Ju­rors hear ad­mis­sion of fa­tal beat­ing

In­ves­ti­ga­tor tes­ti­fies about al­leged abuse of de­fen­dant’s 4-year-old son by slain man

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - FRONT PAGE - By Pa­tri­cia Doxsey pdoxsey@free­manon­line.com pat­ti­at­free­man on Twit­ter

In tele­phone con­ver­sa­tions from the Ulster County Jail in the days af­ter he beat his fa­ther to death with a base­ball bat, Ni­cholas Pascarella Jr. talked freely about killing his fa­ther and re­peat­edly asked his es­tranged wife if she was proud of him for what he had done.

Ju­rors on Wed­nes­day heard the three taped tele­phone con­ver­sa­tions be­tween Pascarella and his for­mer wife, Michele, dur­ing the sec­ond day of Pascarella’s re­trial for mur­der.

Pascarella is be­ing tried in Ulster County Court for a sec­ond time for the Dec. 27, 2014, blud­geon­ing death of his fa­ther, Ni­cholas Pascarella Sr., out­side the older man’s Marl­bor­ough home. The first trial, in late March and early April, ended with a hung jury.

In one taped con­ver­sa­tion, Pascarella was heard telling his es­tranged wife that when po­lice told him his fa­ther was dead, he re­sponded, “Thank God.” In an­other, he said, “I told you I would do it, and I did it,” and, “If I get a taste of free­dom and you ask me to

kill some­body else, I’d do it again.”

Pascarella, 41, has ad­mit­ted killing his 67-yearold fa­ther but claims he suf­fers from post-trau­matic stress dis­or­der and acted out of ex­treme emo­tional dis­tur­bance af­ter years of abuse at the hands of the el­der Pascarella and rev­e­la­tions that his fa­ther had sex­u­ally abused the younger Pascarella’s 4-year-old son.

Prose­cu­tors, though, say there was no sex­ual abuse of the boy and that the killing was pre­med­i­tated mur­der.

On the wit­ness stand Wed­nes­day, state po­lice Se­nior In­ves­ti­ga­tor Car­men Gof­fredo tes­ti­fied un­der ques­tion­ing by Ulster County As­sis­tant Public De­fender Mar­iAnn Connolly that he wit­nessed an in­ter­view be­tween the child and Child Pro­tec­tive Ser­vices of­fi­cials about the al­leged abuse and the child im­me­di­ately stated his grand­fa­ther touched him on his pe­nis and rec­tum.

Un­der cross-ex­am­i­na­tion by Chief As­sis­tant Dis­trict At­tor­ney Michael Ka­vanagh, Gof­fredo said it was “un­usual” for a child to im­me­di­ately blurt out such in­for­ma­tion.

Gof­fredo also tes­ti­fied that shortly af­ter the ini­tial claim of the child be­ing abused, he set up a mon­i­tored phone call be­tween Pascarella and his fa­ther on Feb. 24, 2014, in an at­tempt to elicit an ad­mis­sion of abuse from the older man.

Gof­fredo said he told Pascarella Jr. to tell his fa­ther that po­lice had DNA and phys­i­cal ev­i­dence prov­ing the older man had abused his grand­son.

“Es­sen­tially, we were try­ing to call his bluff,” Gof­fredo said.

But the el­der Pascarella didn’t crack, Gof­fredo tes­ti­fied, in­stead say­ing, “It’s a lie. I never touched the kid.”

Gof­fredo said the abuse case was closed af­ter au­thor­i­ties were un­able to sub­stan­ti­ate the claims.

On Tues­day, the de­fen­dant’s mother, Ju­dith Pascarella, took the stand to tell ju­rors how she watched from an up­stairs win­dow has her son re­peat­edly beat her hus­band to death, Ka­vanagh said.

He said ju­rors also heard the 911 call Mrs. Pascarella made.

Dutchess County Med­i­cal Ex­am­iner Dr. Den­nis Chute, who per­formed the au­topsy on the el­der Pascarella, tes­ti­fied Wed­nes­day that he found mul­ti­ple blunt-force in­juries on the body, in­clud­ing a 4.74-inch lac­er­a­tion on the back of his head.

“You could see frac­tured skull and some brain mat­ter com­ing through the scalp,” Chute said.

He said the el­der Pascarella also had bruises and scrapes on both arms and scrapes on his knees.

Also tak­ing the stand Wed­nes­day was Anna Doxsey, who worked with Pascarella’s ex-wife at the for­mer De­ter­mined Gym and who saw Pascarella in the hours be­fore he killed his fa­ther.

Doxsey tes­ti­fied that Pascarella’s de­meanor that day was that of a “nor­mal per­son.”

She also said that just be­fore noon, Pascarella called the gym and spoke to his son and briefly to his ex-wife. She said he didn’t seem up­set on the phone and that Michele Pascarella didn’t seem any dif­fer­ent af­ter tak­ing the call.

Au­thor­i­ties con­tend Pascarella called his for­mer wife to tell her he had killed his fa­ther.

Tes­ti­mony is sched­uled to re­sume at 10 a.m. Thurs­day.

TANIA BARRICKLO — DAILY FREE­MAN

Ni­cholas Pascarella Jr., left, sits in Ulster County Court on Wed­nes­day with Ulster County As­sis­tant Public De­fend­ers Jef­frey Proven­zano and Mar­iAnn Connolly.

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