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Lawyer to be charged Friday in hunter’s death

Attorney David M. Manilla will be charged Friday in the Nov. 29 shooting death of a Bucks County hunter, authorities announced Thursday afternoon.

Bucks County District Attorney David W. Heckler would not disclose the specific crime or crimes that Manilla, 49, will face, but said that he would be the only person charged in the shooting. Heckler has said that he was considering charges including third-degree murder and manslaughter.

In the announcement, Heckler said Manilla would be arraigned at 2 p.m. Friday in Richland Township before Magisterial District Judge Robert Roth. A news conference is scheduled afterward at the Richland Township Police Department.

Manilla has been identified as the person who shot and killed hunter Barry Groh, 52, of Quakertown, with a high-powered rifle while hunting on property Manilla owned in Richland Township. Groh, who had dragged a buck he had shot into a creekbed, was found fatally wounded in the chest, his body lying in the creek.

It is likely that Manilla, 49, of Worcester, Montgomery County, will also face charges of violating hunting and firearms laws. He pleaded guilty in 1985 to aggravated assault in Montgomery County and, as a convicted felon, was not permitted to possess firearms. The rifle he shot Groh with was also illegal for hunting in Bucks County, where only shotguns, muzzle-loaders and bows are allowed for deer hunting.

Manilla was hunting with his uncle, Michael D. Marino, who is a former Montgomery County district attorney and county commissioner, and a third man who lives out of state.

J. David Farrell, an attorney representing Manilla, declined to comment Thursday. Manilla's other defense attorney, Richard Winters, could not be reached for comment.