LAS CRUCES, N.M. — The judge presiding over the retrial of a New Mexico sheriff’s deputy charged with killing another deputy in 2014 has denied a request by the suspect’s lawyers for the case to be dismissed.
The lawyers on Monday claimed “prosecutorial misconduct” occurred because a transcript of suspect Tai Chan’s statements to investigators omitted declarations he made that could be used to justify he acted in self-defense.
“The court has to take some judicial notice that this is shocking,” said one of the lawyers, Tom Clark.
Judge Fernando Macias declined the request for the case to be dismissed, the Las Cruces Sun-News reported (http://bit.ly/2pHhGGi ).
The prosecutor, District Attorney Mark D’Antonio, said the omission of the statements by Chan was unintentional and probably happened when a technician edited the seven-hour recording.
“This was inadvertent and unfortunate errors,” D’Antonio said.
Chan is charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of 29-year-old Jeremy Martin inside a hotel. His lawyers have said he acted in self-defense and a deadlocked jury last year forced a mistrial.
During one omitted statement, Chan said was shot at and “he tried to kill me; he tried to kill me.”
Chan also said: “I was so scared for my life.”
Macias said he believed the omissions would have minimal impact on jurors.
Information from: Las Cruces Sun-News, http://www.lcsun-news.com