Conn. judge denies home invasion defense request

By the Associated Press | August 3, 2011 | 2:13 PM EDT

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut judge says a man charged with killing a woman and her two daughters in a 2007 home invasion cannot issue a statement in response to the victims' relatives who described him as evil.

There's a gag order in the case, so attorneys for Joshua Komisarjevsky (koh-mi-sahr-JEFF'-skee) asked the judge to let their client make the statement. They say the comments by relatives could prejudice his right to a fair trial next month.

New Haven Superior Court Judge Roland Fasano denied the request Wednesday. He says the description by relatives was contained in a tribute to the victims and "fashioned to attract little notice other than that of family and friends." The judge says the reference did not name Komisarjevsky or any legal proceedings.