ELLINGTON -- Richard Dabate appeared in court Monday in connection with the 2015 murder of his wife, Connie Dabate. He's being held at Hartford Correctional Center but plans to post his $1 million bond Wednesday, using $710,000 in real estate and $290,000 in cash surety.
On Friday, state police issued an arrest warrant for Dabate, 40, after a lengthy investigation. He was arrested on Birchview Drive and taken to Troop C in Tolland.
Dabate was presented at Rockville Superior Court on Monday. Dabate is charged with murder in the first degree, tampering with evidence and providing a false statement.
The warrant and the investigation took nearly a year and a half to complete. State police released a 50 page arrest warrant detaining the interaction between Richard and Connie Dabate, as well as witnesses to the incident.
In the warrant, Dabate claims an intruder tied him up to a chair in the kitchen and fled. However, when law enforcement arrived at the scene, a K-9 unit was unable to find any additional evidence of this claim or any signs of another individual running away from the house.
You can read the full warrant here. (WARNING: Graphic content)
"My client is innocent of these charges and he looks forward to being vindicated after a trial," said Dabate's lawyer, Hubert Santosin court.
The State's attorney tried to argue for a higher bond of $5 million, saying Dabate has a wealthy extended family. Defense Attorney Hubert Santos refuted that claim, and the judge kept bond at $1 million.
On December 23, 2015, a burglary alarm brought police to the house on Birchview Drive; officers encountered smoke where they found Rich suffering from minor injuries. He told police it was a home invasion robbery. Shortly after, police said his wife Connie was found dead, shot in the stomach and head.
Right after the crime, detectives claimed there was no threat to the public.
Investigators examined an iPhone belonging to Connie which had a special section in the "Notes" portion labeled "why I want a divorce." It goes on to list several examples of incidents between the two.
Neither Santos nor any of Dabate's family or friends would comment while exiting court.
His next court appearance is scheduled for April 28.