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2nd man charged in a deadly Connecticut home invasion, Joshua Komisarjevsky, set to go on trial

Haley, Michaela, Jennifer Hawke-Petit, William Petit (Personal Photo)
WFSB-TV/Connecticut State Police
Conn. Home Invasion Update: 2nd Conn. home invasion trial to begin
Hayley, Michaela, Jennifer Hawke-Petit, William Petit
CBS/Personal Photo

(CBS/AP) NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The trial of Joshua Komisarjevsky, the second defendant charged in the slaying of a mother and her two daughters during a notorious Connecticut home invasion, is set to begin today in New Haven Superior Court.

Pictures: The Petit Family

The 31-year-old faces a possible death sentence if convicted. His co-defendant, Steven Hayes, was sentenced to death last year.

Authorities say the two paroled burglars broke into a Cheshire home in July 2007, beat Dr. William Petit and killed his wife, Jennifer Hawke-Petit and their two daughters, 11-year-old Michaela and 17-year-old Hayley. Dr. Petit survived.

Prosecutors say Hayes raped and strangled Hawke-Petit, and Komisarjevsky sexually molested Michaela. The two girls were tied up and died of smoke inhalation after the home was set on fire.

Complete coverage of the Petit family case on Crimesider