Superior Court upholds JS man’s sentence
Jackson convicted of manslaughter, hiding body
HARRISBURG — Glenn Jackson wasn’t satisfied when he dodged a murder conviction for hacking a drinking buddy to death with a sword and a kitchen knife and then hiding the body in a crawl space beneath his Jersey Shore home.
It was too severe, he argued, that a Lycoming County jury even convicted him of other charges including voluntary manslaughter, aggravated assault and abuse of a corpse for the February 2013 slaying of Michael Krauser.
Well, a state Superior Court panel this week decided Jackson, 53, will have to live with the 82-month to 25-year prison sentence he is serving for the killing, which resulted from an argument over $20 and a microwave oven.
Jackson never denied killing Krauser. He just insisted he did so in self defense, Judge Jack A. Panella noted in the state court’s opinion denying Jackson’s appeal of his convictions.
Panella’s court rejected Jackson’s argument that county Judge Marc F. Lovecchio should have allowed him to introduce more evidence of Krauser’s violent nature during his trial.
Krauser’s slaying was fueled by alcohol. Investigators said Jackson invited Krauser to his home after Krauser expressed an interest in buying some puppies Jackson was selling. The two men drank “significant amounts” of alcohol, vodka in particular, before an argument broke out.
Jackson testified that when dispute turned physical he hit Krauser with an ashtray, stabbed him in the neck with a ceremonial sword and sliced him with a knife. Jackson then wrapped the body in plastic and buried it in the crawl space.
“He did feel compelled to confess to his neighbor after a period, as he feared he could hear the body decomposing under his floor,” Panella wrote.
Jackson argued in his appeal that Lovecchio improperly hindered his self defense argument by limiting testimony about a protection from abuse order Krauser’s wife secured and about Krauser’s interaction with two police officers in New Mexico. That full testimony would have shown Krauser’s tendency to become violent when he was drunk, Jackson contended.
At trial, Lovecchio allowed Jackson to introduce testimony about Krauser’s wife’s allegations that Krauser had choked her. The county judge barred Jackson from showing the jury the full PFA complaint, however, since Krauser never admitted to all of its allegations.
Similarly, Lovecchio allowed one of the New Mexico cops to testify only that Krauser had lunged at him during a traffic stop. Krauser had pleaded guilty to doing that, but had not admitted to other allegations, which Jackson wanted the jury to hear, that he had threatened and kicked the officer, Lovecchio noted.
Also, the county judge allowed another New Mexico officer to testify that Krauser refused to leave the scene in a trespassing case, but rejected Jackson’s request for the cop to describe how Krauser also became aggressive and called the officer a “pig.” In that incident, Krauser pleaded guilty only to disobeyingithe officer’s order to leave.
Panella concluded that Lovecchio was right to impose those restrictions on testimony because by law the jury was allowed only to hear about conduct for which Krauser was convicted.