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WARREN Murder trial scheduled to begin



Published: Sun, August 26, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



If convicted, the 43-year-old man could face the death penalty.

By PEGGY SINKOVICH

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

WARREN -- The trial for a man accused of killing a mother and her 12-year-old daughter nearly two years ago is set to begin Monday with jury selection.

More than 100 potential jurors are expected to appear at 9 a.m. Judge Peter J. Kontos is presiding in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court.

Stanley Adams faces charges of aggravated murder in the deaths of Esther Cook, 43, and her daughter, Ashley. Their bodies were found Oct. 11, 1999, inside their Dickey Avenue home.

The charges carry specifications that the killings occurred in conjunction with other crimes. Adams also is charged with three counts of rape and one count each of kidnapping and aggravated burglary.

If convicted of all the charges he could face the death penalty. Adams is being held in the county jail without bond.

Jury selection: Attorneys for both sides believe it will take about seven days to two weeks to select a jury and an additional two weeks to present evidence.

Attorneys say a juror won't necessarily be disqualified if he has read newspaper stories or seen television accounts of the murders.

Lawyers say they will be concerned only about jurors who may have formed an opinion about Adams or others involved in the case.

Adams told the judge during a pretrial hearing in November that he wanted his case to be moved because he does not think he can get a fair trial in Trumbull County.

Court officials say the trial won't be moved unless the judge determines there are not enough impartial jurors who can be seated here.

Adams was convicted in October of the murder and rape of Roslyn Taylor, 40, of Poland Township on Aug. 6, 1999. He was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.

Officials don't know if Taylor knew Esther or Ashley Cook.

Authorities have described Adams as a self-employed auto mechanic who lived with the Cooks for a short time.

Adams has maintained his innocence in all three murders.

sinkovich@vindy.com




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