Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Confession of Suspect in Florida Officer's Death Could Be Tossed

Alfred Gordon Sr

Posted: September 26th, 2008 12:01 PM EDT

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An attorney says Orange County deputies broke the rules interrogating an accused cop killer and his confession could be thrown out.

Davin Smith is accused of killing Orlando Police Officer Alfred Gordon last October. Smith is on tape claiming to detectives he accidentally shot Alfred Gordon minutes after Gordon took money out of an ATM. Now that testimony may be thrown out, because the defense says they got his statement illegally.

When Orange County detectives arrested Smith and Hugo Terry for allegedly murdering Alfred Gordon, they thought they had a slam dunk. In fact, Smith even admitted in a videotaped interrogation that he killed the off-duty officer.

"I heard the gunshot go off and that was it," Smith told investigators.

Gordon had just left the ATM at a Bank of America parking lot in Pine Hills when the two suspects approached him. Detectives said Gordon reached for his gun and Smith reached for his gun and that's when Smith shot him. The state is asking for the death penalty.

But now, Eyewitness News has learned Judge Belvin Perry may throw out Smith's statements to two detectives, including his confession while homicide detectives were interrogating Smith. The defense says they ignored his repeated requests for an attorney, a possible Miranda rights violation.

"He wanted to terminate that interview," said assistant public defender Marc Burnham.

"I want to call my mom and tell her to get my lawyer because this s*** ain't right," Smith told investigators.

The defense says detectives obtained Smith's statements illegally and without that confession the state has no case.

"Without that, all they have is Hugo Terry and his brothers making statements bringing my client into this," Burnham said.

With or without Smith's statement, prosecutors still feel they have a good case.

The public defender's office also claimed a deputy lied about whether he interviewed Smith and wanted the judge to take the death penalty off the table. Perry ruled the deputy may have simply forgotten.

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