Connecticut Superior Court Judge Jon Blue will allow media and spectators to be present in the courtroom for the videotaped testimony of Joshua Komisarjevsky’s 9-year-old daughter, at the request of lawyers and representatives for local New Haven media outlets, including WFSB.
Komisarjevsky was found guilty last month on 17 counts of murder, burglary, kidnapping, sexual assault and arson stemming from a 2007 home invasion in Cheshire, CT. A hearing to determine if he will face the dealth penalty is currently underway, and his 9-year-old daughter will present video testimony in the case.
Lawyers for WFSB, as well as the New Haven Register and the Hartford Courant, wanted the footage presented in open court, while attorneys for the child wanted media to be banned from seeing the video.
“We don’t believe sufficient evidence has been presented showing that the interests of the child are at risk (by showing the tape in open court),” Jeffrey Mueller, an attorney representing WFSB, told the New Haven Register.
Blue ruled that the video will be shown in the courtroom, which will be set up in such a way that media and spectators will only be able to hear — but not see — the testimony. Credentialed reporters will be permitted to see it later, but will not be allowed to make copies of it; courtroom sketch artists will not be allowed to replicate it.
The reporters for all three media outlets have pledged not to reveal the identity of the child.