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Prosecutors Bring Up N.Y. Man’s Prison Slashing In Trial

Gavel (credit: CBS 2)

Gavel (credit: CBS 2)

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EASTON, Pa. (AP) — Attorneys for a New York man accused of killing a 3-year-old child in eastern Pennsylvania want his criminal record, including a prison slashing, kept out of upcoming trial.

Northampton County prosecutors want to use it to seek the death penalty if 24-year-old Eugenio Torres of Brooklyn, N.Y., is convicted in the July 2008 death of Elijah Strickland in Wilson Borough.

Authorities say Torres pleaded guilty to attempted homicide after slashing the face and head of another inmate and was sentenced last month to nine to 18 years in state prison.

But defense attorneys argued Friday that that the record does not show a significant history of felony convictions involving violence or threats of violence. According to the Express-Times of Easton, they say the slashing cannot be used because it happened after the murder charges were filed.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)