Superior Court upholds woman’s murder conviction

By Ed Lewis - [email protected]
Alinsky -

A state appellate court has upheld the third-degree murder conviction of Jessica Lynn Alinsky, who claimed she was denied a fair trial due to the prosecution’s suppression of evidence.

A Luzerne County jury convicted Alinsky in 2016 for the shooting death of her boyfriend, Matthew Gailie, 34, in his Hazle Township residence on Sept. 2, 2011.

Prosecutors maintained Alinsky, 34, of Shenandoah, shot Gailie at point-blank range and staged the scene to look as if he took his own life.

She was sentenced to 20 to 40-and-a-half years in state prison.

During the trial before Judge Tina Polachek Gartley, Alinsky’s attorney, Demetrius Fannick, called for a mistrial.

Fannick claimed Mark Reynolds, a blood-stain pattern expert, advised him that prosecution expert witness, state police Trooper John Corrigan, presented the Alinsky case as part of a 2014 police seminar in Bethlehem. Reynolds attended the seminar as an instructor and challenged Corrigan’s conclusions and opinions about the Alinsky case.

Corrigan testified during the Alinsky trial, but Fannick’s request to declare a mistral was denied.

Fannick appealed the conviction to the state Superior Court, claiming prosecutors failed to disclose evidence that would had been favorable to Alinsky, such as Reynolds’ claim that Corrigan’s report on the case was flawed.

Fannick was not able to call Reynolds to testify at Alinsky’s trial because Reynolds resides in Australia, and the court did not delay the proceedings to allow Reynolds to examine and issue a report on Corrigan’s findings.

A three-member panel of the Superior Court denied Alinsky’s appeal in a 12-page ruling issued Friday.

The appellate court also ruled Gartley properly exercised discretion in denying Fannick’s request for a mistrial.


By Ed Lewis

[email protected]