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Kerrigan father-killing case goes to jury

May 24, 2011 at 11:32 AM   |   Comments

WOBURN, Mass., May 24 (UPI) -- A Massachusetts prosecutor denounced Mark Kerrigan as a "nasty drunk" in closing arguments, but the defense said he did not cause his father's death.

Wrapping up her manslaughter case Monday, Assistant District Attorney Elizabeth Keeley told the Middlesex County Superior Court jury in Woburn, "It took this defendant -- an angry, mean, nasty, drunk son of his -- to take Daniel Kerrigan down, to end his life.''

Defense lawyer Janice Bassil said there was no evidence to prove Mark Kerrigan grabbed his father by the neck in his Stoneham, Mass., kitchen on Jan. 23, 2010, or that his actions led to his father's death, The Boston Globe reported.

Kerrigan's family, including his mother Brenda and sister Nancy, the Olympic figure skater, is supporting him.

Bassil said Daniel Kerrigan died from advanced and longstanding coronary artery disease.

Prosecutors say Kerrigan crushed the cartilage in his father's neck, triggering his heart failure. But the defense cited a forensic pathologist who testified that the cartilage damage probably occurred after death, during the two-hour effort to resuscitate the victim or during the autopsy.

Deliberations were to resume Tuesday.

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