Ex-cop nabbed in larceny
By SZYMON TWAROG , Middletown Press Staff 07/20/2004
MIDDLETOWN -- A former lieutenant with the Middletown Police Department and chief with the Madison Police Department was arrested Monday on charges that he stole more than $425,000 in cash and property from his elderly parents.

Dennis Anziano, 56, of 144 Ballfall Road, is accused of fraudulently obtaining power of attorney over his parents and then using that power to steal more than $98,000 from his parents’ bank accounts as well as $330,000 worth of property. He is accused of fraudulently obtaining the title to their home, where he now lives, and rental property.

Anziano told his parents, who are 90 and 86-years-old, that they had to move out of their Ballfall Road residence and moved them into a retirement community, according to a press release from the Division of Criminal Justice.

As a police chief in Madison, Anziano was fired in 1992 after five months of hearings for using the town’s tax-free accounts to purchase items for himself.

The Police Commission found Anziano was guilty of buying tires for his personal vehicle as well as two guns for private citizens -- a 0.380-caliber Beretta handgun for Richard Spero of Madison and a 9 mm Beretta machine gun for Martin Dudley of Madison. He was also found guilty of buying a storage shed for his personal use, while claiming the shed was for the police department, and illegally accepting a compact disc player installed in his cruiser from Longworth Carlson Inc.

A month later, Anziano was charged with four counts of second degree larceny for defrauding the public. In 1995, he eventually pleaded no contest to misdemeanor charges of criminal attempt to commit fifth-degree larceny and criminal attempt to avoid paying state sales tax. He received a six-month suspended sentence.

Anziano now faces three counts of larceny in the first degree, three counts of larceny in the second degree from a victim 60 years of age or older, one count of perjury and two counts of making false statements in the second degree. If convicted on all charges, he could face a maximum of 97 years in jail.

Anziano was arraigned in Middlesex Superior Court and was released on a $100,000 non-surety bond. His next court date is Aug. 16.

The case is being prosecuted by the Elder Abuse Unit of the Elder Services Bureau in the Chief State’s Attorney Rocky Hill office. Anziano was arrested by Inspectors from the Office of the Chief State’s Attorney.

Anziano spent 15 years with the Middletown Police Department before moving to Madison.

To contact Szymon Twarog, call (860)347-3331 Ext. 220 or email stwarog@middletownpress.com.

The New Haven Register contributed to this report.

©The Middletown Press 2004

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