NORWALK, Conn. – A 17-year-old New Canaan girl charged in the death of a Norwalk jogger appeared briefly in Norwalk Superior Court on Friday morning, pleading not guilty as she stood next to her father and her attorney before Judge Bruce Hudock.
Kenneth Dorsey, 44, was jogging on New Canaan Avenue in Norwalk the morning of March 24 when he was struck by a Toyota 4Runner, according to Norwalk Police. He was pronounced dead a short while later at Norwalk Hospital. Police say the SUV was driven by the then-16-year-old, who was using her smartphone to surf the Internet while driving.
She is charged with negligent homicide, use of a hand-held telephone under age 18 and failure to drive in the proper lane. Her case was continued to Aug. 16.
Hudock did not allow photos or videos during the court proceedings. Attorney Robert Bello objected to the photographers on the scene, prompting Hudock to remark that he was torn and that media requests to photograph the proceedings had troubled him from the onset of the case. Bello then repeated his desire not to have photos taken in the "very tragic case," and Hudock asked the waiting media photographers to leave.
The thin, pony-tailed girl wore tight gray pants and a pink top as she stood with her hands clasped in front of her before Hudock. Her demeanor was serious. Bello mentioned "supervised pretrial" as he agreed with Hudock that the case be continued to Aug. 16.
Prosecutor Suzanne Vieux asked that the victim's cellphone, which had been seized as evidence, be returned. Bello did not object. Hudock agreed that it was no longer necessary that it be held and said it would be returned.
The teen's family left the courtroom shortly thereafter and fled out the back door. A Channel 12 videographer followed, taking footage as they grimly got into their car.
Correction made, 9:49 p.m.