Controversial plea deal thrown out after petition, social media storm

Connecticut

MILFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Back in March 2019, Lori Wierzbicki was attacked in her home by recently-evicted neighbor, Russel Molleur.

On Wednesday, it was announced Russel Molleur’s guilty plea was vacated and Judge Brown has set the pre-trial date for February 13.

According to court documents, when Molleur was first arrested, he faced multiple charges including disorderly conduct assault in the first degree, strangulation in the first degree, unlawful restraint in the first degree, and tampering with evidence.

RELATED: Milford woman worries that man who brutally beat, assaulted her could be released from prison early

Lori Wierzbicki gave her victim impact statement during court Wednesday saying, “I have severe memory loss of that day because of strangulation, but the memories I do have are absolutely horrific. I definitely thought I was going to die that day.” 

Wierzbicki detailed one of the things she struggles with most since the alleged attack is showering. She says Molleur forced her in the shower to rinse off the blood.

“Standing in the shower in a pool of my own blood that was up and over my ankles,” she continued to say, “Today was day 26 since March 9 that I was able to get into the shower.”  

She tells the court in her statement, instead of showering she uses babywipes and is forced to wash her hair in her kitchen sink.  

Molleur’s defense attorney, Susan Brown noted his confession to the incident, “He stood there and said ‘I did it’.”  

Molleur declined the offer to say anything in court Wednesday.  

After the decision, Wierzbicki was grateful for the judge’s decision saying, “thank you very much for hearing me.”  

Her brother, Timothy McLaughlin tells News 8, “It feels good to not only have support of the community and have all this love, but also to have victory within walls of the courtroom. It feels really good on both sides.”  

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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