LaForte said it was shortly after her meeting with Arduini that she called her good friend, the late Judge Joseph Cannizzaro, to inform him that she would be Porco's guardian. LaForte and Kearney then went to 36 Brockley Drive to pick up Barrister, the family dog, to provide a home for him as well.
LaForte and Kearney hired Porco to work at their vet hospital in 1999, and since then developed not only a close working relationship, but also a friendship with Christopher and Joan Porco,
"I never knew Peter well at all, other than being Christopher's father," said LaForte. Joan Porco was also an acquaintance until the crime in November 2004.
"Joan and I have become friends since the attack," said LaForte. "She's a good person, and we have a close relationship now.
Testimony elicited from Kearney on Monday by Chief Prosecutor Michael McDermott revealed that a lot of the work at the vet hospital was bloody and messy, and Christopher many times would clean up after these "bloody messes." LaForte on Tuesday said she handles most surgeries at the vet hospital, and not all operations leave behind a bloody trail.
"My surgeries are not messy and bloody, thank you very much," LaForte said.
The prosecution had no questions for LaForte, and witness testimony ended at 3:17 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 8 in Orange County Supreme Court in Goshen.
The Christopher Porco murder trial has lasted eight weeks " 21 court days including jury selection. Closing arguments were expected to begin at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 9, and last through the afternoon, followed by a charge to the jury by Judge Jeffrey Berry. The jury is expected to deliberate daily Monday through Friday, beginning at 8:45 a.m. and concluding at 6 p.m.. Jury deliberations could begin as soon as the end of the day on Wednesday, Aug. 9.
"I think the case went much better than we thought," said McDermott. McDermott said he takes exception to the defense's accusations of shoddy police work.
"This was a top-notch investigation by the Bethlehem police department and the state police," said McDermott. "I don't see any stones they left unturned."
Shanks said she felt the defense case was "terrific."
"Finally, after two years, the people will see the real Christopher Porco and the real Porco family, not the one spun by the Bethlehem police department," Shanks said.