Tomorrow will mark exactly four months since Jennifer Dulos, a mother of five, disappeared. It's been 122 days since her children said goodbye after she dropped them off at school and it's been more than 16 weeks since police found blood stains and spatter in the garage of her New Canaan home.
Jennifer's estranged husband, Fotis Dulos, and his girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, are each facing multiple charges in connection with Jennifer's disappearance.
Both Fotis and Troconis are facing two charges of tampering with evidence and one charge of hindering prosecution in relation to Jennifer's disappearance.
Fotis Dulos was called into court Monday, after probation officers raised an alarm about his GPS monitoring device. They say he’s letting the battery get too low.
“A low battery status is not a trivial condition,” said the Hon. John Blawie in court.
He expressed concern over whether the 52-year-old Dulos is following the conditions of his release.
The assistant state’s attorney, Richard Colangelo, said there was never a moment where the device stopped working. Still, he questioned whether Dulos is purposely not charging the battery on the ankle bracelet used to track his every move.
“I would ask that you start setting a curfew for him because he’s obviously just snubbing his nose at the court,” said Colangelo. “This is a person that believes that he is above the court’s orders and doesn’t really understand the seriousness of what he’s facing.”
However, defense attorney Norm Pattis questioned whether his client even needs to wear a tracking device.
“I am unaware of any other case in the state of Connecticut where a person not charged with a crime of violence with no criminal history has had an electronic monitoring device imposed,” said Pattis.
While authorities have been tracking Fotis Dulos since his arrest, police say technology has also put Dulos at the scene of the crime the day Jennifer disappeared.
According to the latest court filing, investigators believe Dulos was lying in wait near Jennifer’s home the morning of May 24.
The arrest warrant suggests that surveillance footage from that day shows someone parking a pick-up truck owned by a former Dulos employee outside the same park that Jennifer’s SUV was found abandoned. Using private surveillance footage and traffic cameras, police tracked the pick-up leave Farmington, where Dulos lives and traced its journey to New Canaan.
Dulos and his girlfriend, Michelle Troconis, were recently re-arrested and charged with a second count of tampering with evidence.
According to the arrest warrant, the pair tried cleaning the seats of the pick-up before returning it to its owner, who told police Dulos instructed him to remove the seats. He instead, turned them over to police.
Troconis has not entered a plea on the latest charge, but pled not-guilty to earlier charges. Dulos has pled not guilty to all charges.
Monday, the judge upheld the conditions of Dulos’ release on bond and left him with a warning that he could increase his bond or revoke it altogether if he doesn’t start property charging his GPS ankle bracelet.
“You know there’s two doors out of this courtroom. There’s that door and there’s the door out back with your council, and I don’t want to send you through that door,” said Blawi, referring to the door that those who are incarcerated are brought through coming in and out of the courtroom.
After court, Dulos declined to comment on the case, which is now under a gag order, but did have a message for his family.
“I would like to thank all these people that have given me their support. I just want to tell you how much I love my children and I can’t wait to see them,” said Dulos.
He will be back in court on October 4, when his attorney says he plans to argue his motion to have the charges against his client dismissed.
After the court appearance, Pattis said they would be filing a public interest appeal Wednesday in the state Supreme Court on a gag order that has been issued in the criminal case.
“It’s our position that the judge acted in ways that no other court in the United States ever has by basically imposing a prior restraint on Mr. Dulos, me and others associated with the case, barring us from commenting on a charge that hasn’t even been brought,” Pattis said.
The judge has the option to revoke Fotis' bond if he finds Fotis did not comply with the terms of his release.
Police have set up a dedicated website for tips in the disappearance of Jennifer Dulos. Anyone with information that can help the investigation is asked to call police at 203-594-3544 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.