Reporting Sophia Hall
CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) - The Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office has indicted David Laffer in connection with the massacre at Haven Drugs Pharmacy in Medford.
Laffer’s Attorney, Mary Beth Abbate, said she expected that four counts of first-degree murder would be added to the charges. She also offered the very first glimpses into Laffer’s psyche.
“He’s overwhelmed. He’s never been arrested before. He’s never been in any trouble. He’s a veteran,” she told reporters.
Laffer did not appear in court Tuesday. He is being held without bail on first-degree murder and resisting arrest charges.
Abbate said she believes Brady is cooperating with the district attorney and may be cutting a deal with prosecutors to avoid a murder charge.
PHOTOS: Haven Pharmacy Massacre
“Somebody under the influence of drugs would say anything,” Abbate said.
Abbate said her client is not suicidal but she wants him kept in protective custody.
“There’s a lot of strong emotion running around and again, the jail is not immune to that,” Abbate said. “I am concerned about his safety.”
Laffer’s wife, 29-year-old Melinda Brady, is accused of robbery and obstruction. A grand jury, however, is considering upgrading charges against her. Prosecutors claim Brady confessed it was her idea to steal the prescription painkillers. She also allegedly admitted to driving the getaway car.
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Brady was due in court Tuesday, however her appearance was postponed to July 15. She has not yet been indicted.
Laffer’s lawyer said her client’s fingerprints in the pharmacy were left on a previous occasion. She also claims the surveillance photos do not look like Laffer and that she knows nothing of a police lineup.
“You all saw his face; I think that the police did not get a confession that they wanted from him,” Abbate said.
When asked by CBS 2′s Jennifer McLogan is she felt Laffer’s face showed remorse, Abbate answered, “I think the bruises show that he was very seriously injured.”
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The execution-style killings of four people during the robbery stunned the Tri-State Area.
An uncle of victim Jaime Taccetta said many want the case to become a federal case — a capital crime.
“Mr. Laffer and his wife should be…they should consider themselves very fortunate that they will be tried in a court of law versus the court of public opinion, where they most assuredly would have been stoned to death upon their apprehension,” Ray Malone said.
On Tuesday, detectives paid another visit to Laffer’s home. This time, they sifted through a specific storm drain for possible weapons and evidence.
At a makeshift shrine at the Medford pharmacy, anger and sadness was still very much present within the community.
“It’s just so heartbreaking what happened to everybody. I can’t believe it,” Charlotte Devivo said.
If convicted, what is the appropriate punishment in this case? Sound off in our comments section.