Defendant's guns to be sold for legal fees

A man accused of fatally shooting his newlywed wife in Norwich two years ago will be able to sell some of his guns to help pay for his defense.

Chihan "Eric" Chyung, 48, is awaiting trial for the murder of Paige A. Bennett. The couple had been married for just three weeks when 46-year-old Bennett, a nurse's aide at The William W. Backus Hospital, was killed.

Chyung hired private attorneys Brian J. Woolf and Kathleen E. Rallo to represent him. The attorneys are preparing the case for trial and recently filed a motion asking the state for funds to hire expert witnesses. During Chyung's appearance this morning in New London Superior Court, Judge Patrick J. Clifford scheduled a hearing on the motion for Jan. 10.

At the same time, Clifford granted the defense request that he order the state to release three of Chyung's guns so that they can be sold to help pay for his defense. Police had seized the guns, a Marlin .22 rifle, a Colt .357 magnum and Heckler & Koch .308 assault rifle, from the Milford home of Chyung's former girlfriend during their investigation, according to Woolf.

They are not the alleged murder weapon, which is a Glock 9 mm handgun.

The judge said once the state determines the three guns are not of evidentiary value in the case and investigators have an opportunity to photograph them, they could be released to someone who could legally possess and sell them.

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