Sussman Landscaper Pleads Not Guilty To Daughter’s Murder

Feb 19 2010 | 9:20am ET

The landscaper charged with killing his daughter on a hedge fund manager’s Connecticut estate has pleaded not guilty.

At a hearing at Stamford Superior Court, Adam Dobrzanski’s public defender said his client “maintains his innocence to the allegation of murder.” Howard Ehring said Dobrzanski said he was suffering from “extreme emotional disturbance” on the Dec. 30, when his 20-year-old daughter Amanda was found dead at the Greenwich home of Donald Sussman, CEO of Paloma Partners. Dobrzanski was a live-in landscaper at the estate.

Ehring said he would seek money for further psychiatric evaluations of his client. At an earlier hearing, Dobrzanski was described as having a history of mental illness.

"My client maintains his innocence to the allegation of murder," Ehring told the court. "The issues my client wanted to touch upon was the fact he was under an extreme emotional situation, dealing with the possible loss of his job, his home, possible marital infidelity and unaccountable finances."

For his part, Dobrzanski remained calm for most of the hearing, telling the judge he understood what was going on. But when marshals began to lead him back to his holding cell, Dobrzanski began shouting, mostly in his native Polish.

On the night of the alleged murder, police found Dobrzanski’s daughter with her throat slashed and Dobrzanski himself with a number of self-inflicted stab wounds. Authorities were alerted by Dobrzanski’s estranged wife, Renata, a live-in cook for the Sussmans who was travelling with them in the Virgin Islands. She said she was concerned because Dobrzanski had been threatening to kill himself.

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