By JOHN MCLOUGHLIN
TROY, N.Y. — Attorneys are playing the blame game after a mistrial was declared in the attempted murder trial of 19-year-old Ariel Myers of Troy, charged with shooting a father of three left in a vegetative coma with little hope of recovery.
36-year old Robert Guynup was shot in the head in the middle of the night as he tried to quiet an unruly crowd outside his home in the Griswold Heights section of Troy.
Assistant Public Defender Greg Cholakis, who represents Myers, says the district attorney waited until the very last minute before trial to give him a list of witnesses against his client. It turned out that Cholakis, in his public defender role, had represented two of them, creating a conflict of interest that brought the trial to a halt in its sixth day.
Cholakis also claims that the D.A. and the police intimidated witnesses, telling one witness that she could lose her welfare payments if she did not cooperate. But District Attorney Rich McNally, who defeated Cholakis for the job, says the public defender is to blame, claiming that Cholakis “tried to sabotage this case from the start.”
Jodie Guynup, the victim's wife, tells NEWS10 she was shocked by the mistrial and disappointed that she will have to testify again.
She says her husband is due to come home from Sunnyview Rehab in Schenectady on Thursday or Friday to be with her and their three children, ages 6 to 16.
But she says doctors have advised that only a miracle will bring a recovery.
Meanwhile, the defendant, Ariel Myers, remains in jail without bail until a second trial, probably in August or September.