More On Johnathan Porco.
Assuming that Christopher attacked their parents, then in some respects Johnathan is the greatest victim of this crime. Johnathan lost his father, has a mother who has been tragically changed, and a brother who may very well be heading to prison for a long time. If he thinks Christopher is innocent, then seeing him on trial must be tough. If he thinks Christopher is guilty, then Johnathan’s relationship with his mother must be strained since she maintains Christopher’s innocence, and, of course, what kind of relationship can you have with a sibling you believe killed your mother?
In one tragic night Johnathan’s family disintegrated. A seemingly perfect, nuclear family, destroyed by the equivalent of an atomic explosion of hatred. (And if any crime should be called a hate crime, it's this one.) In some ways, Johnathan is much like an orphan. As the sole, strong survivor of this family tragedy; however, Johnathan might very will be the key to the Porco’s survival as a family, if indeed such a thing is possible.
In any event, Brendan Lyons of The Times Union wrote a piece a few days ago, in which we get the most definitive story about Johnathan to date. Here is what he said about him.
The potential testimony of Christopher's older brother, Johnathan, who has missed most the case's court proceedings, is even less clear.
Johnathan Porco, a 25-year-old Naval officer, is assigned to a submarine based in Groton, Conn.
"Johnathan was and is the perfect son," Kindlon said in his opening statement to the jury, as he went on to describe Christopher Porco as someone who has "done some really dumb things."
Johnathan Porco has remained silent about the case, other than a letter attributed to him in a bail application for Christopher, who was indicted for murder in November 2005.
"I am firmly convinced that he is innocent," the letter states. "I have not heard or seen anything from him or any other source that would indicate to me that he is guilty."
The letter was never signed by Johnathan Porco before it was submitted to a judge just prior to Christopher Porco's bail hearing. Sources close to the family said the letter was written by an attorney for the family before Johnathan had approved its submission.
Johnathan Porco then attended the bail hearing that month with his own attorney, James E. Long, and allegedly had threatened to withdraw the letter before approving its submission at the last moment, according to sources close to the family. Long declined comment, and Johnathan Porco could not be reached for comment.
"Johnathan is 100 percent supportive of Christopher," Kindlon said last week. "You may recall that a significant amount of Christopher's bail was posted by Johnathan."
Prosecutors said they still hope to call Johnathan Porco as a witness, but his submarine's mission and location are classified and his availability uncertain.
"The information that we've received from the Navy is it's not as simple as all that," McDermott said. "He is on a submarine, and the next time the submarine surfaces, there is a possibility he would be made available, as long as it doesn't interrupt the operation of the vessel. ... It's up to him. It's a voluntary-type thing."
If Johnathan Porco does testify, McDermott said, they would seek to bolster earlier testimony from another Naval officer that Johnathan Porco was on a base in South Carolina at the time of the murder.
Johnathan Porco has never been accused of having any connection to the attacks. But he was one of only four family members -- along with Peter, Joan and Christopher -- who knew the master code on the family's alarm system, which was deactivated at 2:14 a.m. the night of the attacks, McDermott said.
"The main purpose of calling him would be to establish his whereabouts at the time the crime occurred, and that's been done through another witness," he said.