Updated 04/09/2012 06:31 PM
Trial begins for man accused of murdering father
It's been nearly a year and a half since the fatal shooting, but on Tuesday, a Trumansburg man will head to court. He is charged with murdering his father in the basement of their family home. Tamara Lindstrom has been following the investigation and has more details.
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TOMPKINS COUNTY, N.Y. -- The identity of the killer was never in question.
Late on the night of November 30th, 2010, police say then 28-year-old Matthew Taranto entered the basement of his family's Trumansburg home and shot his father multiple times in the chest and torso.
Fifty-eight-year-old Sal Taranto, a former Nassau County police officer, was able to crawl to a neighbor's house seeking help, but later died from his wounds.
The neighbors called 911 and when officers arrived, the younger Taranto, still in the home, surrendered to police. He pleaded not guilty to the charge of second degree murder.
Taranto's attorney, Scott Miller, says the shooting was done in self defense. Miller said his client suffers from Asperger's syndrome and obsessive compulsive disorder and that Taranto's father had threatened his son with a loaded gun earlier that evening.
Taranto has been released from jail. His attorney says the now 29-year-old is back home with his mother.
Taranto has waived his right to a jury trial. A judge will hear the case, which is expected to last through the end of the week.