"Did she communicate with you in any way?" asked Shanks.
"I asked her if she had memories, but never specifically of the attack," said Spurgas.
"There is no notation that ever indicated Joan Porco was given a mental status exam when she came to the emergency room," Shanks said.
"She was sedated before coming to the emergency room, and could not respond with a tube in her throat," said Spurgas.
A key piece of evidence in the prosecution's case against Christopher Porco is that police and paramedics at the scene of the crime on Nov. 15, 2004 testified later that Joan Porco nodded "yes" when asked whether her son Christopher had attacked her.
Defense Attorneys Shanks and Terence Kindlon are trying to poke holes in that theory. It is their belief it was too dark to see the assailant in the middle of the night, and both Joan and Peter Porco could have been asleep before the attack occurred. The defense believes that, combined with Joan Porco's mental state immediately after the injuries when paramedics began treatment, make it impossible for her to know who committed the crime.
Peter Porco was found dead at the base of the stairs in his home after the attacks by Third Appellate Division Court Officer Michael Hart, who arrived first on the scene Monday, Nov. 15, when Peter Porco didn't report to work.
Christopher Porco is charged with murder and attempted murder and is free on bail. He is currently living at the home of Elaine LaForte and her family in Glenmont.
The trial recessed at the end of the day Thursday, and is scheduled to resume on Monday, July 10.""