Du­los search re­turns to former home

The News-Times - - FRONT PAGE - By Lisa Backus, Grace Duffield and John Nick­er­son

FARM­ING­TON — As the search for Jen­nifer Du­los reached the two-week mark on Fri­day, in­ves­ti­ga­tors returned to her former Jef­fer­son Cross­ing home.

They were joined at one point by Michelle Tro­co­nis, who spent about an hour with in­ves­ti­ga­tors on the prop­erty. Tro­co­nis, who is free on bail, met with state po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tors and the state’s at­tor­ney on Thurs­day for sev­eral hours at her lawyer’s West­port of­fice.

It was not im­me­di­ately known what Tro­co­nis was do­ing on the prop­erty, but drone footage from the scene showed in­ves­ti­ga­tors fo­cus­ing on the wooded

area behind the home that leads to the West Hart­ford Reser­voir.

Tro­co­nis, 44, and her boyfriend, Fo­tis Du­los, 51, have been charged with evidence tam­per­ing and hin­der­ing pros­e­cu­tion in the dis­ap­pear­ance of Jen­nifer Du­los, who was last seen around 8 a.m. May 24 drop­ping off her chil­dren at New Canaan Coun­try School.

Fo­tis Du­los re­mains jailed at the Bridge­port Cor­rec­tional Cen­ter un­able to post $500,000 bond.

New Canaan Po­lice Lt. Ja­son Fer­raro said an up­date to the in­ves­ti­ga­tion was not go­ing to be re­leased on Fri­day.

“She is still con­sid­ered miss­ing and, as stated pre­vi­ously, an ac­tive crim­i­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tion is oc­cur­ring,” Fer­raro wrote in an email.

Eu­gene Ric­cio, Fo­tis Du­los’ crim­i­nal de­fense at­tor­ney, de­clined to com­ment about Tro­co­nis’ meet­ing on Thurs­day with in­ves­ti­ga­tors.

"It would not be pro­duc­tive for me to make any state­ment re­gard­ing that re­port,” he said Fri­day.

Ric­cio also de­clined to com­ment on the mo­tion filed Thurs­day by Michael Rose, who has asked to be re­moved as Fo­tis Du­los’ di­vorce at­tor­ney.

“Good cause ex­ists to grant this mo­tion be­cause con­sid­er­a­tions other than com­pen­sa­tion pre­vent the firm from con­tin­u­ing to rep­re­sent the de­fen­dant,” the mo­tion states. “Coun­sel rep­re­sents that the with­drawal will have no ef­fects on the client’s in­ter­ests.”

Tro­co­nis and her daugh­ter moved into the Jef­fer­son Cross­ing home af­ter Jen­nifer Du­los, 50, and her chil­dren left for New Canaan when she filed for di­vorce in 2017.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors spent nearly all last week­end search­ing for clues on the prop­erty and have returned sev­eral more times. They ex­e­cuted an emer­gency search war­rant there Wed­nes­day night and were seen leaving with sev­eral boxes of evidence.

Ear­lier on Wed­nes­day, state po­lice searched a metal dump­ster out­side 61 Stur­bridge Hill Road in New Canaan. The prop­erty is among those connected to Fo­tis Du­los’ cus­tom home­build­ing com­pany, the Fore Group.

Neigh­bors said they heard the loud sounds of metal bang­ing dur­ing the pre-dawn hours on May 25 — the day af­ter Jen­nifer Du­los was re­ported miss­ing. One neigh­bor said po­lice have been to the neigh­bor­hood three times in the past two weeks.

The prop­erty of the 7,000-square-foot home, listed at $4.8 mil­lion, is still be­ing de­vel­oped. A trailer with Fore Group’s name on the side and the dump­ster re­main on the prop­erty.

The home is lo­cated about 10 min­utes from Jen­nifer Du­los’ Welles Lane res­i­dence that had an added layer of se­cu­rity on Fri­day. In ad­di­tion to the po­lice of­fi­cer who has been sta­tioned at the home, a pri­vate se­cu­rity guard was also there. The man said he was “se­cur­ing” the home.

The Du­los chil­dren who range in age from 8 to 13 have been stay­ing with their ma­ter­nal grand­mother un­der the watch of an armed guard in her New York City apart­ment. Their grand­mother, Glo­ria Far­ber, is also seek­ing cus­tody of them.

Du­los. More sto­ries on A6

Tyler Size­more / Hearst Connecticu­t Me­dia

At­tor­ney An­drew Bow­man, right, speaks dur­ing the ar­raign­ment of his client Michelle C. Tro­co­nis, 44, on charges of tam­per­ing with or fab­ri­cat­ing phys­i­cal evidence and first-de­gree hin­der­ing pros­e­cu­tion at state Su­pe­rior Court in Norwalk on Monday.

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