YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) — Marquis Torres, 22, claims he was under the influence of drugs when he was interviewed last February in the Mahoning County Jail as a suspect in the murder of a Youngstown woman, but the lead detective in the case testified Wednesday he saw no signs that Torres was under the influence of anything.
Detective Sgt. Rick Spotleson said he read Torres his rights, and he had a signed waiver of those rights by Torres, who agreed to talk to him.
Spotleson testified in a suppression hearing before Judge Anthony Donofrio in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court.
Torres is one of seven men charged with the January 24, 2019, shooting death of 23-year-old Crystal Hernandez in the McBride Street apartment she shared with her boyfriend Gabriel Smith.
Police said Hernandez was killed by a group of men who were looking to retaliate against Smith and another man who had been involved in a series of shootings with the group earlier that day.
Three co-defendants have already pleaded guilty and testified in the trial of the man accused of firing the shot that killed Hernandez, Larenz Rhodes, 20.
Rhodes was convicted of murder and other charges last week by a jury and was sentenced to 30 years to life in prison.
Torres filed a suppression motion before the trial saying his statements to police in the case should be thrown out because he was tricked and also because he was under the influence of drugs.
Spotleson testified he interviewed Torres Feb. 8, 2019, in the Mahoning County jail, and Torres did not appear to be under the influence of anything and seemed to understand his rights.
“He seemed fine,” Spotleson said under cross examination by defense attorney Mark Carfolo.
A video of the interview was played in court, in which Torres could be heard saying he was anxious to be released.
“I’ve got myself and my family to take care of,” Torres said.
Judge Donofrio will make a decision after studying briefs on the matter.
Court records show Torres has a Sept. 28 pretrial as the next event in the case.