After a status conference yesterday morning, Westmoreland County Judge Al Bell postponed next month’s triple murder trial of Kevin Murphy, the Saltsburg man accused of murdering his mother, sister, and aunt in 2009. The new trial date will be April 8th, just shy of four years since the murders occurred at the family glass plant in Loyalhanna Township.
During the discovery portion of yesterday’s meeting, Judge Bell ordered the defense expert hired to examine the alleged murder weapon to provide his report to the prosecution within thirty days of the examination. Investigators say the 22-caliber revolver was brought by Murphy to the plant the day of the killings and was used to shoot all three women. Murphy contends he used it only to shoot birds.
The trial was originally scheduled for December 3rd before Judge John Blahovec, but he recused himself from the case last month because of an unrelated matter, and it was assigned to Bell. Yesterday’s status conference was his first official participation in the case. District Attorney John Peck is seeking the death penalty against Murphy.