Trial likely delayed after double murder suspect spits on attorney
Updated: Friday, February 14 2014, 11:21 AM EST
by Jane Walsh
Rochester, N.Y. -- The trial against a Rochester man accused of killing a Wayne County mother and daughter last summer may now be delayed and the judge isn't happy about it.
Judge Daniel Barrett accused Dante Taylor of spitting on his attorney in order to manipulate the court.
"I think the judge is indicating he did it intentionally so he could get a new attorney," said Wayne County District Attorney Rick Healy after the court appearance Thursday.
The incident occurred after a court appearance on February 4. The judge denied Taylor’s request for a new attorney. Afterward, as sheriff’s deputies escorted him to the transportation van, he is accused of having an altercation with his attorney Jim Kernan.
"Inmate Taylor turned towards Kernan and spit on him," said a statement by witness Jared Gill.
In court Thursday Kernan asked to be excused from the case. "Based on that incident, I think our relationship has deteriorated further than I realized," he said.
"I have no doubt you manipulated this situation," said Judge Barrett chastising Taylor. "You've been around. You know what to do."
Dante Taylor has a history of convictions for violent crimes. He was on parole when he broke into a Sodus farmhouse where Terri and Stacey Moulton were pet sitting for a neighbor. He is accused of their murders.
The search for a new attorney will likely delay the trial originally set for April. Prosecutor Rick Healy describes this as a complicated case based on circumstantial evidence and the testimony of more than 50 witnesses.
"When something like this happens it makes it so much more difficult to prosecute the case," he said of the delay. "The trial date keeps getting changes and it makes it worse when that change is caused by the misconduct of the defendant."
The trial will likely be moved to September.