Defense works to spare life of man convicted in strangulation deaths of pharmacist, girlfriend

Attorneys for a northeastern Pennsylvania man convicted in the 2002 strangulation deaths of a pharmacist and his girlfriend are trying to persuade a jury to spare his life.

Hugo Selenski's relatives are testifying Wednesday at the penalty phase of his capital murder trial. They call him a good father and brother even behind bars.

Prosecutors say the 41-year-old Selenski and another man strangled Michael Kerkowski and Tammy Fassett with plastic ties during a robbery. Police found their bodies, along with at least three other sets of human remains, in Selenski's yard in 2003.

The jury convicted Selenski on two counts of first-degree murder. Pennsylvania's governor recently declared a moratorium on the death penalty, but the law remains on the books and prosecutors want jurors to send him to death row.