Niagara Gazette

Local News

February 21, 2013

Grover takes kidnapping plea

(Continued)

Niagara Gazette — Zucco requested Farkas to allow his team to present evidence at trial in regards to Grover’s past convictions.

In 2004, he was convicted of an attempted burglary in the Town of Niagara, Zucco said. 

“A male testified in that case that he saw the defendant totally nude in the apartment hallway, and that he was touching his penis with his hand,” Zucco said. 

Grover told police following the incident that he needed money for cocaine and took off his pants because they were baggy and were making too much noise, startling the residents of the apartments. 

Zucco also sought to introduce evidence from Grover’s previous kidnapping conviction in 2007 when he took a 4-year-old girl from her home.

“This type of evidence could help the jury determine if his conduct — taking the girl away from her home — was done for sexual gratification,” Zucco said. 

In response to Zucco, Douglas argued that introducing the evidence from the past convictions would end the trial before it even begun.

“It would be like an atomic bomb being dropped upon us,” Douglas said. “And once it’s dropped, most jurors are going to think, ‘that’s the end of it, I don’t have to think about this anymore.’”

But Farkas sided with the prosecution, although she didn’t make her final determination in court Thursday. 

“I’m inclined to embrace some of the people’s argument, if not all of it,” she said.

Douglas requested a recess following the arguments to discuss the bargain with his client. Following the break, Grover re-entered the courtroom and quickly became emotional, crying throughout his plea. 

He will remain held at Niagara County Court without bail until his sentencing. 

Contact reporter Jessica Bagley at 693-1000, ext. 4150

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