Pitt research professor accused of killing wife faces extradition

July 29, 2013 at 9:27 AM
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PITTSBURGH, July 29 (UPI) -- A University of Pittsburgh researcher accused of killing his wife with poison won't fight extradition from West Virginia to Pennsylvania, his lawyers said.

An extradition hearing was scheduled Monday for Robert Ferrante, charged with killing Autumn Klein, 41, a Pittsburgh doctor, by cyanide poisoning, CNN reported.

"He's anxious to defend himself, have his day in court, prove his innocence," Ferrante's defense attorney, William Difenderfer, said.

Klein, head of women's neurology at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, died in April. An affidavit of probable cause released Thursday indicated Klein told a friend she was planning to divorce Ferrante and that he believed she was having an affair, CNN said.

Ferrante, a researcher and professor of neurological surgery at Pitt, was arrested Thursday by West Virginia State Police near Beckley.

"He was relatively quiet," State Police Sgt. William Tupper told CNN. "He knew there were warrants for him. Said he was en route back to Pittsburgh."

Ferrante was placed on immediate and indefinite leave from Pitt, spokesman John Andrew Fedele said.

Ferrante's child was placed in the maternal grandparents' custody, a statement from the Allegheny County district attorney's office said.

His financial assets were frozen.

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