Defense On The Offensive
MAYVILLE – The ex-wife of accused murderer, Anthony R. Taglianetti II, revealed Friday in Chautauqua County Court that a “lack of attention” was what drove her to multiple online – and secretive – affairs with men.
Public Defender Nathaniel Barone quickly took aim at Mary Taglianetti’s credibility, painting her as an unfaithful wife and serial liar who misled her husband, the police and Keith Reed Jr., the former Clymer Central Schools superintendent who was the victim of an apparent homicide on Sept. 21, 2012.
Uncomfortable and clearly fidgeting in her chair, Mary Taglianetti responded to questions about the summer of 2010, in which she briefly separated from her husband, moved in with her parents in Upstate New York and began an online romance with Reed through a dating website.
“I was lonely … I wanted a guy,” Mary Taglianetti said.
Recounting the details of her relationship with Reed, Mary Taglianetti described how she exchanged personal emails and phone numbers with him, eventually engaging in phone sex, “sexting,” and the sharing of sexually explicit photos.
A meeting was eventually arranged for a dinner date in August 2010 at a Cheesecake Factory in Albany, after which the two drove in Reed’s car to an empty parking lot and had sex. Mary Taglianetti left shortly afterward for work that night.
Barone immediately jumped on the discrepancy between her testimony in court and an earlier police statement in which she stated that she spent the night with Reed and left the following day. Mary Taglianetti admitted to the discrepancy.
The admission was one of many for Mary Taglianetti, as Barone further questioned her honesty.
In response to whether she provided an accurate description of herself on the dating website – namely her relationship status – Mary Taglianetti could not recall.
A similar response was given to Barone’s inquiry about her other online affairs, particularly whether she had more than five other online relationships of a sexual nature.
She admitted that she was “talking to a couple other people” after Reed decided to reunite with an ex-girlfriend at the end of 2010.
In 2011, Mary Taglianetti began another online relationship with a man in North Carolina. Again, sexual communication was involved.
When asked why she engaged in this behavior, Mary Taglianetti said “for the attention.” Though her husband was still committed to the marriage, she never told him how she felt. Moreover, she didn’t want her husband to know about these affairs because she didn’t want him to “think less of (her).”
Mary Taglianetti resumed her online relationship with Reed in August 2012.
According to testimony that she provided in Thursday’s trial, Mary Taglianetti had “begged” her husband to stay home the night of Sept. 20, 2012, because she feared for Reed’s life. Barone questioned her credibility, indicating that this was never told to police or mentioned in any previous testimonies.
Barone also indicated that Mary Taglianetti signed a divorce filing that contained false information. The filing, which was initiated in March 2013, stated that she had been living in New York state for two years. In actuality, she moved to New York state at the beginning of 2013.
“You lied on that document,” Barone said. “You lied to the court.”
Barone notably informed Mary Taglianetti on multiple occasions that she was under oath.
Chautauqua County District Attorney David Foley and his prosecution team later brought to the stand a number of law enforcement officials who were involved in the Reed murder case.
Lieutenant Vincent Gerace, of the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office, was dispatched to Reed’s home on Sept. 24, 2012, three days after Reed’s murder.
“The lights were not working,” said Gerace, referring to the three exterior light fixtures on Reed’s garage that had no light bulbs inside.
Fingerprint testing on the fixtures was inconclusive.
The prosecution also brought Paul Weber, Taglianetti’s former supervisor at Virginia’s National Museum of the Marine Corps, to the stand.
Weber said that Taglianetti tendered his resignation – he worked as an oral historian at the museum – on Sept. 24, 2012. Weber also mentioned that Taglianetti had called in sick the day of Reed’s murder.
The second-degree murder trial is scheduled to continue Tuesday at 9:30 a.m.