Attorneys for Raymond Louis Urgo on trial in Arlington on a murder charge, asked the court yesterday to dismiss the evidence against Urgo because prosecutors had failed to prove malice or show a motive for the shooting death last January of Ellen Dana Kisacky.
Judge Charles S. Russell refused the defense request and said it is up to the jury to determine whether there was malice. Russell said malice arises from the deliberate use of a deadly weapon. Under Virginia law, he said, the prosecutors do not have to prove that Urgo had a motive.
Earlier in the trial in Arlington Circuit Court, the prosecution played two tape recordings of police interviews with Urgo hours after the killing. In the interviews, Urgo said he accidently killed Kisacky after a sex and drug party at his Arlington Towers apartment. Urgo, according to the tape, told police he was "trying to be a big shot" by showing off his .357 magnum revolver to Kisacky and two other women at the party. He said he was trying to scare the women by putting the gun to Kisacky's mouth, when the gun fired accidently.
One of Urgo's attorneys, Richard Ben-Veniste, a former assistant special Watergate prosecutor, said that by playing Urgo's tape recorded interview, prosecutors were reinforcing the defendant's contention that the shooting was an accident.
Earlier in the day, a prosecution witness, James C. Beyer, deputy Northern Virginia medical examiner, testified that Kisacky died from the gunshot wound in her mouth.The shot injured the upper portion of her spinal cord, and caused "extensive damage to the base of the skull, brain and brain stem."
Police detective Edward W. Gabrielson, a defense witness, testified under crross-examination, that police attempted to have one of the women attending the party in Urgo's apartment testify in the case but she fled to Luxembourg.