Dulos defendant misses hearing for GPS removal  

Mawhinney and Troconis are the remaining defendants in the Jennifer Dulos case after Fotis Dulos died by suicide in January 2020.

Marissa Alter

Oct 24, 2023, 11:06 PM

Updated 175 days ago

Share:

The former attorney who’s charged with conspiracy to commit murder in the disappearance and presumed death of Jennifer Dulos missed a hearing Tuesday afternoon to argue for the removal of his GPS ankle monitor. Kent Mawhinney, the longtime friend of Fotis Dulos, and his attorney Jeffrey Kestenband were at Stamford Superior Court for a motion to modify that condition of his bond release. But the two never made it into the first-floor courtroom for arguments until after Judge Gary White adjourned for the day around 3:20 p.m.
Kestenband explained they’d been upstairs on the fourth floor because he thought the hearing was going on in a different courtroom—the courtroom where jury selection was happening for Mawhinney’s co-defendant, Michelle Troconis. Both cases have the same lead prosecutor, Supervisory Assistant State’s Attorney Michelle Manning, and Kestenband said he thought Manning would be arguing the motion, so he went to that courtroom instead.
Troconis has pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit murder, evidence tampering, conspiracy to commit evidence tampering and hindering prosecution. Jury selection began Oct. 4 and has continued a few days a week since then. On Tuesday, the ninth juror was selected. A jury of six with six alternates will begin hearing evidence in the trial on Jan. 8.
Troconis’ mother and two other loved ones left jury selection Tuesday afternoon to be in the courtroom and see Mawhinney go before the judge. Now that hearing will be rescheduled. Troconis’ attorney Jon Schoenhorn told News 12 that while he saw Kestenband at jury selection, Mawhinney was not in the courtroom for it. It’s presumed he was waiting in a conference room on the floor.
Mawhinney and Troconis are the remaining defendants in the Jennifer Dulos case after Fotis Dulos died by suicide in January 2020, just a few weeks after he was charged with her murder and kidnapping. Police said the morning of May 24, 2019, Fotis Dulos was “lying in wait” for his estranged wife at her house in New Canaan and attacked her in the garage before disposing of her body. Jennifer Dulos’ remains have never been found, but she is believed to be dead.
Mawhinney was initially held on $2 million bond following his arrest on Jan. 7, 2020, and remained in jail until Oct. 19, 2020, when the state agreed to lower his bond to $246,000. He was released with the condition of GPS monitoring and appeared to have no issues for about two years. But on Oct. 3, 2022, the judge raised Mawhinney’s bond to $1.5 million after Mawhinney was accused of tampering with his ankle bracelet. He remained in jail until Dec. 15, 2022, when the judge lowered his bond back to what it was and put Mawhinney on home confinement. That condition was then lifted in May.
In the newest motion to remove GPS monitoring, Kestenband said Mawhinney is not a flight risk. The motion stated that his immediate family lives in Connecticut, he has no passport, and he doesn’t know any foreign languages. It also said the case has garnered so much attention, Mawhinney would be recognizable anywhere if he tried to flee. The motion also pointed out that he’s traveled outside Connecticut multiple times with the court’s permission and had no violations.
The ankle bracelet has caused “undue embarrassment and anxiety” to Mawhinney and interfered with employment opportunities, according to the motion. It said Mawhinney has the ability to teach power skating lessons to teenage ice hockey players, but the bracelet prevents him from being able to wear an ice skate. Mawhinney previously requested the bracelet’s removal so he could get a job as a  referee for local ice hockey games, but that motion was denied.
Mawhinney is accused of trying to provide a fake alibi for Fotis Dulos on the morning Jennifer Dulos vanished. He’s pleaded not guilty.


More from News 12