Danbury Landlord Joseph DaSilva, charged with homicide, first-degree assault and third-degree assault following the 2009 death of Luis Encalada, pleaded to lesser charges Wednesday that could put him behind bars for up to seven years.
DaSilva agreed using the Alford doctrine in Danbury Superior Court the state could probably win its case, although he disagreed with parts of it. That left him pleading guilty to negligent homicide, second-degree assault and third-degree assault, lesser charges than those originally filed against him.
DaSilva was originally charged with manslaughter and assault following a confrontation on Nov. 6, 2009 on Town Hill Avenue in Danbury that left a man dead. The man, Luis Encalada, may have been an illegal immigrant, and as each juror is questioned, both the Assistant State's Attorney Hodge and Defense Attorney Riccio ask jurors about their thoughts about illegal immigrants.
According to the arrest warrant application and what Assistant State's Attorney Sharmese Hodge said in court, DaSilva was throwing squatters from one of his apartments at 58 Town Hill Ave., when one of the man, Encalada, suffered injuries to his liver. He died later that day at Danbury Hospital.
As the agreement stands right now, DaSilva will be sentenced on March 14 to seven years in prison, suspended after two-and-a-half years, with five years of probation. DaSilva's defense attorney, Eugene Riccio of Bridgeport, has the opportunity at his sentencing to ask for reduced prison time. Riccio and DaSilva declined to comment Wednesday.
Assistant State's Attorney Sharmese Hodge said, "We reached this agreement after long negotiations." That included her talking to the victim's family and to one of the men thrown from the apartment with Encalada. "The outcome was fair to all sides."
Danbury Detective Dan Trompetta, who led the investigation, said, "It seems fair to everybody."