation after the house was set on fire.

Komisarjevsky's attorneys are trying to get his statement thrown out as he heads to trial next month. His co-defendant, Steven Hayes, was convicted last year and is on death row.

Police say the men killed Jennifer Hawke-Petit, who was strangled, and her 11- and 17-year-old daughters, Michaela and Hayley.

The men went upstairs, where they found Michaela and her mother asleep in the master bedroom, Vitello said Tuesday.

Komisarjevsky described how he tied Michaela to her bed, Vitello said. He also said he and Hayes went to Hayley's bedroom to tie her up, Vitello said. Komisarjevsky did not appear distraught during the interview, the detective said.

Shortly after he arrived on the scene, Vitello said the men tried to flee in the family's car, which he said appeared to be airborne. He said the car crashed into two police cruisers blocking the road and he arrested Hayes.

Under cross examination, Vitello said he asked Hayes if there were people in the burning house and that Hayes replied that he didn't know and that "things got out of control." Komisarjevsky told him there were three occupants and that the mother might be dead, which he blamed on Hayes, Vitello said.

Komisarjevsky's attorneys say his statement to police violated his rights because it was made without a voluntary, knowing and intelligent waiver of his privilege against self-incrimination. They said Komisarjevsky had been awake for 39 hours.

Vitello testified that Komisarjevsky signed forms waiving his rights and voluntarily cooperated. The detective said Komisarjevsky did not appear tired.

A judge did not rule on the motion Tuesday. A hearing for arguments was planned for Friday.