Robert Neulander granted a new trial after DA loses appeal

Local News

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Robert Neulander has been granted a new trial by the state’s highest court, upholding a lower court’s decision.

The now 68-year-old was convicted of killing his wife, Leslie, at their home in DeWitt in 2015, nearly three years after her death. He was sentenced to 20 years to life in state prison.

NewsChannel 9’s Jeff Kulikowsky gives a general overview of the Neulander case

The conviction was immediately challenged over allegations of juror misconduct. A juror was accused of using her cell phone to send text messages during the trial.

NewsChannel 9’s Jeff Kulikowsky discusses the decision with Christie Casciano

Before sentencing, Onondaga County Court Judge Thomas Miller was asked to review the alleged misconduct, but decided not to overturn Neulander’s conviction.

Neulander’s attorney appealed that decision, asking an appellate court to review the case and ensure the former doctor received a fair trial.

In June 2018, the court narrowly decided to grant Neulander a new trial. The former prominent doctor was allowed out of prison on bail after serving about three years at Elmira Correctional Facility.

Onondaga County District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick was allowed to appeal to the state’s highest court, which heard the case in September 2019.

The seven judge panel unanimously agreed with the decision to order a new trial.

Fitzpatrick telling NewsChannel 9 on Tuesday morning that his office will retry Neulander.

Onondaga County Court Judge Thomas Miller has set a court date for November 8 to decide how to proceed with the case. No trial date has been set but Fitzpatrick expects it will be in the Spring.

Neulander is still formally charged in his wife’s death and remains free on bail.

Neulander’s attorney, Alexandra Shapiro, gave the following statement:

“Bob Neulander and his family greatly appreciate the Court of Appeals’ decision, which reaffirms that every defendant has the right to an impartial jury and a fair trial.” 

Alexandra Shapiro, attorney for Robert Neulander

You can read the entire opinion below:

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