Out of area judge assigned to murder case

An out of area judge has been assigned to the murder case of Brockley Drive resident and law clerk Peter Porco, if it ever makes it to trial.

Assistant District Attorney Dave Rossi said it's not unusual for judges to be assigned cases before indictments. In the Porco case, where, on Nov. 15, 52-year-old Peter was killed in his home and his wife, Joan, was found upstairs from him severely beaten, there hasn't even been an arrest.

There has been a judge assigned, prepared to handle the case, if there ever is a case handed up, Rossi said. "It will be an out of area judge, just to avoid any potential conflicts."

Peter Porco was a longtime friend and law clerk for Supreme Court Judge Anthony Cardona. Cardona spoke at his funeral and spoke to Peter Porco on the phone the day before he was found dead in his home.

Rossi said he couldn't give the name of the judge or what county the judge works in. A grand jury has been investigating the death of Peter Porco. After a three-week hiatus, the grand jury reconvened in January, after the jurors' terms were extended and has been on hiatus since then.

"There's still no date (set when the grand jury will meet again)," Rossi said. "I can't really comment about the grand jury."

The assignment of an out-of-area judge does not rule out a change of venue, Rossi said, noting a change of venue is a motion that would have to be filed by attorneys before the trial.

A court officer from the New York State Appellate Court, where Peter Porco served as Judge Anthony Cardona's law clerk, showed up at the Porco's 36 Brockley Drive residence on the morning of Nov. 15 when Peter Porco failed to report for work. Joan Porco was found upstairs from her deceased husband, with trauma to the head and body, police have said. Joan Porco was alert before she was taken by ambulance to the hospital.

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