Lawyer says double murder case against Munchinski should be dismissed

Brian Bowling
| Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013, 11:50 a.m.

The state missed its 120-day deadline for retrying David Munchinski for a 1977 double homicide so a federal judge should dismiss the criminal case, the former Latrobe man‘s lawyer argues in a motion filed shortly before midnight Wednesday.

Munchinski, 60, successfully appealed his earlier conviction for the murders that took place in a Bears Rocks chalet in Fayette County. The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in September upheld U.S. Magistrate Judge Lisa Pupo Lenihan‘s ruling that prosecutors improperly withheld evidence that would have cast doubt on Munchinski‘s guilt.

Noah Geary, Munchinski‘s lawyer, said the next step in the case, if Lenihan dismisses the criminal charges, is asking the state to compensate Munchinski for the 27 years he spent in prison. Munchinski is currently out on bond.

“I would hope we could negotiate a settlement,” he said. “If not, we will file a lawsuit.”

A spokesman for the Attorney General's Office had no immediate comment.

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or bbowling@tribweb.com.

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