October 18, 2017
Stephan E. Seeger, with whom, on the brief, was Igor G.
Kuperman, for the appellant (defendant).
F. Currie-Zeffiro, assistant state's attorney, with whom,
on the brief, were Richard J. Colangelo, Jr., state's
attorney, and Paul J. Ferencek, senior assistant state's
attorney, for the appellee (state).
Keller, Prescott and Beach, Js.
defendant, Anthony C. Manousos, appeals from the judgment of
conviction, rendered after a jury trial, of arson in the
first degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-111
(a) (1). The defendant claims that the trial court improperly
(1) denied his motions to suppress various tangible items
collected from him, as well as oral statements that he made
to the police during an investigatory stop and subsequent
patdown search for weapons; and (2) compelled him to disclose
prior to trial the substance of the opinions of the expert
witness he intended to call at trial. We disagree and,
accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.
jury reasonably could have found the following facts on the
basis of the evidence adduced at trial. On December 3, 2014,
at approximately 12:40 p.m., the Stamford police received a
911 call from Brenda Ortiz. Ortiz reported that the
multifamily home located at 52 Highland Road, in which she
rented the first floor apartment, was on fire. The property
was owned by the defendant and was in need of substantial
repairs. The defendant had been unable to sell the house
despite repeated efforts to find a buyer.
day, Ortiz had been asleep on the couch in her living room
when she was awakened by a strong smell of gasoline. Unsure
of where the smell was coming from, Ortiz headed toward the
porch. The smell became even stronger as she walked into the
foyer, so she propped open the foyer door to ventilate the
area with fresh air.
then went back inside her apartment to call her husband. Once
inside, she heard the foyer door slam shut, as well as
footsteps on the stairs leading to the second and third floor
apartment units. Ortiz went back into the foyer, where she
saw ‘‘two legs and a pair of boots''
traversing up the stairs. She yelled out to the defendant,
did not stop or respond. Although Ortiz could not see the
defendant's face, she noticed that the person was wearing
jeans and black boots.
went back inside her apartment and dialed 911. As she was
dialing, she heard a loud explosion. Ortiz looked back into
the foyer and saw a ‘‘fireball'' coming
out of the stairwell. She also saw the defendant running down
the stairs wearing the same jeans and boots she had observed
just moments beforehand, as well as a black hooded
then grabbed her car keys and ran outside, where she saw the
defendant walking quickly down the sidewalk. She chased after
him, yelling, ‘‘yo, what the fuck you just
did?'' The defendant turned back, saw Ortiz, and took
off running toward Grove Street.
then got into her truck and attempted to track him down.
Unable to locate him, Ortiz drove back to 52 Highland Road
and parked on the street. She then provided a description of
the defendant to the 911 operator. Soon after, police and
fire personnel arrived.
Sergeant Russell Gladwin of the Stamford Police Department
was patrolling in his vehicle on Grove Street when he
received a dispatch reporting a fire at 52 Highland Road. The
dispatcher reported that the man suspected of starting the
fire had taken off down Highland Road and was headed toward
responded to the call, as he was only a short distance away.
As Gladwin turned right from Grove Street onto Highland Road,
he encountered the defendant coming out of an empty grassy
lot to his left. Gladwin stopped the defendant and asked
where he was coming from. The defendant spontaneously offered
to show Gladwin his driver's license.
Jonathan Rizzitello arrived in the area shortly after
Gladwin. As Rizzitello approached, Gladwin gestured to him to
handcuff the defendant. Rizzitello then conducted a patdown
search for weapons, and seized the defendant's hooded
sweatshirt and umbrella, which he was carrying, as well as
two sets of keys and a box of wooden matches found in the
defendant's jeans pocket.
