Expert witness barred in western Pa. murder trial

SOMERSET, Pa. (AP) — A western Pennsylvania judge has barred some testimony sought by defense attorneys in the upcoming trial of a woman accused of having killed her housemate more than two years ago.

Prosecutors in Somerset County allege that 27-year-old Erin Everett shot 21-year-old Tory Minnick twice in the head and then bludgeoned her with a hammer in Jerome in March 2011.

Defense attorney Brent Peck had sought to present testimony on battered women syndrome, spousal abuse and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Prosecutors argued that the testimony would be “unrepresentative of the facts and grossly misleading” and also challenged the qualifications of the proposed expert witness.

The (Somerset) Daily American (http://bit.ly/170EYlg ) says President Judge John Cascio agreed, ruling that there was no evidence to justify such a self-defense argument.

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Information from: Daily American, http://www.dailyamerican.com

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