Testimony early Thursday in the ongoing trial of Matthew Pugh, accused of murdering 26-year-old Alexandra Ducsay in 2006, focused on how Pugh may have  covered up the crime by using items from his workplace.

The jury in the Milford courthouse Thursday morning heard testimony from Peter Callender, Pugh’s former supervisor at Chromalloy in Windsor, a company that overhauls engines.

Callender testified that Pugh would have had easy access to the boot covers, gloves and smocks that employees at Chromalloy used in the course of their jobs.

“It would have been easy,” Callender responded when asked if Pugh could have taken the items.

Pugh’s lawyer asked Judge Denise Markle to not allow presentation of some of those items, including the paper gowns, boot covers and gloves, because he said Pugh was not found to be in possession of them after the 2006 murder.

But the judge ruled the items could be presented. Milford State’s Attorney Kevin Lawlor explained the items were relevant because in earlier testimony, and in an arrest warrant affidavit on file at Superior Court, Pugh’s cousin Anthony Pugh stated that Matthew had talked to him about “using things from work to help cover up who the murderer of Alexandra would be.”

According to the affidavit, “Matthew Pugh talked with Anthony about taking tape, smocks, boot covers and gloves from Chromalloy for this purpose.”

The relationship

Ducsay and Matthew Pugh had dated for “some considerable period of time starting when Alexandra was 16 years old,” according to court documents.

During their relationship Pugh was sent to prison in Connecticut, and the relationship ended while Pugh was incarcerated.

Ducsay's mother, Linda Ducsay, told police at the time that “Matthew Pugh would regularly harass and threaten” her daughter after the break-up.

Pugh was released from jail Aug. 6, 2004. Alexandra Ducsay's brother, Eric Terranova, told police during their investigation that Pugh continually threatened his sister after his release from jail.

On May 19, 2006, Ducsay was discovered dead in her home on Boothbay Street in Milford. Police were called to the house at about 4:40 p.m. that day after Ducsay’s mother discovered her daughter beaten in the basement.

Police said the area was consistent with a violent crime scene. An autopsy performed by the Chief Medical Examiner’s office determined that the cause of death was blunt force trauma and the manner of death was certified as “homicide.”

Supervisor’s testimony

On Thursday, Callender told the court that the protective clothing and gloves at Chromalloy were kept in several places, including a central crib, which was often supervised, and several unsupervised lockers throughout the departments, from which the employees could take items whenever they needed them.

Callender also testified about Pugh’s attendance at work Friday, May 19, 2006, the day Alexandra Ducsay was killed.

He said Pugh’s shift was 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., but on May 19 Pugh asked to leave around 8:30 a.m. because he said his daughter had been suspended from school “and he had to go take care of things.”

He said that in the days before and after May 19, Pugh was more short tempered than usual. “Matt was always short tempered, but was just a little more at that time,” Callender said.

The supervisor also talked about black tape that Chromalloy uses, and which investigators said in an arrest warrant was found on the victim’s cheek. The same type of tape also was found at Pugh’s residence in Hamden, the arrest warrant states.

Callender said the tape is not the kind you can pick up at a local hardware store but is special ordered. He said it is used when blasting metal parts, and has proven to be very durable. He said it is not a common tape.

Trial continues

Questioned about the murder over the years, Pugh, 42, has consistently denied killing Ducsay, police documents state. Pugh also denies being in Milford that day.

Jurors heard more testimony Thursday morning, including testimony from an investigator for AT&T and presentation of records regarding Pugh’s cell phone the day of the murder, and the trial continued into the afternoon.

The trial got underway Tuesday, Feb. 10. Judge Markle suggested testimony may wrap up next week, and she was anticipating issuing her directives to the jury on Monday.