Case Of The Week: Inmate Challenges Death Sentence In Light Of Repeal
The Law Tribune will preview an interesting or important case most weeks when the state Appellate Court or state Supreme Court are in session.
Case: Daniel Webb v. Commissioner of Correction
Court: Connecticut Supreme Court
Date: Tuesday, October 22
Time: 12 p.m.
Attorneys: Richard A. Reeve; Michael O. Sheehan; Timothy J. Sugrue
Summary: A man on death row for kidnapping and killing a bank executive in 1989 is challenging his death sentence in light of the state's repeal of the death penalty last year. The death penalty repeal only applies to cases going forward, not convictions that already occurred.
Background: On Aug. 24, 1989, Daniel Webb kidnapped Diane Gellenbeck at gunpoint from a parking garage in downtown Hartford, drove her to Keney Park and attempted to rape her. The woman, a bank executive, briefly escaped from Webb but he then shot her twice in the back.
As the badly injured woman screamed and tried crawling away, Webb calmly got into his car, drove closer to Gellenbeck, got back out of his car and shot her three more times at point blank range, killing her.
In 1991, Webb was convicted of capital felony and sentenced to death for Gellenbeck's kidnapping and murder. After his death sentence was upheld on appeal, Webb brought a habeas action claiming that his appellate counsel was ineffective. His habeas petition was denied.