I’m No Nancy Drew, But I’d Say the Jury Got It Right The First Time

I’m No Nancy Drew, But I’d Say the Jury Got It Right The First Time

The fields of medicine and the biological sciences are full of some really bright people. Then there are guys like Robert Ferrante. Convicted of killing his wife by poisoning her with a lethal dose of cyanide, Dr. Ferrante wants a new trial because of blah, blah, blabbity-blah. Ferrante is a guy who was a just a little smarter than some of the other guys in his class – this is how he describes himself on the ResearchGate website: “I am a Professor of Neurosurgery, Director – Translational Therapeutics Laboratory, Co-Director – Center for ALS Research, and Investigator -McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. My interests are in the neuropathology and pathophysiological mechanisms of neurological disorders, particularly Huntington’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis with a focus on animal models of disease, biomarker discovery, translational studies, and human clinical trials.”

Despite all this blithery-blab ole’ Bobby was not smarter than the high-school educated homicide detectives on the Pittsburgh police force. 

C’mon – they guy searches for cyanide poisoning data on his computer, buys a bunch of cyanide off the internet and his poor wife is found dead shortly afterward of – surprise! – cyanide poisoning. I guess he thought he was being very clever by having the cyanide shipped to his lab instead of his house.  As Bugs Bunny would say – what a maroon. 

So Bobby has some hotshot defense lawyers that are charging him an arm and a leg to mount some cockamamie excuse for a new trial based on some nutty theory about the lab not processing the sample properly. Really? Or that Quest is not a forensic lab. Really? Quest may not be a registered forensic lab but they are totally capable of performing a test for cyanide concentration. They do it all the time. 

Lost in all this is the tragic murder of a brilliant young physician and scientist. Yeah, Bobby should have his day in court, then should be locked away for the rest of his miserable life. 

Written by Poison Boy

Gerry O'Malley (a.k.a Poison Boy) is a board certified ER doctor and toxicologist with a interest in the unusual, terrifying and occasionally hilarious world of poisonings and toxicology. This site is an exploration of poisons of historical interest as well as in current events and pop culture.

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