BETHLEHEM It took an Orange County jury less than six hours to find Christopher Porco guilty of the murder of his father, Peter Porco and the attempted murder of his mother, Joan Porco, during an overnight ax attack inside the master bedroom of their Brockley Drive home on Nov. 15, 2004.
Jury deliberation began at 10:25 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 10 and by 4:12 p.m. on a warm summer afternoon in Goshen, Orange County, and the foreperson handed a note to Judge Jeffrey Berry and the verdict was read.
On the charge of second degree murder, how do you find the defendant, Christopher Porco? asked Berry.
"Guilty, Your Honor," said the foreperson.
A guilty verdict was read again on the second-degree attempted murder of Porco's mother Joan. Jurors one by one repeated aloud "Guilty," 12 times in front of the defendant and his attorneys Terence Kindlon and Laurie Shanks.
"The verdict was certainly quicker than we expected," said Kindlon.
Notably absent from courtroom 15 in Orange County Supreme Court where the verdict was read was Joan Porco, who almost died from injuries sustained in the attack. She was resting in her hotel room, and was not alerted in time to be present in the courtroom when the verdict was handed down. She has defended her son and stood by his side throughout the trial.
"We stand before you crushed and profoundly disappointed," said Kindlon.
The 23-year-old Porco slowly stood up as Berry thanked the jury and adjourned sentencing for Oct. 25. The hand and foot cuffs were placed on the prisoner and he was sent away through a side door as two young female friends of Porco hugged and sobbed as they watched him be escorted away by police.
Bethlehem Det. Christopher Bowdish and Bethlehem Police Chief Lou Corsi were inside the courtroom when the verdict was read, as was Patty Szostak, the sister of the late State Appellate Judge Law Clerk Peter Porco.