A Rockland podiatrist who is behind bars for allegedly plotting to kill his wife along with his beautiful girlfriend has filed paperwork to have his guilty plea vacated so he can have his day, and say in court, according to his attorney.
Ira Bernstein claims his girlfriend, Kelly Gribeluk, pressured him into pleading guilty to plotting to have his wife killed in order to protect her sentencing deal, said Bernstein's attorney Jeffrey Millman.
"Dr. Ira Bernstein intended to go to trial on January 9, 2017, to show he was not guilty of Conspiracy to Murder his wife, Susan Bernstein," said Millman. "Ira was entitled to have an honest trial supported by the facts regardless of whether they helped the prosecution's case or hurts it."
The popular former doctor to the police department, claims in court documents that Gribeluk told him she would not testify truthfully in order to protect her deal, and he should do the same, according to legal papers filed with the state Appellate Division by Millman.
The 70-page court document says the doctor never wanted to have his wife killed and that the entire ploy was devised by Gribeluk, who met with the supposed "businessman" who arranged the fake murder scheme while working as an informant for the police.
Gribeluk claimed she told police the "hitman" had threatened to kill her and her children, as well as Bernstein, if she tried to back out of the plan, the court documents say.
"Due to co-defendant Gribeluk being repeatedly warned by the prosecution that they believed her story of threats and coercion by the civilian police informant aimed against Ira Bernstein and his children was a lie, she chose to safeguard her deal with the prosecutors rather than be truthful at trial," Millman said.
She also advised Bernstein she intended to omit all reference to forcing Ira to involve himself in this conspiracy due to the duress by police witnesses if she were to testify at trial on behalf of the prosecution, he added.
"This willful act created an unfair and unjust scenario that she used to push Ira Bernstein into admitting guilt he maintained was not so, so as to protect losing trial due to false evidence," Millman said. "We are looking forward to a trial with complete and honest evidence to be presented to the jury."
Richard Moran with the Rockland County District Attorney's Office said the motion is "without merit," and the office has no further comment.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.