BELFAST, Maine — The attorney for the Jackson man accused of killing a Florida firefighter in a drug-related shooting in February has filed a motion seeking to suppress evidence obtained during questioning of his client by police in Connecticut and Maine.
The motion on behalf of Daniel Porter, 25, seeks to quash statements the suspect made to law enforcement officials in Connecticut and Maine state police detectives from Feb. 22 through Feb. 28, according to documents filed Monday in Waldo County Superior Court in Belfast and posted on the Maine Judicial Branch’s website on Friday.
In the motion, attorney Jeffrey Silverstein of Bangor challenges whether statements made by Porter — and evidence gathered as result of those statements — were the product of a violation of Porter’s federal and state constitutional rights.
The motion disputes Porter’s statements to police were voluntary, that police in Connecticut and Maine complied with the provisions of the Miranda Act, and that Porter voluntarily waived his right to remain silent, consult with an attorney and have the attorney present during questioning.
The motion also states the “fruit of the poisonous tree” doctrine challenges the admissibility of any physical evidence obtained as a result of Porter’s statements.
Silverstein could not be reached for comment Friday night.
Porter was indicted in May by a Waldo County grand jury and charged with one count of intentional or knowing murder in the slaying of Jerry Perdomo, a firefighter and emergency medical technician for the Seminole County Fire Department.
Porter pleaded not guilty in June. He is being held without bail at Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset pending his trial, which is scheduled to begin on April 1, 2013, in Waldo County Superior Court, according to the Maine Judicial branch’s web site.
Police have said that Porter shot the 31-year-old Perdomo in the side of the head with a semiautomatic rifle on Feb. 16 at a rented home in Jackson after the two men had a dispute over drugs. Perdomo reportedly had been coming to Bangor once a month for nearly a year in order to illicitly transport and sell prescription drugs from Florida.
On the day he was killed, Perdomo packed a gun and two cellphones and told his girlfriend, Lisa Gould of Bangor, that he had to go collect a debt, according to Maine State Police Detective Brian Strout, who testified at Porter’s bail hearing in March at Waldo County Superior Court.
Porter’s girlfriend, Cheyanne Nowak, met Perdomo at a Route 69 gas station and led him to the rural Jackson home where Porter was staying. She then left the house to pick up her toddler while the two men were inside playing pool together, Strout said.
Porter later told police that he had owed Perdomo $3,000 and that Perdomo had threatened him and his family. One of the alleged threats was made public during Porter’s bail hearing, when he said that Perdomo told him he would erase $500 from the debt if Perdomo could rape Nowak on the pool table.
After Perdomo was shot, his body was wrapped in blue tarps and then moved several miles to the woods near Porter’s grandmother’s home on Dahlia Farm Road in Newburgh, Assistant Attorney General Leane Zainea said earlier.
Police found the body on a red sled off a woods path nearly two weeks into a widespread search effort that included local police, wardens and firefighters from Florida.
Police had arrested Porter and charged him with homicide the day before finding Perdomo’s body after discovering skull fragments and blood drops in the rented Jackson home.