Thursday, August 29, 2013 7:39 pm
Astor heir, 89, to parole officials: Regrets? Yes
By JENNIFER PELTZAssociated Press
And when Anthony Marshall was asked whether he'd do the things at issue differently if he could, Marshall said, simply, "Quite."
Marshall's brief answers in the Aug. 21 interview, which led to his release last week on medical parole, offer a glimpse into thoughts he didn't express at his 2009 trial or sentencing in a case that opened a well-placed window on New York society.
Interviewed in a hospital bed two months into his one-to-three-year sentence, Marshall was asked whether he had regrets about the events leading to his imprisonment.
"Well, regrets, yeah," he said, "naturally."
Astor married a descendant of one of America's first multimillionaires, and she gave away millions to both big cultural institutions and neighborhood charities. She received the nation's top civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and was a fondly regarded fixture in the city's society set. She was 105 when she died in 2007.
Marshall, a former ambassador and Broadway producer, was convicted in 2009 of exploiting his mother's dementia to loot her $200 million fortune. His trial plunged jurors into a world of Park Avenue apartments and sprawling estates; witnesses included Astor friends Henry Kissinger and Barbara Walters.
Marshall, who didn't testify at his trial or speak at his sentencing, denies the allegations and has fought his conviction. He remained free on bail until June.
State law allows medical parole for inmates with serious and permanent illnesses.
Marshall suffers from Parkinson's disease, his doctors have said. He'd been taken to a hospital after falling down in prison and was interviewed with an oxygen tube to help his breathing, according to the redacted transcript released by the state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision. The agency generally redacts details that pertain to medical conditions, victims of crime and safety issues.
His lawyers had no immediate comment Thursday on Marshall's current condition.
Marshall told parole commissioners he can't stand up or walk for long, gets dizzy and needs help to fasten a button. While he said he was fuzzy about the date and how long he'd been in prison, he said his memory overall was "fair."
And when asked whether he recalled the allegations that led to his conviction, Marshall didn't hesitate.
"I remember it," he said, "all too well."
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