Rondano, a Stamford police officer assigned to the
department's crime scene unit, also reported to the
residence located at 52 Highland Road. A fire marshal pointed
out to Rondano that there were two used matches on the floor
in front of the stairway. Rondano collected the matches and
stored them in plastic bags.
about 2:15 p.m., an arson investigator, Detective Paul Makuc
of the state police, arrived at the residence. Upon entering
the foyer, Makuc smelled gasoline. Makuc also saw an
irregular burn pattern on the carpet covering the foyer
stairwell. Specifically, Makuc noticed that the carpet on the
top of the stairs was intact, although portions of the carpet
on the lower half of the stairs had been destroyed by fire.
believed that the irregular burn pattern indicated that an
accelerant may have been poured on the staircase, suggesting
arson. He therefore decided to secure the scene and apply for
a warrant to search the residence, as well as the
defendant's clothing and his girlfriend's white
Mercedes, which was found parked a short distance down the
the warrants were issued, Makuc and his team reconvened and
began their investigation. The team concluded that the
basement, attic unit, and second floor units did not incur
any interior fire damage, while on the first floor the foyer
stairwell and closet directly beneath it were severely
trained canine aided Makuc in detecting the possible origin
of the fire. In the stairwell, the canine alerted to both
ends of the irregular burn pattern, indicating the presence
of an accelerant such as gasoline. The canine did not alert
to any other areas in the home, including the closet
underneath the foyer stairwell. After completing their
investigation of the residence, Makuc and his team members
concluded that the fire originated in the foyer stairwell and
was incendiary in nature-meaning that it was
‘‘set by human hands with the use of an ignitable
liquid in conjunction with an ignition source consistent with
an open flame . . . [such as] a match or a lighter.''
and his team then returned to the Stamford police station,
where they executed search warrants for the defendant's
clothing items and his girlfriend's vehicle. Makuc's
canine alerted to the defendant's black hooded
sweatshirt, as well as to one of his boots. Makuc then
searched the pockets of the sweatshirt and found two
partially burnt wooden matches, a white cotton mask, and two
cotton gloves. Forensic testing later confirmed the presence
of gasoline on the gloves, boot, and hooded sweatshirt.
trunk of the vehicle belonging to the defendant's
girlfriend, Makuc found a white garbage bag containing a red,
plastic five gallon gasoline can, as well as metal containers
filled with Coleman fuel. Makuc also found an opened
five-pack of white masks containing four of the five masks.
Forensic testing later confirmed that the fibers from the
masks found in the trunk were consistent with white fibers
found in the defendant's beard.
front console of the vehicle, the investigators found a
receipt from Home Depot for a purchase dated December 3,
2014-the same day of the fire-for a five gallon plastic
gasoline container. In addition, a pressure sprayer was found
in the backseat of the vehicle. Forensic testing later
confirmed the presence of gasoline in both the five gallon
plastic container and the pressure sprayer.
defendant was subsequently arrested and, following a jury
trial, convicted of arson in the first degree in violation of
§ 53a-111 (a) (1). He was sentenced to fourteen years of
incarceration, followed by eleven years of special parole.
This appeal followed.
defendant first claims that the trial court improperly denied
his motion to suppress the tangible items collected from his
person, and oral statements that he made to the police
following the investigatory stop and subsequent patdown for
weapons conducted by officers Gladwin and Rizzitello.
Specifically, the defendant argues that the police lacked a
reasonable and articulable suspicion to stop him, as well as
a reasonable belief that he may have been armed and
dangerous. We disagree.
following additional facts, which the trial court found
following an evidentiary hearing, and procedural history are
relevant to this claim. On December 3, 2014, at approximately
12:40 p.m., Gladwin responded to a radio dispatch about a
fire at 52 Highland Road. The dispatcher reported that the
woman who called 911 had seen a Hispanic male wearing a gray
sweater fleeing the scene.
who was driving down Grove Street a short distance away,
responded to the call. He reached Highland Road within twenty
seconds of receiving the dispatch. Upon turning onto Highland
Road, Gladwin saw the defendant walking out of an empty
grassy lot about 300 feet from the fire. Although it was
forty degrees and raining that day, the defendant was wearing
only jeans and a T-shirt. The defendant was also carrying an
umbrella and something that looked to Gladwin to be an outer
rolled down his window and asked the defendant where he was
coming from. The defendant gestured back toward the empty lot
and stated ‘‘over there.'' The defendant
then spontaneously offered to show Gladwin his driver's
license, which listed a Nor-walk address. Gladwin noticed
that the ...