Extradition hearing set for Wisconsin murder suspect
Glenwood Springs correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS – A Wisconsin man accused of killing his ex-girlfriend in a suburb of Milwaukee and stuffing her body in a shipping container was formally advised of the charges against him Thursday in Garfield County Court in Glenwood Springs.
Benjamin M. Germano, 32, of Wauwatosa, Wis., is charged with first-degree intentional homicide in the death of Sarah Rosio, 24.
Public Defender James Conway entered a motion, and was appointed to represent Germano regarding extradition in the case. Conway told 9th Judicial District Court Judge Gail Nichols that Germano had not yet decided whether to waive extradition or not. Conway requested additional time for that discussion, which Nichols granted, and a hearing was set for Friday morning.
Deputy District Attorney Tony Hershey told the judge that if Germano did not waive extradition, that prosecutors would seek a governor’s warrant in the case, which would ultimately send Germano back to Milwaukee for trial in the case.
Hershey asked that no bond be set due to the serious nature of the allegations against Germano, and Nichols agreed. Germano remains in the Garfield County jail.
If convicted in Wisconsin on the homicide charge, Germano faces a possible penalty of life in prison.
Wauwatosa police detectives made a quick trip to Glenwood and interviewed Germano at the jail Thursday, and were present in court for the hearing.
Television news station TMJ4 in Milwaukee requested that video cameras and audio equipment be allowed in the courtroom, but that motion was denied by Judge Nichols,who said it would hinder Germano’s right to a fair trial.
“The court has certainly leaned toward open and public trials,” Nichols said. However, Nichols said, “Expanded coverage could interfere with his right to a fair trail.”
Germano is suspected of strangling Rosio to death, and driving around with her deceased body in the trunk of his vehicle for four days before dumping her remains in a shipping container outside of a business in West Allis, Wis., a suburb of Milwaukee.
Germano was arrested by New Castle Police and Garfield County Sheriff’s deputies after a brief pursuit on Interstate 70, late Tuesday night. Authorities said a New Castle officer spotted Germano’s 2001 black Toyota Corolla heading west on Interstate 70 just after being alerted that Germano might be in the area.
A bulletin was issued to local authorities after Germano used an ATM in Eagle earlier in the evening, pinpointing his location.
The officer began following Germano, who reportedly turned around and began driving east in the westbound lanes. He then exited I-70 and lost control of his vehicle on Highway 6 near New Castle. He was then arrested.
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