After nearly a month of media frenzy, a jury found Stephen Hayes the man accused of a nationally infamous 2007 triple homicide in Cheshire, Conn., guilty on Tuesday.
Hayes, who was tried in New Haven Superior Court on Church Street, was convicted on 16 out of 17 counts in the murders of William Petit’s wife Jennifer Hawke-Petit and their two daughters, Hayley and Michaela, at the Petits’ home in Cheshire, the Hartford Courant reported. Six of the guilty charges are capital felonies, which each make Hayes eligible for the death penalty.
Surrounded by a swarm of cameras outside the courthouse shortly after Tuesday’s verdicts, Petit praised the jurors for their “due diligence” in reaching the guilty verdicts, and added that he hoped they would impose the death penalty on Hayes.
Hayes’ trial now moves into the penalty phase, in which jurors will decide whether Hayes is executed. Judge Jon Blue scheduled those proceedings to begin Oct. 18. Hayes’ trial started Sept. 13.
Hayes’ alleged accomplice, Joshua Komisarjevsky, is slated to stand trial next year.