ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The man accused of killing a Webster woman this fall was back in court Monday morning.
Piero Scala, 35, pleaded not guilty to second degree murder charges two months ago.
Police say he fatally stabbed 56-year-old Cathy O’Brien in her Webster home.
At Monday’s court appearance, a judge decided to grant a DNA sample of Scala to prosecutors
The prosecution argued that there was the presence of blood on certain items found inside the victim’s home — they believe that blood is Scala’s.
Prosecutors say they want the DNA for both inclusion, and exclusion purposes in this case.
Police say O’Brien’s body was found inside her home on Oakdale Drive in Webster on October after they conducted a welfare check.
Investigators say she was stabbed to death.
The defense countered the prosecution’s request for a DNA sample, arguing that the prosecutors and not built a DNA profile from the blood marks on the items they want to cross reference. The defense says until they can do that, Scala’s DNA should not come into play.
However, the judge granted the DNA sample and the case takes a step forward.
Scala’s trial is scheduled to begin in April of next year.
Friends of Scala said he is “just not capable” of the crime in which he’s accused. Samantha Shultz, who has known Scala for years, shares a child with him and said she’s worried about her son.
Schultz said she doesn’t think Scala is capable of murder, but she also said he’s been using drugs for 20 years and they’re a huge part of his life.
“He’s had reckless behavior, he’s made bad choices, but it doesn’t make him a murderer,” said Schultz. “I don’t think that somebody can just wake up one day and do the heinous thing that was done to this poor woman I don’t care what was going on … you have to be disconnected. Do drugs disconnect people? Yeah.”
This was Webster’s second homicide in just a few months.
Back in July, 29-year-old Timothy Manley Jr. died from injuries sustained in a shooting on Hollywood Boulevard. No arrests have been made in connection to that case.