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Vote Postponed Until Search Warrants Are Released

by Hugh McQuaid | Mar 26, 2013 12:35pm
(8) Comments | Commenting has expired

Christine Stuart file photo

House Speaker Brendan Sharkey, House Minority Leader Lawrence Cafero and Sen. Donald Williams after their first closed-door meeting on the legislation back on March 7

The religious holiday at the end of the week will push the General Assembly’s vote on post-Newtown issues into April. Legislative leaders expressed concern last week that they weren’t being given enough information about the investigation into the murder of 20 children and six educators that took place more than three months ago.

Senate President Donald Williams said leaders from both parties met with State’s Attorney Stephen Sedensky for about an hour last week and had the opportunity to ask him questions. Those questions did not yield any new information, he said Monday.

“We weren’t being presented with information. We weren’t being given answers,” he said.

However, Williams said Sedensky indicated that search warrant documents will be publicly available by Thursday morning.

“When warrants were issued to search Adam Lanza’s mother’s home, to search the automobile, the vehicle he drove to the school, and to search any other jurisdictions, there would be information concerning what the police found at those sites that will be coming out later this week,” he said.

Although Williams said he didn’t believe the information in the warrants would “measurably change” the bipartisan negotiations on a legislative response to the Sandy Hook shooting, he said leaders have agreed to wait until at least next week to vote on legislation.

“If there’s a 10 percent chance that there’s some significant new piece of information that could impact our policy, and we’re really talking about waiting a week, then it makes a lot of sense,” he said.

Williams said he wasn’t sure what the process for the release of the warrants would be, but said as soon as lawmakers had copies they would make them available to reporters. He expected leaders to begin meeting again on Tuesday and hoped lawmakers would be voting on a legislative package next week.

The group of legislative leaders started meeting to craft the legislation on March 7. They have met almost every day since.

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(8) Comments

posted by: Chien DeBerger | March 26, 2013  1:39pm

If the republicans are smart, they will not cast one vote in favor of any anti-gun legislation. Let the democrats own this.

posted by: Joebigjoe | March 26, 2013  2:15pm

I’m not for this people control legislation, but I have to ask the question about what is now taking so long on this investigation? The legislators werent given any new information so there must be a surprise coming, or something pretty major that hasnt been leaked yet.

posted by: anuddaCTresident | March 26, 2013  2:27pm

Finally, some true common sense…waiting for additional info before voting on sweeping rule changes that affect innocent, law abiding citizens.  Would make even more sense to wait until a final report on the investigation is out if you are going to use the events at Sandy Hook as a rallying cry for gun control.

posted by: dano860 | March 26, 2013  6:08pm

WOW, D.W. is actually proposing to wait for more information.
He’s more than likely following lawyer rule #1, don’t ask a question unless you know the answer.
Will anything monumental come from these reports? Maybe.
Will the information, even if it’s monumental, change their minds on the over reaching legislation…doubt it.
Answer the one question, will any of the changes being proposed prevent another tragedy?

posted by: Rafj | March 26, 2013  6:37pm

RE:Chien, do we really have any conservative republican state legilators?  Witkos got hammered last night at his gun “people” control hearing in Canton because he is for many of the proposals.  It’s all bad and we have no voice in this state government.

posted by: Tessa Marquis | March 26, 2013  6:52pm

Pish Posh. The “investigation” is irrelevant.

December’s murders are the symbolic impetus to work on restricting psychopaths and criminals from access to high powered weapons. There are many many other murders - and murderers - whose actions are also horrifying.

The restrictions that are needed are universal - throughout the US - and not dependent on one massacre being explained.

The “Cheshire Murders” and one family’s influence overshadowed a larger issue, and the suffering of our neighbors in Newtown stands alone, and unrelated to what some investigators determine.

Ask any Mayor.

posted by: Tessa Marquis | March 26, 2013  6:55pm

Translation of my previous comment:

The Legislators are chicken wafflers who are no doubt making deals rather than just creating real laws that help real people.

posted by: Chien DeBerger | March 27, 2013  10:02am

@Rafj-
I agree with you and this is also the national picture too. The establishment republicans are really blue dog democrats. I am well aware of the lack of commitment by Witkos to stand with the people on this issue. I had a collegue who spoke at that forum and he passed that along. And I believe the republicans will cave and allow a magazine ban. I can tell you, this state will continue to go into the toilet and I will sit home during election day and let the Witkos and other republicans without a backbone loose by selecting “None of the Above.”

The release of the search warrant applications is a smoke screen. They will not contain the specifics that should be in the hands of the legislators and the public before this vote takes place. Trust me, I am a police officer.
Semper Fi!