Colorado murder suspect Robert Feldman pays for $550K defense for private lawyer with dead wife’s insurance policy after previous decision forced him to use public defender.
The decision follows, Robert Feldman — who allegedly strangled his wife, Stacy Feldman, in the shower in 2015 — scoring roughly $751,000 in insurance proceedings after her death, Denver’s FOX 31 reported.
The decision led to Feldman firing his public defender on Monday and rehiring a high profile lawyer who’d previously been assigned on his case.
When Feldman, 55, was charged with his wife’s murder three years later, the husband put down at least $550,000 of that cash to pay for his high profile lawyer, David Kaplan.
Stacy’s relatives in turn sued him in Probate Court, citing Colorado’s ‘Slayer Statute,’ which is meant to stop killers from cashing in on their crimes. The life insurance money, they said, should instead go to Stacy’s children, the suit claimed.
They won the case, forcing Feldman to use a public defender according to KDVR.
Flaw in Colorado’s Slayer Statute ?
Feldman in turn appealed the decision in Colorado Supreme Court, which last month in a decision that has drawn wide eye scrutiny – ruled that Stacy’s family acted too late in stopping Feldman from using the funds.
The Supreme Court also found that the Probate Court can’t freeze money already given to a third party, in this case Feldman’s attorney’s law firm.
The ruling stunned lawmakers, who said it defies logic.
‘On its face, it sounds completely ridiculous,’ said Colorado state Rep. Jonathan Singer of Longmont.
‘We need to go back to the legislature next year and revisit this and reopen those books and look at the real intent of [the Slayer Statute],’ Singer said.
Feldman has since rehired Kaplan.
Prosecutors say Feldman strangled Stacy in the shower, then staged a slip-and-fall, hours after she confronted him about having an affair.
A judge set Feldman’s arraignment for October and set aside two weeks in April 2020 to hold the murder trial.