Argument Over Defense in Orchard Park Beheading Case

August 13, 2010 Updated Aug 13, 2010 at 6:14 PM EDT

By Jennifer Stanonis

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August 13, 2010 Updated Aug 13, 2010 at 6:14 PM EDT

{BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) -- Muzzamil Hassan was in court once again for a pre-trial conference Friday morning. Erie County District Attorney Frank Sedita and the defense attorneys argued over if they're going to proceed with the stance by the defense that Hassan suffered from 'Battered Spouse Syndrome'. Hassan is accused of beheading his wife inside the Orchard Park business they owned and operated back in February, 2009. "I think this defense is going to be offered in bad faith, I don't think there's any credible evidence or credible information that this defendant, look at him, that this defendant was abused," Sedita said before being stopped by objections from the defense attorneys.

Prosecutors say there are a number of reasons why the court shouldn't proceed with this defense, but Hassan's attorneys say there are many facts that support it. "Earlier in the day of the incident itself Mrs. Hassan had pulled a knife on him and put it to his throat," defense attorney Julie Atti Rogers said. "And he did believe that his life would be in danger."

"Since 1985, case law has acknowledged it's... a legitimate defense," Jeremy Schwartz, Hassan's attorney, said.

The judge is deciding what will happen next and if there will have to be a separate hearing to resolve this. Until further notice, the trial is still set to begin on September 7th. The judge has already allowed Hassan to replace more than one lawyer on his case.