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Published by: vsundqvist on Dec 10, 2011
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,I
DOCKETNO.CV10-6003848
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~H1PERIORCOURTLORRAINESINISGALLI,ADMINSTRATRIX;'~;
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NEWBRITAINVS.atNEWBRITAINJAMESO'ROURKE,ET.AL.DECEMBER5,2011
MEMORANDUMOFDECISIONRE:DEFENDANTO'ROURKE'SMOTIONSTOQUASHANDMOTIONSFORPROTECTIVEORDERS,#177,179
1
WhenacriminalinvestigationwasperformedinrelationtothedeathofCarolSinisgalli,theRockyHillPoliceDepartmentobtainedswornstatementsfromwitnesses,andpreparedapolicereportinconnectionwiththeinvestigation.Thedefendant,JamesO'Rourke,2isseekingaprotectiveorderpreventingthedepositiontestimonyofDetectiveRoyBombaci,andanorderthattheplaintiffbepreventedfrominquiringordeposingPatriciaAdams,RobertJohnson,JeffreyBrown,andanyotherwitnessthatprovidedstatementstotheRockyHillPoliceDepartmentinconnectionwiththecriminalinvestigation.Thedefendantalsoseekstoprecludeanyinvestigationorinquiryaboutanystatementsthenamedindividualsmadetothepolice,orusinganystatementsasexhibits,cross-examiningadeponentaboutanystatements,andotherwiseutilizingordisseminatinganysuchstatements.
1
ThisdecisionalsoaddressesthedefendantO'Rourke'smotionforprotectiveorderandmotiontoquash,#191,datedNovember8,2011,whichraisesthesameissuesasmotion#179.
2
Forpurposesofthismemorandum,thecourtwillreferonlytothedefendant,O'Rourke.
 
Bywayofbackground,onApril7,2010,theplaintiffservedasubpoenaducestecumontheRockyHillPoliceDepartment(the"Department"),andnoticeofrecordsdepositionfortheDepartmenttobeconductedonMay4,2010,commandingthatparticulardocumentsbeproduced,includingcopiesofallswornstatementstakenintheinvestigationofthedeathofCarolSinisgalli.OnApril16,2010,
0
'Rourkefiledamotiontoquashthesubpoena.Beforethemotioncouldbeheard,onApril22,2010,O'RourkereceivedaletterfromtheplaintiffscounselwithcopiesoftheswornwitnessstatementswhichhadbeenvoluntarilyproducedbytheDepartment.OnMay20,2010,inordertomaintainthestatusquopendingafullhearingontherightsofthepartieswithrespecttothedefendant'smotionforaprotectiveorderandtheplaintiffsvariousdiscoveryrequests,thiscourtissuedanorderprecludingthe"us[e],furtherdisseminat[ion],orotherwiseutiliz[ationof]anywitnessorpartystatements"thattheplaintiffhadobtainedfromtheDepartment
"untilfurtherorderofthecourt.,,3
OnAugust31,2011,theplaintiffservedasubpoenaducestecumuponDetectiveRoyBombacitoappearatadepositionaswellastobringhispolicereportwithhim.O'Rourkemovedforaprotectiveorderandtoquashthesubpoena,relyingonthecourt'sMay20,2010order.SubpoenaswerealsoservedonPatriciaAdams,JeffreyBrown,andRobertJohnson,towhichO'Rourkeobjected.Theplaintifffiledanobjectiontothemotionstoquashandmotionsforprotectiveorder,andthecourtheardoralargumentonthematter."[T]he[trial]court'sinherentauthoritytoissueprotectiveordersisembodiedinPracticeBook§13-5..."
Rosado
v.
BridgeportRomanCatholicDiocesanCorp.,276
3
Thecourt'sorderonlyconcernedtheswornwitnessstatements,anddidnotpreventtheuseofthepolicereportwhichwaspreparedfortheinvestigation.
2
 
Conn.168,221n.59,884A.2d981(2005)."[D]iscoveryrelatedprotectiveorders...areinjunctiveinnature.Suchordershaveboththeforceandeffectofaninjunction,andserveasimilarequitablepurpose,namely,toregulateprospectivelytheconductoftheparties,eitherbyrestrainingthemfromactingorbyrequiringthemtoactundercircumstancesthat,ifnotsoregulated,couldleadtoundulyharmfulconsequences....[O]nceissued,protectiveorders,likeinjunctions,neednotremaininplacepermanently...andtheirtermsarenotimmutable.
It
iswell-settledthatatrialcourtretainsthepowertomodifyorliftaprotectiveorderthatithasentered....Indeed,courtsandcommentatorsseemunanimousinfinding...[thatcourtshave]aninherentpowertomodifydiscovery-relatedprotectiveorders...whencircumstancesjustify."(Citationomitted;internalquotationmarksomitted.)Id.,214-15.Theuseofprotectiveordersand"thegrantingordenialofadiscoveryrequestrestsinthesounddiscretionofthe[trial]court..."
Barry
v.
QualitySteelProducts,Inc.,280
Conn.1,16-17,905A.2d55(2006)."Thatdiscretionappliestodecisionsconcerningwhethertheinformationismaterial,privileged,substantiallymoreavailabletothedisclosingpartyorwithinthedisclosingparty'sknowledge,possessionorpower."
Brown
v.
HousingAuthority,
23Conn.App.624,626-27,583A.2d643(1990).Thedefendantarguesthatthecourt'spriororderpreventsanyutilizationoftheswornwitnessstatementsineithertakingthedepositionofDetectiveBombaci,orthedepositionsofthewitnesses.Althoughthecourtdidorderthat"theplaintiffs[were]precludedfromusing,furtherdisseminating,orotherwiseutilizinganywitnessorpartystatements,"thecourt'sintentwasclearthatthisorderwas"untilfurtherorderofthecourt."3

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