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Groton freezer death case will go to trial

Luis Otero, accused of killing his Groton housemate last year and putting her body in a freezer, has rejected an offer from the state to plead guilty to murder in exchange for a 27-year prison sentence.

Otero, 50, is accused of killing Madeline J. Brisson, whom he had dated and with whom he was living at 1184 Gold Star Highway to help her cover the rent. Otero turned himself in on March 7, 2010, saying he had put a body into the freezer at that address.

The body of Brisson, 50, was frozen solid, according to police, and the state Office of the Chief Medical Examiner could not immediately determine the cause and manner of her death. The office later ruled that Brisson was a homicide victim who had died of blunt traumatic injuries and asphyxia.

Otero, who has been held in lieu of $2 million bond since his arrest, appeared in New London Superior Court Tuesday with his attorney, Bruce A. Sturman. Sturman told the judge that Otero was rejecting the state's plea offer and would like a trial.

Judge Patrick J. Clifford told Otero that the offer, which the victim's family considered too lenient, is off the table. Murder carries a minimum sentence of 25 years in prison and a maximum of 60 years.

- Karen Florin

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