Es­tranged hus­band re­leased on bond

Prose­cu­tor: Fo­tis Du­los’ DNA found with wife’s blood

The Register Citizen (Torrington, CT) - - FRONT PAGE - By Pat Tom­lin­son, Ta­tiana Flow­ers and Ethan Fry

STAM­FORD — The state be­lieves Jen­nifer Du­los has died and wants her es­tranged hus­band to re­veal where her re­mains can be found, his de­fense at­tor­ney said late Tues­day.

But Norm Pat­tis said his client can’t help — and vowed to take the charges re­lated to the dis­ap­pear­ance to trial.

Fo­tis Du­los re­turned to his Farm­ing­ton home late Tues­day af­ter post­ing $35,150 bond and plead­ing not guilty in state Su­pe­rior Court in Stam­ford to tam­per­ing with ev­i­dence and hin­der­ing pros­e­cu­tion charges. He had been lodged for 10 days at the Bridge­port Cor­rec­tional Cen­ter since his ar­rest.

Jen­nifer Du­los was last seen around 8 a.m. May 24 when she dropped off her five chil­dren at New Canaan Coun­try School. Her dis­ap­pear­ance is still of­fi­cially be­ing treated as a miss­ing per­sons case.

But be­hind closed doors, Pat­tis said au­thor­i­ties believe Jen­nifer Du­los has died — and that Fo­tis Du­los was in­volved.

In a failed ef­fort to have the de­fen­dant’s bond in­creased, State’s At­tor­ney Richard Colan­gelo told Judge John Blawie on Tues­day that new ev­i­dence shows Fo­tis Du­los’ DNA was found mixed with his es­tranged wife’s blood in a kitchen sink in her New Canaan home.

“When I talked to At­tor­ney Colan­gelo, he ex­pressed an in­ter­est in the lo­ca­tion of the body,” Pat­tis said in an in­ter­view Tues­day. “I said ‘We don’t know.’ ”

Pat­tis vowed to take the case to trial.

“We’re def­i­nitely go­ing to go to trial,” he said. “At 51 years old, they’re not go­ing to of­fer him any­thing less than an ef­fec­tive life sen­tence.

“He’s deeply wounded by the al­le­ga­tions against him and con­cerned about the mother of his chil­dren. He’s a man who misses his chil­dren.”

As part of the con­di­tions of his re­lease, Fo­tis Du­los was fit­ted with a GPS tracker and banned from con­tact­ing his chil­dren and fam­ily mem­bers of his es­tranged wife. He’s also not al­lowed to leave the state.

Be­fore post­ing bond, Fo­tis Du­los at­tended a di­vorce hear­ing in fam­ily court where he used his Fifth Amend­ment right to avoid tes­ti­fy­ing as Jen­nifer Du­los’ mother, Glo­ria Far­ber, was seek­ing cus­tody of the chil­dren.

The chil­dren who range in age from 8 to 13 will re­main in Far­ber’s care un­til a judge is­sues a writ­ten rul­ing.

Jen­nifer Du­los’ fam­ily re­leased a state­ment Tues­day night, say­ing her chil­dren “long to know where their mother is.”

“As the news cy­cle pro­pels the story of Jen­nifer’s dis­ap­pear­ance for­ward, we must not lose sight of the enor­mous hu­man cost of this tragedy: five young chil­dren have not seen their mother in 18 days,” the state­ment read. “Jen­nifer is the con­stant pres­ence in their lives. She has sole phys­i­cal cus­tody and has de­voted her full en­er­gies to their care and hap­pi­ness.”

Dur­ing the crim­i­nal court hear­ing, Colan­gelo said Fo­tis Du­los’ DNA was found mixed with his wife’s blood on the faucet of a kitchen sink in her Welles Lane home.

In court, Pat­tis coun­tered this rev­e­la­tion, claim­ing the DNA could have been left from a visit with his chil­dren two nights be­fore Jen­nifer Du­los dis­ap­peared.

“He was present at the home with his chil­dren for din­ner a few days ear­lier, it’s hardly sur­pris­ing that there would be trace DNA,” Pat­tis said.

Sev­eral wit­nesses from that night, how­ever, claim Fo­tis Du­los never went in­side the home dur­ing that get-to­gether, Colan­gelo said.

Con­sid­er­ing the new ev­i­dence, Colan­gelo ar­gued for bond to be in­creased to $850,000, while Pat­tis re­quested it be re­duced to $100,000.

Blawie de­nied both re­quests and kept bail at $500,000.

Fo­tis Du­los paid $35,150 — or 7 per­cent plus a $150 fee — to Mark Mo­tuz­ick from Cap­i­tal Bail Bonds, which, in turn, guar­an­tees the court that it will re­ceive from him the full amount if he fails to show up to court.

Af­ter turn­ing over his pass­port — which de­fense at­tor­ney Rich Rochlin had to fetch on his be­half — Fo­tis Du­los posted bail late Tues­day af­ter­noon.

Pat­tis said Fo­tis Du­los would stay at his Farm­ing­ton home ini­tially, but could re­lo­cate con­sid­er­ing the in­tense in­ter­est in the case.

