Lawyers cite books read by defendant as blueprint for crime
| Jul 22, 2010
As the trial approaches for one of the men charged in the triple-homicide home invasion in Cheshire, Connecticut, in 2007, all the motions, requests for evidence and demands that one would expect in a complex capital case have flown back and forth between the defense and prosecutors.
But one stood out, tantalizingly. The defense said it would request that the names of books that one of the accused men, Steven J. Hayes, checked out of a prison library before the killings not be admitted as evidence. The books, the defense indicated in one motion, included plots that were “criminally malevolent in the extreme.”
Hayes’s lawyers suggested that prison librarians might have given him what amounted to a literary blueprint for the crime, which already has what some see as a literary predecessor of sorts. It has been compared to the 1959 Kansas killings described in Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood. Read more in The New York Times online.