Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Remember that Letter I Mentioned?

Well Ed Lewis at the Times Leader beat me to it, but I'll try to post Harlow's letter in it's entirety shortly...

Homicide suspect Harlow Cuadra didn’t want any pictures of himself wearing jeans posted on Web sites. He also praised the fact that his self-given nickname, “The Stud Wonder,” was removed from his Web site, boybatter.com.

The revelations came in a six-page letter Cuadra, 27, wrote to his friend Renee Martin in October 2007.

Assistant district attorneys Michael Melnick, Shannon Crake and Allyson Kacmarski are expected to call Martin to testify this week about the letter and phone calls she allegedly arranged between Cuadra and his partner, Joseph Kerekes.

Court records indicate Martin, of Texas, received a subpoena in December from the District Attorney’s Office.

Cuadra is facing the death penalty if convicted by a jury in the murder of gay pornographic movie producer Bryan Kocis, 44, at Kocis’ home in Dallas Township on Jan. 24, 2007. His trial before Judge Peter Paul Olszewski Jr. is entering its sixth day of testimony today.

Cuadra’s partner, Joseph Kerekes, 35, pleaded guilty in December to second-degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison without parole.

Prosecutors have called 41 witnesses since Cuadra’s trial began last Tuesday.

In his letter, Cuadra wrote “The Plan” by “obtaining the means to hire attorneys that can tell a good story. That’s all this comes down to.”

Cuadra also recommended a public-image campaign to “make gossip that would help us,” and, “make false fact gossip like the stupid $1 million dollar motive,” according to the letter.

He also wrote, “Please, none of those fat pics. Remember it’s the jeans that made me look like I have a fat ass, not my fat ass that makes those jeans look fat.”

Cuadra also suggested “cleaning Joe’s (Kerekes) image, the hard edges need to be filed down. His blog needs to be cleaned up a lot. Positive spin needs to be turned on.”

Cuadra wanted nice suits to wear in court because, “a good-looking defendant is harder to sentence … that business look with contrasting happy ties would be just right.” He recommended light-colored suits and said gray, dark blue and black suits “are a no, no” and wanted office-looking, lace-up shoes.

“Image matters a lot. Notice all the close ups of my face? Yeah, they use that youth killer look to make those papers fly from the stand. Thank God I shaved,” Cuadra wrote.

Cuadra wrote in the letter that his life was threatened at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility by “some gangsters,” and had to face “the leader of the North Eastern PA Latin Kings” every time he was jailed at the county correctional facility.

Latin Kings is a Hispanic street gang.

Cuadra was formerly jailed at the Lackawanna County Prison and is currently jailed at the county correctional facility for the trial.

“If convicted would I survive the years it would take for the appeal process to go through? If it did? Joe (Kerekes) sent me a note while in Luzerne (county correctional facility) ‘Baby, you sound so sure of victory, like case closed, but are you ready to spend a long time away from me,’ ” Cuadra wrote.

Cuadra said he was writing to his regular “pen pals” to attend at least two days of the trial, and urged them to “buy and wear a free Harlow T-shirt to court.”

“I have also taken prayer a little more seriously … completing this practical plan is definitely appreciated,” Cuadra ended his letter.