Norm Pattis wants his client to have his day in court, even though that client, Fotis Dulos, is dead.
And Pattis says he’s willing to petition the U.S. Supreme Court to make it happen, even though he’s likely to fail.
Pattis filed a motion to substitute Dulos’ estate as the defendant in the hope of continuing the upcoming trial of his client, who was charged with murder following his wife’s disappearance. Dulos died Thursday by suicide, after an attempt two days earlier.
“I do suppose I am angry,” Pattis said. “I was born ornery.”
Pattis conceded Monday he had little chance of prevailing. Yet he vowed to move the motion up the courts, until he’s exhausted every legal avenue in what he expects to be a “daunting” review process.
“I know the chances of success are somewhere between zero and 0.00001%,” he said.
So why is Pattis, an attorney who has taken on numerous infamous clients, including conspiracy theorist and Info Wars talk show host Alex Jones, continuing to keep the Dulos case afloat?
Because, Pattis said, he believes the state overplayed its hand when it charged his client with the murder of mother-of-five Jennifer Dulos, who disappeared in May.
“We want access to the state’s discovery, because we still have not seen it,” Pattis said.
Prosecutors have remained silent as to their next move, but the criminal case against Dulos is likely to end with the defendant’s death.
Richard Colangelo Jr. declined to comment for this report, saying the case is an active pending legal matter. Colangelo is still acting as the state’s attorney for the Judicial District of Stamford/Norwalk, even though he was named chief state’s attorney Thursday.
‘I WAS SEARCHING MYSELF’
Meanwhile, Pattis said he has no doubt his client had nothing to do with his wife’s disappearance. And the New Haven-based defense attorney partly blamed the media for Dulos’ troubles.
“I still don’t understand the fascination and preoccupation with this case,” Pattis said. “The questions they were asking were entirely consistent with his being guilty. Reporters were shouting out questions like, ‘Where is the body?’ as he was walking into the courthouse, and ‘Why did you do this to Jennifer?’ He was tried and convicted in the court of public opinion, and his death was the functional equivalent of an execution.”
Pattis also said he’s bracing for civil litigation, which often follows the estate of a defendant such as Dulos, a real estate developer who assets are likely in the crosshairs.
The defense lawyer added that Dulos’ suicide led to introspection.
“You, as an attorney, always say, ‘I will do better, do better, do better.’ But sometimes you fail,” he said. “If there were obvious signs, I missed them. I am searching myself to ask what I could have done better.”