Former Alarm Installer on Trial in Murder

RIVERHEAD, N.Y. (AP) -- Daniel Pelosi, accused of murdering an East Hampton investment banker whose widow he later wed, was one of only a few people familiar with how security cameras operated inside the multimillionaire's mansion, the system's installer testified Wednesday.

John Kundle, the owner of Safeguard Alarm Co., told a Suffolk County jury that he was hired by Pelosi in early 2001 to upgrade the security system inside the home of Theodore Ammon.

Ammon, 52, who ran the private equity firm Chancery Lane Capital and was chairman of Jazz at Lincoln Center, was found bludgeoned to death in the master bedroom of his East Hampton mansion in October 2001. At the time he was killed, Ammon was within days of finalizing a bitter divorce from his wife, Generosa.

Prosecutors argue that Pelosi, 41, who was having an affair with Generosa Ammon, killed the banker because he believed that Generosa Ammon was getting a paltry settlement -- $25 million, plus several properties.

Ammon, an alumnus and trustee of Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pa., was worth at least $80 million when he was killed, Assistant District Attorney Janet Albertson said last week in opening statements.

Prosecutors also contend that Pelosi, an electrician, had contracted for the installation of Ammon's home security system, and therefore could have easily slipped into the mansion undetected.

The system was unplugged and its computer hard drive was missing from the home when detectives arrived to investigate the killing. The hard drive was never located after the slaying.

The hard drive was installed in the eaves of the mansion, a location that few people knew about, Kundle testified. Kundle said that other than Pelosi, the only other person he told about the hard drive location was a contractor who installed telephone wires so the system could be accessed remotely by a computer modem.

The sophisticated ``rapid eye'' system included motion detectors and eight cameras ``the size of a pinhead'' throughout the house, Kundle said.

And Kundle said that although Generosa Ammon paid for the security upgrade, he dealt with Pelosi both during and after the camera system was installed.

Kundle also testified that he had never discussed the installation with Theodore Ammon, and all bills were sent to a company owned by Generosa Ammon. She married Pelosi three months after Ammon's slaying, although they split up within a year and she died of cancer in August 2003.

Defense attorney Gerald Shargel planned to cross-examine Kundle later Wednesday, suggesting to reporters that others were aware of details about the security system.

If convicted, Pelosi -- who has a long list of arrests for drunken driving and other offenses -- faces 25 years to life in prison.

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