New Details of Darien Teens’ Assault of New Canaan Juvenile Emerge in Arrest Warrant Application

The assault of a New Canaan juvenile this month that resulted in the arrests of three Darien teenagers began with “hostile” and “antagonistic” trash-talking between high school students through text and Snapchat, court documents show. According to arrest warrant applications from New Canaan Police, citing sworn statements and interviews with a handful of teens present at an Old Kings Highway gathering that would be crashed by the Darienites, those communications included talk “how about how Darien High sucks and New Canaan High is better.”

The exchanges escalated—one of them included a photo of 18-year-old Darien resident Jack Joyce’s middle finger—followed by a text from the Darien High School senior saying “It’s Joyce” and “We’re coming.”

They did. It was about 11:15 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 6, and though the victim had told Joyce not to come to the house, even lying that he was not there, “a carload of Darien kids” arrived, “came storming downstairs” and two to four kids grabbed the juvenile while fellow Darien senior Brian Minicus put him in a headlock and punched his face about 12 times, according to the arrest warrant applications. When the assault ended, the juvenile iced his face and the Darien kids were “yelling violently and talking dirty,” according to the arrest warrant applications.

‘He Is Like ‘Grandpa Benny’ ’: Iconic New Canaan Mounted Troop Horse Turns 30

Benny, a chestnut gelding, made a small circle in his stall on a recent morning, then stepped toward the sliding door and poked his head out into the aisle, as if to catch sight of one of the other 24 horses living here in the New Canaan Mounted Troop’s spacious barn. According to those who know him best, it’s a gesture typical of this singularly sociable animal, a thoroughbred-quarter-horse cross who has called the Carter Street nonprofit organization’s serene 13.4-acre campus home for more than two decades. Benny “still gets visits from people who rode him years ago in the program,” according to Anne Dylweski, closing in on her eleventh year as barn manager at NCMT. “One former student from the late 90s, I believe, still stops in any time she’s passing by. I think it says something about his character that people take time out of their day to come see the horse that helped teach them riding years ago.”

Gregarious, patient, comical and kind, Benny since arriving at NCMT in 1994 has emerged as an “icon” of the unique program here, according to several lifelong riders and fans, serving as both companion and instructor to scores of New Canaan and area kids who have learned the basics of horsemanship and equine care atop and alongside him.