Judge reviewing Grand Jury indictment in Clark's Beach Motel murder
HERKIMER, N.Y. (WKTV) - 59 year old Michael Leach made the two and a half hour trip from his home near Rochester Friday morning to Herkimer County Court. The retired Rochester Police Captain is accused of intentionally murdering his own son last summer in Old Forge. Although Leach is retired from the Rochester Police Department, he is a part time police officer with the Village of Perry, which is about 35 miles southwest of Rochester. He is alleged to have used his own Village of Perry Police Department police gun that he used to shoot his son, 38 year old Matthew Leach around 1 a.m. back on July 21. The father and son were in Old Forge on an annual trip with a motorcycle club out of Rochester. Back in February, a Herkimer County Grand Jury indicted Leach on a charge of second degree murder and a weapons charge. Friday morning, Leach's attorney, Joe Damelio of Rochester, asked Herkimer County Court Judge John Crandall to release the minutes from the Grand Jury proceedings, something that is rarely done. Judge Crandall said he would not release the minutes, but would review the Grand Jury's indictment. Damelio questioned the way the members of the Grand Jury were given instructions and also questioned whether there was sufficient evidence to indict on a murder charge. Damelio says his client did not murder his son, but rather mistakenly thought his son was an intruder in the Clark's Beach Motel room when Michael Leach shot him. Media cameras were not allowed in Friday's proceedings. The defense also filed a motion this week to subpoena certain records. Judge Crandall set a court date of April 29th for a determination on those records. He also set a trial date for August 5th.