A Municipal Court judge on Friday found Gregory Mitros guilty of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the June 21, 2011 shooting death of his wife Lynda inside their Manayunk home.
After a non-jury degree-of-guilt waiver trial which spanned three hours of testimony on Feb. 22 and less than an hour on Friday, Judge Jeffrey P. Minehart deliberated for roughly five minutes.
Mitros could have been found guilty of third-degree murder or voluntary or involuntary manslaughter in the case.
Sentencing in April
With sentencing scheduled for April 26, the 54-year-old Manayunk man faces anywhere from probation to five years in prison on the misdemeanor offense.
Neither Mitros nor Lynda’s son Eric commented after a verdict which brought joy to no one in Courtroom 907.
“It’s a double-edged sword,” said Mitros’ brother-in-law Joe Genovese. “Happy that Greg [wasn’t found guilty of third-degree murder], but Lynda’s not here.”
In contrast to last week’s emotional session, which included graphic crime-scene pictures displayed along with Gregory Mitros’ call to 911 and several police officers and experts testifying, Friday saw a weapons expert take the stand to talk about the “unsafe” reputation of the revolver involved.
Gregory Mitros also briefly took the stand, but not to testify. Rather, through brief questioning from defense attorney Michael P. Quinn, he said he was not inclined to do so. That decision was made 15 minutes before he was to take the stand, Quinn said.
Closing arguments and reactions
In summarizing their cases for Minehart on Friday, the prosecution and defense offered conflicting accounts of what happened inside the Manayunk home between a couple who had been married since 1988.
Assistant District Attorney Peter Lim maintained that Gregory Mitros intentionally fired upon his wife during a struggle on a stairwell. Quinn, the defense attorney, maintained that the weapon discharged accidentally as Mitros tried to wrestle it away from his distraught, intoxicated wife.
After Minehart’s verdict seemingly aligned with the defense version of events, both attorneys said this was not a celebratory moment for anyone involved.
Quinn, who asked the judge to “give this man a measure of forgiveness and redemption,” said Mitros was conflicted.
“He’s happy that the judge agreed with our version of events,” he said, “but he’s unhappy because he lost his wife.”
For his part, Lim said it was a difficult case insofar as the only witness was the defendant, and it was a matter of presenting evidence that clearly countered his version of events.
“Everybody suffers a loss in this case. Everybody takes a loss,” Lim said after meeting with Lynda Mitros’ son and grandson and their wives immediately after the verdict. “They’re satisfied. They say they had [blame] as a 50/50 and the verdict was a 50/50.”
Mitros will appear before Minehart again in April for a sentencing. Quinn told the dozens of people who knew both Greg and Lynda that he hopes the former will not serve any time in prison after that appearance.
non-jury degree-of-guilt waiver trialAfter a non-jury degree-of-guilt waiver trial which spanned three hours of testimony on Feb. 22 and less than an hour on Friday, Judge Jeffrey P. Minehart deliberated for roughly five minutes.Mitros could have been found guilty of third-degree murder or voluntary or involuntary manslaughter in the case.With sentencing scheduled for April 26, the 54-year-old Manayunk man faces anywhere from probabtion to five years in prison on the misdemanor offense. Both Mitros and Lynda’s son Eric declined to comment after a verdict which brought joy to no one in Courtroom 907.