- Associated Press - Monday, February 2, 2015

PITTSBURGH (AP) - A former University of Pittsburgh researcher awaiting sentencing in the poisoning death of his neurologist wife is asking a judge to lift an order barring his adult children from a previous marriage from having contact with his young daughter.

Sixty-six-year-old Robert Ferrante was convicted of first-degree murder in Allegheny County last fall in the April 2013 death of 41-year-old Dr. Autumn Klein. Prosecutors said he laced her energy drink with cyanide.

The court ordered no contact between his daughter and her adult half-siblings after prosecutors said the 8-year-old girl could be a witness in the case.

Ferrante’s attorneys called the order “disingenuous and made without any basis of fact,” and they say it’s moot since the trial is over.

Ferrante is scheduled to receive a mandatory life sentence Wednesday.

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