Vote On Newtown Bill Possible Next Week
March 25, 2013 2:31 PM
SUSAN HAIGH, Associated Press
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ The president of the state Senate said Monday he expects that search warrants in the Newtown school shooting will be released this week, and legislative leaders hope to review the documents before finishing work on a bipartisan bill that addresses gun control and other issues related to the massacre.
Democratic and Republican leaders met Friday with Danbury State’s Attorney Stephen Sedensky III, who told them that search warrants and the completed return of the search warrants, which typically includes a documented inventory of property seized, will likely be released Thursday, Senate President Donald E. Williams Jr. said.
Williams said he expects those documents to include warrants to search the vehicle used by the 20-year-old shooter, Adam Lanza, and the home of his mother, Nancy Lanza. Adam Lanza killed his mother before driving to Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14 to gun down 20 first-graders and six educators. He then turned the gun on himself.
The Brooklyn Democrat had originally hoped for a vote Wednesday by the full General Assembly on the legislation, but he now says next week is more likely.
“While it’s my personal belief that we will not see information that will measurably change the tenor of our negotiations or the issues that we’re focused on, the idea that there might even be a tiny chance that there would be new information that could impact on our policy was enough for folks to say, `Look, let’s wait a couple of days and see the warrants and the releases,”’ Williams said.
On Monday, Sedensky objected to a move by The Associated Press and five newspapers seeking to intervene against any move to extend the current 90-day seal of the warrants. Sedensky said the request to intervene is premature because the state hasn’t filed any further requests.
Lawmakers, including Williams, recently voiced concern that a Connecticut State Police commander reportedly disclosed evidence from the massacre at a law enforcement seminar in New Orleans.
House Minority Leader Lawrence Cafero Jr., R-Norwalk, said legislators had asked several times without success for information from the state police investigation that would help them as they craft a legislative response to the shooting that addresses gun violence, school security and mental health. Cafero last week called it “really galling” to read an account in the New York Daily News of comments Col. Daniel Stebbins made to “strangers in our state.”
A column published last week, citing an unnamed police officer who attended the seminar, reported that Stebbins discussed evidence suggesting Lanza studied other mass slayings and dedicated extensive planning to the massacre.
That prompted Gov. Dannel P. Malloy to announce that the Chief State’s Attorney’s Office had agreed to release additional information about the state police investigation by March 29. It initially hadn’t been expected for several months.
After meeting with Sedensky, Williams said he wasn’t expecting an interim report to be released. He said he was only anticipating the warrants and the completed returns of the warrants.Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.