Pre-Trial Hearing Likely to Set Trial Date For Stephen Morgan
The criminal case of Stephen Morgan will continue in the Middlesex Superior Court today with his pre-trial hearing. Morgan, who is accused of fatally shooting Johanna Justin-Jinich ’10 last May, is pleading not guilty to three felonies: murder, intimidation due to bias, and carrying a pistol without a permit.
The court will be open to the public at 10 a.m. A pre-trial often entails an off-the-record meeting between the defendant’s attorney and the preciding judge. According to a representative of the Superior Court, the date for Morgan’s trial will likely be set today.
According to an article in The Hartford Courant, new details about the murder have been released in recently filed search warrant affidavits. The documents say that a friend of Justin-Jinich’s reported to the police that she had tried to avoid contact from a man she had met at New York University (NYU) by changing her e-mail address. The man, who was not identified in documents, found Justin-Jinich’s new e-mail address, despite the fact that she reportedly e-mailed him telling him to “leave her alone.”
Morgan, who turned himself in to police two days after the murder, attended a summer program at NYU with Justin-Jinich during the summer of 2007. Justin-Jinich reportedly filed harassment claims against Morgan, but did not pursue them. According to the reports, her friend said that Justin-Jinich and the man e-mailing her “used to hang out but now Johanna does not want anything to do with him.”
The documents also state that police are looking into whether or not Morgan had visited Middletown earlier in the year. According to receipts and an employee, Stephen Morgan dropped off the same red Nissan Sentra he left at Broad Street Books in May at Middletown Nissan for work in December. The employee claims to have seen a wig in the car.
Additionally, the documents state that police examined an iMac they believe belonged to Morgan, revealing searches for Columbine, Virginia Tech, and anti-semitic videos on the day of Justin-Jinich’s death.
A copy of the intensely anti-semitic book “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” was reportedly found in the motel room in which Morgan stayed.
Morgan’s lawyer declined to comment on the statements in the documents.