Saturday, October 10, 2015

Judge to decide on request to move trial

Raghunandan Yandamuri (center) has been charged in the deaths of a baby and her grandmother.
Raghunandan Yandamuri (center) has been charged in the deaths of a baby and her grandmother. TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer, file
Judge to decide on request to move trial

Montgomery County Court Judge Steven T. O'Neill said Monday that he will wait until the first prospective jurors are questioned later this summer to decide if he will relocate the trial or seek an out-of-county jury for a man accused of killing a 10-month-old girl and her 61-year-old grandmother at a King of Prussia apartment complex in October 2012.

The hearing was the first proceeding in which Raghunandan Yandamuri, 28, served as his own lawyer. He is accused of stabbing Satyavathi Venna and suffocating her granddaughter, Saanvi Venna, in a kidnap-and-ransom plot gone awry.

Yandamuri, who was granted his request in May to represent himself, mainly raised procedural issues at the hearing, including what photos could be shown at the trial and whether prosecutors could bring up what he said was false information that he was saddled with gambling debts. He also asked the court to pay for a forensic pathologist and a computer animation/crime scene reconstructionist. The trial is scheduled for Sept. 8.

Yandamuri, who wore a red jail uniform of the Montgomery County Correctional Facility, said his mother and brother were having trouble getting a visa to come from India and be character witnesses for him. Henry S. Hilles 3d, who remains Yandamuri's attorney for the penalty phase of the capital case, suggested they could testify by Skype if they could not come. - Carolyn Davis

We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
comments powered by Disqus
Also on
letter icon Newsletter