FBI agents try to trace defendants on night of triple homicide using cellphone towers

Randall Daluz, 36, of Brockton, Massachusetts, is seated after entering a courtroom at the Penobscot Judicial Center in Bangor recently.
Randall Daluz, 36, of Brockton, Massachusetts, is seated after entering a courtroom at the Penobscot Judicial Center in Bangor recently.
Posted May 14, 2014, at 6:43 p.m.
Nicholas Sexton, 33, of Warwick, Rhode Island is seated in a courtroom at the Penobscot Judicial Center in Bangor recently.
Nicholas Sexton, 33, of Warwick, Rhode Island is seated in a courtroom at the Penobscot Judicial Center in Bangor recently.

BANGOR, Maine — Testimony on Wednesday afternoon in the triple murder trial focused on use of cellphone records in the prosecution’s attempt to track the movements of the defendants and their alleged victims on Aug. 12 and 13, 2012.

Special Agent William Shute of the FBI used maps of the Bangor area to show which cellphone towers the defendants’ phones were using to send text messages and make calls the night the prosecution claims they shot three people to death and then set the car they were in on fire.

Nicholas Sexton, 33, of Warwick, Rhode Island, and Randall Daluz, 36, of Brockton, Massachusetts, known by the nickname “Ricky” or “Money,” have been charged with three counts of murder and one count of arson in connection with the deaths. Investigators have described the slayings as a drug deal gone bad. Sexton and Daluz have pleaded not guilty.

The charred bodies of Nicolle A. Lugdon, 24, of Eddington; Daniel T. Borders, 26, of Hermon; and Lucas A. Tuscano, 28, of Bradford were found in a burning rental car on Aug. 13, 2012, at 22 Target Industrial Circle in Bangor.

Shute testified that he sent text messages and made phone calls from the locations where prosecutors claim Sexton and Daluz spent their evenings to see which cellphone towers he connected with. Shute mapped the towers serving areas at Carolina’s Bar & Grill under the Joshua Chamberlain Bridge in Bangor, where Sexton and Daluz spent much of the evening Aug. 12, 2012, according to testimony.

The FBI agent, who is trained in cellphone tower mapping, also made calls and sent texts in Bangor from 15 Bolling Drive, where the men allegedly picked up the victims; from the Ramada Inn on Odlin Road; and from 22 Target Industrial Circle, where the burned car was found. Shute also traveled to 65 Holyoke Lane in Dedham, where Sexton and Daluz allegedly got the can of diesel gasoline used to set the car and bodies on fire.

Alexis Eon of Verizon testified Wednesday morning that Borders made an outgoing call at 11:01 p.m. Aug. 12, 2012, but that all incoming calls after that went straight to voicemail. Tuscano’s phone last registered on a tower at 11:12 p.m. that night, Eon said. Beginning at 11:17 p.m., his calls began going to voicemail.

Phones records showed dozens of calls late on Aug. 12, 2012, and throughout the day on Aug. 13, 2012, went to voicemail as friends and family apparently tried to reach them, according to previous testimony.

Cross-examination of Shute will continue Thursday. The defense is expected to call its own cellphone expert next week to dispute Shute’s testimony.

The state could rest early next week. Defense attorneys have declined to say whether their clients will take the stand in their own defense.

Testimony in the trial began May 2, the day after the jury was seated and opening statements were made. The trial was scheduled to take between three and four weeks.

If convicted of murder, Sexton and Daluz face 25 years to life in prison on each count.

 

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