Prosecutors: Investigators did not mislead gang member questioned in Aaron Hernandez case
Robert E. Klein for The Boston Globe
The Bristol County district attorney’s office formally asked a judge today to throw out a motion accusing them of prosecutorial misconduct which was filed by the attorneys defending former New England Patriot Aaron Hernandez.
The prosecution’s request came after Attleboro District Court Judge Robert G. Harbour said his court no longer had jurisdiction over the case because it was moved to Superior Court following Hernandez’s indictment.
“He’s going to be arraigned in Superior Court next week. I think it’s proper at that point that these motions be issued before the Superior Court judge,” Harbour said.
The court motion and response from prosecutors centers on interviews both legal teams conducted with Everett Garcia, a Bristol, Conn., man serving seven-and-a-half years in prison for robbery.
In a motion filed earlier this month, Hernandez’s defense team alleged that investigators who arrived at the Connecticut prison where Garcia is being held told the inmate that they were there to “help out” Hernandez and concealed that they were police officers.
But in court papers filed today by District Attorney C. Samuel Sutter, the prosecution insisted that Garcia knew exactly who he was talking to when he agreed to speak with police.
Lawyers for Hernandez did not reply to requests for comment on the district attorney’s response to their accusations.
The prison interviews in question came as investigators continue to probe the link between Hernandez and the June 17 murder of Odin Lloyd, 27, of Dorchester. Hernandez has been charged with first-degree murder, and two other men are being held in connection to the slaying.
According to the new documents filed by prosecutors, investigators with the Massachusetts State Police and Bristol police arrived on Aug. 15 at the prison where Garcia is being held in an attempt to interview him.
Garcia, a confirmed member of the Bloods gang, was introduced to the officers by name and department and then voluntarily spoke with police investigators, according to an affidavit filed by Daniel Dougherty, a captain with the Connecticut Department of Corrections, that was included in Friday’s filing.
“One of the officers told Garcia that he could probably figure out why they were there,” Dougherty wrote. “Garcia said that it had to be related to the Hernandez case.”
Dougherty added that Garcia’s conversations with police included discussions about Hernandez, Ernest Wallace, and “Charlie-Boy.”
Wallace, of Miramar Fla., is one of the other two men who has been arrested in connection to the Lloyd murder. Carlos Ortiz, of Bristol, has also been arrested, but it is unclear if “Charlie-Boy” was a reference to him.
Dougherty’s report does not say what information investigators believe Garcia may have in relation to the Lloyd murder and does not include details of their conversation with him. His three-page affidavit repeatedly stresses, however, that Garcia knew that he was speaking to police.
“At no time during the interview did the officers say or do anything that suggested that they were there to help out Aaron Hernandez,” Dougherty wrote. “Garcia did not express any reluctance to speak with the officers and the interview was conversational and calm.”
A Superior Court judge will hear both legal teams’ arguments on the motions, likely when Hernandez appears in Fall River Superior Court next Friday for his arraignment.Wesley Lowery can be reached at Wesley.Lowery@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @WesleyLowery.