What Happened During the Home Invasion

Both men have now been convicted.

On July 23, 2007, Steven Hayes and Joshua Komisarjevsky broke into 300 Sorghum Mill Drive in Cheshire.

They beat Dr. William Petit and tied him up in the basement. 

After taking his wife, Jennifer Hawke-Petit, to the family's bank to withdraw thousands of dollars, they raped and strangled her. They also tied up and set fire to the beds of the couple's daughters, Hayley and Michaela and sexually assaulted Michaela. Traces of gasoline were found on the girls clothing and Komisarjevsky took disturbing photos of Michaela.   

The terrifying ordeal went on for about eight hours. Then, the house went up in flames and police arrested Hayes and Komisarjevsky as they were trying to flee the scene.

The crime shocked people across the state and prompted people who once felt secure to install security alarms.

Over the next two and half years, records would reveal that Komisarjevsky had a record of breaking into homes, that Hayes was a petty thief and that both men were out on parole the night of the murders.

The two men were tried separately.

Hayes was tried first, after pleading guilty and then taking them back and attempted to commit suicide. His attorneys painted him as an accessory and Komisarjevsky at the main perpetrator. Ultimately the jury found him guilty on all charges except arson. He is now on death row.

There was also controversy over the book "In the Middle of the Night," a book author Brian McDonald wrote detailing the murders after interviewing Komisarjevsky.

Now, Komisarjevsky too has been convicted and will be sentenced after the death penalty.

Contact Us