Jason Dominick returns to court asking for new trial

Convicted killer believes his attorney made mistakes

SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) - It was one of the most high-profile murder trials in recent years in Lackawanna County and Monday one of the two men convicted of killing Frank Bonacci was back in court looking for a new trial.

A judge heard testimony from Jason Dominick about why he believes his murder conviction shoul dbe thrown out.

The trial of Jason Dominick in 2014 lasted two weeks.

It involved dozens of witnesses and the case had thousands of documents and photographs for attorneys to go over.

Jason Dominick maintains his innocence and believes his defense attorney made several mistakes.

It's been more than three years since Dominick was found guilty of third degree murder and conspiracy for the shooting death of Frank Bonacci.

Bonacci's family was in court Monday as Dominick was asking for a new trial.

"To see him again, it runs emotional, very emotional, to see him," Nick Tielli, Frank Bonacci's grandfather said.

Dominick's new attorney Terrence McDonald spent most of the day questioning Dominick's former attorney Bernie Brown about decisions made before and during trial.

McDonald believes at least a dozen errors were made.

Frank Bonacci was killed in 2013 while riding in his Jeep with Dominick and another man, Neil Pal.

Both Pal and Dominick blamed each other for the murder.

One of the biggest issues raised during Monday's hearing is that attorney Bernie Brown did not seek an expert in blood patterns which might have shown Dominick was not the shooter.

Brown defended his work saying he was focused on where the shot came from, not where it ended up.

Having to re-live the trial testimony and details of the murder was hard for the Bonacci family.

"It's difficult for the family to have to go through this again. It just brings back all the demons and how we feel about all that went on," Tielli said.

Family members say they hope Dominick's conviction is upheld.

They say their pain will never go away.

"It's years later but we can think like it happened yesterday," Tielli said.

Another reason Jason Dominick believes he should get a new trial is that his attorney never asked for co-counsel to help him even as prosecutors had four attorneys on the case.

Brown said he felt he could handle the trial adding that he wanted to portray the essence of "David and Golith" to the jury.

The judge who heard Monday's appeal hearing did not immediately issue any rulings. That is expected at a later date.

 


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