- Written by Administrator
- Published: 30 May 2012
The dangerousness hearing for Brett Roderick, 19, the Oklahoma man accused of an attempted armed home invasion on Deerpath Trail, was continued until May 30 at Plymouth District Court due to scheduling conflicts. He will be held at the Plymouth County House of Corrections until presiding Judge Kathryn Hand makes her ruling. Roderick is charged with multiple counts of assault with attempt to murder and assault with a dangerous weapon for allegedly firing on Duxbury police officers responding to the call. No one was harmed in the May 21 incident. Roderick’s newly appointed defense attorney, Liam Scully, said his client is not guilty of the charges.
“It’s obviously easy to point the finger at this kid, but there are some major inconsistencies right now,” said Scully. “From what I have, my client is not the person they were looking for. No one has positively identified him.”
Scully spoke to reporters outside the courtroom before the hearing got underway. He claimed differing witness statements and police reports described the sweatshirt the suspect wore varied from orange to rusty. Another inconsistency, according to Scully, is of the handgun allegedly used in the attack. He said he heard a report on WATD radio that the recovered gun was fully loaded. Additionally, Scully said, the one reportedly wielded at the Deerpath Trail home was described by the victim, an off duty cop, as silver, whereas a black handgun was recovered 25 feet from where Roderick, was found.
“My clients hands were also tested for gunpowder residue and none was recovered,” said Scully.
Inside the courtroom, Scully conferred with Plymouth County Assistant District Attorney Douglas Humphrey before the start of the hearing about the differing accounts of the gun.
“Can you tell me about the discrepancy between the black handgun and the silver?” Scully asked Humphrey.
“It was shiny and has the silver barrel,” responded Humphrey. “The grip, that would be silver, too. Other than that, it’s just the glint off the barrel.”
“We don’t have ballistics, right?” asked Scully.
“None,” said Humphrey.
While there’s no doubt his client was in the area the night of the alleged assault, Scully said Roderick was visiting a family member, stopped to smoke marijuana in nearby woods and then fled from police searching the neighborhood. The gunman who tried to force his way into the Deer Path Trail home was described as wearing a mask and according to Scully, no one has been able to positively identify Roderick as that suspect.
According to Humphrey, Roderick approached the Deer Path Trail home of an off duty Duxbury cop on May 21 at 10:45 p.m. wearing a hooded sweatshirt and mask, while wielding a semi-automatic handgun, and said, “Hurry up let me in it’s cold.” A resident of the housesaid Roderick appeared to try to disguise his voice.
When Duxbury Police responded to a 911 call from the police officer’s wife, Officer Mary Ellen Vidito spotted a suspect on Temple Street near the overpass and ordered the suspect to stop multiple times, but the suspect fled. Three other officers responded, including a K9 unit, and gave chase through the woods where they say the suspect fired two gunshots at them.
Once the hearing got underway, Roderick, wrists and ankles shackled, was led into the courtroom wearing a blue Old Navy t-shirt and low-slung jeans. Scully asked that his client have his cuffs removed, but the judge declined his request.
“I have some safety concerns under the circumstances,” said Hand.
In addition to the Massachusetts charges, a warrant was issued in Oklahoma for Roderick’s arrest for a probation violation following his conviction on armed robbery there. He served two years of a 15-year sentence for that crime.
Hand did agree to Scully’s requests for $2,000 from the court to pay for the defense’s private investigator and to preserve all involved police radio recordings from the May 21 night.
Scully is no novice when it comes to trying high profile criminal cases. He is perhaps best known for defending Duxbury resident and former Notre Dame soccer coach Jose Arana, accused of raping two of his then teen daughter’s friends in his home during a 2004 sleepover. In a retrial, Arana was convicted of rape of a child and sentenced to 8 to 10 years.
The prosecution hoped to present four witnesses, all from the Duxbury Police Department (DPD), but there was time to hear the testimony of only Vidito, a 19-year veteran of the DPD. She testified that she saw a suspect wearing a rust-colored hooded sweatshirt go into the woods near the Temple Street overpass after refusing to stop when ordered by her to do so.
Testimony in Roderick’s dangerousness hearing will resume in Plymouth District Court today at 2 p.m.