Bay City News–Accused serial killer Joseph Naso has retained an attorney to advise, but not represent, him during his quadruple murder trial in Marin County Superior Court.
Naso lived in Piedmont during the late 1970s and early 1980s, according to local residents who attended Piedmont schools with his sons.
At a brief hearing Wednesday morning, Naso's advisory counsel Michael Marowitz, a San Rafael attorney admitted to the bar in 1978, sat next to him at the defense table. But that could change.
Marin County Superior Court Judge Andrew Sweet said he will review the parameters for advisory counsel, including whether they are allowed to sit at the defense table. Advisory counsel may not actively participate in the case and address the court.
"They are more 'behind the scenes," Sweet said.
Marowitz said, "It is vital for me to sit at the defense table, not in the audience."
Naso has been representing himself on charges he killed four Northern California women, including two in the Bay Area, between 1977 and 1994. The Marin County District Attorney's Office intends to seek the death penalty if a jury decides he committed multiple murders.
A trial date was to be set Wednesday, but Naso asked to have a date set on April 4 so he can consult with his advisory counsel. Deputy District Attorney Rosemary Slote told the judge she wants to start the trial in late July or early August.
Naso is charged with killing Roxene Roggasch, 18, of Oakland, in Marin County in 1977; Carmen Colon, 22, in Port Costa in Contra Costa County in 1978; Pamela Parsons, 38, and Tracy Tafoya in Yuba County in 1993 and 1994 respectively.
Testimony during Naso's preliminary hearing indicated the women, who worked as prostitutes, were strangled and dumped along rural roads.
At the nine-day preliminary hearing in January, the prosecution presented DNA evidence linking Naso to Roggasch's murder. Her body was found near Fairfax on Jan. 11, 1977. A criminalist testified semen found on the pantyhose Roggasch was wearing inside out was likely Naso's and that Naso's now ex-wife Judith's DNA was found on pantyhose wrapped around Roggasch's neck.
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