MONDAY 4 pm — At least two of the Turkey Bowl vandals applied for accelerated rehabilitation Monday at their court appearance, according to the Stamford court.
Greg and Michael Klein, both 21, applied for the program, which allows for a those without a previous record to get a certain probation time period, after which they receive a clean record pending no further incidents. Court documents show both Kleins were arrested on Wednesday, Dec. 26.They are due back in court on Tuesday, Jan. 29.
Rocco Colandro, 21, and William Canning, 21, who were both arrested on Monday, Dec. 31, the day police released the arrests information, also had their cases continued until Tuesday, Jan. 29 at their appearances Monday.
Kevin Green, 22, who was arrested on Friday, Dec. 28, had his case continued until Tuesday, Jan. 22.
FRIDAY —Five Darien High School alumni, including the sons of a former first selectwoman and the current chairman of the town’s Democratic Town Committee, were arrested for urinating on New Canaan High School football equipment during the Turkey Bowl Thanksgiving Day, Darien Police announced this week.
Two of the arrestees, Greg and Michael Klein, both 21, are the sons of former three-term first selectwoman Evonne Klein, who held the top office from 2003 until 2009, and Randy Klein, current chairman of the town’s Democratic Town Committee. They are among the five Darien High School graduates who allegedly broke into the locker room being used by the New Canaan team on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22.
Attorney Mark Sherman, who is representing Kevin Green, another Darien High School graduate, said his client was not responsible for any vandalism and describes the charges as “heavy handed.” Attorney Thomas Cotter, who is representing Michael and Greg Klein, declined comment. The Kleins have not responded to requests for comment.
A New Canaan High School football player reported to the police that during the New Canaan vs. Darien football game, some person or persons had urinated on team equipment which was being kept in the girl’s locker room. The same individual had reported that a back pack containing $20 had been taken.
Darien Police worked with school officials in reviewing surveillance tapes and identified five former Darien High School students entering the female locker room. Police then arrested the Kleins for third-degree conspiracy to criminal mischief, third-degree criminal mischief and second-degree criminal trespass. Michael was also charged with sixth-degree larceny. Both live at 19 Salt Box Lane.
Also charged with third-degree conspiracy to criminal mischief, third-degree criminal mischief and second-degree criminal trespass are Kevin Green, 22, of 30 Lynn Court, Darien; William Canning, 21, of 12 Edgehill Rd., Darien; and Rocco Colandro, 21, of 66 Hoyclo Rd., Stamford.
All five men were released on a promise to appear and have court on Monday, Jan. 7.
There has been some speculation in town as to possible political motivation for the length of time it took to make arrests and also the timing of the press release on the arrests — which was released on a holiday, New Year’s Eve, at about 3 p.m.
Darien Police Captain Fred Komm dismissed that speculation in an email to The Darien Times.
“This investigation, like all others we undertake, was accomplished in a professionally thorough, complete, and comprehensive manner absent any type of favoritism factor,” Komm said. “The same can be said of the issuance of the press release. To suggest otherwise is preposterous.”
Third-degree criminal mischief and second-degree criminal trespass are a class B misdemeanors in Connecticut, each punishable by up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.
After Darien was victorious over New Canaan for the first time since 2001’s Turkey Bowl on Thanksgiving Day, Darien Police confirmed the New Canaan team’s locker room was invaded during the game.
“Apparently an equipment bag was stolen and some New Canaan player’s property was urinated on by an individual or individuals while in their locker room,” Komm told The Darien Times at the time of the incident.
Komm added that it “doesn’t appear, at this time, that current Darien High School students were involved.”
Darien High School won its first Turkey Bowl against New Canaan in 11 years 36-23 in November.
At the time, Darien High School football coach Rob Trifone said the incident at the Turkey Bowl should not mar the Darien’s first win over rival New Canaan in 11 years or the rest of the Blue Wave’s accomplishments.
“I have confirmed with authorities that it does not involve any current students. I have talked with Lou Marinelli and apologized for the actions of very immature community members who may be involved,” Trifone told The Darien Times. Trifone said New Canaan’s coach “simply congratulated me on the win and said not to worry about individuals outside of both of our programs.”
Schools Superintendent Steve Falcone called the incident “unfortunate.”
The Turkey Bowl has had been affected by arrests in 2010 and 2011. Last year, arrests were made at a party shortly before the Turkey Bowl which resulted in at least two players being suspended from the 2011 Turkey Bowl.
In 2010, five football players were ordered to pay $1,500 in restitution for spray painting New Canaan High School the Wednesday before that year’s Turkey Bowl. They were all suspended from the team before the game.
Lou Marinelli, coach of the New Canaan Rams, echoed Falcone’s sentiments.
“You have two very proud communities with two very proud football traditions — the best of what high school football is all about,” Marinelli said.