The hearing in the trial of Robert Ferrante, a University of Pittsburgh medical researcher who is charged with killing his wife, will begin on Tuesday in Allegheny County Common Pleas Court.
Dr. Ferrante, who faces a single count of criminal homicide, has denied all the allegations.
65-year-old Dr. Ferrante, a lead researcher on Lou Gehrig’s disease, will be heard in the April 2013 death case of his wife Dr. Amber Klein (41), who herself was the chief of women’s neurology at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
Autumn Marie Klein who was a rising star in the field of neurology and obstetrics fell ill on April 17 last year and died three days later from cyanide poisoning.
Just two days before she collapsed at her home, Dr. Ferrante had ordered for a bottle of cyanide that was shipped overnight to his laboratory at the University of Pittsburgh, according to the police.
The police also said that Ferrante got her wife’s body cremated shortly after her death.
Law professor John Burkoff, who is supervising the case, said, “If the defense doesn’t have some credible medical evidence to dispute the prosecution’s evidence, they’re in pretty bad shape.”
“The most important thing that makes me curious is what expert testimony the defense will have on the cyanide evidence. If you find there is a substantial amount of cyanide in her system and that he had access to cyanide, well, that’s pretty much it,” Burkoff said.
Ferrante’s attorneys have said that his client is innocent and he has nothing to do with his wife’s death.
Ferrante remains in a very “devastated” condition, his attorneys further said.