Westmoreland County Judge John Blahovec yesterday denied a defense request to reconsider pretrial motions he had already rejected in the Kevin Murphy triple-murder case. Blahovec told attorneys Mark Bolkovac and Bob Bell of Indiana that he had no “ethical dilemma” related to his subsequent recusal from the actual trial for Murphy, the 51-year-old Conemaugh Township man accused of shooting to death his mother, sister, and aunt in 2009. He said the argument for the motions was months before an issue with District Attorney John Peck caused him to step away from any trials involving the D.A.
The defense had sought to forbid the use of statements Murphy had made to police after the murders, contending that he had spoken while under the influence of medications he’d been given after the victims were discovered.
Judge Blahovec scolded the defense team for the numerous delays in bringing Murphy to trial. He read from a transcript of a meeting last year in which he told Bolkovac and Bell of his concerns with their slow pace.
The trial is scheduled for December with newly-appointed Judge Al Bell to preside, but could be delayed again after a pretrial conference on November 16th.