Home > Crime > Judge Denies Motion For New Trial In Petit Family Murders

Judge Denies Motion For New Trial In Petit Family Murders


Judge Jon Blue

On Friday, Superior Court Judge Jon C. Blue denied a defense motion for a new trial for Steven J. Hayes.  Hayes was convicted last month of killing Jennifer Hawke-Petit and her daughters Michaela, 11, and Hayley, 17, during the 2007 home invasion in Cheshire, CT.  He was given death by a jury this month.

Stephen Hayes

Hayes’ defense team claimed the 12 jurors based their conviction of Hayes and the death sentence on “emotion, passion and prejudice.” To support the motion, the defense quoted several statements by jurors to the media after the penalty phase.

Judge Blue ruled that statements by jurors, after-the-fact, were immaterial.  He stated, “During the trial, the jury gave every indication that it was an exceptionally sober group of citizens taking its awesome responsibility with the utmost seriousness.”

The defense also, unsuccessfully, argued the trial jury and penalty phase jury were not the same – an original juror was removed for an inappropriate comment and replaced by an alternate!

Petit Family

Additionally, the defense wanted the assault charges against Dr. Petit removed, raising the question of who wielded the baseball bat during the brutal beating of Dr. Petit and finally, the defense wanted the death penalty exchanged for life without parole.

Judge Blue denied both items.

Hayes’ sentencing is scheduled for December 2.

Joshua Komisarjevsky will go on trial next year.

New Haven Register

County Times

  1. Barb2
    11/28/2010 at 10:36 am

    I agree, no reason for a new trial; this defendant should never breathe fresh air again.

  2. Ritanita
    11/28/2010 at 10:45 am

    Thank you, Judge Blue.

  3. donchais
    11/28/2010 at 11:13 am

    I am in full agreement with Judge Blue’s rulings – justice and common sense prevailed!

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