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New Hampshire trial on criminal charges in student death

The 31-year-old man of Westborough, Massachusetts, once aspired to be a police officer. He now faces multiple felony charges, including first- and second-degree murder of a young female college student in his Dover, New Hampshire, apartment.

Court records allege his actions could be related to a proclivity for unusual sexual activity and bondage. His trial focuses on counts involving first-degree murder, second-degree murder, falsifying evidence and resistance to arrest for murder. During the investigation, the man was interviewed at length. He even asked the officers about consequences of sexual sadomasochistic behavior or role-playing with asphyxiation gone awry.

The investigators alleged the man's girlfriend had led the 19-year-old woman to his apartment for a possible sexual tryst, and later helped him get rid of the body by dumping it into a river. While the dead woman's cellphone had been tracked, her body was never found.

Following a litany of statements by over 100 witnesses, the deputy medical examiner confirmed the likelihood of ligature strangulation. Defense for the man has included testimony from a pathologist to contradict that statement, concluding the woman's death was an accident. His lawyers maintain there was no rape or murder involved. Representatives for Internet sites specializing in sexual encounters may be called to testify to the practice of dominant sex-play. It is unclear if the defendant will testify. His girlfriend is cooperating as a witness in exchange for a deal. Police officials are on the witness list but may not testify.

When forensic evidence was collected, the court will be permitted to hear the man was initially helpful with police who questioned him, mentioning he had wanted to join law enforcement. After unusually lengthy questioning without counsel, he admitted the woman's death was an accident resulting from a consensual sexual encounter.

Criminal charges may stem from allegedly deviant sexual escapades. Consenting adults have the freedom to conduct themselves the way they want in private, but in this case, a young woman may have been accidentally killed. Individuals facing serious charges have the right to have criminal defense to represent their interests, and to be protected with appropriate representation on their behalf.

Source: Metro West Daily News, "Trial starts Tuesday in slaying of Westborough woman" Elizabeth Dinan, May. 26, 2014

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