Attorneys for Niles boy charged with aggravated murder ask court to suppress evidence

Staff report


Attorneys for Jacob Larosa, 17, of Niles, charged with killing his elderly neighbor March 31, 2015, say they believe comments Larosa made to police should be suppressed from evidence.

His attorneys with the Ohio Public Defender’s Office filed a motion Wednesday in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court, saying all statements Larosa made that day and all evidence obtained through a search of his Lafayette Avenue home and from his person should be suppressed.

The filing says Larosa was “visibly and severely intoxicated” when he was taken to St. Joseph Warren Hospital that day after the body of Marie Belcastro, 94, of Cherry Street was found in her home.

Because of his intoxication, Larosa “could not knowingly, intelligently and voluntarily waive” his rights to remain silent, the filing says.

Prosecutors told Niles police to prevent anyone from entering Larosa’s hospital room, including his parents and his attorney, which was a violation of his right to remain silent, the filing adds.

The filing also says the affidavit written by Niles police used to justify a search warrant issued by a common pleas court judge was defective in that it “does not particularly describe the items to be seized.”

The search warrant also is defective “in that it does not particularly describe the things to be searched for and seized,” the filing says.

“The search resulting in the seizure of the items was too broad and exploratory,” the filing says.

Larosa was in court before Judge W. Wyatt McKay for a hearing in his case, but a report on Larosa’s competency to stand trial is not yet available, so there were no matters to discuss, the judge said.

His next hearing is set in April.

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