April 9, 2019
charging the defendant with the crime of assault in the first
degree, brought to the Superior Court in the judicial
district of Fairfield and tried to the jury before Pavia, J.;
verdict and judgment of guilty of the lesser included offense
of assault in the second degree, from which the defendant
appealed to this court. Affirmed.
Formica, for the appellant (defendant).
Michael A. DeJoseph, senior assistant state's attorney,
with whom, on the brief, was John C. Smriga, state's
attorney, for the appellee (state).
Alvord, Elgo and Moll, Js.
defendant, Terene Clark, appeals from the judgment of
conviction, rendered following a jury trial, of one count of
assault in the second degree in violation of General Statutes
§ 53a-60 (a) (3). On appeal, the defendant claims that
the trial court erred by denying her motion to suppress her
statement to the police, which she alleges was obtained in
violation of her constitutional rights under Miranda
v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436, 478-79, 86 S.Ct.
1602, 16 L.Ed.2d 694 (1966). We affirm the judgment of the
jury reasonably could have found the following
facts. In the early morning hours of June 18,
2015, the defendant and the victim were involved in an
altercation at their shared apartment. At the time, the
defendant and the victim had been in a relationship for
approximately ten years. The victim became angry when he
discovered that the defendant was in the bedroom talking on
the phone to another man. The argument started in the bedroom
and continued into the kitchen. While in the kitchen, the
defendant grabbed a knife off the counter and, ultimately,
stabbed the victim twice, once in the upper back and once in
the leg. The victim fell to the floor and was unable to stand
up. A neighbor drove the victim to the hospital while the
defendant remained at the apartment.
a.m., Luis Moura, an officer with the Bridgeport Police
Department, was dispatched to a multifamily home on Grand
Street to respond to a report of a domestic dispute. Upon
arrival, Officer Moura spoke to the second floor tenant, who
had called the police. She reported that the dispute happened
Moura thereafter knocked on the door of the first floor
apartment, and the defendant answered. Officer Moura asked
her what had happened, and she responded that
‘‘he went to the hospital.'' Officer
Moura did not know about whom the defendant was talking and
again asked her what had happened. The defendant led Officer
Moura to the bedroom, where she explained that she had been
in that room on the phone with a male friend whom the victim
did not like. The defendant stated that the victim then took
her phone, knocked items off the dresser and onto the floor,
and struck her twice.
the defendant explained to Officer Moura what had happened in
the bedroom, she left the bedroom and brought Officer Moura
through the living room and into the kitchen. There, she
explained that she feared for her life, so she had taken a
knife off the counter and warned the victim to stay back.
Finally, the defendant explained that the victim was injured
when he walked away from her and slipped on water on the
kitchen floor, falling backward onto the knife.
Moura then received a phone call from Thomas Harper, an
officer with the Bridgeport Police Department who had gone to
the hospital to check on the victim's condition. Officer
Harper told Officer Moura that the victim had two stab
wounds, one in the leg and one in the upper back, which had
left the victim a paraplegic. Upon learning that the
victim's injuries were inconsistent with the
defendant's version of events,  Officer Moura placed the
defendant under arrest.
defendant subsequently was charged with assault in the first
degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-59 (a)
(1). Prior to trial, the defendant filed a motion to suppress
all statements that she had made to the police, including her
statement to Officer Moura explaining what had happened to
cause the victim's injuries. At a pretrial suppression
hearing, the trial court denied the defendant's motion
with respect to her statement as to ...