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Conn. state police search pond associated husband of missing mother

Tribune News Service logo Tribune News Service 6/12/2019 By Dave Altimari, Nicholas Rondinone and David Owens, The Hartford Courant
a group of people in uniform: Michelle Troconis, 44, the girlfriend of Fotis Dulos, 51, is led into Norwalk Superior Court on Monday morning, June 3, 2019 by New Canaan police, judicial marshals and the state police. Troconis and Dulos were both arrested late Saturday night by state police detectives at a hotel in Avon and have been held on $500,000 bond pending arraignment in Norwalk Superior Court. Fotis Dulos, the estranged husband of missing New Canaan mother of five Jennifer Farber Dulos, has been charged in connection with the investigation into her disappearance. New Canaan police said Sunday they charged Fotis Dulos with hindering prosecution and tampering with evidence, along with Troconis. © Patrick Raycraft/Hartford Courant/TNS Michelle Troconis, 44, the girlfriend of Fotis Dulos, 51, is led into Norwalk Superior Court on Monday morning, June 3, 2019 by New Canaan police, judicial marshals and the state police. Troconis and Dulos were both arrested late Saturday night by state police detectives at a hotel in Avon and have been held on $500,000 bond pending arraignment in Norwalk Superior Court. Fotis Dulos, the estranged husband of missing New Canaan mother of five Jennifer Farber Dulos, has been charged in connection with the investigation into her disappearance. New Canaan police said Sunday they charged Fotis Dulos with hindering prosecution and tampering with evidence, along with Troconis.

HARTFORD, Conn. — Connecticut state police dog teams and divers began inspecting the water skiing lake in Avon Wednesday where Fotis Dulos brought his children to train, as the search for his missing wife, Jennifer Farber Dulos, entered its 19th day.

At least two troopers with dogs were searching the woods behind the pond located off of Old Farm Road in Avon, and police officials said a dive team was also dispatched to the roughly quarter-mile-long body of water. Sources said police were planning to do some sort of sonar scanning of the pond. They also used divers Wednesday afternoon to search the lake.

Farber Dulos has been missing since May 24 and police have focused their most recent search efforts on a trash-to-energy plant in Hartford and properties that Fotis Dulos owns in the Farmington area. Police said they remained at the trash-to-energy plant on Wednesday.

Along with searching, they have been pushing the public for help, amassing more than 475 tips from across the globe on Farber Dulos’ location.

Dulos took the couple’s five children to the water skiing pond frequently and his Facebook page was filled with pictures of him skiing on the lake. Several of the older Dulos children are nationally ranked water skiiers; however, in divorce filings, Farber Dulos claimed her children were sick of water skiing and that her husband had placed too much pressure on them to succeed.

a man and a woman standing next to a tree: Members of an FBI Evidence Response Team combs a heavily wooded area in Waveny Park in New Canaan, Ct., on Monday afternoon, June 3, 2019. Fotis Dulos, the estranged husband of missing New Canaan mother of five Jennifer Farber Dulos, has been charged in connection with the investigation into her disappearance and was arraigned on Monday morning. © Patrick Raycraft/Hartford Courant/TNS Members of an FBI Evidence Response Team combs a heavily wooded area in Waveny Park in New Canaan, Ct., on Monday afternoon, June 3, 2019. Fotis Dulos, the estranged husband of missing New Canaan mother of five Jennifer Farber Dulos, has been charged in connection with the investigation into her disappearance and was arraigned on Monday morning.

“The children have told me that they do not want to waterski at this level,” Farber Dulos said in a court filing.

“They are physically and emotionally exhausted and have begged me to do something about it. We are all terrified to disobey my husband.”

The document goes on to say that if the children complain about the waterskiing Dulos bullies them.

“For example, on one occasion when my son felt too tired to ski, my husband threw one of his skis against a rock and broke it in a fit of rage,” she wrote.

