Carole LaRossa, accused of killing her former New York City police officer husband, lost some of her bond privileges Thursday when a judge was told that shed made an unauthorized trip to buy cards for her family after learning that her brother had cancer.
LaRossa, 49, is charged with murder. Her husband, James LaRossa, 51 was stabbed to death in April 2012 at his Rea Road apartment in south Charlotte.
Carole LaRossa had originally been placed on 24-hour house arrest with electronic monitoring. She was later allowed to leave her home a couple of hours in the mornings and afternoons to help take care of her teenage daughter.
LaRossa also was allowed to go to appointments with doctors and her attorneys.
During a hearing Thursday, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Sgt. Dave Scheppegrell, who heads the departments electronic monitoring unit, told the judge that LaRossa stopped off at SouthPark Mall in February after a doctors appointment. She was supposed to go straight home after seeing the doctor.
LaRossa was arrested and jailed on Feb. 27.
Defense attorney David Rudolf acknowledged that what LaRossa had done was a violation of her bond conditions.
But Rudolf told the judge that LaRossa had recently learned that her brother had cancer. The whole family was in turmoil, he said.
Rudolf told the judge that LaRossa stopped at SouthPark to buy cards for her mother and father and other family members. It was motivated by her concern for her brother and family, he told the judge. She was under enormous emotional stress.
Superior Court Judge Robert Sumner on Thursday allowed LaRossa to get out of jail and remain free on 24-hour house arrest and electronic monitoring. But the judge revoked her privileges to leave her home in the mornings and afternoons to care for her daughter.
Following the hearing, Rudolf told reporters that what LaRossa had done to violate the bond conditions was not an intentional and willful act of disobedience.
Shell abide by the conditions, he said.
Carole LaRossa was charged with first-degree murder a crime punishable by life in prison or death.
But the family of the slain officer has attacked Mecklenburg prosecutors for offering a deal that would allow LaRossa to plead guilty to voluntary manslaughter a crime that carries a punishment range of three years to 17 years in prison.
Lauren Cox, James LaRossas niece, described her family as outraged, devastated and heartbroken by the prosecutors decision to offer the plea bargain.
Mecklenburg District Attorney Andrew Murray has said he and his prosecutors are ethically prohibited from discussing pending cases. Rudolf also wouldnt say if Carole LaRossa had been offered a deal.
Rudolf has said there was a history of domestic violence between James and Carole LaRossa.
The defense attorney has said that Carole LaRossa also had stab wounds when police arrived at the scene of the fatal stabbing. Her injuries were not life-threatening.
Wright: 704 358-5052
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