Conn. jury begins deliberating fate of man charged in home-invasion killings of woman, 2 kids

By John Christoffersen, AP
Monday, October 4, 2010

Jury deliberations begin in Conn. killings trial

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — A Connecticut jury has completed its first day of deliberations in the trial of a man charged with killing a woman and her two daughters in a 2007 home invasion.

The jury in New Haven Superior Court met for about two hours Monday afternoon after receiving instructions from the judge. The panel will return Tuesday to continue deliberations.

Steven Hayes faces 17 charges including capital felony, murder and sexual assault in connection with the deaths of Jennifer Hawke-Petit and her daughters, 11-year-old Michaela and 17-year-old Hayley, at their Cheshire (CHESH’-ur) home.

The jury asked two questions Monday that appeared to focus on Hayes’ responsibility for a fire that prosecutors said was set at the home.

A second suspect, Joshua Komisarjevsky (koh-mih-sar-JEFF’-ski), will be tried separately.

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