Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Christopher Porco

Pre-Trial Hearing

Deffense attorney Kindlon argues in court
Deffense attorney Kindlon argues in court

The pre-trial hearing into the Porco case began on May 16, 2006 at Albany County Court. During the hearings, the prosecution team led by Chief Assistant District Attorney Michael P. McDermott and the defense led by Kindlon debated whether a video of the police interrogation of Chris should be allowed as evidence. The defense argued that the police never warned Chris of his Miranda rights prior to or during the interrogation and because they failed to do so the tape should be rendered inadmissible in court. Consequently, the judge did not allow the interrogation video as evidence but did "allow the prosecution's evidence that Joan allegedly identified her son as the assailant," The Times Union reported.  

District Attorney Michael P. McDermott
District Attorney Michael P. McDermott

During the pre-trial hearings the presiding judge also heard arguments made by the defense for a change of venue. Steve Ference quoted Kindlon who argued that "leaked information from law enforcement" to the media could "make it completely impossible to get an impartial jury." The judge granted the defense's request for a change of venue to Orange County, about 100 miles south of Albany, although legal analyst and attorney Paul DerOhannesian believed that moving the trial wouldn't stop potential jurors from learning about the case, Ken Jubie reported.

One of the leaks the defense team referred to that was widely reported in the media was that concerning Chris' DNA purportedly being found on a toll booth ticket collected in the late evening hours of November 15th 2004. Ference stated that "the ticket could mean Christopher Porco was in the area around the time his parents were attacked." If true, the evidence would be monumental and have serious implications for the defense team if introduced at trial scheduled for June, 2006. 

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