Us

Romantic Note Interrupts Conn. Home Invasion Trial

  • Photo released in Feb. 2010 by the Connecticut Department of Correction shows convicted killer Steven Hayes.

    Photo released in Feb. 2010 by the Connecticut Department of Correction shows convicted killer Steven Hayes.  (AP )

  • Sept. 13: Dr. William Petit Jr. , right, leaves court with his father, William Petit, left, after the first day of the trial of Steven Hayes at Superior Court in New Haven, Conn. (AP).

    Sept. 13: Dr. William Petit Jr. , right, leaves court with his father, William Petit, left, after the first day of the trial of Steven Hayes at Superior Court in New Haven, Conn. (AP).  (AP2010)

A Connecticut judge has rejected a defense motion to dismiss the last alternate juror in a deadly home invasion trial after she showed romantic interest in a court worker.

The judge said Monday that a "middle school note" the juror attempted to pass to a court security officer Friday was "spectacularly poor judgment" but did not affect her impartiality. A clerk intercepted the note.

A defense lawyer called the note "disturbing." Prosecutors opposed the motion, saying the juror has been paying attention.

Steven Hayes was convicted of killing a Cheshire woman and her two daughters in a home invasion in 2007. The jury is weighing whether he should be put to death or receive a life sentence.

The judge dismissed a juror Friday who was overheard making a derogatory comment to another juror.