GREENSBURG (KDKA) – Jurors heard opening statements Monday in the capital murder trial of Ricky Smyrnes.
Smyrnes is the alleged ringleader of the so-called “Greensburg 6.”
Prosecutors said he orchestrated the torture and murder of 30-year-old Jennifer Daugherty in a Pennsylvania Avenue apartment in Greensburg in February of 2010.
District Attorney John Peck told jurors that Smyrnes, “Orchestrated the murder,” and that “It was he more than anyone else that caused Jennifer Daugherty to die.”
Defense attorney Mike DeRiso told jurors the idea that Smyrnes was the “puppet master” is “ridiculous.”
He said, “This is not a case of who done it. It’s a case of who done it to what degree.”
Also testifying today was a young woman who saw Smyrnes and Melvin Knight dragging a garbage can across Main Street early in the morning as her father drove her to work.
The man who found the body in a garbage can under his work truck in the Greensburg Salem Middle School parking lot also testified.
Smyrnes sat still and emotionless during testimony. He appeared in a blue collared shirt and navy pants. His hair was slicked back.
Smyrnes is charged with first and second-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder and kidnapping.
The trial could take up to four weeks if Smyrnes is found guilty and the trial moves to the penalty phase.
One juror was dismissed this morning for personal reasons.
A jury of eight men and four women is hearing the case.
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