Investigator notes sought in double murder case

2014-03-04T15:26:00Z 2014-03-05T07:59:06Z Investigator notes sought in double murder caseBob Kasarda bob.kasarda@nwi.com, (219) 548-4345 nwitimes.com

VALPARAISO | A defense attorney in a double murder case argued Tuesday he has a right to see the notes taken by investigators while they were talking to his client, but before they turned on the recording equipment to take a formal statement.

The request by Mitch Peters was opposed by Deputy Prosecutor Cheryl Polarek, who argued that Alejandro Sanchez was considered a witness during the interview time in question.

At some point in that conversation, a third party identified Sanchez as a party to the crime and he went from being a witness to a suspect, she said. It was not until that transition that the interview was recorded and thus the defense has no right to the earlier notes in question, she said.

Porter Circuit Court Judge Mary Harper called on both attorneys to submit legal citations backing up their arguments.

Sanchez and co-defendant Julius Garza, both of Hammond, are charged with the April 7, 2012, shooting deaths of Jeffery Trinka, 40, of Valparaiso, and Jennifer Guinn, 31, of Hammond, at a house in the 1500 block of Lincolnway in Center Township.

Sanchez told Harper during his initial hearing in October that he did not know why he was behind bars. He said he was supposed to be a witness in the case.

Peters is seeking bond for Sanchez and won the right Tuesday to transport three inmates from the jail and prison to attend an April 3 hearing.

The request to bring the inmates to the hearing was opposed by Polarek, who said it is not material to the bond issue.

Polarek also objected to news that Peters had been meeting without her knowledge with individuals he claims are his witnesses.

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