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James Ecker Obituary

11/4/1929 - 12/25/2013| Visit Guest Book
James Ecker (Associated Press, Keith Srakocic)
James Ecker (Associated Press, Keith Srakocic)
PITTSBURGH (AP) - James Ecker, a prominent defense attorney who stoically accompanied some of the Pittsburgh area's most celebrated criminal defendants for decades, has died.

The Allegheny County medical examiner's office says Ecker was 84 when he died in his sleep of natural causes before his body was found about 9 a.m. Wednesday.

Ecker cut a distinguished figure with his white hair and dapper dress.

Among others, he represented John Vojtas, a Brentwood police officer acquitted in the death of Jonny Gammage, a black motorist and cousin of then-Pittsburgh Steelers player Ray Seals, who died during a 1995 traffic stop. Ecker also represented Thomas Hose, a former school security guard serving five to 15 years in prison for keeping a female student captive for a decade.

Law partner Brent McCune says Ecker "was the ringmaster" in many high-profile cases.

Copyright © 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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Published online on December 25, 2013 courtesy of
On Wednesday, December 25, 2013. Son of the late I. Elmer and Belle Ecker; also survived by Barbara Ecker; longtime loving companion of 34 years to Donna Murtha; loving father of Micki Mallison... Read Obituary

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