Case Ruling

Judge rules Springfield police officers didn’t honor murder defendant Edward Gonzalez’s rights

By August 30, 2016 No Comments

Photo: Dave Roback | droback@repub.com

SPRINGFIELD — A Hampden Superior Court judge has ruled statements made by murder defendant Edward Gonzalez after he asked for a lawyer four times during a police interview cannot be used at trial.

Gonzalez, 25, and Juan Villegas-Rodriguez, 33, both of Holyoke, have denied murder charges related to the Jan. 25, 2016, shooting death of 71-year-old Juan Zayas in Springfield’s North End.

Zayas, a North End community activist and father of a state trooper, was shot to death around 5:30 p.m. outside his home at 38 Brookline Ave. Information from court hearings indicates the men planned a robbery.

According to Judge John S. Ferrara, Gonzalez was brought into the Springfield police department after being arrested on May 26, 2016. Villegas-Rodriguez implicated Gonzalez in the homicide, the ruling said.

Capt. Trent Duda assigned detective Jose Canini, who speaks Spanish, to help Sgt. Jeffrey Martucci interview Gonzalez, who waived his rights and agreed to speak to detectives.

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