ONEONTA – Otsego County’s first slaying of 2017 – on New Year’s morning – happened in an Oneonta apartment with a surveillance camera in every room.
The cameras helped put suspect Joshua Underwood, 25, in the victim’s room, and help convict the man, said District Attorney John Muehl.
Underwood was convicted Friday, March 30, to 20 years in jail.
“Witnesses said they got into a fight about Joshua Underwood having a girlfriend,” said Muehl. “Morrison went to bed, and on video, we have Underwood checking on Morrison. Shortly after that, the video went out, and that’s about the approximate time Morrison was killed.”
Officials say around 3:30 a.m. Jan. 1, 2017, Underwood called 911 and reported that he had killed his boyfriend, 52-year-old Mark Morrison of Oneonta. Police found Morrison dead in his Main Street apartment from what was later ruled to be blunt force trauma to the head. Police also alleged that Underwood tried to conceal the crime by stuffing the apartment doorway with newspapers and setting them on fire.
Though originally scheduled to be sentenced in mid-December, Underwood tried to withdraw his guilty plea for first-degree manslaughter, claiming he was coerced by the public defender’s assistant assigned to the case.
ONEONTA – Joshua Underwood has pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter in the New Year’s Day death in Oneonta of Mark J. Morrison, 52, according to the clerk of state Supreme Court. Check back for details.
ONEONTA – Weeping, shaking and making a small wave to family gathered in the courtroom, Joshua P. Underwood, 25, made his first court appearance since his Monday morning arraignment on the charge that he bludgeoned Mark J. Morrison, 52, to death on New Year’s Day.