Mark Anthony De Simone, 53 at the time, arrives in Juneau District Court for his arraignment in this May 2016 file photo. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Mark Anthony De Simone, 53 at the time, arrives in Juneau District Court for his arraignment in this May 2016 file photo. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Murder trial pushed back

A trial two years in the works was supposed to start Monday, but a last-minute change will push it back at least a day or two.

Mark De Simone, a former Arizona legislator, was scheduled to go on trial starting Monday for the 2016 shooting death of Juneau man Duilio Antonio “Tony” Rosales. As prosecutors conducted final interviews with witnesses last week, Assistant District Attorney Amy Paige explained in court Monday, one witness brought up a previous interview he had done with law enforcement.

That interview, Paige said, wasn’t included in the prosecution’s case. The contents of the interview, which were not revealed in court Monday, could potentially change the way both sides handle their cases, Paige said.

“I wish this hadn’t happened, but we are where we are now,” Paige said. “Needless to say, it’s critical information, from the state’s perspective, that we will be certainly intending to rely upon.”

The initial interview was not recorded, Paige said, and the trooper who supposedly conducted the interview said he didn’t recall the details of it. The witness, Paige said, said the contents of the interview were important.

This newfound piece of information, Paige said, resulted in the prosecution conducting more interviews. Defense attorney Deborah Macaulay, representing De Simone, said in court she has not been able to listen to the new interviews yet.

Macaulay pointed out that almost every aspect of the investigation was recorded and said she was surprised that something that was apparently this vital to the case would not have been recorded.

“The idea that this interview took place two years ago, was never audio recorded, was never put into a report and was never produced is vastly unfair to the defense,” Macaulay said.

Jury selection did not start Monday, and might not start Tuesday as well. The two attorneys and Judge Philip Pallenberg agreed to have hearings Monday afternoon and midday Tuesday to further discuss the logistics of how to proceed. Paige said it’s especially difficult because many of the witnesses are flying into town from out of state.

Pallenberg said he has another trial in mid-May. With De Simone’s trial expected to last three weeks, Pallenberg said he hopes this trial get started soon.

“If it turns out this is a major issue that’s going to take more time than that,” Pallenberg said, pausing. “Well, we’ll figure that out.”

Alaska State Troopers found Rosales, 34, deceased with two gunshots in the back of his head on May 15, 2016, according to the original indictment. Rosales and De Simone were members of a hunting party near Excursion Inlet, charging documents allege, and one witness reported to troopers that De Simone confessed to the crime at the scene. Four days later, De Simone was indicted on charges of murder, manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide.

De Simone served as a state legislator in Arizona after living in Juneau from 1981 to 1988. According to reports at the time, De Simone was back in Juneau for a short time before the hunting trip in 2016.

• Contact reporter Alex McCarthy at 523-2271 or Follow him on Twitter at @akmccarthy.

More in News

(Juneau Empire file photo)
Aurora forecast for the week of April 15

These forecasts are courtesy of the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Geophysical Institute… Continue reading

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Monday, April 15, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Juneau’s Recycling Center and Household Hazardous Waste Facility at 5600 Tonsgurd Court. (City and Borough of Juneau photo)
Recycleworks stops accepting dropoffs temporarily due to equipment failure

Manager of city facility hopes operations can resume by early next week

People staying at the city’s cold weather emergency shelter during its final night of operation board a bus bound for the Glory Hall and other locations in town early Tuesday morning. In the background are tour buses that a company says were broken into and damaged during the winter by people staying at the shelter, and one of the first cruise ships of the season. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Juneau’s homeless head outdoors with no official place to camp as warming shelter closes for season

“Everybody’s frantic. They’re probably all going to be sleeping on the streets by the stores again.”

The Anchorage band Big Chimney Barn Dance performs in the main ballroom of Centennial Hall on Sunday night near the end of the 49th Annual Alaska Folk Festival. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
49th annual Alaska Folk Festival ends with promise of an ‘epic’ 50th

Weeklong event remains free after nearly a half-century “which is unheard of,” board president says.

Students leave the Marie Drake Building, which houses local alternative education offerings including the HomeBRIDGE correspondence program, on April 4. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Educators and lawmakers trying to determine impacts, next steps of ruling denying state funds for homeschoolers

“Everybody wants to make sure there’s a way to continue supporting homeschool families,” Kiehl says.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Sunday, April 14, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

TJ Beers holds a sign to advocate for the rights of people experiencing homelessness outside the state Capitol on April 9. Beers was homeless for four years and in three states. “I don’t know how I survived,” he said. (Claire Stremple/Alaska Beacon)
Lawmakers weigh whether to reduce or acknowledge rights of growing Alaska homeless population

As cities try to house people, Dunleavy’s protest bill would further criminalize them, advocates say.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Saturday, April 13, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Most Read