Richard Kenneth Petroski appeared in court Monday morning to enter his plea and set a trial date.
A not guilty plea was entered by defense attorney Mark Ralphs on behalf of Petroski, who sat quietly in the jury box during the hearing. Ralphs also denied all special allegations associated with the case. He then told Judge James R. Wagoner that they were requesting a trial be set on the matter.
After looking at the court calendar, a readiness and settlement conference was set for Feb. 25, 2013, at 8:30 a.m. in Department 1 for a trial to begin March 26, 2013. While deputy district attorney James Clinchard estimated the trial to last six days, Ralphs said he believed it would be closer to nine days.
Petroski is accused of killing his stepfather, John Gale Malia, 69, on Dec. 4, 2011. Petroski allegedly shot Malia with a .22 caliber rifle. Afterward, Petroski shot himself in the head in a suicide attempt while Amy Settle, who also lived on the property, attempted to call 911. Malia died later that day at Marshall Hospital from a gunshot wound to the head. As Pestroski failed to kill himself, he turned himself in when deputies arrived.