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Walton homicide trial to resume Monday

Rich Cholodofsky
| Monday, May 14, 2012, 4:51 p.m.

The murder trial of accused killer Terry L. Walton is scheduled to reconvene Monday morning.

Testimony in the nonjury trial before Westmoreland County Judge John Blahovec was slated to resume Friday after more than a week hiatus, but a scheduling conflict with a witness pushed back the restart date to next week.

Walton, 45, of 416 Harrison Ave., Greensburg, is accused of shooting his estranged girlfriend, Philomena Rulli Robinson, 42, in the head on Dec. 29, 1998. Walton is charged with first-degree murder and faces a mandatory life prison sentence if he is convicted of that offense.

Prosecutors contend Walton, a star basketball player at Greensburg Salem High School in the early 1970s, went to Robinson's apartment to shoot her after she rebuffed his attempts at a reconciliation.

Walton testified last week that he went to Robinson's home at the Rosewood Apartments in Greensburg with the intent to commit suicide in front of her. Walton said he accidentally shot Robinson as she tried to run away from him.

Walton said he had actually aimed the gun at her car and not at her head, where she was struck with one round from his semiautomatic revolver.

The trial was stopped last week when defense attorneys tried to introduce evidence that Walton was too depressed to form an intent to kill.

Blahovec postponed the trial to allow prosecutors time to prepare for that testimony.

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