Policeman pleads not guilty to murdering fellow officer - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Policeman pleads not guilty to murdering fellow officer

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The police officer charged in the fatal shooting of veteran officer Bert Piolo appeared in court today.

Mark Anthony Torre, Jr. answers to the charges of first degree murder, manslaughter, and aggravated assault.

It was standing room only in Magistrate Judge Alberto Tolentino's courtroom today. With defense counsel, Attorney Jay Arriola by his side, Torre pleaded not guilty to the charges he faces.

Torre is charged in the fatal shooting of fellow GPD officer, Elbert Piolo. According to 911 recordings, Piolo phoned twice for help and indicated he had been shot in the chest and identified Torre was with him.

Aside from answering to the charges, Torre's counsel waived his right to speedy trial. That means he'll remain on house arrest at his Yigo residence to third party custodians: his grandmother, his mother, and his wife.

As we reported, bail was initially set at a half-million dollars but Torre was released on a $165,000 property bond. Because of his profession, Torre required special accommodations while he was confined at the Department of Corrections. Specifically, he had to be separated from the general population.

The effects of the fatal shooting have put not only the police department at odds, but also the families and close friends of the alleged suspect and victim. As in Torre's previous hearings, court marshals were present to escort the families on and off court grounds separately.

We should note cameras and other recording devices were not allowed in today's hearing as previously objected by defense counsel. As for Torre, his next court appearance is a criminal trial setting before Judge Michael Bordallo on August 20 at 9am.

Piolo was laid to rest over the weekend. Alongside being a veteran GPD officer for over 15 years, Piolo was a percussionist for the band Soulvibes and the owner of the new clothing line Goodvibez. A motorcade and a music tribute were also held over the weekend in his honor.

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