A jury in U.S. District Court in Bridgeport today returned a verdict against Ken Krayeske, a political activist and free-lance journalist, in the civil rights case he brought over his arrest during Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s inaugural parade in 2007.

Krayeske claimed he was targeted for political reasons: His photograph was circulated by state police after he wrote a blog item suggesting that people protest outside Rell’s inaugural ball.

A Hartford police officer arrested Krayeske, who was photographing the parade. Police said he intruded into the parade route, then resisted when an officer grabbed him. He was charged with breach of peace and interferring with a police officer.

But the aspect of the case that drew broader press attention was how Krayeske was handled after his arrest: He was jailed for about 12 hours, then released only after the inaugural ball was concluded.

By the time his case got to trial, however, his claims against the state police were dismissed, leaving only the arresting officer and Hartford police as defendants.

“The jury got a very limited picture of what happened on Jan. 7, 2007,” Krayeske said today.

I was called to testify Thursday. As a reporter for The Courant, I had walked the parade route, shadowing Rell and gathering color for a larger inaugural story. I never saw Krayeske approach the governor, but neither did I see the arrest.

Another witness told me Krayeske was grabbed by police after Rell and I had passed by.

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Mark PazniokasCapitol Bureau Chief

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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