Yandamuri’s lawyers filed a motion in the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County (PA) today asking that prosecutors not be permitted to show color pictures of his crime scene and the bodies at the upcoming trial claiming they would adversely affect their client’s prospects before the jury.
Instead they want any pictures of the crime scene or the bodies to be shown only in black and white, according to media reports.
Yandamuri’s lawyers are also asking to see the crime photographs that prosecutors plan to use in the trial and the right to prohibit any photo they find objectionable. Only pictures they don’t object to should be shown during the trial, and that too only in black and white, the motion says.
Crime – Never Pretty
Raghunandan Yandamuri, a former software programmer and hardcore gambler, has been charged in the killings of 10-month-old Saanvi Venna and her 61-year-old grandmother Satyavathi Venna in their King of Prussia apartment on October 22, 2012 during a kidnapping bid of the baby that went awry.
Apparently there are several gory pictures of Yandamuri’s two victims and the crime scene with prosecutors. These pictures are said to graphically show the severity of injuries inflicted on the two Vennas.
Yandamuri initially admitted on video to killing Satyavathi Venna with a knife.
Obviously a lot of blood must have been shed in the commissioning of the crime and the pictures are bound to be gory.
No crime is pretty, and more so where a lot of blood is shed.
The baby died of suffocation after Yandamuri stuffed a cloth in her mouth and dumped her in an unused sauna room in the apartment complex.
Yandamuri claimed the killings were accidental at first but changed his account later giving a new twist to the crimes (he now blames others for the crimes).
Here’s an excerpt from the motion filed by Yandamuri’s lawyers in the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County today:
The commonwealth is in possession of numerous inflammatory photographs and the inflammatory nature of these photographs is due to their presentation in color, instead of black and white.
Yandamuri’s motion also reads:
Additionally, these photographs deemed by the trial court to be potentially admissible should be reduced to black and white to avoid unnecessarily inflaming the passions of the jury.
Despite Pennsylvania case law allowing for computer animation, Yandamuri’s attorneys are opposing its use in opening, case-in-chief and closing arguments arguing it’d prejudice the minds of jurors.
Montgomery County prosecutors must respond to Yandamuri’s two motions before Judge Steven T. O’Neill issues his ruling on barring color photographs and computer animation at the trial.
If you ask us, the two motions are silly and, irrespective of whether they’re granted or denied, will ultimately be proven to have little value.
Telugu bidda Raghunandan Yandamuri has already confessed to the killings on video but now claims the police coerced him into it and is asking for the video confession to be suppressed at the trial.
Yandamuri’s motion for suppression of his video confession statement, which he attributes to police misconduct, has yet to be ruled upon by Judge O’Neill.
Yandamuri’s trial is slated for May 5, 2014 but there’s a good chance it might be postponed to give more time for the defense team to prepare.
Since this is a death penalty case, the defense team enjoys more leeway compared to other criminal cases.