Jury selection begins Friday in in the manslaughter trial of Mark Kerrigan who is accused of causing his father's death more than a year ago in Stoneham.
Mark Kerrigan, of Stoneham, is the brother of Olympic figure skater Nancy Kerrigan who is expected to be called as a witness by the prosecution. Their father Daniel Kerrigan died in his Stoneham home during a struggle with Mark.
Nancy Kerrigan, of Lynnfield, has supported her brother and believes he was not responsible for their father's death on Jan. 24, 2010, but rather an underlying medical condition was the culprit. Prosecutors told the Associated Press that Nancy Kerrigan had provided them with "extremely relevant testimony."
Mark Kerrigan, who was allegedly drunk at the time of the incident, and his father were involved in what the prosecution claims was a violent struggle that began after Daniel Kerrigan requested his son not use the family phone to call the wife of his cousin, according to a report by the AP. Mark Kerrigan reportedly called the woman more than 20 times.
"This defendant should have known that the cruel acts that he committed against his elderly father, including grabbing him by the neck with enough force to cause a fracture, were highly likely to result in substantial harm and endanger his father's life," Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone told the AP after Kerrigan was indicted for manslaughter.
Mark Kerrigan's attorneys claim that Daniel Kerrigan died not as a result of the physical altercation, but rather "significant blockage of his major coronary arteries, a condition his family did not know about," the AP reports.
The defense, which denies the claim by prosecutors that the incident was a prolonged violent struggle between the two men, has also stated that an autopsy showed Daniel Kerrigan had experienced undiagnosed heart attacks.
Neither the prosecution or defense commented on the case with the trial just days away. It's unclear how long the jury selection process will take and when the trial is slated to begin.
Nancy Kerrigan, a two-time Olympic medal-winning skater, recently made an appearance for a.
*Information from The Associated Press used in this report was accessed via the WHDH website.