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Information-sharing issue delayed murder trial for Pa. man accused of killing mother

June 06, 2013|By JENNIFER FITCH | waynesboro@herald-mail.com

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — An information-sharing issue between prosecutors and defense attorneys apparently delayed the start of the capital murder trial in the Franklin County (Pa.) Court of Common Pleas for a man accused of killing his mother.

A trial for Marcus Wallace was scheduled to start Friday, but jury selection was unexpectedly halted Tuesday.

On Thursday, Court Administrator Mark Singer said no proceedings for the Wallace trial were being held that day or Friday. He referred a reporter to court orders from Senior Judge John C. Uhler for information about scheduling.

The only order filed within the last week that references a potential continuance concerns discovery, the exchange of information between parties prior to trial.

Uhler wrote in that court order that the defense team does not intend to raise an insanity defense during the guilt phase of Wallace’s trial. However, attorneys may introduce expert reports during the penalty phase as the jury looks at various factors to determine the sentence.

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“The court will consider a continuance request so that the (prosecution’s) expert may adequately review any defense expert reports regarding mental disease, defect or condition to be used at the penalty phase if and when that becomes necessary,” Uhler wrote.

Also, he wrote that the defense team needs to turn over a list of all potential witnesses by 4:30 p.m. Friday.

Prosecutors, who are seeking the death penalty, allege that Wallace attacked his mother, Consuella Wallace, in her Hamilton Township, Pa., home on Dec. 10, 2009. She died from her injuries in February 2010.

The trial was scheduled to last three weeks.

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