Skip to content
Link copied to clipboard

Jury in '85 police officer killing to resume Tuesday

The jury in the second murder trial of Wilfredo Santiago in the execution-style slaying of Police Officer Thomas Trench in 1985 will resume deliberations after the holiday weekend.

The panel ended its work early yesterday because of a death in the family of one of the jurors. They are scheduled to return Tuesday morning.

Jurors have sent out a number of questions since late Monday, but they have not been discussed in open court, and lawyers have not been able to talk about them because of a gag order imposed by Common Pleas Court Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes.

Prosecutors allege that Santiago, harboring a grudge against another police officer, shot Trench, 43, in the face and neck as he sat in a patrol car at 17th and Spring Garden Streets in the early morning of May 28, 1985. No physical evidence or eyewitnesses linked Santiago, now 44, to Trench's killing, and the prosecution's case has depended on circumstantial evidence.

- Joseph A. Gambardello