Family frustrated 13-year-old murder case might not go to trial

Family frustrated 13-year-old murder case might not go to trial

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by DIANNE GALLAGHER / NBC Charlotte

Bio | Email | Follow: @DianneG

WCNC.com

Posted on April 4, 2013 at 11:51 PM

Updated Friday, Apr 5 at 12:01 AM

MONROE, N.C. -- George Kastanis was killed in April of 2000.  The 41-year-old husband and father of four was gunned down in his grocery store in Monroe.

"He didn't get to walk me down the aisle. We didn't get to the first dance," said his now 23-year-old daughter, Nikki Russell.  "I didn't get to dance with anybody."

John Carvalho was arrested for the murder of Kastanis in November 2004.  Since that arrest, Carvalho has been in and out of jail on other, unrelated charges, but has yet to stand trial for the murder of George Kastanis.

"We've just been waiting and waiting for my dad's case to go to trial," said Russell.

According to Kastanis' widow, Tammy Tadlock, the District Attorney told her this Thursday he wanted to offer Carvalho a plea bargain.

"Because of the arrest time and the delay in taking it to court, his attorney is asking for this to be completely dismissed.  So the DA wants to plead down to assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill for our case," explained Tadlock.  "Which could mean, after counting time served, he could just walk.  So George cared for his family, he's murdered, he doesn't have a trial and it's just over?"

The family said it understands there is a risk Carvalho will not be convicted if the case goes to trial, but said that's a risk it's willing to take.

"Give it a chance.  Everybody should at least get a chance in a courtroom.  My father deserves his day in court," said Russell.

Kastanis' family contacted NBC Charlotte after the District Attorney's office had closed for the day.  NBC Charlotte will update this story with the DA's response once he has had a chance to comment.

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