Father frustrated in search for justice in son's murder

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By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman

PHOENIX -- A Valley father, whose son was murdered, is frustrated with the criminal justice system in Maricopa County.

"It's like a slow form of torture," grieving Daniel Marco said outside Maricopa County Superior Court today. "There seems to be a lack of urgency."

For Daniel Marco and his family, it's a nightmare that began nearly two years ago when Marco's 21-year-old son, Zachary, a straight-A honor student at ASU, was robbed and murdered on his way home from a campus library.

"Today marks the 21st month since his death," the frustrated father said. "Twenty of those months we've been slogging through the system with no end in sight."

Marco was at Superior Court on Tuesday for what he thought would be the sentencing of 18-year-old Marion Patterson.

Patterson is one of two men arrest for the 2010  murder of Zachary Marco.

In a deal with prosecutors, Patterson pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.

But at Tuesday morning's hearing Patterson was a no-show, reportedly refusing to leave his jail cell.

"I have never seen anything fraught with delays like this system is," Marco said of the criminal justice system in Maricopa County.

Marco, who is a lawyer, said, "there seems to be a lack of care for what victims go through."

Still on tap for Marco is the first-degree murder trial for the alleged gunman in his son's murder, 22-year-old Louis Harper.

"It's broken," Marco said of a system that he now thinks is full of delays. "it needs to be fixed."