NEW ORLEANS - After emotional testimony Thursday from the victim who survived a double knife attack in the Pal's Lounge murder case, the killer was granted a 24-hour sentencing delay.
Erik Traczyk, 41, will return to court Friday to get a mandatory life sentence in the throat-slashing murder of Nia Robertson in 2007. Traczyk was convicted last month after failing to convince a jury he was not guilty by reason of insanity.
The delay did not sit well with a family members and friends of Robertson, who attended the hearing expecting to see Traczyk for the last time before he is sent to Angola Penitentiary to serve the rest of his natural life for first-degree murder.
“It’s painful. It’s unnecessary,” one family member said. “But we waited five years to get to here, so I guess we can wait one more day.”
Ryan Pasternak, whose throat was slashed seconds before Robertson’s, took the stand and attributed his survival to wearing a dress shirt when he went to the Mid-City bar directly after work.
“I’ll never be able to explain the scars to my son in a way that he’ll feel secure,” Pasternak testified before Judge Karen Herman.