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State v. Courchesne

Connecticut Supreme Court
816 A.2d 562 (2003)


Robert Courchesne (defendant) stabbed Demetris Rodgers to death. Rodgers was pregnant. Rodgers died, but her child was delivered and lived for 42 days before dying from a lack of oxygen to the brain. Courchesne was convicted of a capital felony for the murder of two persons in the course of a single transaction. The State of Connecticut (plaintiff) sought the death penalty, which requires proof of an aggravating factor. The state argued that one of the murders was committed in an especially heinous, cruel or depraved manner. Courchesne argued that the state was required to prove that both murders were committed in an especially heinous, cruel or depraved manner. The trial court ruled in favor of Courchesne, and the state appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Borden, J.)

Dissent (Zarella, J.)

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