A jury took just below 5 hours to convict a New Jersey man on trial for the murders of three members of the family and a detailed household pal.
Scott Kologi, 20, sat in silence as he listened to the decision in a Monmouth County courtroom on Thursday, the Asbury Park Press reported. Ultimately, jurors discovered the defendant responsible of 4 counts of first-degree homicide and a second-degree weapons cost for the deaths of his mom, father, sister, and surrogate grandmother on New 12 months’s Eve in 2017.
Kologi faces the potential for 4 life sentences in jail for the deaths of Linda Kologi, 44; Steven Kologi Sr., 42; Mary Schulz, 70; and Brittany Kologi, 18. His sentencing is about for June 30.
The protection entered a plea of not responsible by cause of madness and argued in courtroom that Kologi had untreated schizophrenia and hallucinations and skilled a psychotic break the day of the murders. Kologi additionally suffered from extreme developmental disabilities, his lawyer argued in courtroom.
The protection known as certainly one of Kologi’s surviving brothers to the stand to assist its claims through the second week of the three-week trial. Jonathan Ruiz testified that on the time of the shootings his brother nonetheless believed in Santa Claus, slept in his mother and father’ mattress, and couldn’t dress by himself, as first reported by Asbury Park Press.
A prosecution professional countered that the defendant “is autistic, not schizophrenic, and knew what he was doing when he killed his members of the family,” the Press stated.
Kologi was 16 when a jury agreed that he killed his household, however prosecutors determined to strive him as an grownup.
A choose agreed to confess a video recording of the defendant’s alleged confession into proof; the recording turned a key piece of proof for the state regardless of the protection’s makes an attempt to dam the tape.
Monmouth County Superior Court docket Decide Marc C. Lemieux dominated towards protection makes an attempt to dam the jury from seeing the recording. The protection unsuccessfully argued in courtroom filings that the defendant — a 16-year-old with autism — didn’t have the capability to know after which waive his Miranda rights.
Kologi’s legal professionals additionally acknowledged in these filings that Steven Kologi Jr. ought to by no means have been allowed to function his defendant brother’s guardian throughout police questioning since he was each current for the shootings and was the proprietor of the gun used to hold out the assault.
Within the video, which was recorded simply hours after the bloodbath and subsequently obtained by Legislation&Crime, Scott Kologi informed a detective with the Lengthy Department Police Division how he carried out the killings. His brother struggled to keep up his composure whereas sitting within the room. The defendant then informed a second detective with the Workplace of the Monmouth County Prosecutor that he was conscious of his actions on the time.
Jurors heard that recording through the trial, together with the 2 minutes Kologi spent describing how he killed his household. Within the transcript under, “Detective 1” is Lengthy Department Detective Michael Verdadeiro, and “Detective 2” is Detective Andrea Tozzi of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Workplace.
KOLOGI: I do know they’re all, properly, deceased.
DETECTIVE 1: How are you aware that?
KOLOGI: Like I stated like despite the fact that prefer it felt like I wasn’t doing this bodily, I used to be nonetheless in a position to see all the things and I would love see them transferring and I simply saved firing till like they stopped transferring. You realize like purpose on the head and whatnot.
DETECTIVE 1: So that you’re aiming at their head?
KOLOGI: Yeah, and after I noticed they’re nonetheless transferring — as a result of, like, despite the fact that I used to be like on this like kind of factor like I simply didn’t need to be in ache on the identical time.
DETECTIVE 1: Alright, so let me rewind somewhat bit. So upstairs, your mother walks in, proper?
KOLOGI: Nicely, opens the door to stroll in.
DETECTIVE 1: So the gun is loaded already.
DETECTIVE 1: What number of occasions do you shoot her?
KOLOGI: I might say 5, seven occasions.
DETECTIVE 1: The place do you shoot her? At what a part of the physique?
KOLOGI: Just like the torso and chest.
DETECTIVE 1: Alright, after which your father hears the photographs and he comes up.
DETECTIVE 1: After which he’s hit, it was his again?
KOLOGI: His again, yeah.
DETECTIVE 1: Alright. And then you definately stroll down the steps?
DETECTIVE 1: With the gun loaded, and also you go within the kitchen?
KOLOGI: Yeah, after which the remaining occurred
DETECTIVE 1: What number of occasions do you shoot your sister?
DETECTIVE 1: The place’d you shoot her at?
KOLOGI: Nicely, she was sitting down so it was like sort of like chest and all the things.
DETECTIVE 1: And who’s the opposite individual you shot?
KOLOGI: Grandmother. Yeah, chest, Chest area.
DETECTIVE 1: What number of occasions did you shoot her?
KOLOGI: 4 occasions, I consider.
DETECTIVE 1: 4 occasions?
KOLOGI: Like and I do know like, uh, as a result of I had the issues in my ears it was muffled however prefer it was additionally as a result of I wasn’t there totally.
DETECTIVE 2: Whenever you had been loading the [gun] and whenever you had been doing this there…
KOLOGI: Yeah, I used to be like questioning it however I identical to couldn’t cease. Prefer it was one thing subconsciously, like, I needed to do it.
DETECTIVE 2: Did you are feeling anger?
KOLOGI: At sure moments, yeah.
DETECTIVE 2: Okay, um, you stated one thing earlier than, and I need to be certain that I bear in mind it accurately to ask you about it. You stated one thing about — you weren’t actually mentally there, like, when all the things was happening . . .
KOLOGI: Like all the things was occurring, prefer it felt like I used to be watching it. Prefer it felt like I used to be like additional again in my thoughts like properly I may nonetheless see it after I knew I used to be doing it but it surely simply felt prefer it wasn’t me.
DETECTIVE 2: Okay, yeah, however but you knew what you had been doing?
The topic of Kologi’s psychological state got here up once more when he talked about to detectives that he considered killing a bully who lived down the road from the household that evening:
DETECTIVE 2: Had been you listening to any voices, seeing issues when this occurred?
KOLOGI: No, no.
DETECTIVE 2: Did you hear any voices that stated, “Do it?” Visions commanding you to do it?
KOLOGI: No, no.
DETECTIVE 1: Did you ever consider killing another person?
DETECTIVE 1: What stopped you from doing it?
KOLOGI: I don’t know. Approach too drained, I assume. I doubt I’d do it once more, however I’m unsure.
DETECTIVE 2: Whenever you noticed your grandpa, did you make the choice to not shoot him? Why? Why is it that whenever you noticed him you snapped out of it?
KOLOGI: As a result of I used to be confused.
DETECTIVE 1: You appear to be a sensible man. You realize what you probably did; you’re not a dummy.
KOLOGI: Yeah, yeah.
Prosecutors praised the jury after it rendered a conviction.
“The jury’s verdict confirms that Scott Kologi was liable for his selections and actions on the evening that culminated with him killing 4 members of his household,” Appearing Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey stated in an announcement on Thursday.
This trial hinged on problems with psychological well being and the accountability of this defendant. It’s clear that the jury thought of all the proof, together with testimony of professional witnesses, in addition to the relevant legislation, in rendering its verdict. In recognizing the criminality of the defendant’s actions, we additionally acknowledge that it is a tragedy for all the members of the family who’re left to mourn this great loss. This Workplace will proceed to carry the perpetrators of gun violence accountable.
Kologi’s legal professional didn’t reply to a request for remark from Legislation&Crime.
Learn an affidavit of possible trigger under:
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