Bridgeport murder-for-hire case marks state's 1st trial since pandemic's start

Larise King, accused of having her estranged husband killed, is the Connecticut court system's first defendant to stand trial in more than a year – doing so in a room filled with large plexiglass partitions reminiscent of a hockey rink.
The Bridgeport courtroom has been modified for the age of COVID-19 as a protective covering on the witness stand microphone is switched out before anyone new testifies.
The prosecution's case began with Reginald Cathey, who recalled the early morning hours of July 27, 2019. He was at Newfield Avenue and Revere Street in Bridgeport when someone opened fire.
Officer John Knapp was one of the first to respond. Knapp found Dathan "Daedae" Gray, 32, shot several times and described him as being “in a pool of blood” while a bystander attempted CPR.
Gray was King's estranged husband. Police say she hired a relative to kill him. On the stand Tuesday, detectives went through the evidence collected at the scene.
“A lot of spent casings, bullet fragments, spent bullets – there were two damaged vehicles and we also had the blood,” said Bridgeport Detective Juan Serrano.
King is facing a three-judge panel rather than a jury of her peers. Jury trials aren't set to resume until June. This allows King to have her day in court before then.
She's been in custody since her arrest in September of 2019.
News 12 was told that Gray and King had a contentious relationship. Police say they got into an argument just hours before his murder and court documents reference surveillance footage showing a woman matching King's description in the shooter's car.
She's charged with conspiracy to commit murder and murder. No one has been charged as a co-defendant in the case, which continues Wednesday.