New searches of his home or his other prop­er­ties will re­quire new search war­rants.

Fo­tis Du­los and his girl­friend, Michelle Tro­co­nis, each pleaded not guilty Tues­day when they were ar­raigned on charges of tam­per­ing with ev­i­dence and hin­der­ing pros­e­cu­tion. Both re­quested a trial by jury. Tro­co­nis is sched­uled to re­turn to court on July 18 and Du­los on Aug. 2.

Blawie de­nied Pat­tis’ re­quest to have his law firm take con­trol of Fo­tis Du­los’ 401(k) for as­sur­ance pur­poses.

In his third and fi­nal mo­tion, Pat­tis asked to have the trial ex­pe­dited to Au­gust.

“Mr. Du­los is tired of sit­ting back and hear­ing peo­ple pick apart his mo­tives,” Pat­tis said. “We are ready for trial now.”

The judge said that would re­quire “sig­nif­i­cant dis­cov­ery” and Fo­tis Du­los is not yet el­i­gi­ble for such a re­quest.

The state’s speedy trial law says a de­fen­dant out on bond must be brought to trial within 30 days af­ter fil­ing a mo­tion in a case where charges have been pend­ing for at least a year.

“If he be­comes el­i­gi­ble then, I as­sure you, the court will ac­com­mo­date him,” Blawie said.

Pat­tis said the trial should come as soon as pos­si­ble given the in­tense spec­u­la­tion in the case.

“You’ve picked this fight,” Pat­tis said after­ward. “Let’s have it. Let’s get it on.”

Pat­tis, a con­tro­ver­sial New Haven lawyer who rep­re­sents In­fowars host Alex Jones and was con­demned for racial Face­book posts, said the state lacks ev­i­dence con­nect­ing his client to the crime.

Pat­tis ac­knowl­edged dur­ing an in­ter­view late Tues­day that it wasn’t a sur­prise his client has come un­der sus­pi­cion.

“There are awk­ward and anoma­lous facts in this case and there are ex­pla­na­tions for some of them,” he said. “I’m not sug­gest­ing that the state picked Mr. Du­los at ran­dom for pros­e­cu­tion. It has its rea­sons.”

Still, Fo­tis Du­los main­tains his in­no­cence, Pat­tis said.

“We res­o­lutely deny that Mr. Du­los had any­thing to do with the dis­ap­pear­ance of his wife,” he said. “We will ad­dress force­fully and vig­or­ously any ac­cu­sa­tions that he was.”

Tro­co­nis’ at­tor­ney, An­drew Bow­man, ar­gued in­ac­cu­rate re­port­ing by the me­dia has prej­u­diced his client.

“I don’t need to re­mind you, that Michelle Tro­co­nis is pre­sumed in­no­cent and when you put out in­ac­cu­rate in­for­ma­tion in the elec­tronic and print me­dia, it prej­u­dices her right to a fair trial,” he said out­side the court­house.

On Mon­day, Pat­tis claimed Tro­co­nis was not in New Canaan on May 24 when Jen­nifer Du­los dis­ap­peared.

“I’m told by peo­ple with in­for­ma­tion that the girl­friend was never at the New Canaan home that day — the day the wife went miss­ing — and that she can prove she never was there and that law en­force­ment may be sat­is­fied,” Pat­tis said Mon­day on WPLR’s “Chaz & AJ” ra­dio show. “That is a very sig­nif­i­cant fact in this case.”

Bow­man walked away when he was asked Tues­day about where his client was on May 24.

Since be­ing re­leased on bail on June 3, Tro­co­nis has met with in­ves­ti­ga­tors at least twice, but claims to have no idea where to find Jen­nifer Du­los, a law en­force­ment source told the Hart­ford Courant. In court Tues­day, Pat­tis claimed nei­ther Tro­co­nis, nor her lawyer, would re­veal any de­tails of those meet­ings.

Jen­nifer Du­los was last seen around 8 a.m. May 24 when she dropped off her five chil­dren at New Canaan Coun­try School. Af­ter miss­ing sev­eral doc­tor’s ap­point­ments, she was re­ported miss­ing around 7 p.m. that night.

Around the same time, Fo­tis Du­los and Tro­co­nis were seen on video toss­ing garbage bags in more than 30 re­cep­ta­cles in a four­mile stretch in Hart­ford, ac­cord­ing to their ar­rest war­rants. The bags con­tained items with Jen­nifer Du­los’ blood on them, the war­rants said.

Pat­tis said he hasn’t had a chance to re­view the videos yet.

Po­lice said they found Jen­nifer Du­los’ Chevy Sub­ur­ban aban­doned on Lapham Road near Waveny Park, a few miles from her Welles Lane home, soon af­ter she was re­ported miss­ing.

Erik Traut­mann / Hearst Con­necti­cut Me­dia

Fo­tis Du­los and his le­gal team in­clud­ing Norm Pat­tis, left, ap­peal bond Tues­day dur­ing his ap­pear­ance in state Su­pe­rior Court in Stam­ford for tam­per­ing with ev­i­dence and hin­der­ing pros­e­cu­tion into the in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the dis­ap­pear­ance of his wife, Jen­nifer Du­los.

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