A former New Jersey man charged with killing his wife in Forestport could plead guilty the next time he returns to court.
Larry Utter, 49, appeared in Oneida County Court Thursday for what was supposed to be a pre-trial hearing regarding statements he made to state police shortly after his estranged wife, Stacy, 45, was shot twice with a shotgun on June 11.
But the hearing was adjourned for now, and Judge Michael L. Dwyer scheduled Utter to be back in court on Monday, Sept. 23, to report whether Utter wants to accept a plea offer or move forward with the hearing.
Utter was charged with second-degree murder after he told 911 that he accidentally shot his wife inside their rural Trestle Road home. But a series of remarks Utter made to responding troopers prompted them to further investigate the shooting and ultimately arrest Utter several days later.
Although Utter previously rejected the prosecution’s plea offer in July, his defense attorney said they have not made a final decision on that issue yet.
“We’re still considering it, but you take your time with allegations of this significance,” Assistant Public Defender David Cooke said. “I just wanted more time to talk with my client.”
Prosecutors have not said publicly what the motive might have been for the shooting, but the married couple has had a series of “domestic tensions” over the past year that occasionally did involve a police response.