Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Ax Murder in NY - Lots of Legal Questions

John Caher, - Slaying of N.Y. Appellate Clerk Raises Myriad Legal Questions, N.Y.L.J., May 17, 2006:

"As a career appellate clerk and devoted student of the law, Peter Porco likely would have relished the substantive legal issues that his own murder has generated.

Porco, 52, the principal clerk to Presiding Justice Anthony V. Cardona * * *, was brutally murdered with an ax during the early morning hours of Nov. 15, 2004, apparently as he slept in his bed. His wife, Joan, then 54, was resting by her husband's side and was similarly attacked, yet miraculously survived. Their 22-year-old son, Christopher, is charged with murder and attempted murder. He is slated to go on trial this summer. Pretrial hearings began Tuesday morning.

As prosecutors and defense counsel prepare for trial, the case has sparked an avalanche of motions, swirling around issues like Miranda warnings, right to counsel, excited utterances versus dying declarations and the scope of the Court of Appeals seminal ruling on the admissibility of prior bad acts, People v. Molineux.
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