Bid to bar Pa. death penalty retrial rejected

February 21, 2014

BEAVER (AP) – A Western Pennsylvania judge has dismissed a defense motion to bar a new trial for stepbrothers accused of killing an elderly man who authorities say died weeks after he was tied up and beaten during a robbery.

President Judge John McBride last month cited inappropriate testimony in declaring a mistrial in the Beaver County proceedings against 26-year-old Joseph Arlott and 23-year-old Beau Chermer.

Prosecutors are seeking capital punishment if the McKees Rocks residents are convicted of first-degree murder in the death of 82-year-old Daniel Santia following the April 2012 Hopewell Township break-in.

The Beaver County Times reports that the judge on Tuesday rejected a defense motion to bar a retrial on double jeopardy grounds, calling it “frivolous.” The judge said there was no evidence of prosecutorial misconduct.



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