‘People Magazine Investigates: Connecticut Horror Story,’ an episode of Investigation Discovery‘s ‘People Magazine Investigates,’ highlights a 2007 crime that shocked the suburban community of Cheshire to its core.
After all, it was in their own house that an accomplished local doctor, a paediatric nurse, and their two children were assaulted, with only the patriarch, Dr. William Petit Jr., surviving.
Thankfully, Joshua Komisarjevsky and Steven Hayes were captured for the identical crime not long after.
So we’ve got you covered if you want to learn everything there is to know about them.
Joshua Komisarjevsky and Steven Hayes: Who Are They?
Joshua Komisarjevsky and Steven Hayes broke into the Petit family’s house on July 23, 2007.
One of them saw Jennifer Hawke-Petit and her 11-year-old daughter, Michaela, at a local supermarket earlier that day.
The person had followed the mother & daughter to home then came back later that evening with another in the intention of relieving their financial difficulties, but things quickly escalated.
Dr. Petit was bashed in the head with a baseball bat & locked in the basement before Michaela, and 17-year-old Hayley were tied to their respective beds.
Steven drove Jennifer to a bank in the morning, hours after keeping the family hostage, to withdraw $15,000 for them, unknowing that she’d managed to inform a cashier about their circumstances.
As a result, when they came home, he raped and strangled her to death, only to later assist Joshua in dousing the estate with gasoline and setting it on fire.
Joshua Komisarjevsky had sexually raped Michaela when the others were not at home, and both young girls died as a result of smoke inhalation.
Haley had managed to break free from her shackles, but she couldn’t get past the stairwell.
Both perpetrators — Joshua and Steven — were apprehended on the streets during their attempt to flee.
What Has Happened to Joshua Komisarjevsky and Steven Hayes?
Both Joshua Komisarjevsky and Steven Hayes were charged with 17 counts total, including capital felony murder of Jennifer, Hayley, and Michaela, a capital felony with intent to kill the three women, four counts of kidnapping, sexual assault, assault, burglary, robbery, arson, theft, and endangering the welfare of children.
Following separate trials in 2011 and 2010, the previously well-known offenders were found guilty of the majority of the counts and sentenced to death.
After the capital penalty was abolished in Connecticut, they were both resentenced to 6 consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole, plus an extra 140 years in prison.
Since then, both of them have been shifted to the Pennsylvania prison system as part of an interstate arrangement, making them out-of-state inmates.
As a result, while Joshua, 41, is detained at the medium-security Mahanoy Correctional Institution in Frackville, Steven, 58, is incarcerated at the medium-security Benner Township Correctional Institution in Bellefonte.
On many grounds, Joshua Komisarjevsky attempted to appeal his conviction in this home invasion-turned-murder case, but the State Supreme Court dismissed it in 2021 with a 7-0 Justice decision.
In addition, Steven stated in 2019 that he was receiving hormone therapy in prison as part of his transition. “I’m a transgender,” Steven said, without specifying which pronouns he preferred.
My family never recognised or treated my sexual identity disorder, which I was diagnosed with at the age of 16.”