NORRISTOWN (AP) – A suburban Philadelphia man accused of killing a baby and her grandmother in a botched ransom kidnapping says he was coerced into a confession during a 17-hour detention and interrogation.
The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Raghunandan Yandamuri made the statement during Thursday testimony at a pretrial hearing.
The 27-year-old Yandamuri has denied in earlier court filings that he killed the two, and his lawyers asked Montgomery County Judge Steven O’Neill to bar his confession from trial.
Authorities allege Yandamuri kidnapped the baby from her family’s King of Prussia apartment and killed her grandmother who tried to protect the child. The girl’s body was found several days later.
Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in the October 2012 crime and deny coercion. The hearing will continue Jan. 13.