A preliminary hearing for Kendra L. Dias, charged with orchestrating the slaying of her stepfather Donald Bachman nearly four years ago, was delayed Thursday for more than a month.
Dias, 24, of 114 Hemlock St., Sugar Notch, is the sole person charged as investigators allege she planned the deadly shooting in front of Bachman’s house at 62 Willow St. on May 1, 2015.
Bachman, 49, died from multiple gunshot wounds. The actual gunman remains unknown but Luzerne County Assistant District Attorney Jarrett Ferentino hinted others close to Dias know the killer.
Ferentino called the killing an “execution-style hit.”
During Thursday’s brief proceeding before District Judge Richard Cronauer, Ferentino said “there are other individuals close to Ms. Dias that are involved.”
Afterward, Ferentino told reporters, “Obviously, this is a situation that involved the stepdaughter basically occasioning the murder of her stepfather. This is a family situation so individuals that are impacted or involved are certainly within her immediate family.”
Ferentino declined to say if Dias is cooperating with investigators. She was charged Feb. 20 with criminal solicitation to commit homicide and criminal conspiracy to commit homicide.
Outside the courtroom, Bachman’s widow and Dias’ mother, Lori Bachman, was overheard making statements to her family criticizing media coverage, specifically reports calling her late husband a “community activist.”
“They (media) make him look like an angel. He was no community activist,” she was heard saying.
A man with Lori Bachman cursed and stood in a lobby staring at reporters and through glass doors at Bachman’s sister, Judi Comisky.
Family members left with no incidents.
Court records say Dias solicited several people to kill Bachman, paying an unknown killer $1,500. Investigators based the charges on interviews with two confidential witnesses.
One witness lived in Nanticoke where Dias admitted to investigators she spoke about killing her stepfather but was not able to pay until after his death. Dias also mentioned her mother could pay after Bachman’s life insurance had been collected, court records state.
Dias was remanded to the county correctional facility for lack of $1 million bail.
Cronauer denied a request by Dias’ attorney, Nanda Palissery, to reduce bail.
Dias’ preliminary hearing was continued to April 11.
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