A high profile murder case is back in Onondaga County Court. Stacey Castor, currently serving up to a life sentence for killing her second husband and attempting to murder her daughter, was back before a judge Thursday. As our Katie Gibas reports, her case is still far from over.
ONONDAGA COUNTY, N.Y. -- It was a mix of anger, frustration and sadness as relatives of Stacey Castor's two dead husbands sat in Onondaga County Court Thursday.
"He doesn't get to appeal his death. But she gets to have everybody fight for her. For what reason, I don't know?" said Rosemary Corbett, Mike Wallace's sister.
Janice Poissant, David Castor's ex-wife, added, "There were a lot of flashbacks of being here for the trial, out here in the hall and then finally in there when Stacey was there. It's like putting a DVD in there and wanting to push it out, just like my son said years ago. It's just doesn't seem possible that it could be reality that someone could be so evil and take so many lives."
Castor was sentenced in March 2009 to 51 years to life for poisoning her second husband, David Castor, with anti-freeze and attempting to kill her daughter. Though she was never tried for it, authorities believe she also killed her first husband, Michael Wallace.
Last month, the appellate court in Rochester ruled that Castor received a fair trial. But they said the county court should review one of the interviews of Castor by a Sheriff's detective.
"This is the famous conversation she had with Detective Spinelli where she made the comment, 'Antifree, oops, I mean cranberry juice.' Then she asserted her right to counsel," said William Fitzpatrick, the Onondaga County District Attorney.
Her lawyers argue a 2007 statement to police was taken in violation of her right to counsel and that motion was denied in Onondaga County Court. The appellate court upheld that appeal, deciding that a hearing should have been held on that matter.
"This is a very technical issues because there is no question she was given her Miranda rights. She acknowledges that. She, in fact, obviously understood them because when the questioning got a little hostile, what did she do? She said she wanted an attorney, so that's a pretty good indication she knew what her rights were," said Fitzpatrick.
Both sides were due in court Thursday to schedule that hearing. But that was put on hold because both sides are seeking appeals in the case. The DA's office is asking the state's highest court to say the hearing is unnecessary. Meanwhile, the defense has also gone to the court of appeals to overturn Castor's conviction. DA Fitzpatrick says he's confident they'll prevail and the conviction will be upheld.
"To me what convicted Stacey Castor was her effort to falsify the suicide note. The interview was important. Would I have convicted her without that September 7th interview? Absolutely," said Fitzpatrick.
Judge Joseph Fahey scheduled the next court appearance for January 15th, to allow the court of appeals to hash these issues out.
Castor's attorney declined to comment on the appeals.