When Farber Dulos moved the children to New Canaan after filing for divorce in July 2017 she enrolled one of her sons in a ice hockey program, which Dulos complained about in court documents, claiming the son was miserable having “pucks shot at him all day.”

a group of people standing next to a tree: An FBI Evidence Response Team combs a heavily wooded area in Waveny Park in New Canaan, Ct., on Monday afternoon, June 3, 2019. Fotis Dulos, the estranged husband of missing New Canaan mother of five Jennifer Farber Dulos, has been charged in connection with the investigation into her disappearance and was arraigned on Monday morning. © Patrick Raycraft/Hartford Courant/TNS An FBI Evidence Response Team combs a heavily wooded area in Waveny Park in New Canaan, Ct., on Monday afternoon, June 3, 2019. Fotis Dulos, the estranged husband of missing New Canaan mother of five Jennifer Farber Dulos, has been charged in connection with the investigation into her disappearance and was arraigned on Monday morning.

Farber Dulos was last seen dropping her children off at the New Canaan Country School. The couple have five children between the ages of 8 and 13.

Law enforcement authorities have searched a park in New Canaan near where her car was found, all of the properties and houses owned by Fotis Dulos’ home building company, The Fore Group, and the Materials Innovation and Recycling Authority’s trash-to-energy plant on Maxim Road in Hartford’s South Meadows.

Both Dulos and his girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, are charged with tampering with evidence and hindering prosecution stemming from video Hartford police recovered showing a man that looked like Dulos throwing multiple garbage bags into trash receptacles on Albany Avenue the same night that Farber Dulos disappeared, court records said.

A woman resembling Troconis at one point is seen on video sitting in the passenger seat and either placing something on the ground or picking up an item as Dulos throws out the bags, according to court records. The documents don’t say what she placed on the ground and there is no video evidence that she handled any of the trash bags.

a group of people standing next to a tree: An FBI Evidence Response Team combs a heavily wooded area in Waveny Park in New Canaan, Ct., on Monday afternoon, June 3, 2019. Fotis Dulos, the estranged husband of missing New Canaan mother of five Jennifer Farber Dulos, has been charged in connection with the investigation into her disappearance and was arraigned on Monday morning. © Patrick Raycraft/Hartford Courant/TNS An FBI Evidence Response Team combs a heavily wooded area in Waveny Park in New Canaan, Ct., on Monday afternoon, June 3, 2019. Fotis Dulos, the estranged husband of missing New Canaan mother of five Jennifer Farber Dulos, has been charged in connection with the investigation into her disappearance and was arraigned on Monday morning.

State police detectives rushed to Albany Avenue on May 31 and found some of the trash bags they believe Dulos had thrown out. Court records said DNA testing on some of the bloody clothes, towels and sponges in the bags matched Farber Dulos.

Police were too late to get some of the garbage and have spent the last week painstakingly searching through a mountain of trash at the trash-to-energy plant. A corps of state police, using German Shepherd cadaver dogs, have been shifting through the garbage searching for more evidence.

Dulos and Troconis have both pleaded not guilty and remain free on $500,000 bonds.

It was during Dulos’ bond hearing on Tuesday that Stamford/Norwalk State’s Attorney Richard Colangelo announced recent lab results from police investigators showed the DNA of Dulos mixed with Farber Dulos’ blood on a faucet in the kitchen of her New Canaan home.

Colangelo strongly objected to the bail reduction for Dulos and asked Superior Court Judge John F. Blawie instead to raise the bond to $850,000. He told the judge there was no explanation for Dulos’ blood to be on the faucet. Colangelo said while Dulos had been at the New Canaan home on May 22, two days before his wife disappeared, visiting his children for dinner, witnesses told police he never entered the home and therefore could not have left blood on the faucet that night. He said the search for Farber Dulos is “a fluid investigation” and new evidence is coming in every day.

Blawie kept bail at $500,000 for Dulos, and ordered that he turn in his passport and wear an ankle bracelet with a GPS monitoring device that Troconis also is required to wear. The judge continued Troconis’ case to July 18. Dulos is expected to appear in court again on Aug. 2.

When Dulos had the GPS device affixed to his ankle Tuesday in Stamford, he was not provided with a recharger.

The error was discovered late Tuesday, but rather than have Dulos return to Stamford, he was directed to visit a probation department office in Hartford to obtain a charger, officials said.

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©2019 The Hartford Courant (Hartford, Conn.)

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